The calendar running out, and so many things left to bat the government with, it was going to be another fairly testy QP, but before things could get underway, the business or the House paused so that newly elected NDP MP Murray Rankin could be brought into the a chamber to take his seat. When QP got underway, Thomas Mulcair read off a trio of questions about when the government would be clarifying the Investment Canada Act, per the NDP opposition day motion yesterday which the Conservatives agreed to. Harper responded that they already clarified the rules last Friday when they drew the line in the sand around state-owned enterprises — hence why they voted for said motion. Mulcair carried on, asking a pair of questions on the F-35s, and why there were no regional industrial benefits. Harper assured him of the Seven-Point Plan™, and named several companies in Montreal that are benefitting from subcontracts for the plane’s construction. Bob Rae was up next, and pressed about the cost figures for the F-35 purchase. Harper went back to the Seven-Point Plan™, and reminded Rae that when you keep lengthening the service lifetime that the costs will also keep rising.
Round two started off with Hélène LeBlanc bringing up CNOOC’s environmental record (Paradis: The Liberals would rubberstamp investments and the NDP would turn them all down!), Peter Julian worried about the effect of the Canada-China FIPA with CNOOC (Paradis: You hate investment), and Matthew Kellway, Christine Moore and Jack Harris asked about a competitive process to replace the CF-18s (Ambrose: We have a secretariat and a full options analysis). Carolyn Bennett asked a five-year wait for an adoption case (Kenney: Come talk to me later, but foreign adoptions need particular scrutiny), Ted Hsu asked about the closure of the immigration office in Kingston (Kenney: Woe be the shameful Liberal record), and John McCallum asked about the long wait times for family-class immigrants (Kenney: We’ve cut those wait times). Anne-Marie Day and Claude Patry asked about access to EI tribunals (Finley: We’re trying to help people find new jobs!), and Jonathan Tremblay and Chris Charlton asked about changes to the Working While On Claim programme (Finley: We responded to the need for changes).
Round three saw questions on contaminated sites clean-up costs, a private member’s bill, party business (which the Speaker did call out), a comparison between Diane Finley and Gary Bettman when it comes to EI performance, a housing co-op in Winnipeg, Murray Rankin asked his first question on a yacht marina approved in his riding, the closure of the Kitsilano Coast Guard station, social housing, Internet access in remote areas, and sports funding.
Sartorially speaking, snaps go out to Blake Richards for a grey suit with a pale lavender shirt and a violet tie, and to Michelle Rempel, for a fitted jewel-toned blue dress with three-quarter sleeves and a notched neckline. Style citations go out to Megan Leslie for a snot-green belted dress with the sleeves buttoned in place, and to Colin Carrie for a black suit, terra cotta shirt, and bright white tie. Dishonourable mention to Jean Rousseau for a black suit with a bright yellow shirt and brown tie.