Shooting in Quebec City
The House of Commons observed a moment of silence in memory of the victims of the attack at the Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec. All parties in the House of Commons expressed their condemnation of the shooting and offered their condolences to the families of the victims, as well as the Muslim community in Quebec. Statements condemning the attack were read by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Leader of the Opposition MP Rona Ambrose, NDP Leader MP Thomas Mulcair, Bloc Quebecois Leader MP Rhéal Fortin, and the Green Party Leader MP Elizabeth May.
U.S. Travel Ban
NDP Leader MP Thomas Mulcair stated to the House that the American president has implemented a ban on all individuals from several Muslim countries without justifications. MP Thomas Mulcair asked the Prime Minister if he agrees that this targeting of people based on their religion or place of birth is an affront to our shared values as Canadians.Prime Minister Justin Trudeau responded by stating that he will continue defend the Canadian values of openness and diversity that we cherish so much.
MP Thomas Mulcair also asked the Prime Minister what he intends to do to provide ongoing assistance to the thousands of refugees who are now banned from the United States. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau responded by stating that he has asked the Minister of Immigration, Refugees & Citizenship (MP Ahmed Hussen) to consider the different ways we can help these refugees.
Separately, The Minister of Immigration, Refugees & Citizenship, MP Ahmed Hussen, told the House that the government has received assurance from the United States that Canadian citizens and Canadian permanent residents with valid permanent resident cards will not be denied entry into the United States as a result of this executive order.
NDP Leader MP Thomas Mulcair stated to the House that the Prime Minister has abandoned his commitment for democratic reform and in doing so, betrayed all Canadians.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau responded by restating that while he has long preferred a preferential ballot, the members opposite wanted proportional representation, and the official opposition wanted a referendum. There was no consensus. Hence, the Prime Minister stated that there is no clear path forward and therefore, Canada’s voting system will be left unchanged. MP Thomas Mulcair responded by stating to the House that the Liberal party promised something in order to get elected and to appear progressive, but then, once elected, shamelessly broke its promise to all Canadians.
Leader of the Opposition MP Rona Ambrose (Conservative), stated that last year the House unanimously voted to recognize that violence perpetrated by ISIS against the Yazidi people constitutes genocide, and committed to providing asylum to Yazidi women and girls within 120 days. MP Rona Ambrose asked the Prime Minister how many Yazidi women and children have made it safely to Canada. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau answered by saying that the new Minister of Immigration, Refugees & Citizenship (MP Ahmed Hussen) is working hard on this file and anticipates meeting the February deadline for this mandate.