Hansard: February 22, 2022
Federal government policy
Mrs. Belinda C. Karahalios: Speaker, my question is for the Premier.
Last night, the federal Trudeau Liberal government, with the support of the NDP, passed a motion to extend the continued use of special policing measures for a situation that no longer exists or requires them.
The Conservative Party of Canada opposed the extension of these measures, which give the federal government the ability to freeze bank accounts and credit cards, put in police checkpoints and separate parents from children—all without due process ordinarily given under the law.
Why does this Ontario government continue to prop up Justin Trudeau—
The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Order.
Mrs. Belinda C. Karahalios: —this time by supporting the continued extension of these authoritarian and unwarranted special federal measures, when the situation used to justify them no longer exists?
The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Stop the clock.
I had difficulty hearing parts of the question because the member for Orléans was heckling loudly and the member for Carleton was heckling loudly. I’d ask you to come to order.
Start the clock.
To reply on behalf of the government, government House leader.
Hon. Paul Calandra: The federal Parliament made a decision yesterday that was supported by a majority of the House of Commons, and we of course will respect that decision.
I think what you hear, Mr. Speaker, is the ongoing issues with respect to the COVID-19 response. It has been very difficult. As the member for Ottawa Centre said, people are frustrated and they are angry. We have to make sure that we do a better job of understanding what that anger is about.
We heard from farmers. Farmers were protesting, Mr. Speaker. We heard from different families who were protesting. Some people were protesting the high cost of living. Some people were protesting the fact that a carbon tax put so many more costs on farmers and their ability to bring their food to market. There’s a whole range of issues that need to be addressed by our Legislature and by Legislatures across this country.
Of course we’ll let the federal government make decisions on behalf of the federal government, but ultimately, we all have to do a better job of understanding what it is that brought people to Ottawa.
The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Supplementary question.
Mrs. Belinda C. Karahalios: Premier Moe of Saskatchewan and Premier Kenney of Alberta both opposed the Trudeau government’s authoritarian special measures. Member of Parliament Leslyn Lewis—who the Premier gave a government appointment to on the Ontario Trillium Foundation—herself said that the Trudeau government’s special measures are about one thing: to financially attack and silence people he despises for disagreeing with him. Even Premier Kenney, who Premier Ford once stood shoulder to shoulder with, announced that Alberta is filing a court challenge against the federal government’s special measures.
Why won’t this government stop propping up the Trudeau government and, instead of being in the back pocket of the Prime Minister, try standing up for Ontarians and join Alberta in court to challenge the federal government’s unnecessary, destructive and authoritarian measures?
Hon. Paul Calandra: Again, Mr. Speaker, I think it is that type of language that helps to inflame and get people really misunderstanding how government has responded to the COVID-19 crisis.
First and foremost, we wanted to ensure that the people of the province of Ontario were safe through the COVID-19 crisis, Mr. Speaker.
Let’s be honest and let’s be clear about what we saw in these protests. It doesn’t matter who is on what side of the chamber; nobody supports symbols of hate. Nobody supports the absolutely ridiculous aims of the protest organizers. We’re all on the same page on that. But let’s be clear: There were farmers there who were protesting the high cost of fuel. There were families who were there protesting the cost of living in this country. There was a whole other subset of people who were there for different reasons. We can continue to inflame that—I’m not sure why—or we can look at what it was and what has caused people to go to Ottawa, what has caused them to go to the Ambassador Bridge.
But make no mistake about it; we will always stand up for law and order. We will always stand up for the authority of the state. That is our job, and we will continue to make sure that that happens.
Comment: notice how he smears the protesters by association with the agents/plants who had the extremist symbols. Then he completely dismisses their objections to mandatory injections (and loss of freedoms) by calling their aims “absolutely ridiculous.” Dismissing these objections as if they aren’t legitimate is an Orwellian attack on reality.