Full Text Canadian Political Transcripts November 26, 2014: PM Stephen Harper’s Statement announcing the new Speaker of the Senate of Canada — Transcript

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Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada announcing the new Speaker of the Senate of Canada

Source: PM.gc.ca, 11-26-14

Ottawa, Ontario
26 November 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement on the occasion of Dr. Noël A. Kinsella’s last day as Speaker of the Senate of Canada and to announce the appointment of the Honourable Pierre Claude Nolin as the new Speaker:

“Over the last eight years, Senator Noël Kinsella has served with distinction as Speaker of the Senate of Canada. He has presided over the Upper Chamber with aplomb and dignity, respecting the decorum of this institution and setting a tone that brought out the very best in his colleagues from all political parties.

“During his time as Speaker of the Senate, Senator Kinsella distinguished himself around the world as a human rights advocate and an academic. As an Honorary Captain in the Royal Canadian Navy’s Naval Reserve, he continued in his unfailing support of the men and women who serve, visiting the Pacific and Atlantic coast Canadian naval installations and boarding many of the ships of the Canadian fleet, including HMCS Charlottetown on patrol in the Persian Gulf.

“On behalf of all Canadians, I would like to express my deepest appreciation to Senator Kinsella for his remarkable work, and for the compassion and intellect which he used to raise his office. I thank him as well for his tireless parliamentary service to Canadians and for representing New Brunswickers and Acadians so well. He will be remembered and honoured and I wish him every success in all his future endeavours.

“I am also pleased today to announce that Senator Pierre Claude Nolin has accepted to become the next Speaker of the Senate.

“Senator Nolin has represented Quebecers and Canadians in the Upper Chamber with honour for over 21 years. The wealth of experience he has gained on numerous committees, including the Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs, the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade, the Standing Committee on National Security and Defence, and the Standing Committee on Banking, Trade and Commerce, as well as his experience as Speaker pro tempore of the Senate will no doubt allow him to excel as Speaker of the Senate of Canada. I am confident he will succeed in his new role and work to make this institution more transparent, democratic and accountable.”
– See more at: http://pm.gc.ca/eng/news/2014/11/26/statement-prime-minister-canada-announcing-new-speaker-senate-canada#sthash.gulRH1bU.dpuf

Full Text Canadian Political Transcripts December 25, 2014: PM Stephen Harper’s Statement on the Christmas season — Transcript

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Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada on the Christmas season

Source: PM.gc.ca, 12-25-14

Ottawa, Ontario
25 December 2014

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Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement on the Christmas season:

“This Christmas, we Canadians have many reasons to celebrate.

“We live in a beautiful country, a compassionate country, a prosperous country.

“Despite the difficulties elsewhere in the world, Canada’s economy is getting ever stronger, and more Canadians have more opportunities and better jobs than ever before.

“Importantly, around the world our country is also known for doing what is good and right, and for protecting the vulnerable, promoting peace, and defending the freedom of all people.

“Amid all the festivities, please say a prayer of thanks for the brave men and women in uniform, who serve this Christmas in harm’s way, especially those fighting the terrorists of the so-called Islamic State.

“In our abundance, and in the spirit of Christmas, I’d also ask you to show kindness to the less fortunate.

“And as you gather with friends and family, may you be filled with love, joy, peace and most of all, hope for the future.

“On behalf of the Government of Canada and from my family to yours, Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah and Season’s Greetings.”
– See more at: http://pm.gc.ca/eng/news/2014/12/25/statement-prime-minister-canada-christmas-season#sthash.FGybkQSy.dpuf

Full Text Canadian Political Transcripts December 17, 2014: PM Stephen Harper’s Statement to mark the beginning of Chanukah — Transcript

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Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada to mark the beginning of Chanukah

Source: PM.gc.ca, 12-17-14

Prime Minister Stephen Harper, his wife Laureen and Rabbi Shriki light the first candle of the chanukiah during a special ceremony marking the beginning of Chanukah.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper, his wife Laureen and Rabbi Shriki light the first candle of the chanukiah during a special ceremony marking the beginning of Chanukah.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper, his wife Laureen and Rabbi Shriki light the first candle of the chanukiah during a special ceremony marking the beginning of Chanukah.
Ottawa, Ontario
16 December 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement to mark the beginning of Chanukah:

“This evening at sundown marks the first night of Chanukah, the Jewish Festival of Lights.

“Chanukah is a meaningful eight-day celebration of the victory of the Maccabees, which liberated the ancient Israelites from oppression and their rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. It is also a celebration of the ‘great miracle,’ when one day’s worth of oil burned for a full eight days, symbolizing the power of faith to bring light to a world often filled with darkness and despair.

“Tonight, Jews across Canada and around the world will gather with their family and friends to light the first candle of the chanukiah, an important tradition which people of the Jewish faith have upheld for over 2,000 years.

“Chanukah is an opportunity for all Canadians to reflect on the meaning of faith, freedom and the triumph of good over evil, and to pay tribute to the tremendous contributions of Canada’s Jewish community in all areas of endeavour.

“On behalf of all Canadians, I wish everyone celebrating Chanukah both in Canada and around the world a happy and peaceful holiday.

“Chag Chanukah Sameach!”

Full Text Canadian Political Transcripts December 10, 2014: PM Stephen Harper’s Statement following the funeral service for Jean Béliveau — Transcript

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Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada following the funeral service for Jean Béliveau

Source: PM.gc.ca, 12-10-14

Montréal, Quebec
10 December 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement following Jean Béliveau’s funeral service in Montréal:

“On behalf of the Government of Canada and on behalf of all Canadians, I extend my heartfelt condolences to the family of Jean Béliveau.

“His wife Élise, his daughter Hélène, and his two granddaughters, Mylène and Magalie, have lost an extraordinary husband, father, and grandfather.

“And Canada has lost one of the most respected and admired citizens of his generation.

“No one played our national sport so skillfully, elegantly and successfully as Jean Béliveau.

“He inspired generations of young Canadian men and women, from coast to coast to coast.

“The greatest dream of hundreds of thousands of those youngsters was to score a goal ‘like Jean Béliveau.’

“Indeed, ever since the early 1950s there has been, and still is today, a special sort of goal in Canadian hockey: the ‘Jean Béliveau goal.’

“But Mr. Béliveau was greater than the sport to which he devoted his whole life.

“In Quebec, he was one of a handful of individuals, of popular heroes, who nourished the pride of our fellow citizens.

“During our first year in office, our Government had a resolution passed in the Parliament of Canada recognizing that the Québécois form a nation within a united Canada.

“Among those great cultural values and institutions that are specific to Quebec – the French language and culture, the civil law – I think we can also very clearly recognize a red, white and blue jersey.

“A number nine could already be seen on the back of that jersey.

“Now we can see a jersey bearing the number four.

“Like so many generations of young Canadians since hockey has been played in Canada, Jean Béliveau took his first steps on skates on a small rink that his father set up in the back yard of the family home.

“Starting in his first years as a junior in Victoriaville and then in Québec City, there was something magical to be seen in how Jean Béliveau skated.

“For 18 years, thanks to his talent and team spirit, he made his mark as the natural leader of the Habs, who already had other stars in their roster.

“His charisma and influence transcended team lines.

“I remember attending a gala in honour of Mr. Béliveau’s 75th anniversary, here in Montréal.

“There, the great Gordie Howe, as fierce a competitor as the National Hockey League has ever seen, who played against Jean Béliveau for 18 years, said about him: ‘If you think he’s a good hockey player, as a gentleman he’s even better.’

“After hanging up his skates, he remained a beloved and respected figure of Quebec society, as a hockey executive and philanthropist.

“Above all, he was a family man, devoted to his wife, his daughter and his grandchildren.

“To remain close to them during a difficult period in their life, he declined two of the highest functions in the country, offered by two successive prime ministers – of different political stripes.

“Jean Béliveau also leaves the legacy and the example of a discreet, generous philanthropist, deeply committed to his community.

“Throughout and after his sports career, he had a special place in his heart for children with disabilities.

“Jean Béliveau was already a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame, inducted immediately after he retired from the game.

“He is now a part of Canadian history.”
– See more at: http://pm.gc.ca/eng/news/2014/12/10/statement-prime-minister-canada-following-funeral-service-jean-beliveau#sthash.FZqOkDAe.dpuf

Full Text Canadian Political Transcripts December 9, 2014: PM Stephen Harper comments on the terrorist situations in France

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PM Stephen Harper comments on the terrorist situations in France

Ottawa, Ontario
9 January 2015

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today commented on the additional deaths in France as a result of the terrorist attacks, and commended French authorities for ending the immediate terrorist threat in and around Paris, France.

“The thoughts and prayers of all Canadians are with the family and friends of those who were killed during today’s hostage takings in France. We are also relieved that French authorities were able to neutralize three of those directly involved in these cowardly terrorist acts that killed many innocent people in several locations in France.

“I would like to commend French authorities for tracking down those responsible for these heinous crimes. It is my hope any other individuals responsible for planning and carrying out these depraved acts will be brought to justice and face the full force of the law.

“We stand with our allies in defiance of those who commit such barbaric acts and whose only aim is to usurp the rights of freedom-loving people everywhere, including the fundamental right of freedom of expression.”

Full Text Canadian Political Transcripts December 7, 2014: PM Stephen Harper’s Statement on the shooting at offices of French news magazine in Paris

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  1. Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada on shooting at offices of French news magazine in Paris
Ottawa, Ontario
7 January 2015

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement on the shooting that occurred in Paris, France:

“I am angered and saddened to hear of the terrorist attack today in the offices of the Parisian news magazine “Charlie Hebdo,” which has killed at least 12 individuals, including two police officers.

“On behalf of all Canadians, I offer my deepest condolences to the family and friends of those who lost their lives during this heinous crime and wish a speedy recovery to those injured. The perpetrators of this attack must be apprehended and brought to justice.

“This barbaric act, along with recent attacks in Sydney, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, and Ottawa, is a grim reminder that no country is immune to the types of terrorist attacks we have seen elsewhere around the world.

“Canada and its allies will not be intimidated and will continue to stand firmly together against terrorists who would threaten the peace, freedom and democracy our countries so dearly value. Canadians stand with France on this dark day.”

Full Text Canadian Political Transcripts December 3, 2014: PM Stephen Harper’s Statement on the death of Jean Béliveau — Transcript

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Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada on the death of Jean Béliveau

Source: PM.gc.ca, 12-3-14

Ottawa, Ontario
3 December 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement after learning of the death of hockey legend Jean Béliveau:

“On behalf of all Canadians, Laureen and I offer our deepest condolences to the family, friends, colleagues and many fans of Jean Béliveau, who passed away at the age of 83.

“Known affectionately as ‘Le Gros Bill,’ Mr. Béliveau was quite simply one of the most talented and gracious players to ever play the game. His renowned skills as a centre – including his skating ability and expert stick handling – were perhaps only eclipsed by his unfailing sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct both on and off the ice.

“A pillar of the Montreal Canadiens for decades, he contributed enormously as both a player and later an executive to the Habs, earning 17 Stanley cups. He still ranks second on the team’s all-time regular season scoring list with 1,219 points and holds the Canadiens’ record with 176 career playoff points in 162 contests. He made the All-Star Team numerous times, and won many of the leagues’ most prestigious honours, including the Art Ross Trophy, the Conn Smythe Trophy and the Hart Memorial Trophy. Le Gros Bill was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1972.

“Mr. Béliveau was also a philanthropist contributing to the Alzheimer Society and Big Brothers and Big Sisters, as well as to a multitude of activities for children with disabilities, including through the Jean Béliveau Foundation.

“Jean Béliveau was appointed a Companion of the Order of Canada in 1998 and a Grand officier de l’Ordre national du Québec in 2010. He was inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame in 2001 and into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in 1975. He was also the recipient of the NHL Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009.

“Mr. Béliveau will be remembered as a hockey giant who inspired a nation with his outstanding skill, humility and pure love of the game. His legacy lives on in the records he set, the legions of hockey players that he inspired, and the deep love he shared with his home province of Quebec.”
– See more at: http://pm.gc.ca/eng/news/2014/12/03/statement-prime-minister-canada-death-jean-beliveau#sthash.vVv5Wlpz.dpuf

 

Full Text Canadian Political Transcripts November 30, 2014: PM Stephen Harper’s Statement on the Calgary Stampeders on winning the 102nd Grey Cup championship — Transcript

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Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada on the 102nd Grey Cup championship

Source: PM.gc.ca, 11-30-14

Ottawa, Ontario
30 November 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement congratulating the Calgary Stampeders on winning the 102nd Grey Cup game, which was played in Vancouver, British Columbia:

“On behalf of all Canadians, I congratulate the Calgary Stampeders on their 2014 Grey Cup victory over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats at BC Place Stadium in Vancouver.

“For generations the Grey Cup championship has captivated the hearts and attention of Canadians from coast to coast to coast and this year’s contest was no different, providing football fans from across the country with memorable moments in sport.

“I would like to commend both teams – including coaches and trainers – on their remarkable seasons and thank them and the organizers of this year’s Grey Cup championship for another successful chapter in Canadian football history.”
– See more at: http://pm.gc.ca/eng/news/2014/11/30/statement-prime-minister-canada-102nd-grey-cup-championship#sthash.30unjjpc.dpuf

Full Text Canadian Political Transcripts November 11, 2014: PM Stephen Harper’s Statement on Remembrance Day — Transcript

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Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada on Remembrance Day

Source: PM.gc.ca, 12-11-14

Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his wife Laureen pay their respects during the Remembrance Day Ceremony at the National War Memorial

Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his wife Laureen pay their respects during the Remembrance Day Ceremony at the National War Memorial

Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his wife Laureen pay their respects during the Remembrance Day Ceremony at the National War Memorial.
Ottawa, Ontario
11 November 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement to mark Remembrance Day:

“Today we remember the courage and dedication of the Canadian men and women who have fought valiantly over the years to defend our freedom and rights, making it possible for us to live in a peaceful, democratic country where we enjoy one of the best qualities of life in the world.

“For the past two centuries, hundreds of thousands of Canadians have earned enormous respect – at home and abroad – by answering the call to fight against tyranny and evil around the world in engagements such as the First and Second World Wars, the Korean War, Afghanistan and many other international military operations. Those who fought so valiantly in these battlefields are still honoured and remembered in places such as Vimy Ridge, Ypres, Normandy, Sicily, Hill 355 in Korea, and Kandahar to name a few. Many made the ultimate sacrifice.

“It is our duty to remember the Canadians who so selflessly defended our freedom. That is why the commemorations of the 100th anniversary of the First World War and the 75th anniversary of the Second World War are two of the major milestones on the Road to 2017. As we recall our proud history, let us also remember how early Canadians, First Nations and Métis people fought together like never before in the War of 1812 to repel an American invasion, laying the foundation for an independent Canada.

“Remembrance Day also provides an opportunity to pay tribute to the daunting sacrifices made by Canadian families who were forced to endure their loved ones being away at war and dangerous missions abroad. Let us recall the unfailing support they provided to those on the front lines, the thousands of letters and care packages, and the dedication of those who worked in support of the effort back at home.

“On this solemn occasion, let us celebrate the brave men and women of the Canadian Armed Forces carrying on today in the proud tradition of their forebears, defending freedom in places such as Iraq, Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean Sea.

“Members of the Canadian Armed Forces have the honour to wear a uniform that is recognized across the world as a symbol of courage and democracy. The recent deadly attacks on Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent and Corporal Nathan Cirillo, who were targeted simply because they proudly wore this uniform, only strengthens Canada’s resolve to keep fighting against those who would deny our liberties and freedoms, and who have a complete disregard for human lives.

“We can never repay the debt we owe to the intrepid men and women who paid for our freedom with their lives, but we can remember their enormous sacrifices and pay tribute to their bravery and patriotism.

“Lest we forget.”

Full Text Canadian Political Transcripts October 23, 2014: PM Stephen Harper’s Remarks in the House of Commons addressing the terror attacks in the Nation’s Capital, Parliament Hill — Transcript

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Prime Minister Stephen Harper delivers remarks in the House of Commons addressing the attacks in the Nation’s Capital

Source: PM.gc.ca, 10-23-14

Ottawa, Ontario
23 October 2014
Prime Minister Stephen Harper today delivered the following remarks in the House of Commons addressing the attacks in the Nation’s Capital:

“Thank you, colleagues.

“Mr. Speaker, I would like to begin today by recognizing and thanking the Leader of the Opposition and the Honourable Member for Papineau for their kind remarks and words of encouragement yesterday evening.

“Mr. Speaker, in our system, in our country, we are opponents but we are never enemies.

“We are Canadians, one and all.

“We may be across the aisle from one another, but when faced with attacks on the country we all love and the things we all stand for, I know we will always stand together.

“Mr. Speaker, today more than ever before, I’m quite pleased to see all of my colleagues from all parties in good health and good form.

“Let me just maybe use that Mr. Speaker, through you, to provide a little bit of advice to my colleagues.

“I think my position and a growing number of grey hairs entitles me to do this once in a while, and that is just to say, we all here are engaged in extremely demanding and stressful jobs.

“But the stress that many of you faced yesterday was really beyond and above anything that any of us are really expecting to face.

“I would just say while we resume our duties, and I’ll talk about that in a moment, I would encourage everybody here to take care of their health.

“Be sure that you find some time to relax in the next little while, and also if any of you – because we are not all in perfect health – if any of you are experiencing any undue physical stress as a result of what occurred yesterday, please take the time to see a physician and get that checked out.

“I also just want to say to Canadians – we heard a lot of feedback from Canadians yesterday.

“We are all used to the feedback we get very regularly from Canadians.

“Much of it in the form of brick bats, and some of it deserved.

“But in this case, Mr. Speaker, I think we all experienced the tremendous outpouring of warmth and affection and good wishes from people across the country and we thank them, all of us here.

“I just also want to convey all the good wishes that I heard personally, not just from Canadians but from our friends outside the country.

“I heard from President Obama, from Prime Minister Abbott, from Prime Minister Netanyahu, through a statement from Prime Minister Cameron.

“We’ve heard these expressions across the world.

“I think we were all, as Canadians, touched by the wonderful gesture shown last night at the Pittsburgh Penguins hockey game.

“So thank you to our friends in the United States and around the world.

“Of course, Mr. Speaker, we know all too well this is not a happy day for everybody.

“In particular, a terribly sad day for all of the family, loved ones, friends, colleagues of both Nathan Cirillo and Patrice Vincent.

“We have seen photos of these lovely men.

“We’ve all seen the pictures of these beautiful guys, as Don Cherry would say, and our hearts really are with all of them.

“We are so fortunate to have people like this.

“The past couple of decades has, you know, we see across the world, increasing places where the planet is descending into savagery and there are people who every day of their lives stand on guard for this country and for all of us, and we obviously want to convey our gratitude to these two servicemen and their families, but also to all the people who undertake this extremely dangerous work.

“Mr. Speaker, I spoke of the state of much of the world and I think for all of us who are blessed to live in a country like this, it is hard to appreciate, understand, fathom how we can have people who so despise, are involved in a movement who so want violence, who so despise modernity, who so hate progress, that they can desire to drive out medical workers from their community, harm them, how they can enslave women, torture children.

“How they can kill, want to kill anyone who looks or thinks different than them.

“It is in a sense, Mr. Speaker, beyond our comprehension but it is very real and in this struggle in which we are engaged, in which not only our finest values must be put to work, so must be and will be the highest unity and resolve.

“They are our ultimate and indispensible weapons and that’s what these people will face.

“Mr. Speaker, with regard to the events of yesterday and in recent days, a number of questions remain and will all be answered over the course of the police security investigations.

“But I can tell the House this today: the objective of both of those attacks was to spread fear and panic in our country and to interrupt the business of government.

“Well, Honourable Members, as I said yesterday, Canadians will never be intimidated.

“We will be vigilant but we will not run scared.

“We will be prudent but we will not panic.

“And as for the business of government, well, here we are, in our seats, in our chamber in the very heart of our democracy and our work.

“Mr. Speaker, in all its diversity of peoples and opinions, this House personifies the spirit of Canada.

“Canada will never yield to terrorism and neither will this House of Commons.

“We carry on.

“We will attend to the country’s affairs and we will be faithful to the trust that people have placed in us.

“Now, Mr. Speaker, as I said earlier and I have been saying for a long time, we live in dangerous world.

“Terrorism has been here with us for a while and dangerously close on a number of occasions.

“I speak for example, I draw our members’ attention back to incidents such as the Toronto 18, the Via Rail conspiracy in 2013, and I could point to a number of others as well as many that most will never know about.

“For that reason and with the belief and security that Canada is the government’s primary responsibility, we have over the years passed such legislation as the Combating Terrorism Act and the Strengthening Canadian Citizenship Act to better protect Canadians and secure institutions.

“Last week, our Government proposed amendments to the legislation under which the Canadian Security Intelligence Service operates.

“And as you know, Mr. Speaker, in recent weeks I’ve been saying that our laws and police powers need to be strengthened in the area of surveillance, attention and arrest.

“They need to be much strengthened and I assure you, Mr. Speaker, that work which is already underway will be expedited.

“In conclusion, Mr. Speaker, we’re all aware and deeply troubled that both of this week’s terrorist attacks were carried out by Canadian citizens, by young men born and raised in this peaceful country.

“I share this concern, and I have to ask myself what sort of feeble-mindedness could lead a person to reject a nationality that so many people in so many countries would do anything to earn for their children.

“That is a question for another day.

“For now, make no mistake, even as the brave men and women of our Armed Forces are taking this fight to the terrorists on their own territory, we are equally revolved to fight it here.

“We live in dangerous times, yes, but the mission of our country and the work of this Parliament goes on.

“And so does the work throughout this city.

“Let me just say one final word, in recognizing all of the heroics of yesterday.

“First of all, I know so many – I could certainly speak personally to my staff at 24 Sussex – Mr. Roger Charbonneau, the chefs, Tim and Tina, who were up all night.

“But I know people who for all of us across the country and here in Ottawa were working day and night to make things as easy as possible.

“Officials who were busy at work trying to respond to the situation, first responders and citizens who put themselves in harm’s way when this incident began to unfold.

“But obviously, Mr. Speaker, and in conclusion most particularly the men and women of our security services, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Canadian Armed Forces, the City of Ottawa Police and most particularly, of course, Mr. Speaker, I would be very remiss if I did not conclude in acknowledging specifically the work of the security forces here on Parliament and the great work of our Sergeant-at-Arms.”

– See more at: http://pm.gc.ca/eng/news/2014/10/23/statement-prime-minister-canada#sthash.A4kEvObj.dpuf