These comments are direct quotations from the Hansard documents.

CWB Legal Costs Soar

Mr. Dick Proctor (Palliser, NDP): Mr. Speaker, the unfortunate comments by the Prime Minister's director of communications regarding the U.S. president will clearly not help trade relations between our two countries, but more on that later.

The Canadian Wheat Board is now enduring its 10th challenge in 12 years and like a punch-drunk boxer, we just absorb the pounding. Even if we win, the latest challenge will cost $10 million in legal costs and Canadian farmers will have to pony that up.

Would the minister responsible for the board tell us when this country will start pounding back?

Hon. Ralph Goodale (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Minister responsible for the Canadian Wheat Board and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, this hon. gentleman would certainly know everything about eavesdropping, given his record and reputation.

However let me say this about the Canadian Wheat Board. The government has stood by the Canadian Wheat Board in all the previous challenges. The United States, through a whole variety of U.S. official organizations, has raised these allegations not once, not twice, not three times, but nine previous times. The Canadian side has successfully defended every one of those challenges. The score now is nine to nothing in favour of Canada, and we will fight the fight again.