These comments are direct quotations from the Hansard documents.

House Says Discontinue Funding

Mr. Garry Breitkreuz (Yorkton—Melville, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, earlier this week the Minister of Justice spoke of “cash management” in reference to funding the firearms registry. Yet, on December 5 this Parliament unanimously withdrew the funding to the Canadian Firearms Centre.

Why has the Minister of Justice continued to fund his gun registry in spite of the expressed will of the House to discontinue funding?

Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, if my memory serves me right, this issue is the subject of a question of privilege which your honour will rule on. I would rely far more on the objective answer of your honour than the rhetoric I am hearing from across the way.

Mr. Garry Breitkreuz (Yorkton—Melville, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I would like an answer to my question. They are avoiding it, definitely.

Members on that side of the House are in agreement with the Canadian Alliance that the government has wasted $1 billion on the firearms registry. This House spoke with one voice in restricting any further spending, yet the minister continues to fund the program from unnamed sources.

Why does the minister believe that he can override a vote of this Parliament?

Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, first of all, we are not talking about $1 billion and the member knows it very well.

Second, let us talk about the benefit of the program. Some 1.9 million owners have been licensed. Six million guns have been registered. Police use the registry 2,000 times per day. Some 9,000 licences have been revoked or refused.

We are talking about a good program. We are talking about Canadian values. We are talking about public safety. We are heading in the right direction and we will proceed with the program.

Mr. Stephen Harper (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, we do not believe in fairy tales or the Easter bunny.

Earlier in question period the Minister of Justice was up bragging about his unfinished, error prone, and billion dollar gun registry. How could he justify quietly funneling millions of dollars more into this system when his own colleagues say it is a contempt of this House?

Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, this issue is before the Speaker for a ruling. We contend on our side of the House that nothing has been breached.

The hon. member now is contesting that something has been breached. That discussion took place yesterday. We will wait for the Speaker's ruling which we will respect. I only hope that he and his colleagues will as well.