November 29 2011 Speech in Response to Allegations Made by Chief Government Whip

Canadians today are witnessing the anti-democratic, ideological agenda of the Conservative Government in full force.

Western Canadians today are witnessing a government take a position without listening to the very voices of the people they are supposed to represent.

Today many Canadians will realize the way in which this Federal Government doesn't represent us - and why it’s time to talk about the need for real voice and real action when it comes to the issues that matter to us.

I want to begin by responding to the allegations made in the House these last few days that have involved my name.  I am very disappointed by the allegations made by the Member for Regina - Lumsden - Lake Centre and Chief Government Whip.

He approached me last week after a disruption in the gallery and accused me of organizing it.

I made it clear that this was not the case.

In Parliament we are all honourable members and the acceptance of the word of a member is fundamental to the functioning of this house.

Instead of accepting my word as a member of this House, the  Chief Government Whip approached me in this very Chamber and indicated to me "you will get attacked" and went on to repeat the fictional story that he and his colleagues shared in this House.  

I want to make it clear that I provided gallery passes to a group of western farmers who support the Wheat Board. I provide passes to visitors on a regular basis.  I had no knowledge there would be a disruption.

For the record the member of the public that protested in the gallery last week apologized to me shortly afterwards and noted that I had no knowledge of his intentions or had any part in his actions.

The government members instead were eager to make unfounded accusations and attempts to intimidate me. This attitude is not fitting of a government that has been elected to represent Canadians. This House operates on the basis of the honour of members, the honour of our word and the honour we have been given to represent Canadians.

I believe the Whip should withdraw his statements and apologize to the House.

This attitude is a reflection of this government's contempt for anyone who disagrees with them.

They are beginning to look more and more like the Mulroney Conservatives every day.

I want to make one thing clear. I will not be intimidated by members opposite.

I know they have difficulty with the fact that I am currently the only opposition member representing a rural riding in the three Prairie provinces. I have news for them. If they continue this arrogance and continue to show contempt for the people of Western Canada after the next election they will wake up to find there will be a lot more New Democrats from Western Canada giving real representation to the Western Canadians.