Tories slam Liberals for heckling Raitt as she told struggling friend's story
Published Thursday, October 6, 2016 4:45PM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, October 6, 2016 4:47PM EDT
The Conservatives are demanding to know “what’s so funny” after the Liberals jeered and laughed while finance critic Lisa Raitt was asking a question in the House of Commons Wednesday about the government’s new carbon pricing scheme.
Raitt had just begun speaking about her friend Marie, who she said was having “a tough time making ends meet” before the Liberals announced they will impose a carbon tax on any province that doesn’t have either a tax or cap-and-trade system.
As Raitt started to explain that Marie has three boys and a husband on disability benefits, laughter could be heard from the government side of House.
“Are you kidding me? You're laughing,” Raitt said in response. “It is not funny.”
“The reality is that the van has to be filled up to take the boys to hockey, and so which one of the boys does not get to play hockey next year is the question?” Raitt said.
On Thursday, Conservative House Leader Candice Bergen raised the heckling once again, demanding to know “what (do) they find so funny about imposing a tax on Canadians who are suffering?”
Minister of Families, Children and Social Development Yves Duclos responded in French by stating the Liberals are very concerned about the difficulties facing Canadian families and are working hard to strengthen the middle class and reduce poverty.
“Unfortunately that’s cold rhetoric to Canadians that are suffering,” Bergen responded. “Canadians know that gas prices are going to be skyrocketing under this carbon tax. In my riding, rural Manitoba, there’s no public transportation, people have to drive hundreds of miles sometimes to get to work, they don’t have a choice.”
Transport Minister Marc Garneau responded, while reading from his binder, that “we understand the challenges facing Alberta families and we will continue to invest in infrastructure and to support economic growth.”
The Conservatives then heckled Garneau, leading to House Speaker Geoff Regan to interject and ask them to let Garneau speak.
The Conservatives are often the ones facing accusations of heckling. Civic engagement charity Samara Canada surveyed 29 MPs in 2015 more than two-thirds of those surveyed (68 per cent) said the Conservatives heckled the most often, followed by the Liberals (24 per cent).
The survey also found that 90 per cent agreed men heckle more than women. Nearly four out of five women (79 per cent) said they heard heckles related to age and gender, while no men reported hearing age-related heckles and only eight per cent said they heard gendered heckles.