Content of Flyer–Speaker’s Ruling
I want to read into the record a couple of things. I know a number of papers have been read into the record but a recent editorial in the Toronto Star read as follows:
|Through a deliberate twisting of the facts, the flyers suggested that the Liberals are anti-Semites.|
It goes on to say:
|What is really grating about these vile flyers is that they were delivered at taxpayers’ expense….|
A third quote is as follows:
|[The Prime Minister] and his party should repudiate the flyers and apologize for having distributed them.|
I think my friends opposite need to reflect on what has happened. I know we all get engaged in partisan exchange and in very vigorous political fights. As somebody who has been through a few of those myself and having delivered a couple of blows, some of them unfair, over 30 years, I think we would all say that there are times and moments when we might have wished that we had not said something that we had said.
I think this is a time for all of us to reflect on a couple of things. The first is the issue of substance before us, that is to say the content of the leaflet that was distributed. I find that I am in agreement with the comments made by the Toronto Star with respect to the document. It is vile and it associates the Liberal Party with anti-Semitism.
When we come to understand a little better the history and meaning of that terrible phenomenon in world history, we need to understand how deeply wrong it is for a political party to accuse another political party of hosting or encouraging any such views. To put it in more accurate terms, anti-Semitism is Jew hatred and the suggestion that members of the Liberal Party engage in that kind of activity is, frankly, nauseating.
The second is the question of these flyers. I am happy to engage in a discussion with my colleague from Windsor—Tecumseh with respect to the issue of what we should do about the ten percenters, but if anybody thinks that this can be allowed to continue at taxpayer expense, they are sadly mistaken.
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