November 23rd, 2006
23, 2006

Ottawa, Ontario

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued
the following statement to the House of Commons concerning the motion tabled in
respect of Quebec as a nation:

“That this House recognize that the
Québécois form a nation within a united Canada.”

Mr. Speaker,

true intention of the Bloc leader and the sovereignist camp is perfectly

It is not to recognize what the Québécois are, but what the
sovereignists would like them to be.

For the Bloc, this is not about
Quebec as a nation; the National Assembly has already pronounced on that. This
is about separation.

To them, nation means separation.

We saw
his true intentions on October 27, when he said: “…the NDP has recognized for
decades that Quebec forms a nation, yet every time there is a referendum, they
act contrary to the positions they’ve taken.”

In other words, if we
recognize the Québécois as a nation, we must vote “yes” in a referendum on

And the Bloc leader’s attempt to lead the Québécois, in good
faith, to support separation in spite of themselves reminds us of his mentor
Jacques Parizeau and the “lobster traps”.

But the Québécois are not
fooled by these clumsy tactics.

The former PQ Premier, Bernard Landry,
posed the following question: “once that recognition is achieved, you have to
know that you will then be faced with the following question: Why should the
Quebec nation be content with being the province of another nation and forgo
equality with your nation and all other nations?”

The answer is clear,
because the Québécois have always played an historic role in advancing Canada
with solidarity, courage and vision, and building a Quebec that is confident,
self-reliant, united and proud within a Canada that is strong and united,
independent and free.

When he landed in Québec City, Champlain did not
say, “This isn’t going to work: it’s too far, it’s too cold, it’s too
difficult.” No. Champlain and his companions worked hard because they believed
in what they were doing, because they wanted to preserve their values, because
they wanted to build a long-lasting, secure country.

And that is exactly
what happened almost 400 years ago: the founding of the Canadian state.

Mr. Speaker, the Québécois know who they are.

They know they have
contributed to Canada’s founding, development and greatness.

They know
they have preserved their unique language and culture and promoted their values
and interests within Canada.

The question is a straightforward one: do
the Québécois form a nation within a united Canada? The answer is yes.

Do the Québécois form a nation independent from Canada? The answer is
no, and it will always be no.

All throughout their history, the
Québécois have always recognized the prophets of doom and the true guides of
their destiny.

Because the Québécois since Cartier and Laurier to
Mulroney and Trudeau have led this country, and millions like them have helped
to build it.

And with their English- and French-speaking fellow citizens
and people of all nationalities from around the world, they made this country
what it is: the greatest country on Earth, a shining example in a dangerous and
divided world of the harmony and unity that all peoples have the capacity to

And we will do what we must, what our forefathers and
foremothers have always done, and that is to preserve this country—a strong,
united, independent and free Canada.


  1. Rob C
    November 23rd, 2006 at 10:49 | #1

    I am truly tired of these freeloading quebecers wasting time in the house with this crap.

  2. Brian
    November 24th, 2006 at 07:43 | #2

    I think there’s a lot of your view out there, Rob.

    The other view I have heard quite a bit in the last day is “just let them go.”

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