Toews Says Government To Keep Close Watch On Economy in 2013

Jan 1, 2013 | Government News

Provencher Member of Parliament Vic Toews says his government is continuing to keep a very close watch on the fragile economic recovery. He notes that has been the top issue facing Canada during 2012.

“The one thing that has overshadowed most of my work is the fragile nature of the global economy. We continue to be concerned about the situation in the United States. People here in Provencher are very dependent on the American market and feel the effects every time that market is somehow affected.”

Toews says the U.S. takes about 74% of Canada’s exports. He adds that’s down about 10% in the last ten years due to diversification but it is still by far the largest amount of any country.

In his year-end interview, reflecting on 2012, Toews says the first thing that comes to mind is the end of the Long Gun Registry. He says the Registry was a waste of money, “because it didn’t focus on criminal acts with firearms but focused on law-abiding Canadian citizens. We have passed other laws that target criminals, that target individuals who should not be owning firearms.”

He was also pleased to get legislation through the Commons to improve accountability for RCMP. Toews says there are very few officers who make errors in judgement and demonstrate poor conduct, “but I felt it important enough to introduce the Enhancing the RCMP Accountability Act. This Bill will strengthen the review and complaints body of the RCMP.”

The Public Safety Minister says 2012 also saw his government approve a number of tough-on-crime measures. “Essentially what we’re doing is stopping the rotating door of the justice system and trying to target those individuals who consistently break the law and are in trouble on a constant basis.” Toews notes the opposition had predicted these measures would result in a huge increase in the prison population at great expense to taxpayers. He says that did not materialize and he was in fact able to return $1.4 billion to general government coffers that was not needed for new prisons.

Toews says another highlight of the past year was a trade agreement with the U.S. called the Beyond the Borders Action Plan.  He says it is “essentially a trade agreement which ensures that travellers and trade occur more effectively and more efficiently, yet keeping us secure.”


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