OTTAWA - The Canadian Press is always on the lookout for noteworthy or zesty exchanges on the floor of the House of Commons. Here is Tuesday's selection from question period, when Liberal MP Joyce Murray went after Defence Minister Rob Nicholson over plans for a national day of honour Friday to recognize veterans of the war in Afghanistan.
Murray: Mr. Speaker, Friday's day of honour should be a day to put a spotlight on our troops, present and fallen, who served in Afghanistan. They should not be an afterthought: families told to pay their own way; commanders not invited; legions left out in the cold.
Now we have learned the last Canadian flag in Kabul will not be received in Ottawa by a Canadian Forces member, nor even the commander-in-chief, our Governor General. No, the prime minister is taking that honour for himself.
Will the government please put the spotlight back on our troops where it belongs?
Nicholson: Mr. Speaker, I am really quite surprised at the honourable member.
The Prime Minister announced this national day of honour to take place on May 9. Canadians from across this country have come together to make this a wonderful success, and so they should.
Yes, the last flag is coming back here, presented to the chief of defence staff, who will present it to the prime minister, and I am proud of that.