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A noteworthy exchange from question period

OTTAWA - The Canadian Press is always on the lookout for noteworthy or zesty exchanges on the floor of the House of Commons. On Monday, the NDP's Francoise Boivin pressed Justice Minister Peter MacKay about $1.2 million in cuts from Justice Canada's research budget.

Boivin: Mr. Speaker, with these types of answers, we will not be surprised with the next stats.

In April, the Department of Justice cut $1.2 million, or 20 per cent, from its research budget. Its internal report now shows that its research did not line up with the government's priorities. Then, eight researchers got fired.

It did the same as it has done with science. It cut the funding because it does not like the facts. So what exactly were the facts that the government objected to so strongly?

MacKay: Mr. Speaker, I know that the member, and seemingly her party, are very much opposed to any steps that bring about greater accountability and financial responsibility within the public service.

What we are doing, and continuing to do, at the Department of Justice and throughout government, is ensure that we bring value to hard-earned taxpayers' dollars for Canadians to ensure we are getting the maximum efficiencies out of departments, like mine and others.

Research is, of course, undertaken to obtain information to support priorities of government, measures of government that are actually getting results. That is what has happened in this case. That has happened across all government departments.

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