April 29, 1901

CON

David Tisdale

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. Mr. TISDALE.

When I speak of the agreement, I mean the Act of parliament.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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IND
CON

David Tisdale

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. Mr. TISDALE.

The Act of parliament that gave the Great North-west Central, now the Canadian Pacific Railway, their charter, and stated if they build so much a year we would have no business to put our hands upon them.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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IND
CON

David Tisdale

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. Mr. TISDALE.

Yes. These hon. gentlemen who oppose this Bill do not agree upon the facts, and I submit that they should know the facts before they come to speak in this House. We heard some of them propound an argument on the land grant, and it was pointed out to them that they were altogether mistaken. In justice to the country and in justice to themselves, hon. gentlemen should be well informed when they come here to deal with serious matters. I want my position to be fully understood. I challenge any of these bon. gentlemen to point to one vote I gave or one argument I ever made where I did

not stand up to compel the railway to do justice. That is the difference between me and some hon. gentlemen in this House.

Mr. LaRIVIERE. I was in charge of the Bill to which such frequent references has been made during this debate.

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An hon. MEMBER.

You ought to be ashamed of yourself.

Mr. LaRIVIERE. Not in the least. When I was asked by the gentlemen of the Canadian Pacific Railway to take charge of the Bill, I looked at it, and I found that it contained only two clauses. I acceded to the request to take charge of the Bill on the condition, that if any fair compromise were 'suggested, or any fair amendment proposed, I would in duty bound accept it. On that condition I agreed to take charge of the Bill. The Bill merely asked for an extension of time for five years to build the road, and to change the head office to the city of Montreal.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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LIB

William Forsythe McCreary

Liberal

Mr. McCREARY.

And to deal in land.

Mr. LaRIVIERE. There were only two clauses. I have the Bill here just as I introduced it. The Bill went through all its stages, and it was well discussed in the Railway Committee, and a compromise was arrived at whereby the time was shortened from five years to three years, and whereby the company bound themselves to build a certain mileage this year, a certain mileage next year, and a certain mileage the third year. This compromise was accepted, and the Bill passed through the House. I did not get the Bill surreptitiously through the House. Everything was above board, there was a full discussion, and the Bill went to the Senate, after being amended by the. House, and passed by it. If there was any opposition to be offered to that Bill, the time to offer the opposition was when it was before this House. I am surprised to find to-day that after the compromise, which they considered had been a fair and reasonable compromise, had been agreed to, and after the Bill passed this House, that it should come up for discussion in connection with another Bill entirely different, simply because the Canadian Pacific Railway happen to be connected with this other Bill. I am surprised that we should be asked to reopen this whole question which has been already settled. I have no hesitation in stating that it is open to hon. members to ventilate any grievance they think proper, but, at the same time, these grievances should be ventilated at the proper time, and I hope that my hon. friends will cease their agitation against this Bill, if they have no other reasons against it except those in connection with another Bill which has been already settled. If there are new grievances or new amendments or new suggestions in connection with this present Bill, well and good, let notice be given of them.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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CON

David Tisdale

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. TISDALE.

Nothing of the kind has been done. What we are doing now is discussing another Bill, which is not dead or buried, but which has gone to a higher sphere in the Senate. Well, we have already considered that Bill closely and attentively in this House, and a compromise in connection with it was agreed upon by all parties. The House is now committed to that legislation, and we cannot go back on it unless another is introduced to amend that Bill.

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IND

Robert Lorne Richardson

Independent

Mr. RICHARDSON (Lisgar).

I quite realize that in trespassing again upon the time of the committee, I owe them an apology ; but I cannot allow the remarks of the hon. member for South Norfolk (Hon. Mr. Tisdale) to go without a word in reply. The hon. gentleman waxed very warm indeed-I have no doubt his heart was burning with patriotic fire-when he informed this House that rather than interpret a contract or do anything of that kind he would be quite willing to resign his seat and retire into obscurity. I hold in my hand ' Hansard ' of 1894, in which I find a speech of the hon. gentleman's in support of a Bill which was introduced by the hon. member for Lanark (Hon. Mr. Haggart), then Minister of Railways and Canals, to interpret a clause in the Canadian Pacific Railway charter. Let me explain the position. There was a clause in the original charter of the Canadian Pacific Railway which enabled the company to import free of duty all the material required for the construction of the road. The road was completed in 1884, or 1880, and an order in council was passed by the then government declaring the road to be completed, and the subsidies were finally paid. Subsequently it occurred to the Canadian Pacific Railway Company that it would be desirable to construct some iron and steel bridges On the railway, and they asked the government to be allowed under the old clause to import the materials for those bridges free of duty. The government declined. Sir John Thompson, who was then Minister of Justice and Premier, reported that it would be impossible for the government to allow that under the contract, because they had passed an order in council declaring the road to be completed, and had paid the subsidies. The hon. member for Lanark, then Minister of Railways and Canals, got over the difficulty by introducing a Bill to this effect:

That it is expedient to provide that the words ' original construction ' in section 1 of chapter 7 of the statutes of 1882, respecting the allowance of drawback on certain articles manufactured in Canada for use in the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway, shall be construed to extend and include the first iron or steel bridge erected in a locality, but not to any renewal or repair thereof.

Here was a clause in the Canadian Pacific Railway charter which was absolutely clear. ' Original construction ' were the words

used; and when my hon. friend from Lanark introduced a Bill to construe those words, interfering with what the right hon. the

premier would call vested rights-

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The PRIME MINISTER.

Not a bit of it.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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IND

Robert Lorne Richardson

Independent

Mr. RICHARDSON (Lisgar).

Anyway, there can be no doubt upon this point.

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CON
IND

Robert Lorne Richardson

Independent

Mr. RICHARDSON (Lisgar).

No. Allow me to finish my argument. The clause was perfectly clear ; it said that the material to

be used in the ' original construction ' should come in free of duty. The road is completed, the Minister of Justice reports that it has been completed, and the order in council is passed declaring that it has been completed. Then my hon. friend from Lanark introduced a Bill to construe the clause I refer to ; and, as it was in the interest of the Canadian Pacific Railway, the hon. member for South Norfolk stood up and expressed himself in this language :

I regret that I cannot see this matter in the same way as the member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy).

Dalton McCarthy had taken strong ground against the Bill, denouncing it as the interpretation of a contract. The hon. member for South Norfolk went on :

In my opinion, it ought to he considered in a broader way than the strictest technical construction which he wishes parliament to apply to this matter.

Of course, when the interests of the Canadian Pacific Railway are at stake, the contract is to be considered in a ' broad way ; ' but when I introduced a Bill the other day to interpret a clause according to the view which parliament and every man in this country understood to mean-twenty years from the date of the contract, my hon. friend got up and denounced it. It was said he is a dangerous man, this member for Lisgar; he wants to interfere with the vested rights of the Canadian Pacific Railway ? But to-day the hon. gentleman tells us that he will resign his seat in parliament rather than construe a contract. I contend, in view of the case I have made against the hon. gentleman, that he }s absolutely out of court. He is quite willing on every occasion to stand up here and advocate the rights of the Canadian Pacific Railway; but when we from the North-west, who have seen how the settlers have borne the burden and heat of the day, stand up to defend their interests, he undertakes to lecture us. I consider his lecture quite uncalled for, and I resent it.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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LIB

William Forsythe McCreary

Liberal

Mr. McCREARY.

I want to move an amendment, that the road go to the Icelandic river.

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The PRIME MINISTER.

That cannot be done without notice.

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IND

Arthur W. Puttee

Independent Labour

Mr. PUTTEE.

Can the hon. gentleman not have the Bill referred back so as to add that ?

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LIB

SOVEREIGN BANK OP CANADA.


House in committee on Bill (No. 109) to incorporate the Canadian National Bank.- Mr. German. The MINISTER OP FINANCE (Hon. W. S. Fielding). The only question involved in this Bill was its title. I do not see the hon. member for Welland, who has charge of the Bill, in his seat. Objection was taken to the title in the committee, and the name Empire Bank was substituted. That has been very seriously objected to by the directors of the Imperial Bank, and I think the objection is well founded. The promoters of the Bill have therefore expressed their willingness to accept the name, the Sovereign Bank of Canada. I do not think that there can be any objection to that.


LIB

William Samuel Calvert (Chief Government Whip; Whip of the Liberal Party)

Liberal

Mr. CALVERT.

I may say, in the absence of the hon. member for Welland, that I have a telegram from Mr. Campbell stating that he is willing that the name should be changed to the Sovereign Bank of Canada.

Topic:   SOVEREIGN BANK OP CANADA.
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April 29, 1901