March 22, 1904

CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. L. BORDEN.

It seems to me that the object of my hon. friend (Mr. Clarke) would be very fully served if the Minister of Militia would put upon ' Hansard ' the brief which is in his hands. We can discuss the Bill, and we need not pass any clauses at all, but the discussion being upon ' Hansard,' showing the differences between the Bill and the law as it stands, will afford the country the information which it desires.

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LIB
CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. L. BORDEN.

Then I presume that provision could be made to distribute extra copies of ' Hansard ' to those who are interested in the Bill throughout the country.

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LIB
CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. L. BORDEN.

If that be done, then those who take an interest in the measure will understand it better than they possibly can at present.

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LIB

Frederick William Borden (Minister of Militia and Defence)

Liberal

Sir FREDERICK BORDEN.

I quite accede to that proposal.

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L-C

Andrew B. Ingram

Liberal-Conservative

Mr. INGRAM.

Some of us are not ourselves military meu, but we represent constituents who are, and I know that when the minister returned from England, the four prominent points in connection with this Bin were published in the newspapers. But statements in the newspapers are not always reliable and for that reason probably the militiamen did not take them into serious consideration. In order that I may be relieved of any charge of being negligent with regard to this Bill, I enter a solemn protest against such a measure being proceeded with before our constituents have an opportunity of perusing it. If the minister proceeds, I have no objection, but he must take the responsibility of proceeding without giving our militiamen an opportunity of understanding the Bill.

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LIB

Frederick William Borden (Minister of Militia and Defence)

Liberal

Sir FREDERICK BORDEN.

My hon. friend (Mr. Ingram) need scarcely have taken

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the trouble of making the observation, in view of what his leader has said. I do not believe that there is any one in the country who suspects me of being capable of doing anything that is derogatory to the militia.

I am prepared to go on in the way that is suggested by the hon. leader of the opposition.

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L-C

Andrew B. Ingram

Liberal-Conservative

Mr. INGRAM.

It does not become the Minister of Militia to be quite so touchy at the remarks I have made. I have a responsibility to my constituents and in discharging that responsibility I did not reflect upon the character or aims of the minister. When I have anything to say with respect to the minister and his department, I am manly enough to say it in good plain English;

I will not do it by insinuations.

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LIB

Frederick William Borden (Minister of Militia and Defence)

Liberal

Sir FREDERICK BORDEN.

The hon. gentleman did not intend to say that there were insiuuations

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L-C
LIB

Frederick William Borden (Minister of Militia and Defence)

Liberal

Sir FREDERICK BORDEN.

Then we understand each other.

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CON

Edward Frederick Clarke

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLARKE.

Since the discussion commenced I have been favoured with an extra number of copies of the Bill, and I shall place them in the hands of my constituents with the least possible delay. If it is the desire pf the minister to go ahead, I trust that he will make his explanations on this important Bill as fully as possible, so that our constituents may have an opportunity of ascertaining what the Bill contains.

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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. L. BORDEN.

As I understand it you are not going to pass any of the clauses at all ; the minister will simply place upon the pages of ' Hansard ' a distinct statement as to any clause which differs either by omission or by addition from the law as it is at present. Having done that we shall be a little better informed than at present as to the object and scope of the Bill, but shall not have made any progress in the passage of the Bill.

* Mr. McCREARY. The right is reserved of discussing any part of the Bill on the third reading.

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Mr. R. L.@

iiORDEN. The Bill will remain in committee and not a single clause is to be passed.

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LIB

Frederick William Borden (Minister of Militia and Defence)

Liberal

Sir FREDERICK BORDEN.

That is all. We are simply following the suggestion of the hon. member for Toronto, Mr. Clarke, at the outset, namely, that I should give a little further information.

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CON

Edward Frederick Clarke

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLARKE.

I am very glad we are going to have an opportunity of hearing more as to the provisions of this Bill.

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LIB

Peter Macdonald (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. DEPUTY SPEAKER.

The understanding is then that we shall have a discussion on each section of the Bill, but that the section shall be allowed to stand.

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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir F. W. BORDEN.

On section 1.-Short title.

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LIB

March 22, 1904