April 5, 1904

CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. L. BORDEN.

My hon. Hants says, hear, hear.

Topic:   $ 28,132,500 SUMMARY OP OBLIGATIONS.
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An hon. MEMBER.

friend

West

From .,q

Topic:   $ 28,132,500 SUMMARY OP OBLIGATIONS.
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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. L. BORDEN.

Topic:   $ 28,132,500 SUMMARY OP OBLIGATIONS.
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P. 8569.)


be the ..."baity _/ Speaker, whatever may 1 a,.Un,c, \Ve [®ngth. an<i power of the Grand 6 n°w «„v!aTe it all in the undertaking we Aga}" subfflitting to parliament. (Han,, 1 We llaye him saying : s> haV903- p' SB™-) havnpa behind0,1; be4n ®ontent that they shall ana reaanv „ We have required and they ° °f it *LC^nsente'i that they shall be in it Aggjr( 01 form the whole thing. (han„ * 6 spol£e with equal emphasis : * b**eV?5 p' 8™-) hay611 to ns * *" !^e obligation that they have fin® a('oeptpist,given in good faith, that they Uve Oondition - national responsibility which yn *1 Vi H i r,... * mt w w y J '[DOT] " * o n hp t0 mvolves and that they mean to hvPCah And m contract, and I am satisfied that UP to it eans' i£ necessary, to make them live 0 \ Trnn6,. those means when the Urn*. C0lltraet \ Railway did not live up to &etion aL? +„Wbat tben became of the S(;w,to lily , " the safeguards which, accord-givi';,l 1 'll-11' Wend, the government posn 111 g hs thief and my hon. friend further (tW CUls assurance : Jt ^arq Gr '> p. 11852.) tcrPr<B*,1't'unk a^/^e^stood' 1 think, between the ®aine tat>on of A. the government that our in '[DOT]ton of tV. sviornmem mat our m-ISeiiL. However e contract and theirs is the ;?1UUSl°n I ma, wlthout reviving a previous they ' and tifo,Sa^Lthat this is what the Act w,,r® Prena'..j . "'ey have assured us that g0!;llat jj 1 0 to do what the Act requires. ... 'bis a of that assurance ? Is Jw ,a business i>ar6riy hayfi „ ° flo whafUr*ld Us that they government ? are preto, no irhat'T'u uo lnar rney ar Vy^OCu ^ 1 the country requires. v'h'e i^rinfassurance withdrawn ? tely ..Placed thetagen in such form as would b°n it *> government in a position to %>g him£^n w? A"*1 my bon. friend (h„ [DOT] eIf iwith even more emtb^bionai' pf 11853.) nq Trun o ligations on the part of the * company are asked as in the amendment of my hon. friend, all we can say is that they are not in the contract, and we have no right to demand them. The country, it appears, could not demand anything which was not in the contract, but the Grand Trunk Railway could do so r.nd could obtain what it demanded. Again we have my hon. friend the Minister of the Interior thus describing the agreement : (Hansard, 1903, p. 8635.) A clear, distinct and unambiguous contract with a responsible company. Why, then, is it that this session has been called specially, as we are told by the directors of the Grand Trunk Railway, to consider these amendments which they have exacted from the government, after this great measure had been agreed to and adopted ? My hon. friend the Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Fisher) was not behind his colleagues in his appreciation of this wonderful contract. He said : (Hansard, 1903, p. 9529.) Sir, we make a clean cut proposition embodied in a contract signed and sealed with a reputable corporation of great resources which is going ahead with the project as rapidly as possible. Instead of going ahead rapidly, this com pany has come to parliament to obtain further concessions before one single stroke of work is done in the construction of the road through the west ? And what did my hon. friend the Minister of Customs (Mr. Paterson) say ? (Hansard, 1903, p. 10292.) The government's plan is there in black and white, signed by men of repute, signed by the ablest railway men in the world. These men are not mere promoters. If they are not promoters, how is it we have this demand made on the government, and acceded to by them, that there shall be at least $12,000,000 of this stock of the Grand Trunk Pacific taken over by the Grand Trunk Railway for no consideration, or a mere nominal consideration, and be disposed of by them upon the markets of the world, just at the price they see fit and when they see fit ? What did my right hon. friend himself say ? And I have reserved his remarks to the last, because they are more enlightening perhaps than any of the other quotations I have made. This is perhaps the most significant scrap of the heap : I do not deny that the Grand Trunk Railway is at the bottom of this enterprise. ... It cannot default upon the eastern part, because, if it defaults upon the eastern part, it defaults upon the western part. It cannot default upon one part without defaulting upon the whole, and therefore we hold them tight to their bargain and they cannot deviate from it. In the light of what my hon. friend has said to-day, let me again point out those words : Therefore we hold them tight to their bargain and they cannot deviate from it.



Well, Mr. Speaker, if then my right hon. friend could hold them so tight, why did he not do so ? Why did he permit them to deviate from their bargain ? If they were bound by the terms of their agreement, why does he make these further concessions ? If the bargain was an excellent one for the Grand Trunk Railway, as the right hon. gentleman and his colleagues declared last session, if it was a bargain made with responsible men, and a bargain so made that the other party could not deviate from it, but could be held tight to it, what is the meaning of this spectacle to-day of a parlia ment called specially, as we are told, to consider this further proposition ? What is the meaning of it all ? Is there anything behind it ? My right hon. friend has not given us any explanation. Is there any minister of the Crown who will explain to the people all these matters which my right hon. friend put to one side, but which he should have dealt with ? The country is entitled to an explanation of this extraordinary volte face. My right hon. friend has thrown no light on the subject. Let us go back and consider what took place after last session. Shortly after the session closed rumours arose that the Grand Trunk Railway would not make its deposit. Then we were told that a deposit was made, but made after the time it should have been, and not such a deposit as the contract called for; but it was declared by the Liberal organs from one end of the country to the other that the stock which was deposited in lieu of cash was just as good as the cash itself- even better, because it could be sold for more in the market. We were assured that the deposit of stock was not due to any difficulty or financial stringency, but merely for the purpose of convenience. Not one word was then vouchsafed to the country concerning any proposition for any amendment to the contract. The Liberal organs everywhere all said that, although technically the deposit was not in accordance with the contract, it was practically so, and all that was required was some merely formal legislation for the purpose of overcoming any technical objection. Well, the government then gave out a statement, which was published in its organ, the Toronto ' Globe,' on the 19tli of December, 1903. That statement was as follows : The Grand Trunk Railway has deposited £1,000,000 of their guaranteed stock as security for the carrying out of the agreement entered into last session between the government and the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway Company subject to ratification of their shareholders at a general meeting. Inasmuch as the contract requires cash or government securities for the deposit, legislation will be required to confirm the acceptance of the securities which have been deposited, though such securities are worth to-day more than par and their value is unquestionable.


CON
CON
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The MINISTER OF JUSTICE.

Hal*'"be A'"' peting with Portland ? It is double ^ tance practically. toilcin^ '

Topic:   P. 8569.)
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CON
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The MINISTER OF JUSTICE.

Topic:   P. 8569.)
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The MINISTER OF FINANCE.

They might carry it to Portland if they were perfectly free ; hut under the present contract they are obliged to give the same rate to St. John or Halifax as

to Portland. .

Topic:   P. 8569.)
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Mr BORDEN (Halifax).

They will give the same rate, but it will be to their interest to carry it to Portland.

Topic:   P. 8569.)
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The MINISTER OF FINANCE.

Undoubtedly they would make more money by carrying it to Portland, but we do not intend to permit them to carry it there.

Where was the obstacle to their carrying it there ? Where was the stipulation within the four walls of this contract, which prevented them carrying it there ?

Topic:   P. 8569.)
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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BORDEN (Halifax).

Where is the restriction to prevent them ?

Topic:   P. 8569.)
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The MINISTER OF FINANCE.

By the fact that the Canadian rate is not greater than the American rate, and we will trust to the patriotism of the Canadian shipper, that when the rate to a Canadian port Is not greater than to an American port, he will ship by the Canadian port.

Topic:   P. 8569.)
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Some hon. MEMBERS

Oh !

Topic:   P. 8569.)
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LIB
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Mr. R. L.@

BORDEN-And then I said :

Topic:   P. 8569.)
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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BORDEN (Halifax).

Then, it is not sections 42 and 43 that the hon. Minister of Finance relies on to prevent them, hut the patriotism of the Canadian shipper ?

Topic:   P. 8569.)
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April 5, 1904