January 31, 1910

LIB

Sir WILFRID LAURIER: (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

1. $212,032.83.

2. $140,665.79, and $71,367.04.

3. (a) The denial of the claim of the United States government to extra territorial jurisdiction in Behring sea beyond the ordinary three-mile limit, and the ' findings of facts ' which formed the basis of a convention for the settlement of the claims in respect of Canadian sealing vessels seized and otherwise interfered with by the United States authorities.

(h) The Paris Award Regulations, controlling the seal fishery on the North American side of the North Pacific ocean as affecting Canadian and United States sealers.

Topic:   EMPLOYEES' PASSES, INTERCOLONIAL RAILWAY.
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POSITIONS IN CANADIAN NAVY.

CON

Mr. FOSTER:

Conservative (1867-1942)

1. How many applications for positions in the proposed Canadian navy have been received ?

2. How many have been received from officers or ex-officers of the Royal navy?

3. How many have been received from officers of the Royal Navy reserve?

4. How many from Canadians?

Topic:   POSITIONS IN CANADIAN NAVY.
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LIB

Sir WILFRID LAURIER: (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

1. Total number of applications, 234.

2. Number from officers Royal Navy, 59; number from ex-officers, Royal Navy, 6.

3. From officers, Royal Navy Reserve, 37.

4. From Canadians, 115.

Topic:   POSITIONS IN CANADIAN NAVY.
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LANDS LEASED TO SIR RICHARD CARTWRIGHT.

LIB

Mr. EDWARDS:

Liberal

1. What are the terms of the lease of government lands occupied by the Hon. Sir Richard Cartwright in regard to the timber thereon ?

2. Has the government at any time received from the lessee of said lands any money obtained from the sale of wood or timber cut on these lands? If so, when and how much?

Topic:   LANDS LEASED TO SIR RICHARD CARTWRIGHT.
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LIB

Hon. WM. PUGSLEY: (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

1. It is a condition of the lease that the timber on the property shall not be cut down except for the purpose of thinning and improving the same.

2. No.

Topic:   LANDS LEASED TO SIR RICHARD CARTWRIGHT.
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CONTRACTS TO EASTERN DREDGING COMPANY.

CON

Mr. CROCKET:

Conservative (1867-1942)

1. Have any contracts for dredging in New Brunswick been let by the government to the Eastern Dredging Company, Limited, during the present fiscal year ? If so, for what dredging and at what places?

2. Have any payments been made through the Public Works Department to the Eastern

Dredging Company, Limited? If so, what is the total amount of such payments?

Topic:   CONTRACTS TO EASTERN DREDGING COMPANY.
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LIB

PAYMENTS TO T. C. NORRIS.

CON

Arthur Meighen

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MEIGHEN:

What was the total sum paid by the government to T. C. Norris, of Manitoba, in each of the years 1908 and 1909, and for what services ?

Topic:   PAYMENTS TO T. C. NORRIS.
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LIB

Frank Oliver (Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Hon. FRANK OLIVER:

(As far as the Department of the Interior is concerned.)

Fiscal year.

1907- 8 $2,457 84

Services as auctioneer at school lands sale.

1908- 9 Nil.

Topic:   PAYMENTS TO T. C. NORRIS.
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NEW DEPUTY MINISTER OF RAILWAYS AND CANALS.

L-C

Mr. HUGHES:

Liberal-Conservative

1. Who has been appointed to the Deputy Minister of the Department of Railways and Canals ?

2. AVhat duties is be to perform?

3. Is he also appointed Chairman of Board of Management of the Intercolonial railway ?

4. What are the qualifications of the new

deputy minister? .

5. What have been his services during the last ten or twelve years?

Topic:   NEW DEPUTY MINISTER OF RAILWAYS AND CANALS.
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LIB

Mr. GRAHAM: (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Liberal

1. Archibald W. Campbell, C.E.

2. The duties incumbent upon a Deputy Minister of Railways and Canals.

3. He will act as chairman of the Board of Railway Management.

4. He is a civil engineer and has an excellent reputation as an executive head.

5. He has been Deputy Minister of the Department of Public Works in the Ontario government, and head of what is known as the ' good roads movement.'

Topic:   NEW DEPUTY MINISTER OF RAILWAYS AND CANALS.
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MARITIME PROVINCES REPRESENTATION.

LIB

George William Kyte

Liberal

Mr. G. W. KYTE (Richmond, N.S.) moved:

That in the opinion of this House the maritime provinces of Canada should have preserved to them the representation in the House of Commons that they now enjoy. That in the redistribution of the constituencies to be made after the next decennial census the number of representatives to be returned from the said provinces should not in any case be reduced. And that an humble petition be presented to His Majesty praying that the British North America Act be amended in accordance with the purport of this resolution.

He said: Mr. Speaker, the subject introduced in this resolution has come before parliament on several occasions and under varying circumstances during recent years.

We are now approaching the time when another decennial census will be taken, on which will be based a new redistribution Act. A resolution was moved here a few years ago by Mr. Hughes, the then member for Kings, Prince Edward Island, in which he asked to have restored to the maritime provinces the representation which they had at confederation. The resolution which I have the honour of moving this afternoon, varies somewhat from that resolution. We are not appealing to the House upon this resolution for the purpose of reversing a decision given by the Privy Council a few years ago upon an appeal from the judgment of the Supreme Court of Canada. Upon a strictly technical interpretation of certain clauses of that Act it was determined that, as a matter of law, the maritime provinces were subject to have their representation reduced after each decennial census if the population has not increased in proportion to the increase in the province of Quebec. As a matter of law we are deprived of any further consideration of this question, but I appeal to the House of Commons of Canada as the high court of equity and the keeper of the King's conscience. On every consideration of equity and moral right I submit that the maritime provinces are entitled to special consideration in respect to the representation they are hereafter to enjoy in the House of Commons. Before I proceed to discuss the question, let me point out that in Great Britain the representation of the constituencies further removed from the seat of government is based upon a different principle from that which is applied to constituencies located nearer the capital. The county of Kent, which is near the city of London, has a representative for each 30,000 electors, while the more remote constituencies of Northumberland and Cumberland have a representative for each 10,000 and 9,000 electors, respectively. In England and Wales there is a member for each 10,000 electors, in Scotland a member for each 8,800, and in Ireland a member for each 7,000 electors. I point this out to show that in Great Britain, to which we look for precedent in constitutional matters, the various constituencies have their representation based upon a principle, different from that which in Canada is* applied to the maritime provinces. It is well known that conditions which prevailed at the time of confederation and which it was supposed would continue, have not been realized with respect to the different parts of Canada. It was expected then that in the course of the decades to come population would largely increase, not only in the older provinces which first formed the Dominion, but in the new provinces in the west which sooner or later would Mr. KYTE.

become part of the confederacy. Acting upon the presumption that the maritime provinces would increase in population quite as rapidly as the others, it was not considered necessary that precaution should be taken to preserve to these eastern provinces^ their representation undiminished. In 1873, when British Columbia entered confederation, although her then population did not entitle her to so large a proportion, she was given six members, which was to be the minimum representation of the provincb, and it was also stipulated that the representation should be increased in accordance with the provisions of the British North America Act. It is quite plain to every one who looks into the matter with any care that had the representatives of the maritime provinces who took part in the pre-confederation conferences insisted that the representation with which they entered the confederacy should be the minimum, there would have been no hesitation in accepting that proposal, but no one ever dreamed then that such a precaution was necessary. I am not making any special appeal on behalf of the maritime provinces because we have lost population, or because of any decadence in our industrial growth, the causes of which have brought about a reduction of the representation of the maritime provinces is not due to any defect inherent in ourselves, it has to be looked for outside. The population of the maritime provinces has kept on increasing decade after decade, but the records of the immigration department tell the story of our diminished representation in the House. During the last nine years immigrants to the number of 49,521 came to the maritime provinces; to Quebec, 187,382; to Ontario, 227,756; to Manitoba, 255,921; to Alberta and Saskatchewan, 359,578. Thus, the maritime provinces have not kept pace, with Quebec and Ontario and the western provinces, not on account of any depopulation, but rather on account of the enormous immigration which has flocked into the other provinces in excess of that which has come to us. I need scarcely remind the House that for the last 30 years the energies of the immigration department of Canada under all governments, Liberal and Conservative, have been exerted to bringing immigrants, not to the maritime provinces, but to the fertile plains of the northwest. True, no special effort has been made to prevent immigrants coming to the maritime provinces, but we must recognize that immigrants are attracted to the northwest because there they can get fertile farms for the asking. The maritime provinces are not peculiarly adapted for agriculture, we do not possess these fertile fields that-have attracted to the prairie provinces so

many immigrants from European countries. Our resources are largely to be found in our lumber wealth, our fisheries and our mines. The European immigrant coming to the western provinces to engage in farming needs little capital to start in his new Hfe; a comparatively few dollars will give him a homestead location, and all he has to do is to turn up the ground, plant the seed and start in business. But, the man who comes to Nova Scotia or New Brunswick to develop our natural resources must have capital, and so for the vast number of immigrants with little capital the western provinces provide the greater attraction. Therefore, were it not for the enormous increase by immigration in the population of the other provinces, the maritime provinces would be able to hold their own in population and retain their representation as when we cast our lot with the Dominion.

I have before me a statement of the estii mated population of the Dominion of Canada issued by the Census Department at the end of last year. According to these figures, the population of the province of Quebec, which was 1,648,289 in 1901, is estimated to be 2,088,461 at the present time. The population of the maritime provinces, which was 893,553 in 1901, is estimated to be now 1,037,112, or an increase during the last nine years of 143,151. Having regard to this very substantial increase in the population of the maritime provinces;- one would naturally be inclined to the opinion that we would hold our own in respect to representation. But when we come to apply the rule which determines the representation which the provinces of Canada shall have in parliament after the next census is taken and taking the province of Quebec, which is the pivotal province, and dividing its estimated population of 2,008,461 by 65, the number of representatives, which that province is entitled to in this House, we find that the unit of population after the next census will be 32,130 in place of 25,000, which was the unit at the last census. The figures which I have quoted are the estimates of population at the end of the past year, and if the increase of population will continue for another year and a half, at which time the census will be taken, we F may fairly assume that a much larger disparity will exist as between the population of the maritime provinces and that of the province of Quebec. Having ascertained the unit of population to entitle a constituency to return a member to parliament at the present time as 32,130, and dividing that unit into the population of the maritime provinces, we find that instead of thirty-five representatives, to which they are entitled at the present time, they will be entitled to only 32 representatives after the next census is taken. TM3 disparity as regards population has been going

on for a good many years. At the time tha late hon. member for Kings, P.E.I. (Mr. Hughes) moved his resolution three years ago, certain hon. gentlemen who took part in the debate hoped that the conditions would be changed somewhat before the next census was taken, and held that there was evidence that the proportionate representation of the maritime provinces, if not restored, would at all events not suffer hereafter any further diminution. As I have pointed out, the fact is that although the population of the maritime provinces has increased by 143,151 during the last bine years, we stand to lose three more representatives after the next Redistribution Bill has passed this House.

There is another test by which ,the representation of the maritime provinces is determined, and that is the section which provides that if the population of a particular province has not decreased more than one-twentieth as compared with the whole population of Canada, that province shall not suffer any decrease in its representation. It was argued before the Privy Council, in the case which was referred to in respect to our representation, that Canada meant and included the four older provinces of Canada. There would seem to be strong ground for that contention; and had it been accepted by the Privy Council, the maritime province's would not be in the position they are in to-day in respect of their representation. If the population of the older provinces of Canada were taken as the basis upon which the estimated decrease was to be calculated, there i3 no doubt that we would retain our representation as we had it in the past; but when we take into account the fact that the population of the provinces of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba is included with the population of the older provinces of Canada, it would be more than we could hope for that the maritime provinces, with their small proportion of immigrants, would be able to hold their own in that calculation. When I come to discuss the question of immigration, I am naturally reminded that the money which goes to bring immigrants into this Dominion is not the money of the respective provinces which are receiving the benefit of that immigration; it is the money of the whole Dominion of Canada, which is contributed proportionately bv the people of the maritime provinces. Then, it will not be denied for a single moment that from the causes which I have indicated, the maritime provinces have not received their fair share of immigration, notwithstanding the fact that some $9,000,000 has been paid by this government during the last nine years for the purpose of bringing into the country the immigration which has come into Canada during that period.

There is another question that ought to

have some bearing on the consideration of this matter, apart from its legal aspect, but from the point of view of the equitable rights of the maritime provinces; that is, in respect of the increased territory which has been awarded to the different provinces. Hon. members of this House are quite familiar with the fact that a few years ago the province of Quebec, which was designated by the framers of the Confederation Act as the ' pivotal province,' upon which the representation of all the other provinces should be determined, received a very large increase of area, equal to about 118,000 square miles. It is contended that this is not an increase of the area of the province of Quebec, but that the resolution of the House which determined that this additional territory should be given to the province of Quebec was only intended to identify or further locate the boundaries of that province. At the time of confederation, the northern boundary of the province of Quebec was regarded as the height of land lying between the watershed of the St. Lawrence and that of Hudson bay. That being the case, we may assume that the representatives of the maritime provinces, who attended that conference, assumed that the province of Quebec was the province as it was indicated by those boundaries, and did not include any additional territory. In awarding the province of Quebec additional territory, the question is raised as to how far that affected the maritime provinces with respect to the representation which we are hereafter to enjoy. It may be argued that there is no population in that additional territory, and that therefore it does not affect the unit of representation for the province of Quebec. At any moment valuable gold mines might be discovered, which would cause a rush into that territory and thereby materially increase the population of the province of Quebec. That province would then be placed in this position, that those people would be unrepresented in parliament, or the British North America Act would have to be amended for the purpose of giving them representation. The population of that new territory would be too remote from the settled constituencies of the province of Quebec as they exist at present, and we might have a demand from the province of Quebec for an amendment to the British North America Act in order to give to that additional population its due representation in parliament.

The province of Ontario has added very largely to its territory since 1867. By the decision of the boundary case in 1884, the Privy Council awarded Ontario additional territory now designated as New Ontario. At present the provinces of Manitoba and Ontario are knocking at the door of the House of Commons for additional territory. The territory in question was purchased Mr. KYTE.

and paid for by the people of the whole of Canada. It is not territory for which the province of Ontario or Manitoba made any sacrifice, but was territory purchased by the government of Canada, in which every province and every individual in the Dominion has an equal interest and share. The provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan, which have lately been established, extend as far north as the territorial rights of Canada extend and the same is true of British Columbia. Were it possible for the maritime provinces to increase their territory, or improve their position in respect of natural resources, we would not be coming to th'e House of Commons asking compensation as a set-off to the new territory which other provinces have been given. We get no benefit from the investment made by the government of Canada in those lands which are to be awarded the other provinces. We receive no benefit from the money expended year by year by the immigration department for the purpose of inducing immigrants to come to this country; and all we ask, as a compensating condition, is that hereafter, under no circumstances shall the number of representatives from the maritime provinces be decreased in this parliament. The resolution which I have the honour of introducing does not in the slightest degree affect the representation of the rest of Canada. We are only asking that the number of representatives which we send to parliament shall not, under any circumstances be decreased. In that respect we are only asking what was granted British Columbia. If the representation in this parliament of British Columbia is to be permanent, and not subject to any decrease that same condition should be made to apply to the other provinces. I submit that the proposition involved in my resolution is not unreasonable in view of all the circumstances and in view of all the considerations upon which the Act of confederation was based.

The principle of fixing a minimum in the representation of any state or territory, has been followed in the case of every other commonwealth organized as a confederation. In Australia, when the Commonwealth Act was passed, it was provided that the House of representatives should consist of 77 members, of whom 20 were given one province, 23 another, and 9, 7 and 5 to the smaller provinces, and it was specially provided that not one of the original states forming the commonwealth should ever have less than five members in the house of representatives. The constitution of the United States also provides for a minimum representation. It seems to me that these precedents are so reasonable that hon. members should not

regard the proposition I am advancing as one open in any degree to objection.

I yield to no one in my admiration and appreciation of the great men who met together in 1864 for the purpose of considering the conditions under which a union of the provinces of Canada might be brought about. We who are living in a period somewhat remote from that important epoch are perhaps sometimes inclined to think that the men of that day were possessed of transcendent ability, that they were more far seeing, that they possessed the faculty of looking into the future and providing for future conditions to a degree far exceeding that possessed by the men who are occupying similar positions at the present time. Well, I do not think I am detracting in any respect from the merits of those great men when I say that the public men of the day, who are discharging their duties in our federal parliament and provincial legislatures, are quite as far seeing as those who preceded them forty years o.

n the view of subsequent events, we would not be justified in assuming that the framers of the Act of Confederation saw in advance all the conditions and circumstances likely to arise in respect of the various provinces of the Dominion for all time to come. It would be preposterous to say that these men intended to impose upon this country a piece of legislation which never could, under any circumstances, be amended in order to meet conditions bound to arise in a country of our rapid growth. As an instance, to show how men, familiar with the subjects they are attempting to discuss and settle, may be mistaken, let me quote the statement of the late Archi-bishop Tache regarding the possibilites of the Northwest as a wheat raising country. That venerable archbishop wrote a pamphlet in 1869 in which he asserted that the country now described as Alberta and Saskatchewan would never produce wheat, yet during last year the plains and valleys in these two provinces produced no less than 130,000,000 bushels. No doubt the venerable archbishop made that statement in all sincerity and honesty. It was made about two years after the Confederation Act was passed, and based on the information then at hand. Consequently we may very well assume that the framers of the British North America Act, who were representing the older provinces of Canada, could not have anticipated the enormous influx of population which would flow into those western provinces during all those years.

What are the objections heard against the very moderate and modest demand which the maritime provinces are now making? The answer given in some places is that the British North America Act has provided a system by which the representation of all the provinces shall be determined and that we must adhere to it. In other words, to use the language of that unsympathetic and exacting creditor immortalized in the ' Merchant of Venice,' ' it is so written in the bond.' I submit that written constitutions, if they are to be durable, if they are not to bear harshly and unfairly on certain elements of the population and certain parts of the country, must be subject to amendment from time to time. In fact I think I am well within the mark when I say that every essential feature and condition of the British North America Act has been amended from time to time since 1867, except that one provision which fixes the representation of the maritime provinces. In 1869 a resolution was passed by the House of Commons to the effect that it is the undoubted privilege of parliament to fix and determine the amount of all expenses chargeable on the public funds of the Dominion, but that the House was of the opinion that no further grant or provision beyond those made by the Union Act and the Act respecting Nova Scotia, should in the future be made out of the revenues of Canada for the support of the government or legislature of any province.

In addition to the fact that the amount of subsidy payable by this government to the different provinces was determined by the Act, we have years afterwards the resolution I have just read setting a limit to the amount of subsidy to be paid those provinces. It is within the knowledge of hon. members, that, a few years ago, the provincial premiers met in conference and passed a resolution by which they requested that a further appropriation be made to the respective provinces out of the federal treasury. That resolution was received favourably by the federal government and by this House, and, as a consequence, these provinces are enjoying a larger subsidy than they heretofore enjoyed. I might also remind the House that the question was not entirely unanimous, because the premier of British Columbia withdrew from that conference, refusing to accept the proportion that was allotted to the province of British Columbia. When these resolutions were presented to the imperial parliament for legislative enactment, it was sought to insert into that Bill a provision that there should be no further increase from the federal treasury to the provinces of Canada, but that the amount fixed by the Act then passing should be final and conclusive. That amendment was not inserted in the Act, showing that the imperial authorities did not regard it wise that any specific act of legislation should be held to fetter and trench upon the future development and future conditions that might thereafter arise with regard to this great Dominion.

Another objection that has been made to

the acceptance of this resolution is one which I find stated in the columns of the Toronto ' Globe ' of Wednesday last. The late Hon. George Brown was the great exponent of representation by population, and during the whole of his public life he endeavoured to work out that principle in its application to the provinces of Canada. He was the proprietor and director of the Toronto 'Globe' for many years, and that paper which was established by him and which is taken to represent his views so far as the application of his views could be made to the conditions of the present time, made this objection, and this objection only, to the acceptance of this resolution:

The most serious objection to the change is the resultant tendency to make the House unwieldy. There is neither wisdom nor despatch in an overgrown deliberate body, With large membership it is necessary that the preponderance take no part in the -work. Even with the present representation at Ottawa, if every member took an active part, progress would be virtually impossible. Every increase must increase tlie element of silent idlers, and that is rot desirable. The relative strength of the contingent from the maritime provinces would be no less under the change required by the present law than under the change sought. In either case it would be in proportion of population.

Now, Sir, it does seem to me that the merits of this resolution must be fairly apparent when the Toronto ' Globe ' can find no stronger objection to the acceptance of that resolution than the tendency it would have to make the House of Commons unwieldly. Even should all the representatives from Prince Edward Island lose their seats in this House at the next re-distribution, it would leave only four vacant seats for the accommodation of the increasing number of members who will come to this House from the west after the next re-distribution. At the very worst I cannot conceive that more than ten members would be taken from Nova Scotia during the next twenty or thirty years, and perhaps the same number from the province of New Brunswick. And, while such a large decrease as that would affect very seriously the interests of those provinces in this House, there would be no corresponding advantage as respects the unwieldly character of the House of Commons, when we take into account the increased number of members that must necessarily come to parliament from the new provinces in the near future. The objections of the Toronto ' Globe ' suggests a picture of the members who are hereafter to be elected from the now unformed constituencies in the great west, sitting upon the door-step of the House of Commons, patiently, yet hopefully awaiting the inevitable reduction of representatives from the maritime provinces, provided for in the British North America Mr. KYTE.

Act, by which representatives from those provinces are deprived of their seats whereupon they may joyfully enter and take possession of them. It comes to this, so far as the objection of the Toronto ' Globe ' is concerned, ' in the time to come the number of representatives from the larger provinces will necessarily increase, and, in order to provide room for them, some provinces must be deprived of their representation-and why not the maritime provinces as well as any other. I sympathize with hon. members in their desire to adhere strictly, so far as strict adherence is possible to the conditions of the British North America Act. I am not one who would lightly change the conditions under which all the provinces entered confederation. Nor am I one who would wantonly amend the British North America Act for some trifling consideration. But in matters of serious moment, matters that affect so vitally the interests of the maritime provinces, in view of the amendments that have heretofore been made, in view of the principle followed in other countries similarly circumstanced, I feel strongly that the members from the maritime provinces are not asking too much when they ask that a minimum be fixed beyond which their representation would not be reduced. With respect to the constitution of the United States, that constitution was drawn up by men I suppose equal in talent, foresight and statesmanship to those who drew up the British North America Act. But the people of the United States do not regard the American constitution as a piece of sacred legislation that is not to be amended or changed under varying conditions as they arise in that great country. No less than seventeen constitutional amendments have been made to the American constitution to meet the changing conditions in the United States, and whenever it is necessary to have further amendments, there seems to be no hesitation on the part of the people of that progressive nation to make the amendments to suit the circumstances of the day.

The province of Quebec having been selected as the pivotal point on which the representation of the other provinces is determined, some hon. gentlemen are inclined to say that it was so selected to assure to the province of Quebec its proportionate influence and standing in the confederation of Canada. I beg to suggest that no such consideration entered into the minds of the gentlemen who were interested in selecting Quebec as the pivotal province. The reason why Quebec was selected is given in the speech of Sir John A. Macdonald in the confederation debates, wherein he stated that Quebec was accepted as the pivot on which the whole would turn on account of the comparatively permanent character of its population, and from its having neither the

largest nor the.least number of inhabitants. It was not selected in order that the rights or customs of the province of Quebec should be preserved to the people; it was not selected on account of any fear that their influence would become less as this Dominion grew and became more populous; it was selected simply and solely because it was represented to be not the highest or lowest in point of population, and its population was less likely to vary than that of any other. That was another respect in which the framers of confederation did not anticipate the facts as they have occurred.

The province of Quebec has benefited largely by the inflow of population from European countries. It is situated upon the great waterway of this Dominion. The immigrants coming to western Canada first view the beautiful hills and the fertile plains of the province of Quebec, lying along the River St. Lawrence; they come to the great city of Montreal, which is the entrepot of the whole Dominion of Canada. The city of Montreal is destined to become a great city; and I am pleased to know that some of our hon. friends from the pro vince of Quebec are sanguine enough to look forward to the day when the city of Montreal will have a population of a million. When the city of Montreal has a population of a million, I wonder what will become of the representation of the maritime provinces. It is not too hopeful, or too sanguine, a view to take of the development and increase of the province of Quebec, and of the great city of Montreal, to say that hon. gentlemen who predict a population of a million for Montreal within the next thirty or forty years are not reckless in their prophecy. But when the city of Montreal has a population of a million, then I ask you, Mr. Speaker, what will be the position of the maritime provinces as a factor in the public affairs of this dominion, as represented in this House of. Commons. The city of Montreal, regarded as the national port of this country, has been the subject of large grants of money on the part of the national government, millions of dollars have been expended for the purpose of making Montreal the great centre of transportation for this country. It is money well spent, and I am sure no member from the maritime provinces begrudges the city of Montreal and the people of Quebec the money which has been expended to make its harbour safe and to deepen and to improve its channel. But every dollar that has been spent by the Dominion of Canada for the purpose of improving the city of Montreal makes possible a large increase in its population, and therefore a large increase of population in the province of Quebec is due to a considerable extent to the generous disposition with which the maritime 87

provinces have received every proposal to spend money in the province of Quebec and in the river St. Lawrence, at the same time that it is calculated to redound to their disadvantage on account of the increased population which it will bring about, and the corresponding decrease in the representation of the maritime provinces. I beg leave to move, Mr. Speaker, the motion of which I have given notice.

Topic:   MARITIME PROVINCES REPRESENTATION.
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LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. J. G. TURRIFF (Assiniboia).

My hon. friend from Richmond, N.S. (Mr. Kyte) has built up a very elaborate argument on what seems to me a very flimsy foundation. Not being learned in the law, I do not propose to follow along those lines. But there are some facts in connection with this matter that I think it might be well to lay before the House. The entire principle underlying the argument of my hon. friend is a wTong one. He has argued as if some injustice was being done, or had been done, to the people of the maritime provinces. He says that the British North America Act has been amended on many occasions, and that it ought to be amended again to meet his views. Why, Mr. Speaker, if any injustioe was being done to the people of the lower provinces, every man in this House would be ready to call for an amendment of the British North America Act to remedy the injustice. But my hon. friend, during the whole of his speech, has not indicated one single injustice that has been done, or is being done, to the people of the lower provinces. They will continue to be represented in this House just exactly in the same proportion, according to their population, as they were at the time they entered confederation. Nothing that could be said at the present time could make us believe that the fathers of confederation, who had this matter in hand, that men like the Hon. George Brown and others who had fought their whole lives for the principle of representation by population, would have agreed to any such proposition. They must have foreseen that in the future one province might increase in population faster than another, and they never would have consented that one province should be represented in the federal parliament on one basis, and another province on another basis. No one can gather from the debates of that period that any such intention was in their minds. Why, the whole basic principle of confederation was the fact that in the House of Commons every province was to be on an absolutely equal footing. If you want any further proof of that, you can consider what was done in the organization of the second chamber. It was provided that the smaller provinces, smaller territorially and in population, as they would not have an

equal number of members in the parliament of Canada, should be protected, if any protection was necessary, by giving them a predominance in the upper chamber. But the whole groundwork of confederation was the fact that there should be absolute equality of representation in proportion to population in the different provinces of the Dominion. Now it is almost half a century since that took place. At the time of confederation, when the provinces of Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick united, does my hon. friend think for a moment that a resolution like this would have met with favour, that special consideration would be given to the lower provinces, that they should be allowed representation in this House on one basis, and the great province of Ontario, that came in at the same time, under exactly the same conditions and that has lost more representation in the past than the lower provinces have lost, should be allowed representation on another basis? Does my hon. friend think for a minute that the province of Ontario would sit quiet and allow herself to be unrepresented according to population? I do not think so for a moment. Just as certain if we adopted the suggestion of my hon. friend, then next year you would have the province of Ontario coming forward and rightly saying: We came in under the

same terms, under the same conditions, as the lower provinces, and we are entitled to the same consideration.

Topic:   MARITIME PROVINCES REPRESENTATION.
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CON

Clarence Jameson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. JAMESON.

Do I understand the hon. gentleman to say that the province of Ontario has lost any of its representation?

Topic:   MARITIME PROVINCES REPRESENTATION.
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January 31, 1910