May 14, 1926

CON

Henry Herbert Stevens

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEVENS:

I was going .to offer a

slight correction if the minister will permit me, namely, that some of the employees to whom I refer were appointed when the income tax legislation was first introduced which would be before the passing of the Civil Service Act. I merely offer that in correction of part of my hon. friend's statement.

The Budget-Mr. Murphy

Topic:   CIVIL SERVICE SUPERANNUATION
Subtopic:   EXTENSION OF TIME FOE MAKING APPLICATION
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LIB

Eugène Fiset

Liberal

Sir EUGENE FISET:

What applies to

employees of the Taxation branch applies also to a certain number of employees of the Department of Marine and Fisheries who are in the outside service, and who have not yet been classified by the Civil Service Commission. They have not yet had an opportunity of electing to come under t'he present Superannuation Act. I shall be obliged if the government will give due consideration to the observations of my hon. friend.

RAILWAY MAIL SERVICE On the Orders of the Day:

Topic:   CIVIL SERVICE SUPERANNUATION
Subtopic:   EXTENSION OF TIME FOE MAKING APPLICATION
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CON

John Arthur Clark

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. J. A. CLARK (Vancouver-Burrard):

I should like to draw the attention of the government to this telegram which I have just received from the Railway Mail Clerk's Association of Vancouver:.

Strong objections voiced meeting railway mail clerks re action Post Office Department Te adjusting runs this division necessitating removal forty-nine men and families. Please use influence to have department reconsider their action which means domestic and financial losses.

I would ask that this telegram be drawn to the attention of the Postmaster General and *that the matter be reconsidered as it affects a large number of families.

IMPORTATIONS OF WOOL On the Orders of the Day:

Topic:   CIVIL SERVICE SUPERANNUATION
Subtopic:   EXTENSION OF TIME FOE MAKING APPLICATION
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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. J. S. WOODSWORTH (Winnipeg North Centre):

I should like to call the attention of the Acting Minister of Trade and Commerce to this Canadian Press despatch from Truro, Nova Scotia under date of May 11:

Stanfield's mills here, employing hundreds of people in the manufacture of underwear and other wool products, shut down to-night as result of the strike in Great Britain, which cut off the supply of raw material. Wool supplies for this mill were secured in England and the cessation of export due to the strike was given as the cause of the shut down.

Since protection seems to be desired by a large number of members in this House, has the minister considered the advisability of protecting the Canadian farmer against the importation of British wool?

PROPOSED NEW LINE TO PACIFIC On the Orders of the Day:

Mr. A. DeWITT FOSTER (Hants-Kings): In the absence of the Minister of Railways (Mr. Dunning), .may I draw the attention of the Prime Minister to this article appearing in the Canadian Gazette of London, and upon which I desire to found a question:

Proposed New Line to Pacific Coast The Winnipeg correspondent of the Daily Mail states: "The Canadian Pacific Railway Company is planning

a mew line to the Pacific coast from Winnipeg. The proposal is that the Canadian Pacific branch line which is now being built in a north-westerly direction from the present rail end at Cutknife, Saskatchewan, is to be extended to tap the Edmonton-Dunvegan line at a point north of Edmonton, Alberta.

"This line, at present leased by the Canadian Pacific from the Alberta Government, is to be included in the Canadian Pacific system. The present E.D. and B.C. line ds to be extended southerly to tap the Canadian National at Prince George, B.C. The Canadian Pacific is then to purchase the former G.T.P. line from Prince George to Prince Rupert, B.C., now part of the Canadian National system, thus completing the new Pacific coast outlet for the Canadian Pacific.

Have representations been made by the Canadian Pacific looking for the acquisition of that line?

Topic:   CIVIL SERVICE SUPERANNUATION
Subtopic:   EXTENSION OF TIME FOE MAKING APPLICATION
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LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Right Hon. W. L. MACKENZIE KING (Prime Minister):

I regret I am not in a

position to say, but I will ask my colleague the Minister of Railways to give my hon. friend a reply when he is here on Monday.

Topic:   CIVIL SERVICE SUPERANNUATION
Subtopic:   EXTENSION OF TIME FOE MAKING APPLICATION
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CONNAUGHT PLACE-ENLARGEMENT


On the Orders of the Day: .


CON

George Halsey Perley

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE PERLEY (Argenteuil):

When does the Minister of Public Works expect to be able to explain to the House the plans of the government in regard to the block of land which it is reported the government have expropriated in this city?

Topic:   CONNAUGHT PLACE-ENLARGEMENT
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LIB

James Horace King (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Hon. J. H. KING (Minister of Public Works):

I imagine there will be an opportunity of going into the matter when we are dealing with the estimates which I hope wlil come up shortly.

Topic:   CONNAUGHT PLACE-ENLARGEMENT
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THE BUDGET

CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE


The House resumed from Wednesday, May 12, the debate on the motion of Hon. J. A. Robb (Minister of Finance), that the Speaker do now leave the chair for the House to go into committee of Ways and Means and the proposed amendment thereto of Hon. R. J. Manion.


CON

Thomas Gerow Murphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. T. G. MURPHY (Neepawa):

Mr. Speaker, when the House rose on Wednesday I was endeavouring to show that the Australian and New Zealand trade agreements are subjecting producers of dairy products to unnecessary and unfair competition. I 'had shown by information that I had received from a local creamery in my constituency that the price of butter had been reduced four cents a pound this spring owing to the competition of Australian butter. I obtained from the Bureau of Statistics the importations of butter

The Budget-Mr. Murphy

into Canada for the period from October 1,

1924 to March 31, 1925 and from October 1,

1925 to March 31, 1926. I book those periods because the trade treaty with Australia came into effect on October 1, 1925. The following are the importations of butter for those periods:

October 1, 1924, to October 1, 1925, to March 31, 1925 March31,1926

Pounds Value Pounds Value

From Australia-

Butter Nill N-ill 2,485,502 $910,814

From New Zealand-

Butter 2,688 $833 2,342,966 $928,345

When we compare these respective periods, therefore, we find that whereas we have imported from Australia and New Zealand butter to the total value of $1,839,159 during the time the treaty has been in effect, our imports amounted on the other hand only to the sum of $833 when there was no treaty. During the month of March of this year I happened to see in a window of one of the retail produce concerns in the city of Ottawa ,a display of Australian butter. I went in and made certain inquiries and learned that at that time this particular concern was selling between 300 and 400 pounds of dairy butter per week, and not only had they at that time no local butter in stock but for the three weeks prior to that they had not sold one pound of the Canadian product. And that store was only one of a chain of some fourteen shops owned by that concern. At the same time the three prairie provinces were exporting dairy butter as western Canada has overtaken production and is on an export basis twelve months in the year. I do not see why any government should subject the producers of butter in western Canada to such competition. They have to export their butter over thousands of miles of railway and then across the Atlantic to the markets of Great Britain while the people of Ontario cities are purchasing butter produced in Australia.

I want to deal for a few minutes now with the situation as it has developed in the province of Manitoba. Until now Manitoba has been almost entirely an agricultural province, but we shall not always remain a purely farming community. As a matter of fact the change is taking place to-day. Three-fifths of the land area of Manitoba is unsuitable for agricultural development. Up to the present we have depended entirely upon the growing of grain, but to-day the people of the province are beginning to realize the importance of development along other lines. There is now being built in Manitoba at Fort Alexander a pulp mill which, when

completed, will have an output of 100 tons of pulp per day. During the last session of the legislature railway bonds to the extent of $3,500,000 were guaranteed by the provincial government for the building of a railway from Mile 8 on the Hudson Bay line to the Flin Flon mine, the guarantee to become effective only when the Flin Flon people expend thirteen or fourteen million dollars on development work in that area. The legislature has also guaranteed bonds for a railway from Winnipeg into the Bice lake mining area. The people of the province are coming more and more to appreciate the importance of general development along various industrial lines. The province, as I have said before, will not always depend solely upon one industry, the growing of grain. To become prosperous we mugt not only diversify our farming but we must branch out into other industrial activities. We have in Manitoba a water power capable of very considerable development. Indeed, competent engineers have expressed the opinion that there is as much potential hydro electric power available on the Nelson river, flowing into Hudson bay, as has been developed on the Niagara, and wre have in Winnipeg the cheapest hydro-electric power to be found on the American continent.

With the resources latent in the province of Manitoba, including pulpwood and minerals, and with the electrical power available there is no reason why our province should not become one of the greatest manufacturing centres of this Dominion. We can manufacture in Winnipeg and in Manitoba generally, we should manufacture the agricultural implements needed in the province and other parts of the west and we have also the facilities for manufacturing our own boots and shoes, our own clothing and other necessities. It is because the people of the province have wakened to the necessity for general industrial development that, in my opinion, there are in this House seven Conservative members from Manitoba whereas in the last parliament there were none. The development of the province along one line is not in the best interests of the people of Manitoba any more than it would be in the interests of the Dominion as a whole if the activities of the people were centred in one industry. A few years ago we bent our efforts to the development of one industry, namely, the growing of grain and as a result of that one-sided development the people of the province suffered whenever there happened to be a poor crop. The greatest handicap under which we have suffered in

The Budget-Mr. Murphy

the past, and from which as a matter of fact we are suffering to-day, has been that restricted policy which has been the means of driving hundreds and thousands of our young men away from the province. Many of the sons of our farmers in Manitoba, on reaching the age of discretion, decided that they did not want to become farmers. Some of them entered the learned professions and some of them took advantage of the technical school in Winnipeg to fit themselves for an engineering career. With what result? When they had received their education and had graduated they found that there was no opportunity for them to apply their talents in their own country. From my own town of Neepawa many young men, after obtaining scholarships in our educational institutions, have drifted away. I do not know of one of those young men who . took the engineering course in Manitoba who is to-day in employment in Canada. They have all migrated to the United States. I am sure the same is true of other parts of the province.

Not only do we need the establishment and development of new industries in Manitoba, but we require also, for the greatest success, the completion of the Hudson Bay railway. I do not intend to deal at any length with this subject nor, to dwell upon the circumstances whereby this road has been left in its incomplete state, having been built within ninety miles or so of its terminus. Every government, leader and parliament since 1881 have committed themselves to the building of this road. In 1881 charters were granted by the government of Sir John A Macdonald to two companies for the undertaking and in 1884 the same government made a land grant of 6,400 acres per mile in Manitoba and 12,800 acres per mile in what was then the Northwest Territories, to insure the building of the Hudson Bay railway. As a result of that policy the road was built up to the present site of the town of the Pas.

I was interested in reading in the Ottawa Journal of May 11 of the present year, an editorial on the Hudson Bay railway. I shall not read the whole of the article, but I shall quote certain facts which the writer thought he had deduced from a debate which had taken place in the Senate this year:

Fact No. One: That lands sold in the west under the legislation of 1908 had no relation whatever to the construction of the Hudson Bay railway.

Fact No. Two: That these lands would have been sold had the Hudson Bay railway never been mentioned.

Fact No. Three: That none of the lands sold was in the Hudson bay area.

Fact No. Four: That, consequently, the whole of the $21,000,000 thus far spent upon the Hudson Bay railway has come out of ordinary national revenue, i.e. the taxpayer of the country.

At this point I should like to pay a compliment to the two daily papers published in the city of Ottawa. I have read them very carefully ever since my arrival in the capital in January, and I really think they are two very high class journals, but on the subject of the Hudson Bay railway the Ottawa Journal seems to suffer from a kind of mental hydrophobia. About the year 1896 or 1897, Messrs. Mackenzie & Mann, a firm of railway contractors, undertook to build a railway from Gladstone, Manitoba, to Dauphin. At the same time they purchased from Mr. Sutherland who had obtained a charter in 1881 for the building of the Hudson bay road, a controlling interest in the South Saskatchewan and Hudson Bay Railway Company. When the line was built as far as Winnipegosis, Mackenzie & Mann continued westerly into the province of Saskatchewan rather than on to Hudson bay. In 1905, upon the creation of the provinces of Saskatchewan and Alberta, the demand became insistent for the completion of the Hudson Bay road. And the Hon. Frank Oliver, the then Minister of the Interior, on behalf of the government entered into an agreement with Mackenzie & Mann under the terms of which they relinquished the Hudson Bay charter and undertook to build a line from a point on the Dauphin and Prince Albert line to the Saskatchewan river, the government undertaking to sell sufficient homestead and preemption lands to provide for the completion of the road to the bay. As a result of that policy Messrs. Mackenzie & Mann built from a point on the Dauphin and Prince Albert line to the site of the present town of The Pas.

I have said that the government of the day entered into a contract with Mackenzie & Mann in 1905 by which the firm relinquished their charter. In 1908 the federal government caused an amendment to the Dominion Lands Act to be passed. On that occasion Hon. Frank Oliver said he found incongruities in the act which made the administration difficult. He also stated, as one reason why he wanted these amendments made to the act, that it was not the policy of the Laurier government to make grants of land towards the building of railways. In that connection I would refer to the debates of 1908, ag reported in volume 6 of Hansard. At page 11130 of that volume I find Mr. Oliver reported as saying:

Therefore, it is a plain proposition. There is, as it were, a (mortgage standing against the lands of the

The Budget-Mr. Murphy

northwest in respect to aid to a railway to Hudson bay. The necessity of such an outlet is greater than ever before and is more impressed on the minds of the people than ever before. Therefore in wiping out the mortgage upon the lands on behalf of a railway to Hudson bay, if we undertook to do as we propose in this act, it is necessary that we should place something in its stead, and that is the proposition that I desire to lay before the House.

Then further on the the same page:

That is to say, in regard to certain sections to allow the 'homesteader to buy an adjoining quarter section at a fixed price under settlement conditions. We believed that by the revival of this privilege we would create a new source of revenue to the Dominion treasury that would be adequate to meet the responsibilities which would have to be assumed by the construction of a railway to the bay.

And again, on page 11135, he is reported as saying:

There was no suggestion of restriction of the area to which the bill of last year applied.

Mr. Oliver had introduced amendments the year before but they had not been adopted; they were dropped.

My if ear was that a question might have been raised as to whether the provision /was adequate or not. What I had in view was to place before parliament a proposition that should put beyond question the fact that we bad adequately provided assistance from an entirely new source of revenue to enable the Hudson Bay railway to be built.

And again on page 11138:

The point we have din view in regard to this preemption matter is that there shall be a railway built to Hudson bay. If we can get a railway built to Hudson bay without any pre-emption provision at all then I am not insisting upon the pre-emption provision. But I am insisting upon the pre-emption provision as a means of ensuring the early building of a railway to Hudson bay.

And again at page 11150, in answer to a question, Mr. Oliver said:

We do not propose that the building of the railway Shall await ithe sale of 5,000,000 acres of this land, but we want to be able to say to the people of the country that if we find it necessary to pledge the credit of the country to an extent to raise sufficient money to aid in the building of the Hudson Bay railway, here is a new source of revenue that will relieve them of the burden of the responsibility they thus undertake.

I think, Mr. Speaker, from the evidence I have submitted, that the statements of the Ottawa Journal in the editorial in question are not facts but fiction. Now, from the year 1908 onward successive governments have recognized that the moneys derived from the sale of these lands were to be expended for the completion of the Hudson Bay road. The people of the west purchased lands on that definite understanding, and to-day there is a contractual obligation resting on the federal government to keep faith with these purchasers.

In answer to certain questions which I put on the order paper earlier in the session I obtained information to the following effect. Under the provisions of the act of 1908, as amended, there were 14,085,880 acres sold, of a value of approximately $42,257,640. Of that amount $19,837,288 have been collected, and there is still owing the sum of $7,300,000. leaving a total to the credit of the fund of $27,137,288. Of that amount $14,944,870 was expended up to February 28 of the present year, so that there is still a sum of $12,192,418 to the credit of the fund. I have said that the total amount collected was $19,837,288. Of this amount the sum of $14,944,870 has been spent,. leaving a cash credit ol $4,892,418. From the very first there has been determined opposition in certain quarters to the completion of the road and now that the completion is likely to be carried out, the opponents of the project are trying to reopen the question of the relative merits of Churchill and Nelson as a terminal. The port of Nelson was chosen as the terminal by two successive governments, after full investigation and report by competent engineers. Over $6,000,000 has been spent on the development of Port Nelson up to the present, and knowing these facts supporters of the road realize that a red herring is being drawn across the trail. But Mr. Speaker, we refuse to be drawn aside; we think there have been enough investigations during the last forty years, and that the time for action has now arrived.

The Conservative members from the wesi are frequently slightingly spoken of in this House as representing minorities. For the three prairie provinces, which may be taken as an economic unit, I would like to submit that the Conservative members do not represent minorities. I find that in these provinces during the last election there were oast for Conservative candidates 171,263 votes; for the Liberals 161,114 and for the Progressives 159,042. To elect each of the ten Conservatives from the prairie provinces it took 17,126 votes; for each Liberal 8,056, and for each Progressive 7,229. If the Conservatives were represented in this House according to the number of votes cast we would have at least twenty me-mbers instead of the ten we now have. I speak of this, Mr. 'Speaker, for the simple reason that the Progressives arrogate unto themselves the right to voice in this House the sentiments of the west, and I claim that the twenty-two Progressives, who represent only 116,114 votes do not express the feelings of the people of the prairie provinces any more than do the ten Conservatives, representing 171,263 votes.

The Budget-Mr. Verville

The Progressive movement is not as strong and flourishing as it was a few short years ago. There is published in the west a paper called the Grain Growers' Guide, sometimes known as the Progressives' Bible. During some preceding years the subscription price has been $2 a year, $1 of which went to pay for the paper, the other dollar being the membership fee in the farmers' local. But so badly have the Progressives fallen off-

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
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PRO

Robert Forke

Progressive

Mr. FORKE:

I do not wish to let that

statement pass, Mr. Speaker; the hon. member must know that he is not stating the fact. I have taken the Grain Growers' Guide for a good many years-

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
CON

Thomas Gerow Murphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MURPHY:

Is the hon. gentleman

asking a question?

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
PRO

Robert Forke

Progressive

Mr. FORKE:

Did I understand my hon.

friend to say that SI paid for membership in the United Farmers, and SI went to the paper?

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
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CON

Thomas Gerow Murphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MURPHY:

That is my information.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
PRO

Robert Forke

Progressive

Mr. FORKE:

The hon. member is mistaken.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
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CON

Thomas Gerow Murphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MURPHY:

I think I am absolutely

correct. That may not apply to a certain year" which the hon. member has in mind, but I am sure that the facts have been as I have stated for at least some years. I have in my hand a notice from the Grain Growers' Guide, which says:

Great bargain! Guide subscription rate is now 41 for three years.

The Progressive party have fallen on such hard times in the west that they have had to make bargain rates for the organ which is supposed to represent Progressive opinion.

In conclusion, Mr. Speaker, I would like to make my position clear regarding the fiscal policy of the Conservative party. As I understand it the aim of the Conservative fiscal policy is to manufacture Canadian raw .products in Canada; to stimulate the development of Canadian resources by the Canadian people; to develop industries of the right nature; a policy which will provide employment for Canadian workmen and provide traffic for our railways; a policy which will keep Canadians in Canada and attract other people to our shores; a policy which will accomplish all these results without exploitation of the people and which will restore confidence by placing our tariff on an adequate, scientific, and above all a stable basis. If Canada is always to remain a country of magnificent distances with a sparse population fringing its borders; a nation of producers of primary products, then the policy which aims at free trade is the right one.

But I believe Canada has a greater destiny before her, and that the proper way to make our country as far as possible a self-sufficient nation is lay means of a national protective policy.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
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LIB

Joseph-Achille Verville

Liberal

Mr. J. A. VERVILLE (Lotbiniere) (Translation):

Mr. Speaker, I consider it my duty

to take part in the debate which has been going on in this House for several days concerning what we have agreed to call the budget.

First of all, Mr. Speaker, I take pleasure in joining my congratulations to those, most flattering and most sincere, which you have already received since the beginning of the session, on the great honour which has come to you and of which we are all proud.

You will find it quite natural for a beginner to crave your indulgence should my inexperience cause me to commit some faux pas, which will undoubtedly happen despite my best efforts to prevent it. Not having the advantage of sufficient fluency in the English tongue to permit of my speaking here the language of the very great majority of the members of this parliament, I do not feel called upon, however, to make excuses, since both languages are official and since I am convinced moreover, being true to my race, of the rights and the beauties of the tongue I speak. Allow me, in passing, to congratulate most sincerely the hon. member for Northeast Toronto (Mr. Baker) on the splendid example he gave his fellow countrymen, and mine, the other day, when he spoke French in this House. .

I have no intention, Mr. Speaker, of discussing in detail the Speech from the Throne, nor, especially, the very able and very sincere budget speech delivered by the hon. Minister of Finance (Mr. Robb) on April 15th. I merely wish to offer a few comments on certain questions which may interest the voters of my riding as also the voters of the district where I have the pleasure and the advantage of residing. Following the example set by several speakers since the opening of the session I take pleasure in acquainting you a little with the feelings and the needs of my constituents.

I shall not hide from you, Mr. Speaker, that the voters of the county of Lotbiniere, which I have the honour to represent in this House, are very well pleased with the economic situation this government has placed them in. I represent a farming district where industries are few and far between. In certain parishes of course one will find small industrial establishments due to the initiative and energy of enterprising individuals; these

The Budget-Mr. Verville

establishments deserve to survive, and deserve all the encouragement the federal government can give them. But those who are at the head of them are workers who do not rely solely on legislation and tariff increases to succeed in business; but who rely chiefly on their own initiative and on the industry of their workmen.

As regards the farmers, who make up the large majority in the constituency I represent, they have felt, and still feel, the terrible crisis which followed the war. They are the ones who need protection, but that kind of protection which, while favouring them, will work no harm to the other classes of the community. To my mind the best protection the present administration could offer the agricultural class would be to afford them easier access to the markets of the world for the sale of their produce. Our farmers do not fear competition; they would rather have access to the markets than keep their produce at home so as to avoid competition.

When the election was being fought last fall I had the advantage,-if it might be called an advantage-of being present at a large Conservative rally; and it amused me to hear distinguished speakers, with magnificent voice and gesture, their arms spread as though on a cross, their eyes lifted skywards, tell us that things looked very dark in the homes of our farmers, that even bread was getting scarce and that those who wished to avoid death by starvation had no choice but to nail boards over the windows of their homes and to leave Canada for the States. And the Liberal party was held responsible for all this. The result of the election shows that our good farmers are intelligent enough to judge their situation for themselves and that they laugh at calamity howlers just like the citizens of the province of Quebec laughed at Mr. Patenaude. At all events the situation of the farmers in my county, and I have reason to believe that the same thing is true elsewhere, has improved considerably within the last few years. And I claim that this is due in great measure to the wise administration of the present government during the last five years. One is inclined to wonder if Providence is not on the side of the Liberal party for whenever that party takes over the administration of public affairs conditions improve and the country prospers; while the facts prove that exactly the opposite happens each time the Conservative party is at the helm. I am loath to acquire a reputation as an overzealous partisan for speaking thus frankly; but I have always said what I thought and I do not wish to lose this habit

in the House. Besides, the facts are there to prove the truth of what I say; and if we discard the red or blue cloths which blindfold us we must admit that these things are true. At any rate the voters I have had the pleasure ^ of meeting since the beginning of the session are pleased with the present government and congratulate the Liberal party for having stayed in power and thus ensured the prosperity of the country. Since the Finance Minister brought down his budget the people have been rejoicing; my constituents, like everybody else, have expressed their deep satisfaction at all the good financial tidings contained in the budget speech.

The government is surely deserving of our most hearty congratulations for their excellent work and the marvels accomplished. After five years of administration, having found public affairs in a terrible mess, confronted with the complete disorganization which followed the war, and despite the acute crisis which has been felt for several years, the government is able to announce to the country a not inconsiderable surplus and moreover its determination to lift some $25,000,000 of taxes off the shoulders of the Canadian taxpayer. I fully appreciate that there is no putting an end to politics; nevertheless one must recognize facts and call things by their right names. For my part, and I believe I speak for the great majority of my constituents, the present government deserves our congratulations for all the excellent measures they have brought to our attention and I consider it a duty to offer them mine.

Since the opening of the session it has been essential that we should discuss each day and every day Maritime rights, western rights, and the rights of other provinces. You will bear witness, Mr. Speaker, that we have not tired the House with the question of the rights of the province of Quebec. I would not wish to revive the old problem of provincial rights; and if I mention the matter it is merely because I wish to explain my own attitude; I believe in giving to each province, as to the representatives of every county, the greatest possible measure of justice, with absolute impartiality, but with firmness. I understand that certain needs are felt in each riding, and I shall tell you nothing new when I say that Lotbiniere county has needs of its own. There is one problem in particular which interests my county and the neighbouring counties on the south shore.

Since 1922 my predecessor in this House has striven to have a proper roadway afforded to vehicular traffic on the Quebec bridge.

The Budget-Mr. Stewart (Leeds)

A detailed report on this question must have been forwarded to the hon. Minister of Railways.

Let me draw your attention to the following fact: Resolutions asking for the construction of a road for vehicles on the Quebec bridge were adopted by the county councils of Lotbiniere and Levis and the municipal councils of almost every parish of my riding and addressed to the Department of Railways and Canals. Owing to the enormous and ever-increasing traffic of visitors in that part of the province, in summer, and to the very important traffic of the people of my riding and of the two adjacent counties and the city of Quebec, the construction of that road for vehicles on the Quebec bridge is now a necessity. The present government would indeed earn the gratitude of the voters of Lotbiniere were they to start work on this improvement without delay. A minute ago, I said that this improvement is now a necessity and I will add that an inquiry that was conducted has proven the idea to be a practical one. The engineers of the National railways are of the opinion, I am told, that there is in the centre of the bridge plenty of room for the construction of such a road and that the approaches and the floor of the bridge could be so arranged as in no way to interfere with the railways. As you know, in recent years, commissions have been flourishing and if I had my way, I would follow the suggestion that was made before and I would appoint a commission that we could call "the Quebec bridge highway commission." which would be authorized to undertake the work for the project I am putting before the House now. It will be said, I suppose, by certain parties, that at a time when the government are trying to balance the budget, it would not be fair to undertake such a work that may necessitate a large expenditure. I may answer that the country is well able to spend to-day half a million dollars which is the amount required for this work. I will say more: I believe that the Federal government could easily come to an understanding with the provincial government and the Quebec city council and share with those two bodies the cost of the enterprise.

I respectfully submit those facts to the government and hope that they will give them their best attention. There cannot be any [DOT] politics or patronage in connection with the building of this road, its construction is in the public interest and is a public utility; everybody would profit by the road and be glad to have it.

Before I take my seat, Mr. Speaker, I wish to congratulate the hon. member for L'Assomption-Montcalm (Mr. Seguin) for the good move he made last week when he insisted on the use of bilingual postage stamps. I wholly agree with him and I am glad to see that there are yet in this House well advised people who wish to preserve for the province of Quebec and its inhabitants of French descent their full rights. Let us hope, Mr. Speaker, that we will always remember in all the measures that come before the House, as in the different departments of the government, that in the province of Quebec French Canadian citizens have rights equal to those of the citizens of the Maritime provinces, or of the prairie provinces or any other provinces as well and 'that those Quebec citizens are always respectful of the rights of others in the different parts of the country, but do not want others to abuse their generosity; they want others to remember that in this country the French Canadians are the pioneers unwilling to trespass on the rights of others and at the same time intent on safeguarding their own rights.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
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May 14, 1926