July 28, 1931

LIBRARY OF PARLIAMENT


First report of the joint committee on the library of Parliament.-Mr. Speaker.


HUDSON BAY RAILWAY

TEST SHIPMENTS OF GRAIN THROUGH CHURCHILL THIS SEASON


On the orders of the day:


CON

Frank Roland MacMillan

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. F. R. MacMILLAN (Saskatoon):

Mr. Speaker, will the Minister of Railways and Canals (Mr. Manion) advise the house if he

Privilege-Mr. Spotlon

has received any intimation from exporters of grain in the west that they would like to have cargo space reserved in the trial shipment from Churchill. Will he inform the house also if competent authorities in. Saskatchewan have stated that they have secured grain in quantities for the test shipments?

Topic:   HUDSON BAY RAILWAY
Subtopic:   TEST SHIPMENTS OF GRAIN THROUGH CHURCHILL THIS SEASON
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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. R. J. MANION (Minister of Railways and Canals):

Mr. Speaker, I have received no requests from anyotie in western Canada for space in this trial shipment. No one has communicated with me except the On-to-the-Bay Association, who stated that they had disposal of 150,000 bushels, which would comprise about half a cargo. While on my feet may I add that statements have appeared in the papers that Mr. Dunning had said repeatedly that if his party were returned to power they would ship 5,000,000 bushels this fall. A search has been made of the records and of Hansard and no such statement has been found. I do not believe Mr. Dunning ever made any such statement. I ask these western papers either to tell me the source of their information or to stop misquoting and misrepresenting.

Topic:   HUDSON BAY RAILWAY
Subtopic:   TEST SHIPMENTS OF GRAIN THROUGH CHURCHILL THIS SEASON
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PRIVILEGE-MR. SPOTTON


On the orders of the day:


CON

George Spotton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GEORGE SPOTTON (North Huron):

Mr. Speaker, I rise to a question of personal privilege. The Toronto Daily Star of Monday, July 27, contains the following headline:

M.P. Franks Circular Soliciting Students for Business College.

Had Several Hundred Mimeographed in House, George Spotton admits.

The article itself reads as follows:

Enclosed in an official envelope of the House of Commons, Ottawa, a letter written on government stationery received by a Toronto girl, carries a mime'ographed text of about 250 words soliciting her patronage for the Canada Business College, an organization owned and operated by George Spotton, Conservative M.P. for Huron North.

The letter is signed "Canada Business College, per George Spotton, M.P. for North Huron." The outside envelope is franked for free postage, and on the back in large type is the word "free."

Also enclosed is a return envelope, on House of Commons stationery, addressed to G. Mc-Eacbren, B.A., Canada Business College, 274 College Street, Toronto, Ontario.

Interviewed by The Star in Toronto to-day, Mr. Spotton admitted that the letter was one sent out by him.

"How many have you sent out?" The Star asked. "Several hundred," Mr. Spotton said. "Where were they mimeographed?" "In the house. They were dictated to a government stenographer and passed through the usual

channels. All letters dispatched by members have to be authorized by the chief of stenographers and the Clerk of the House."

"Were these letters authorized?" "They were authorized. In fact it was Mr. Smith, head stenographer, who suggested that they should be multigraphed to save time. Otherwise I could have had carbon copies made."

"Do you consider this method of writing business letters quite in order?" "Certainly. I consider it one of my perquisites. Every public office has perquisites. If a man were not allowed to keep in touch with his business while in Ottawa, except by hiring his own stenographer, then a parliamentary career would be for rich men only."

"Is this a general practice?" "Even more so than in my case.' Mr. Smith told me a short time ago that I had been particularly lenient in the use of his stenographers this session. I am not trying 'to put it over.' Both Mr. Smith and the clerk have long experience in parliamentary custom."

Mr. Spotton stated he did not think that the matter would be brought up in the house. "It was done before and it came out that the persons who protested had been themselves making particularly free use of departmental facilities," he said. "If anyone thinks they will do me harm in my constituency, I will say that my electors would laugh if anyone brings up the question in the house, of my having saved $17 or $18 or $21 by using the house stenographers, stationery and stamps. Every envelope bears my initial, written either by me or by someone else on my behalf. That means that I am responsible for that letter."

I wish to say that the Toronto Daily Star was particularly fair to me. During the week end they searched for me all over western Ontario and sought an interview before they published this item.

Topic:   PRIVILEGE-MR. SPOTTON
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CON

Pierre Édouard Blondin (Speaker of the Senate)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPEAKER:

Will the hon. member

state bis question of privilege? He has laid the ground therefor by reading the article, but it is not in order to make a speech.

Topic:   PRIVILEGE-MR. SPOTTON
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CON

George Spotton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPOTTON:

The following appears

under date of Ottawa, July 27:

"Offhand, I should say such a practice would be an abuse of the franking privileges," an official of the Post Office Department told The Star, commenting on Mr. Spotton's circular.

That is my chief complaint. I will read another paragraph in the article, as follows: The regulations governing franking are quite broad and indefinite, the text reading merely as follows: "letters and other mailable matter sent to or by any member of the Senate or House of Commons are carried free of postage." No limitation as to the character of the letter is contained in the regulations.

Topic:   PRIVILEGE-MR. SPOTTON
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CON

Pierre Édouard Blondin (Speaker of the Senate)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPEAKER:

Will the hon. member

state his question of privilege?

Topic:   PRIVILEGE-MR. SPOTTON
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CON

George Spotton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPOTTON:

I deny absolutely the

accusation contained in the heading of this article. A cursory reading of the article would make it appear that the hon. member for

Customs Tariff

North Huron was abusing his privileges. I ask that the Postmaster General (Mr. Sauve) give the name of the post office official who says that a member of this honourable body has abused his franking privileges. I state: This is not correct. A lawyer in the house fills out his deeds, leases and mortgages and keeps in touch with his clients, so does the manufacturer, and if a humible business college manager cannot keep in touch with his business, then he cannot remain in the house.

Topic:   PRIVILEGE-MR. SPOTTON
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CON

Pierre Édouard Blondin (Speaker of the Senate)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPEAKER:

The hon. gentleman can direct his complaint to the Post Office Department which, and not this house, controls the franking privilege.

Topic:   PRIVILEGE-MR. SPOTTON
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CUSTOMS TARIFF AMENDMENT


Right Hon. R. B. BENNETT (Minister of Finance) moved the third reading of Bill No. Ill, to amend the customs tariff. He said: The hon. member for Kenora-Rainy River (Mr. Heenan) said that on the third reading he desired to move an amendment and the matter stood over to afford him that opportunity.


LIB

Peter Heenan

Liberal

Hon. PETER HEENAN (Kenora-Rainy River):

I am not going to discuss my amendment at any length, because it has been discussed on several previous occasions, and I think we have exhausted all the discussion on that particular subject. I am not, however, so sure that I am really responsible for the amendment I have to offer. I think the Prime Minister (Mr. Bennett) is responsible for it; in fact, I think the Conservative party is responsible for it, because in 1930 they advocated an amendment to the customs tariff, and taking my cue from their position I consider that industries which are receiving benefits from the customs tariff should be prepared at least to give their workingmen protection in accordance with the treaty of Versailles. My amendment is along the lines of the one I moved when the bill was last in committee. I beg to move:

That the bill be not now read a third time but be referred back to the committee empowering the committee to add the following section:

The governor in council may direct from time to time that any industry, the products of which receive protection under this act, shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the governor in council that freedom of association for employees for all lawful purposes is permitted in the operation of such industry, and that the hours of labour and rates of wages are observed consistent with the provisions of the labour part of the treaty of Versailles concluded at Paris, France, on June 28, 1919.

Topic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF AMENDMENT
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CON

Pierre Édouard Blondin (Speaker of the Senate)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPEAKER:

Will those in favour of

the amendment kindly say aye?

Topic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF AMENDMENT
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?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Aye.

Topic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF AMENDMENT
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July 28, 1931