May 24, 1933

LIB

Vincent Dupuis

Liberal

Mr. DUPUIS (Translation):

It is quite

possible that, when the summons comes, not one of the members now sitting at the right of the Speaker will toe a candidate. Therefore, if we must take their word, it is quite useless to further waste the time of the house and of all its members discussing this bill. However, without flatly contradicting the assertion of my hon. friends, I can at least say that when I try to look at the facts, not from the point of view of an irreconcilable Liberal, but in entire detachment from party politics, this is what I find: ever since this bill was laid before this house, our friends opposite have, as a primary consideration, sought to rid themselves of the parishes or the counties whose Liberal influence they feared.

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CON
LIB

Vincent Dupuis

Liberal

Mr. DUPUIS (Translation):

Why not? My hon. friend from Berthier-Maskinonge is right. Why not? I understand him. He expresses his innate thoughts; they do not surprise

me. Why not? Indeed, it is magnificent. I noticed what they were doing; who can blame me for seeing clearly enough to do so. Then I noticed that in order to provide new city divisions it was necessary to eliminate some rural counties in the province. Did they eliminate counties represented by Conservatives? Can they name me one? Can they name me a single electoral district represented by a Conservative which they joined to another one also represented by a Conservative, thus eliminating a Conservative county? They cannot mention a single one. I noticed that, and who shall blame me?

While they have selected for elimination no electoral districts represented by Conservatives, I notice that, on the other hand, they have taken divisions represented by Liberals, such as Laprairie-Napierville. From the south, they have detached Napierville and attached it to St. John's, which is represented toy my good friend Mr. Rheaume, a good Liberal. From the north, the county of Laprairie is to be joined, through the Thermopylae pass, to Beauharnois, which is also represented by a good Liberal, Mr. Maxime Raymond. They did that with the ulterior design-I stand ready to be corrected if I am not expressing the truth-of creating dissension in the Liberal ranks and with the inevitable consequence that one of the two Liberal representatives will thereby be eliminated, as in my case.

May I say here that, as regards my humble person, it matters very little. I am speaking from the standpoint of the general interest of the people of the counties concerned. It is evident that at the next convention, which will be held either at Beauharnois or at Laprairie, it is Mr. Maxime Raymond or some one else that the Liberals of Laprairie and of Beauharnois will select as their standard-bearer. It will not be Vincent Dupuis.

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CON

Alfred Duranleau (Minister of Fisheries; Minister of Marine)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. DURANLEAU (Translation):

Why not?

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LIB

Vincent Dupuis

Liberal

Mr. DUPUIS (Translation):

Vincent

Dupuis represents but a very small part of the population of the proposed riding. Vincent Dupuis is unknown in Beauharnois and, besides, the present member for that county deserves the confidence of his constituents. Some of my friends opposite may say, sarcastically, that it is an advantage for me not to be known, but let us face the facts as they are. I am not known in Beauharnois and it is evident that one of the two Liberal representatives will be eliminated.

Our Conservative friends, whose seats, from their own point of view, are in danger, have endeavoured to make them safe by buttressing them with Conservative parishes, as the hon. member for Chateauguay-Huntingdon is now

Redistribution-Mr. Dupuis

doing, and ridding themselves of Liberal parishes. I might mention the hon. member for Dorchester, who has carved out for himself a fine little county in the legitimate hope of coming back to this house, but not with the bravery of the knights of old. In this connection, I would like to say a word about the hon. Minister of Marine. I do not look upon him as a coward; I should like to consider him a " brave homme " (excellent fellow) . .

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CON

Alfred Duranleau (Minister of Fisheries; Minister of Marine)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. DURANLEAU (Translation):

"Brave man."

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LIB

Vincent Dupuis

Liberal

Mr. DUPUIS (Translation):

I know he is an excellent fellow (" brave homme ") and I should like to consider him a brave man ("homme brave"). I should like to see him show the valour that characterizes Canadians of French descent. Our fellow-citizens belonging to other races possess many qualities indeed. but the Canadian of French origin is specially distinguished for bravery. I should like to see the hon. Minister of Marine display this trait. I am afraid, however, that he is not exactly what I should wish him to be, when I see him abandon the good people of Vercheres. The citizens of Vercheres, among whom live a large number of my relatives and of my friends, are people of excellent judgment, just as much so as the people of Laprairie and of Rouville. When I recall the facts of our history and the great bravery of the immortal Madeleine of Vercheres, whose monument stands in the parish of Vercheres, I conclude that the hon. Minister of Marine should be the last man to fail to perpetuate the gallantry that has distinguished our compatriots from time immemorial. I am ignorant of the reasons that prompted the hon. minister to abandon that county, but I venture to think cowardice is not one of them. Why did he exchange, why did he bargain, or should I say why did he jockey, the county of Vercheres for the county of Rouville? Is it because of the mountain in Rouville? Does he expect the mountain to come to him? In order to believe that, he will need greater faith than he will need courage to keep Rouville.

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CON
LIB

Vincent Dupuis

Liberal

Mr. DUPUIS (Translation):

The mountain labours, but not to the advantage of the hon. member for Matane (Mr. Larue), for I fear that at the next election the voters will put him on the street.

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CON

Joseph-Ernest-Henri LaRue

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LARUE (Translation):

For you, it will be the bottom of the well.

[Mr. Dunuis 1

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LIB

Vincent Dupuis

Liberal

Mr. DUPUIS (Translation):

From the

bottom of the well generally come the greatest truths.

May I, sir, be permitted to draw a comparison regarding the attitude of my hon. friend. As Minister of Marine, he is our chief mariner, and seamen are brave in the face of storms. I wonder if he did not commit a capital blunder in trying to repair his small craft on the sides, when the leak is at the bottom. I am afraid he made a mistake and that he will miss his aim. At the next election he will not be able to say, with the fabulist Lafontaine, that it is the bottom that will be the least defective; I think it is the bottom that will be the most defective. Instead of grabbing Rouville and ridding himself of Vercheres, he should have crossed the river and taken the part of Maisonneuve division that contains the Vickers dry-docks in order to be able to have repairs made to the bottom of his little boat. Mr. Chairman, I do not say those things with any intention of hurting the feelings of the hon. Minister of Marine. I know how good-natured he is

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CON

Alfred Duranleau (Minister of Fisheries; Minister of Marine)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. DURANLEAU (Translation):

The

metaphor is rather far-fetched.

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LIB

Vincent Dupuis

Liberal

Mr. DUPUIS (Translation):

I know he can take a joke. I shall now revert to serious matters. It is some of my friends opposite who led me to jest.

I seek no favours, but only justice and fair play for the citizens of Laprairie-Napier-ville. Do not separate these two counties that have been united since 1892 and whose citizens have lived together for centuries. Let them continue together. Join to them, rather, citizens like those of Chambly, and your redistribution will be fair and just. These people live side by side, go to Bonse-cours market together, belong to the same societies and attend the same meetings. It is natural for them to be united. As for me personally, it matters little whether you settle this question in the manner in which my humble judgment leads me to see it or whether you adopt the senseless plan submitted to this house. From the days of my youth I resolved to devote the best of my life, of my energies, of my small talents and knowledge to the service of my fellow-citizens. Since those far-away days I have not failed in the task. I have endeavoured, ever since entering public life, to work for those who did me the honour of making me the representative of Laprairie-Napierville, regardless of race, religion or party. Should this bill eliminate me from public life, it little matters;

I shall continue, in whatever field Providence

Redistribution-Mr. Gagnon

assigns to me, to work for my people according to my capacity, if not in public life at least in private life.

May I be permitted to recall the advice given to some young students by the most illustrious of Canada's public men. These are the words of Sir Wilfrid Laurier:

Be gentle and kind to the weak; let your aim and purpose, in good report or in ill, in victory or in defeat, be so to live, so to strive, so to serve, so to do your part, to raise the standard of life to a higher and better sphere.

Mr. Chairman, such is my aim; such is the path I intend to follow, whatever may be my political future. If I am destined to return to public life, I shall strive to do honour to the people who will have given me their confidence. Should I not return, there will still be found on the map of the country the result of the iniquitous measure that has separated the citizens of two counties accustomed to live together in order to place them in other counties whose geographical situation prevents all close contact between them.

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CON

Onésime Gagnon

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GAGNON:

I have listened with a

good deal of attention to the speech of my hon. friend from Laprairie-Napierville. I will not attempt to follow him along the line he took because it seems to me that when a member has to defend a just cause he need not employ abusive epithets and insulting insinuations towards members opposite in the expression of his views.

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LIB

Vincent Dupuis

Liberal

Mr. DUPUIS:

On a point of order, I would ask the hon. member for Dorchester to cite the insinuations that were insulting to him, because the use of such insinuations was far from my intention. I am sure I did not use any, and when he maintains that assertion he must mention the word I used. Otherwise I would ask him to withdraw the remark.

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CON

Onésime Gagnon

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GAGNON:

The tactics are always the same. When a member on this side of the house, especially when he is a French speaking member, is addressing the chair he is always interrupted by hon. gentlemen opposite, who ought to remember that we never interrupt them.

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?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Oh, oh.

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LIB
CON

Onésime Gagnon

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GAGNON:

The hon. gentleman has

challenged me to quote some of the insulting insinuations he has used. First of all, he said in very clear terms that I was a coward, that I had not been a brave cavalier, in setting up for myself a safe constituency.

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LIB

Vincent Dupuis

Liberal

Mr. DUPUIS:

On a point of order, may

I say that I never said the hon. gentleman was a coward. I never said that and I do not want him to assert such a thing. I have never intended, here or outside, to insult any citizen of this country by the use of such an expression. The hon. member should not say what he has said.

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May 24, 1933