Both parties admit that in these two there must be changes, and both parbies admit pretty well where the changes should take place. But my hon. friends say, "If you don't make the change where -we want it we will keep the house in session." And then they tell us that they are not trying to govern the country by
minority; they tell us that they are reasonable and are adopting the proper course that representatives of the people should follow.
So far as I am concerned, the fact that not a single member south of the South Saskatchewan river has criticized his own seat or his own boundaries or any other boundaries is an indication that the redistribution south of the South Saskatchewan river is a reasonably fair one. It is true that there are constituencies that are smaller than the unit, and the time wall come when the boundaries of these constituencies will have to extend northward across the course of these rivers. I do not think that the time is ripe for that at this redistribution, and my hon. friends agree with me because they have not proposed a single extension of one of these constituencies. If you divided the population south of these rivers into eight you could not get 44,186 in each constituency and allow for excess population in Regina. When I reduced the population in my own seat, when I reduced my majority by 300, by taking that population off, I wonder whether I was creating a deliberate Tory gerrymander in my own favour. I sought no advantage from the redistribution. The map which I made is to my own disadvantage but I think it is in the interests of the people of that part of the country just as is the map of the northern part. It is my own settled opinion that it represents justice to the people who will elect the members to the next parliament. No real criticism of it exists to-day beyond the fact that it is said that it will hurt the chances of some Liberal members of being reelected.
In one of the speeches made since this debate commenced, the right hon. the leader of the opposition (Mr. Mackenzie King) said that redistribution should not be in the interests of a particular member or a particular constituency but in the larger interests of the people of Canada. Yet the whole fuss has been over the question of how this new constituency of Prince Albert will affect him personally. I would say that there are enough intelligent people left in Prince Albert constituency under the map as drawn to be able correctly to weigh the policies of th' right hon. the leader of the opposition. If the boundaries now set are allowed to stand there will be between 38,000 and 39,000 people in this constituency. They are among the most intelligent people that there are in Canada, they are the descendants of the old Lord Selkirk settlers about which the hon. member for Melville (Mr. Motherwell) was moaning a few moments ago. If these men are not of 53719-345J
sufficient intelligence to form a jury to weigh my right hon. friend and find him either righteous or wanting, I do not know where you will find them in the Dominion of Canada.
My right hon. friend complains that he does not want to be elected by 39,000 people; he wants a larger constituency of 51,000- this where there was an increase of thirty per cent while in other parts of the country constituencies containing a smaller population are considered as much too large. If the line suggested by my right hon. leader (Mr. Bennett) this afternoon is accepted, there will be an additional 6,600 of population. This would bring the total up to 45,000, or more than the average for the province itself. In addition to those which I have included, he would then have in his constituency a number of old-time settlers who have settled around Duck Lake and Carlton. These are French Canadians who settled there in the early days and their descendants are still in this district. It would not detract any from the intelligence of the constituency which will pass upon my right hon. friend's policy if it were allowed to remain as proposed, but perhaps he is afraid of one of the most intelligent electorates in Canada.
As I said in the beginning, the reason why I decided to unite four of these, constituencies into three was because of the deficiency in population in the central areas of the province. I shall put certain figures on Hansard to indicate the condition which existed. It was suggested that because Yorkton was one of the largest constituencies there was no reason for its subdivision, but if hon. members will look at the rate of increase in population they will see the reason why this was done. The population of Yorkton in 1921 was 37,857; in 1931 it had increased to 38,692; under the new map it will have 48,473. There has been an increase in ten years of 835 and the average percentage of increase is 2.2. The population of Melville in 1924 was 36,842; in 1931, 39,338; under the new map, 47,499. There has been an increase in ten years of 2,496, or an average increase of 6.7. In 1921 Last Mountain had a population of 34,054; in 1934 this had increased to 36,507 while under the proposed map it will contain 45,518. In ten years there has been an increase of 2,453 or 7.2 per cent. In 1921 Long Lake had a population of 32,308; in 1931, 31,266 and under the new map it will have 42,146. In ten years there was a decrease of 132 and as the percentage was so small I did not attempt to work it out. In 1921 Rose-town had a population of 29,341; in 1931,
Redistribution-Mr. Mackenzie King
32,526 and under the new map it will have 40,708. There has been an increase of 3,185 or 10.8 per cent. In 1021 Kindersley had a population of 28,997; in 1931, 35,290, while under the new map it will have 39,632. There has been an increase of 6,993 or 24.7 per cent.
While the eastern constituencies had the largest populations they showed the smallest percentage of increases. The western constituencies had the smaller populations but they show a larger percentage of increase. In addition to that, the ratio of voters to populations is greater in the western constituences than in the east and that is why I seleced these four eastern seats for amalgamation.
I think I have covered all the arguments which have been made to-day and which had not been covered previously by myself. As I said before, I have no intention of repeating what I said the other day or in attempting to follow my hon. friends in what they have said. I merely point out that out of the members on the opposite side of the house who rose to-night to discuss the Saskatchewan map, five had no complaint as far as the boundaries of their own constituencies were concerned. All of them complained of the boundaries of Prince Albert but they have presented no argument which has changed the situation in the slightest. As far as I am concerned, I see no reason to be impressed by their arguments.