June 27, 1935

LIB

John Campbell Elliott

Liberal

Hon. J. C. ELLIOTT (West Middlesex):

Mr. Speaker, I come from one of the other provinces but I agree heartily with the amendment moved by my hon. friend from Vancouver Centre. I would point out to the Prime Minister (Mr. Bennett) that he was hardly doing justice to the house in his manner of introducing his objection to this amendment. He referred to the litigation being launched in the way in which it was launched. Does he mean by that that when a province desires to object to the constitutionality of any legislation it can only do so in a certain manner? Is he stating that if a writ is launched as this writ was launched, this house will not tolerate it?

I should like to point out what the effect will be upon the other provinces if this bill goes through. The Prime Minister said that if it is undefended, if no litigation arises from it, it will not have the same effect throughout the west of Canada that it would have had had it been fought out. From his experience he must know that exactly the opposite result would occur. Suppose someone in Ontario objects to submitting to an order of the board. They will say that a writ was issued by the province of British Columbia questioning the validity of this legislation and that the dominion government did not even defend [Mr. Jacobs.!

the action with the result that a judgment was given against the validity of the legislation. The effectiveness of this legislation throughout the rest of Canada will be largely gone. During the stress and strain through which this country is going there is no time for friction between the dominion government and the government of a province that happens to be represented by another political party.

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?

An hon. MEMBER:

What was it started for?

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LIB

John Campbell Elliott

Liberal

Mr. ELLIOTT:

Some hon. member asks: What was it started for? It was started as an exercise of the rights which everyone has before the oourts of this country. The remark of the hon. gentleman was perhaps the best argument that could be given in favour of this amendment. It indicates the attitude of the government.

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CON
LIB

John Campbell Elliott

Liberal

Mr. ELLIOTT:

Another hon. member has exactly the same viewpoint. He feels that unless the province falls down and worships everything done by this government it should be put out of the confederation. To ask why this action should have been started is about the most senseless question I have ever heard.

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CON

Richard Bedford Bennett (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT:

The Ontario government would not even let them go to the courts.

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LIB

John Campbell Elliott

Liberal

Mr. ELLIOTT:

We should not consider this as a family quarrel. If this litigant has not started this legislation with the meekness and humility due from a province to the dominion, perhaps it will change the endorsement on the writ to more polite terms. I submit we should agree with the suggestion that this matter should not be pressed at the present time. Perhaps it will be a little cooler next week and a Sunday will have intervened. It is possible that those who are now taking this very severe view may revise their idea and not ask that this legislation be proceeded with at the present time.

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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

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

Mr. Speaker, this is largely but not solely a legal matter and there are other aspects which should be considered. Personally I should like to see the constitutionality of this legislation upheld. I am almost inclined to think that British Columbia is getting what is coming to her but I cannot see that this is a proper way to handle this matter. Either this legislation is intra vires or it is not and it seems to me that the courts

Farmers' Creditors Act

should decide the matter. If the courts have the authority as the Prime Minister (Mr. Bennett) has said so frequently they should have, I cannot see why this matter should not go to them to be decided. By means of an injunction British Columbia will not 'be receiving the benefits of this act and there is no need for haste with regard to the matter. The Prime Minister has stated, if I understand him aright, that the action, of the courts might leave some doubt as to the constitutionality of the legislation but I am rather inclined to think that to settle the matter in this way will leave considerable doubt as to the constitutionality of the legislation as it affects all the provinces. Such action may affect this and other acts, not merely in British Columbia but throughout the whole of Canada. It must be remembered that British Columbia has taken this action only because she wished to safeguard her provincial rights in certain cases and if this legislation is proceeded with by this government it will undoubtedly penalize the farmers of British Columbia who might need the benefits of the act. Under these circumstances I do not think it is fair to press the matter at the present time.

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LIB

William Daum Euler

Liberal

Hon. W. D. EULER (North Waterloo):

Mr. Speaker, I spoke briefly on this matter yesterday but after listening to the remarks of the Prime Minister (Mr. Bennett) and the Minister of Finance (Mr. Rhodes) I have not been able to alter my opinion. It seems to me that this bill can do no good and it may do considerable harm. If the province succeeds to-day in its action then it will be excluded from the operations of the act and this bill will be unnecessary. If the province fails in its action, the legislation passed last year will apply and should this bill be passed we would be placed in the position of depriving the farmers of British Columbia of a share in the benefits of that legislation. I do not want to misquote him, but I understood the Prime Minister to say that the government of British Columbia having taken the action which it has, must be responsible for depriving the people of the benefits of the act. Surely this government and this parliament have some responsibility to the farmers of that province. Because the province has taken a wrongful step is no reason why the farmers of that province should be punished by not being allowed the benefits of the act. It seems to me that if the action on the part of the province succeeds-and this is my reason for making my statement now-you do not need this bill, and if it does not succeed you do not want this bill because you 92582-255 J

do harm to the province of British Columbia or to the individual farmers of that province.

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CON

Arthur Edward Ross

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ROSS:

I was paired with the hon.

member for Megantic (Mr. Roherge). Had I voted, I would have voted against the amendment.

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CON

Mark Cecil Senn

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SENN:

I was paired with the hon.

member for South Perth (Mr. Sanderson). Had I voted, I would have voted against the amendment.

Anderson (Toronto- Mulock

High Park)

Anderson (Halton) Factor

Arsenault Maclnnis

Baribeau Beaubien

Barrette Rheaume

Bell (St. Antoine) Raymond

Bell (St. John) Dubois

Beynon Euler [DOT]

Burns Butcher

Casselman Howard

Charters Blair

Cowan Ilsley

Dorion Verville

Dupre Ferland

Esling Hanbury

Fraser (Cariboo) Speakman

Ganong Michaud

Geary Mercier (Laurier-Outremont)

Gordon Fiset

Gott Rutherford

Hanson Veniot

(York-Sunbury)

Harris Jacobs

Jones MacLean

Kennedy (Winnipeg) McIntosh

Lawson Gray

MacDonald Urquhart

(Cape Breton)

MeDade Dupuis

McGibbon Power

Maloney Young

Manion Chevrier

Matthews Moore (Ont.)

Moore (Ch&teauguay- Dubuc

Huntingdon)

Perley, Sir George Marcil

Pettit Bouchard

Porteous Maephail, Miss

Rhodes Ralston

Ross Roberge

Rowe Lacroix

Senn Sanderson

Smith Gardiner

(Vietoria-Carleton)

Smoke Pouliot

Spotton MacMillan (Mackenzie)

Stevens Malcolm

Stitt (Selkirk) Weir (Macdonald)

Sullivan Brasset

Tummon St-Pcre

White (London) Gershaw.

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CON

Robert Charles Matthews (Minister of National Revenue)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MATTHEWS:

I was paired with the

hon. member for Ontario (Mr. Moore). Had I voted, I would have voted against the amendment.

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CON

Peter McGibbon

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. McGIBBON:

I was paired with the

hon. member for Quebec South (Mr. Power). Had I voted, I would have voted against the amendment.

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CON

Franklin Smoke

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SMOKE:

I was paired with the hon.

member for Temiscouata (Mr. Pouliot). Had I voted, I would have voted against the amendment.

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CON

Finlay MacDonald

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MacDONALD (Cape Breton):

I was

paired with the hon. member for Colchester (Mr. Urquhart). Had I voted, I would have voted against the amendment.

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CON

George Reginald Geary

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GEARY:

I was paired with the hon.

member for Laurier-Outremont (Mr. Mer-cier). Had I voted, I would have voted against the amendment.

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CON

William Kemble Esling

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ESLING:

I was paired with the hon.

member for Vancouver-Burrard (Mr. Han-bury). Had I voted, I would have voted against the amendment.

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CON

George Hamilton Pettit

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. PETTIT:

I was paired with the hon.

member for Kamouraska (Mr. Bouchard). Had I voted, I would have voted against the amendment.

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CON

Alexander James Anderson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ANDERSON (Toronto-High Park):

I was paired with the hon. member for North York (Mr. Mulock). Had I voted, I would have voted against the amendment.

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CON

George Spotton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPOTTON:

I was paired with the hon. member for Mackenzie (Mr. MacMillan). Had I voted, I would have voted against the amendment.

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June 27, 1935