February 14, 1938

RULES OF THE HOUSE

STATEMENT OF MR. SPEAKER WITH RESPECT TO READING IN DEBATE OF STATEMENTS MADE OUTSIDE OF HOUSE

LIB

Walter Edward Foster (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

The right hon. the

leader of the opposition (Mr. Bennett) has expressed the desire that I should state the rules of procedure on the reading in debate of written statements made outside the house. Points of order should be taken before and not after such statements are read and included in the official reports of debates. I have looked into the matter and I think it may be advisable to explain these rules.

The rules under which statements emanating outside the House of Commons may be read in debate are so restrictive that we may say the practice is not allowed. Unless a member intends to base a motion on extracts from such statements, it is irregular to read them during debate if they refer to, comment on or deny anything said by a member, (Bourinot 336); are intended to influence debate (May 316); reflect upon any vote of the house or use offensive words against either house or against any member thereof (standing order 41); contain unparliamentary expressions, as no language can be heard in quotation if it would be disorderly if spoken (Bourinot 336); allude to debates in the other house of parliament (May 316); utter treasonable or seditious words, or use the king's name irreverently

Powell and Unwin Case

(standing order 41); cast reflections upon the conduct of judges (May 295; Bourinot 358); refer to matters pending a judicial decision (May 316); reflect upon the conduct of persons in authority (May 316); make personal allusions to members (May 316); refer to other debates during the same session, or to any question not under discussion (May 317318; Bourinot 336).

Bourinot, page 335, refers to these objections when he says a member may read extracts from documents, books, or other printed publications as part of his speech provided in so doing he does not infringe upon any point of order.

When the hon. member for Qu'Appelle (Mr. Perley) quoted letters in an argument against the Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Gardiner) and when the minister retorted with telegrams, I did not interfere because great latitude has always been given with respect to citations in this house. We follow the same practice as in England where the house itself seems to have settled the procedure in these cases. I take it that the same rule applies to telegrams and letters as to extracts from newspapers.

The practice of reading extracts or written statements in debate to support an argument has been followed in the British house since 1840 when Speaker Peel, with the acquiescence of the house, allowed a member to proceed to read passages from a newspaper. In 1856, when a member was called to order for reading an extract from a newspaper, the Speaker stated that on former occasions when he had attempted to enforce this rule, he had been overruled by the house. A similar statement was made by the chairman in committee on the 9th March, 1857 (May 318). These are the last precedents cited in the 13th edition of May, published in 1924.

The house may be indulgent in these matters but it is a well known principle that a statement made in this house cannot be contradicted by a statement made by a person who is not a member of the house.

Topic:   RULES OF THE HOUSE
Subtopic:   STATEMENT OF MR. SPEAKER WITH RESPECT TO READING IN DEBATE OF STATEMENTS MADE OUTSIDE OF HOUSE
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STANDING COMMITTEES

PRIVILEGES AND ELECTIONS, MISCELLANEOUS PRIVATE BILLS-CHANGES IN PERSONNEL

LIB

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

Liberal

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

That the name of Mr. Little be substituted for that of Mr. Slaght on the standing committee on privileges and elections, and that the name of Mr. Slaght be substituted for that of Mr. Little on the standing committee on miscellaneous private bills.

Topic:   STANDING COMMITTEES
Subtopic:   PRIVILEGES AND ELECTIONS, MISCELLANEOUS PRIVATE BILLS-CHANGES IN PERSONNEL
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Motion agreed to.


POWELL AND UNWIN CASE

MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE

SC

John Horne Blackmore

Social Credit

Mr. J. H. BLACKMORE (Lethbridge):

Mr. Speaker, I ask leave to move the adjournment of the house, under standing order 31, for the purpose of discussing a definite matter of urgent public importance, namely, the advisability of the Minister of Justice granting the request made of his majesty's attorney general and premier of the province of Alberta for the remission of the sentence recently placed upon Messrs. Powell and Unwin in Edmonton, who are reported to be now incarcerated for an offence alleged to have been committed in the said province, which is administered by the above premier and attorney general.

Topic:   POWELL AND UNWIN CASE
Subtopic:   MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE
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LIB

Walter Edward Foster (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

The hon. member was kind enough to give me notice of his motion.

I find that leave for introducing such a motion is covered by standing order 31, paragraph 3 of the said standing order being as follows:

(3) He-

The member-

-then hands a written statement of the matter proposed to be discussed to Mr. Speaker, who, if he thinks it in order, and of urgent public importance, reads it out,

And so on. I have read the document handed me by the hon. member, but I do not regard it as coming within the purview of this paragraph. I consider that it is not a matter of urgent public importance, and in consequence I rule that he cannot introduce the motion.

Topic:   POWELL AND UNWIN CASE
Subtopic:   MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE
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CCF

Abraham Albert Heaps

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. A. A. HEAPS (Winnipeg North):

Mr. Speaker, I rise to a point of order, arising out of your ruling. May I point out that paragraph 4 states:

If less than twenty, but not less than five, members rise in their places, the question whether the member has leave to move the adjournment of the house shall be put forthwith, without debate, and determine, if necessary, by a division.

Then, I find this further statement in paragraph 3:

If objection is taken, Mr. Speaker requests those members who support the motion to rise in their places and, if more than twenty members rise accordingly, Mr. Speaker calls upon the member who has asked for leave.

In other words I do not think the Speaker of the House may determine whether or not such a motion is in order. As I interpret the rule, if twenty or more members of the house are anxious that the hon. member introducing the motion be permitted to proceed with the

Powell and Unwin Case

question which has been brought to the attention of the Speaker, he can be given the right to do so.

Topic:   POWELL AND UNWIN CASE
Subtopic:   MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE
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LIB

Arthur-Joseph Lapointe

Liberal

Right Hon. ERNEST LAPOINTE (Minister of Justice):

Mr. Speaker, I submit the hon. member (Mr. Heaps) is altogether wrong, The matter is entirely in the discretion of the Speaker, and the rule the hon. member has read does not at all substantiate his claim.

Paragraph 2 states that the member desiring to make such a motion rises in his place, asks leave to move the adjournment of the house for the purpose of discussing a definite matter of urgent public importance, and states the matter. This the hon. member has done. Then, paragraph 3 states:

He then hands a written statement of the matter proposed to be discussed to Mr. Speaker, who, if he thinks it in order-

That is, if Mr. Speaker thinks it in order- -and of urgent public importance-

Still referring to the Speaker-

-reads it out.

That is, if he considers it a matter of public importance, Mr. Speaker reads it out, "and asks whether the member has the leave of the house." Then the paragraph states:

If objection is taken, Mr. Speaker requests those members who support the motion to rise in their places and, if more than twenty members rise accordingly, Mr. Speaker calls upon the member who has asked for leave.

That is to say, if Mr. Speaker had thought the matter was in order, or of urgent public importance, he would have read the motion to the house. Then if objection were taken, but twenty members rose in their places, the hon. member would have had authority to discuss the matter. As it is, the Speaker has declared that this is not a matter of urgent public importance. And may I add, as my own view, that not only is it not a matter of urgent public importance that it be discussed, but it is a matter of urgent public importance that it be not discussed.

Topic:   POWELL AND UNWIN CASE
Subtopic:   MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE
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SHOP CARDS REGISTRATION

PROVISION FOR REGISTRATION OF DISTINCTIVE


Hon. FERNAND RINFRET (Secretary of State) moved for leave to introduce Bill No. 22, respecting the registration of shop cards by labour unions. He said: Mr. Speaker, this bill is designed to establish a system for the registration of shop cards by labour unions, and authorizes the keeping of a register of shop cards. It prescribes the conditions upon which regis- tration may be granted, and provides that a labour union may authorize the use of any shop cards registered by it under agreements for the use of the cards. It provides machinery for the cancellation of registrations and for correction of the register. Motion agreed to and bill read the first time.


THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE

CONGRATULATIONS TO RIGHT HON. MR. LAPOINTE UPON THE THIRTY-FOURTH ANNIVERSARY OF HIS ELECTION TO PARLIAMENT

CON

Richard Bedford Bennett (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Right Hon. R. B. BENNETT (Leader of the Opposition):

Mr. Speaker, before proceeding with the business of the day I should like on behalf of those with whom I am associated to convey to the right hon. the Minister of Justice (Mr. Lapointe) our heartiest congratulations upon the celebration of the thirty-fourth anniversary of his election to the House of Commons.

Thirty-four years is a long time in the life of any man; looking back, it must seem to the right hon. gentleman a very long time indeed. It is a fact to be remembered by all. and especially by the younger members, that the right hon. gentleman, who came here with little knowledge of the English language, by persistence and perseverance has made himself one of the most complete masters of the English language in this chamber. This should be a source of inspiration to the younger members of the house.

During the period of thirty-four years that has elapsed since he came to this chamber the right hon. gentleman has travelled far. We have not always agreed with him, and looking back I see less reason than ever why we should have-perhaps he would be the first to admit the correctness of that statement. He has made great progress, and, under Providence, has been permitted to play a not unimportant part in the life of our country. It is well that, where possible, continuity should be perserved in the representation of constituencies. The right hon. gentleman has been able to give an example of the affection and regard in which it may be possible for a member to be held by his constituents, and the fact that he has not always represented the same constituency goes to prove the universality of the affection in which he is held in his native province.

We congratulate the right hon. gentleman because he has served with distinction his day and generation, not only his own province but the country as a whole. In the profession to which we both belong, he has added lustre

The Minister of Justice

and distinction to the title of "Minister of Justice." In the Canadian Bar Association, as honorary president, he has rendered valiant service to the cause for which that organization was created. We wish him many years of useful service. All of us in this chamber, whatever the motives that brought us here in the first place, have, after all, the same desire to render service to the country we love so much. Whatever may have been the political predilections of the right hon. gentleman when he entered this chamber for the first time at the age of under thirty, I feel quite sure that to him party ties have lost much of their acrimony, blended smoothly and easily as they have been into that high regard for his country which has characterized his efforts in recent years and I am sure will be apparent in the years to come. We congratulate him upon his years of service and trust that in whatever capacity it may be- whether to the right or the left of you, Mr. Speaker, is a matter wholly unimportant-he may long continue to render service to Canada.

Topic:   THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE
Subtopic:   CONGRATULATIONS TO RIGHT HON. MR. LAPOINTE UPON THE THIRTY-FOURTH ANNIVERSARY OF HIS ELECTION TO PARLIAMENT
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LIB

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

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, on behalf of hon. members on this side of the house may I express to the right hon. leader of the opposition (Mr. Bennett) our warm appreciation of his thought and courtesy in extending the congratulations he has just extended to the one who in point of years of membership and service is, at the present time, the oldest member of the Canadian House of Commons. I need not say how wholeheartedly we who sit on this side of the house endorse his remarks. It would be impossible for any of us, most of all myself, to begin to say what we owe to the exceptional abilities, wise counsel and helpful guidance of the right hon. member for Quebec East the present Minister of Justice (Mr. Lapointe). He has been at my side-my deskmate in fact-during all of the years I have held the position either of leader of the government or of leader of the opposition. His presence, I need scarcely say, has made my task very much easier and my place infinitely more secure, than it otherwise could possibly have been. I am glad to have this opportunity of repeating in public and in this House of Commons, what I feel I owe to the loyalty, cooperation and constant help I have had from mjr right hon. friend during my entire public life.

The right hon. leader of the opposition has referred to the remarkable manner in which the right hon. member for Quebec East has mastered the English language and the example he has been to us all in that particular. There is another particular in which he has also 51952-25

been a great example, not only to hon. members of this house but to the citizens generally of our country. He has taught us the wisdom of moderation and of toleration in all that pertains to differences between classes, between races, between provinces and between creeds. I am sure that there is but one wish in this house and that is that the right hon. Minister of Justice may be spared for many years to come as a member of the House of Commons in order that he may continue to give in parliament his exceptional abilities and qualities to the public service of our country.

Topic:   THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE
Subtopic:   CONGRATULATIONS TO RIGHT HON. MR. LAPOINTE UPON THE THIRTY-FOURTH ANNIVERSARY OF HIS ELECTION TO PARLIAMENT
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February 14, 1938