Right Hon, W. L. MACKENZIE KING (Prime Minister): At last night's sitting I
drew attention to an article which appeared in the Globe and Mail of March 31, under the name of Mr. Harold Dingman. staff writer of the Globe and Mail, which I felt affected the privileges of this house, inasmuch as it contained a statement which was attributed to me, which was not in accordance with the statement I made in this house, and which as published was certain to create an entirely erroneous impression as to the significance and actual meaning of what I had said.
After the house rose last night the publisher of the Globe and Mail, in company with Mr. Dingman, came to my office and explained to me the circumstances which accounted for the article containing the passage to which I had taken exception, and stated that Mr. Dingman himself was in no way responsible for the particular paragraph that appeared in the article under his name.
I have since received from the managing editor of the Globe and Mail a full explanation of how the article came to appear in the form in which it did, and I have also received from the Canadian Press a statement which goes further to explain the circumstance of the article appearing as it did. I should like to read at once to the house these communications, because they completely exonerate Mr. Dingman in respect of the article referred to in so far as concerns the particular paragraph which was in quotation marks and to which I took exception.
The telegram received this morning from the managing editor of the Globe and Mail is as follows:
Right Hon. W. L. M. King,
Quotation from your speech last Thursday for which you blame our Mr. Dingman in Commons last night was clipped from Canadian Press running report and inserted at our desk here Mr. Dingman having omitted that particular quote from his report. All Canadian newspapers have right' to rely and do rely on meticulous accuracy of house reports by Canadian Press which is official news gathering agency of Canadian newspapers. Mr. Dingman entirely ignorant of its insertion here and blameless for any variation from actual verbiage. Inasmuch as you denounced Dingman as having perpetrated a " false and perverted report, a very wilfully false and perverted report having regard to all the circumstances " I feel sure your sense of fairness will prompt you to
exonerate him in the same place from which you made the accusation. I have been in touch with Canadian Press executive and Canadian Press is issuing its apology for the paragraph in question which the Ololie and Mail in pursuance of its policy of unfailingly rectifying any error or injustice in its columns will glady carry in Wednesday's late edition and then through Thursday's early editions these early editions having gone to press to-night prior to m.v being able to straighten out this tangle.
E. George Smith, Managing Editor, The Globe and Mail.
This morning I received from Mr. Carnegie, the superintendent of the Canadian Press at Ottawa, the following letter:
April 5, 1939.
Right Hon. W. L. Mackenzie King,
Prime Minister of Canada,
My dear Mr. Prime Minister:
In the body of The Canadian Press running report of your speech on international affairs last Thursday was a paragraph quoting you as follows:
"I cannot accept the view of some that regardless of circumstances this country must say here and now that Canada is prepared to support any action that may be decided upon by the government at Westminster."
As I have explained to you-
I should have mentioned that Mr. Carnegie also came to my office last night and immediately made an explanation to me.
-the same quotation appeared in the Globe and Mail's report to which you directed attention in the House of Commons last night. Evidently the Globe and Mail lifted the quotation from The Canadian Press report and incorporated it in its own report.
Later when the text of your speech was available The Canadian Press carried your exact words in this connection. You will note in the morning papers we express our regret.
You will realize summarizing a running report of a lengthy speech provides some margin of error and I think it is a tribute to the excellence of our parliamentary reportorial staff that the errors are so rare.
Most of our members used the textual excerpts of this and other portions of your speech we put out when we received the text including the Globe and Mail itself.
With kind regards,
R. K. Carnegie, Ottawa Superintendent.
These two communications fully explain, I think, the circumstances in which the paragraph to which I took exception came to be inserted in Mr. Dingman's dispatch to the Toronto Globe and Mail. They were circumstances of which I had no knowledge whatever. Had I had any knowledge of them I