February 28, 1944

GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH

ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF ADDRESS IN REPLY

LIB

Thomas Vien (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

I have the honour to inform the house that I have received a message from His Excellency the Governor General, signed by his own hand, reading as follows:

23rd February, 1944

I have received with great pleasure the address that you have voted in reply to my speech at the opening of parliament, and thank you for it sincerely.

Athlone.

Government House Ottawa.

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Subtopic:   ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF ADDRESS IN REPLY
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PRIVILEGE-MR. COLDWELL REFERENCE TO REMARKS IN DEBATE ON FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 24

CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. M. J. COLDWELL (Rosetown-Biggar):

Mr. Speaker, in accordance with the rules of the house and as my right I wish to direct your attention to a speech made by the Minister of National War Services (Mr. LaFleche) on Friday evening. I asked you to get a transcript to see what the record had to say. At page 901 of Hansard the Minister is reported as having said:

' Well, to take the trouble to protect oneself by slipping in the word "alleged" when one has nothing plain in one's heart is not the act of a brave man, and I regret very much to say this, but actions of that kind remind me that it is well in war time to act the man even though one has not chosen to go to meet the enemy. I have no admiration for men who do nothing of which I know to help to win the war, but remain at home, perhaps not willingly yet effectively, to cause trouble in a family which should remain united so that we can do a better job in helping the other united nations in downing our enemies.

I then said:

I rise to a point of order. Is the hon. gentlemen not casting an innuendo with an imputation reflecting upon the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre?

Privilege-Mr. Coldwell

And the minister said:

And the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar.

I particularly wish to draw your attention to the accusation hurled across the floor of this house that we of this party are national socialists. On page 902 of Hansard the minister is reported as having said this:

The same hon. gentleman expressed some fear that this country might some day be governed under nationalist socialism. Well, I wish to give him my assurance in that respect again.

And I interjected: "Nor do I." Then the minister said:

We now have the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar expressing publicly in this house the view, the opinion, that he will never come to power.

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?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Hear, hear.

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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. COLDWELL:

May I just interject to say that in my opinion this applause for that kind of statement is unseemly in this house. Then at page 902 the minister is reported as having said:

The hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar does not like to be called, or his party to be called, national socialists, despite what has been said many times and despite that his lieutenant in British Columbia preached the methods employed by that party in Germany of which our friend says he is not a-

The record breaks there. Mr. Speaker, I contend that we are at war with national socialism in Germany, and to endeavour to attack any party in this country as being a national socialist movement is to accuse that party of disloyalty to this country and falsely to imply a position which is not borne out by the facts. May I say that this movement in its philosophy and outlook is exactly the same as the labour and socialist parties of Great Britain, Australia, New Zealand and other countries.

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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

That is your opinion.

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LIB

Thomas Reid

Liberal

Mr. REID:

That is just not true.

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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. COLDWELL:

I should like to get your ruling, Mr. Speaker.

Hon. L. R. LaFLECHE (Minister of National War Services): Since the last sitting of this house I have had the opportunity of reading the official report of the. proceedings of this honourable house. This afternoon I have listened to the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar, and in reply may I say that in the course of my reading I came across certain statements in Hansard attributed to the hon. member. In an effort to understand their position one must have recourse to what

can be found. Among other things I find the following on page 545 of Hansard of June 5, 1940, where the hon. member is reported as having said:

. . . the secret of the recent success of the Germans is the fact that they have consciously planned their economic structure.

And then later on on another occasion he said that the prosperity built up by the socialists was a type of economy which is causing so much trouble today; and also that they did a remarkable job in a short space of time.

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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. COLDWELL:

Mr. Speaker-

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?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Order.

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LIB

Thomas Vien (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

Is the bon. gentleman rising to a point of order?

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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. COLDWELL:

I rise to a point of order. I ask the hon. gentleman to quote the context of the remarks which I made at that time. If he does, he will find that I said the Germans did it for an evil purpose. I asked for your ruling on Friday evening, Mr. Speaker.

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LIB

Thomas Vien (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

Order. I must have quiet in the chamber. I have to listen to the hon. member to see that his rights are protected as well as those of the house. I must say that I can see no point of order there.

Mr. LaFLECHE: I do not know whether it is in keeping, but the hon. gentleman reminds me of a cry baby.

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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. COLDWELL:

Mr. Speaker, I seek your protection against insults being hurled across the floor of this house.

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LIB

Thomas Vien (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

I wish hon. members would direct themselves to the question of privilege. A question of privilege has been raised and a quotation has already been made by the hon. member.

Mr. LaFLECHE: I have attempted to give in a very few words what has been running through my mind in connection with the party, or if you like, the purposes of the small group headed by the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar. If in any way I have done an injustice to anybody, of course, I would make amends.

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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. COLDWELL:

That is not good enough. I ask for your ruling Mr. Speaker, whether it is a proper term to use in this house of this party, the term national socialist.

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LIB

Thomas Vien (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

The hon. gentleman has risen on a question of privilege, not only on his own behalf but also on behalf of the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre (Mr. FEBRUARY 28, 1944

Industrial Development Bank

Knowles) and has asked for a withdrawal. The hon. minister has made reply and said that if he has offended any hon. member of the house he wishes to make amends, which I presume means he withdraws his statement. There is no point of order now before the Chair.

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CCF

Stanley Howard Knowles (Whip of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation)

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

Mr. S. H. KNOWLES (Winnipeg North Centre):

Mr. Speaker, I rise to a question of privilege, as one who is involved in this incident. I direct Your Honour's attention to Beauchesne's Parliamentary Rules and Forms, 3rd edition, page 57, citation 123, which says:

A personal attack, by one member upon another, is an offence against the house, in the person of one of its members, which, on account of the respect due from every member to the diaraeter and dignity of the house, as well as the importance of preserving regularity in the debates, calls for the prompt interference of the Speaker.

I also direct Your Honour's attention to Beauchesne's 2nd edition, page 96, citation 295:

The House of Commons will insist upon all offensive words being withdrawn, and upon_ an ample apology being made which shall satisfy both the house and the member to whom offence has been given.

Without reading certain other citations, I simply draw Your Honour's attention to them: Beauchesne's 3rd Edition, page 106, citation 256-

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February 28, 1944