December 5, 1947

LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

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

That this house will, at its next sitting, resolve itself into a committee to consider of the ways and means for raising the supply to be granted to His Majesty, notwithstanding the provisions of standing order 57.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
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Motion agreed to.


LIBRARY OF PARLIAMENT


Report of the joint librarians of parliament.-Mr. Speaker.


LIB

James Horace King (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

I have the honour to lay on the table of the house a report on procedure, together with a report on the acoustic conditions of the house. This report will be printed in the Votes and Proceedings.

Tributes to Deceased Members

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   LIBRARY OF PARLIAMENT
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PC

Gordon Graydon

Progressive Conservative

Mr. GRAYDON:

May I ask the government what they intend to do with respect to the report just now tabled by the Speaker?

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   LIBRARY OF PARLIAMENT
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LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

Give hon.

members a chance to read it first, and the government will announce its course later.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   LIBRARY OF PARLIAMENT
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THE MINISTRY

LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

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

Mr.' Speaker, it is customary, when a vacancy is created in the ministry by the death of a minister, to announce any consequent change in the ministry. As hon. members are only too well aware, the late Hon. Francis Bridges passed away on August 10. The minister's death created a vacancy in the position of Minister of Fisheries. That vacancy has very happily and. the government thinks, exceedingly fortunately, been filled by the appointment of Mr. M. F. Gregg as Minister of Fisheries. That is the only change in the present ministry since we last assembled.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   THE MINISTRY
Sub-subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF M. F. GREGG AS MINISTER OF FISHERIES
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PARLIAMENTARY ASSISTANTS

?

Thomas Hay

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

It is not necessary to announce to the house the appointment of parliamentary assistants, but I think it would be desirable to have the appointments on record on Hansard. I would therefore announce that the following were appointed parliamentary assistants on October 30:

Mr. Ralph Maybank (Winnipeg South Centre) to be parliamentary assistant to the Minister of National Health and Welfare.

Mr. W. E. Harris (Grey-Bruce) to be parliamentary assistant to the Secretary of State for External Affairs.

Mr. P. E. Cote (Verdun) to be parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Labour.

Mr. Robert McCubbin (Middlesex West) to be parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Agriculture.

Mr. Gleason Belzile (Rimouski) to be parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Finance.

Mr. Robert H. Winters (Queens-Lunen-burg) to be parliamentary assistant to the Minister of National Revenue.

I might also state to -the house that there have been no transfers of duties since the last session of parliament.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   PARLIAMENTARY ASSISTANTS
Sub-subtopic:   ANNOUNCEMENT OF NEW APPOINTMENTS
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IND

Jean-François Pouliot

Independent Liberal

Mr. POULIOT:

May I ask the government when the usual obituaries on deceased members will be given?

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   PARLIAMENTARY ASSISTANTS
Sub-subtopic:   ANNOUNCEMENT OF NEW APPOINTMENTS
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LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

I was about to rise to remind the house that before we proceeded further it would, I believe, be the wish of hon. members to record the loss which the house has sustained in its membership through the passing of two of its most prominent members, both from this side of the house, and to pay some slight tribute to their memory.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   PARLIAMENTARY ASSISTANTS
Sub-subtopic:   ANNOUNCEMENT OF NEW APPOINTMENTS
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TRIBUTES TO DECEASED MEMBERS

LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, as hon. members know only too well, the government lost one of the most promising members any administration has ever had when, during August last, the Hon. H. F. G. Bridges passed away very suddenly because of a heart ailment of which very .few were aware, and which I doubt if the late hon. minister himself regarded as of the serious character it proved to be.

Only within the past ten days another hon. member, Mr. W. E. N. Sinclair, K.C., has been taken from us.

As hon. members are aware, both Mr. Bridges and Mr. Sinclair came into the House of Commons as recently as the last general election. Neither of them therefore had been here for a long time. But in the short time- the three sessions-they were here, they made their influence and personalities strongly felt.

Mr. Bridges, though he was cut off at the early age of forty-five, had had a prominent and useful career. He began life first as a teacher, but most of his adult life was spent in the practice of the profession of law. During the war he also served as a soldier at headquarters and overseas and became an authority on some matters which were of real concern to the army at that time. As one who had had wide experience as a lawyer and was also a war veteran, Mr. Bridges' services were certain -to be of value to parliament and to the country.

But there was another reason why Mr. Bridges, while he was with us, was a valuable addition to the membership of this house. He had been a member of the legislature of New Brunswick for some time, and not merely a private member but Speaker of the legislature of that province. In the course of filling that high office, Mr. Bridges felt that discussions were taking place in the legislature in which he himself would like to have an

Tributes to Deceased Members

opportunity to participate. He resented very strongly in public affairs anything of a sectional nature. He did not like to have consideration restricted to the affairs of one part of the country, without regard to the wider vision. To present the larger Canadian outlook, he resigned his position of Speaker and took his place anew as a private member on the floor of the legislature. There could have been no better example of his independence of mind and integrity of character. From the floor of the legislature he was most active in presenting strongly the view which he, as a young man, held, and which I believe young men generally throughout our country hold, that too much importance cannot be attached to the conception of Canada as a nation rather than of Canada as a group of provinces. He felt that there could be no higher position which our country could aspire to than to become a united nation. Without ever neglecting the special needs of his own province, he was deeply devoted to Canada as a whole. And so, from then on, he took a special interest in furthering the status of Canada as a nation. He was able the better to place his point of view before his constituents in public discussions. In this House of Commons he presented the same view with great earnestness and vigour.

As I have said, Mr. Bridges was in the ministry but a short time, but during that time he disclosed exceptional talents as an administrator. Nothing has pleased me more and, may I say, few things have touched me more, than communications that have come to the government, since he passed away, from organizations of employers and employees from the Atlantic to the Pacific, having to do with the fishing industry, referring to the way in which he had gained their confidence as administrator of the Department of Fisheries.

I recall very well the first time I met Mr. Bridges. It was in 1935. He was then quite active in politics, both in provincial and in federal affairs; and from that time on he was one of the foremost leaders in the province of New' Brunswick. In the general elections of 1945 he scored a real triumph by winning York-Sunbury, which had been a Conservative stronghold for many years. It was natural, therefore, when Hon. Larry MacLaren resigned as Minister of National Revenue that Mr. Bridges, though he had not been in this house in any previous parliament, should have been selected as minister to succeed Mr. MacLaren in the ministry. It was a grievous loss that one so young and talented should have had his career terminated so suddenly. I

know I pay a tribute which will be echoed by all who knew him, and by none more than his erstwhile fellow members of this house, when I say that in Frank Bridges' passing at the early age he was taken from us, our country lost one of the most promising young men in its public life, and the British commonwealth of nations one of the bravest, most loyal, and best of her sons.

You, Mr. Speaker, will no doubt send to Mr. Bridges' mother, who has survived him, the expression of the feelings of all the members of the House of Commons, and their deep sympathy for her in her great bereavement.

In speaking of Mr. Sinclair, Mr. Speaker, may I say that I feel a real personal loss in his passing. He and I were members of the same year at the university of Toronto. We entered the university as undergraduates in 1891 and graduated in the class of 1895. Wo became close friends at the time, and from university days on were associated more or less closely in the politics of our country. Mr. Sinclair had a strong sense of public duty. His was a lifetime of service to his city, his province and his country. Many times he was elected mayor of Oshawa. Mr. Sinclair was a member of the Ontario legislature over many years-I think, over twenty-one years. He was leader of the Liberal party in Ontario for some seven years, and for three or four additional years he was house leader of the opposition in the legislature. During those years he rendered his province-I should say our country-a real service in the contribution he made to the various questions that came up for consideration.

Mr. Sinclair was a man of high principles and of sterling integrity. His was a powerful influence in the support of all that was best in provincial and federal politics. While he was but a short while in this house, and because of ill health did not participate to the extent that he doubtless otherwise would have, I do not hesitate to say that his name will always hold a high place in the records of the party which he led in the province of Ontario, and an honourable place among the names of the members of this House of Commons. Again, Mr. Speaker, may I ask you to be so kind as to convey to Mrs. Sinclair, the widow, and to her daughter, the expressions of the very sincere sympathy which I know in their bereavement is felt for both by all hon. members of the house.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   TRIBUTES TO DECEASED MEMBERS
Sub-subtopic:   THE LATE HON. H. F. G. BRIDGES- W. E. N. SINCLAIR
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PC

John Bracken (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. JOHN BRACKEN (Leader of the Opposition):

Mr. Speaker, on behalf of my associates I wish to join with the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) in paying

Tributes to Deceased Members

tribute to two members who were with us when we last met here and whose chairs are vacant today. We on this side of the house remember the late Mr. Bridges as a most courteous minister; we remember him as a good soldier and as an industrious administrator of his department, a young man with a bright career ahead, cut off before his time.

We did not see much of the late hon. member for Ontario, Mr. Sinclair. We did not hear from him very much in the house, but we remember him as a quiet man, modest and unassuming, a man of character and integrity.

To the friends and relatives of these deceased members I should like to say on behalf of those who sit with me that we join with the Prime Minister and his hon. friends in extending our sincerest sympathy in their sad bereavement.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   TRIBUTES TO DECEASED MEMBERS
Sub-subtopic:   THE LATE HON. H. F. G. BRIDGES- W. E. N. SINCLAIR
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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

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

I just wish to associate the members of the C.C.F. group in this house with the expressions of sympathy which have already been extended to the families and friends of the two members who have departed. I had known the Hon. Mr. Bridges for really a good many years, not perhaps personally but through correspondence I had with him when he was president of the New Brunswick teachers' association years ago and I happened to be secretary of the Canadian Teachers' Federation. I always found him to be courteous and a thorough gentleman in every respect. We all regret his loss both to the House of Commons and to the country.

I also wish to join in the expressions of sympathy to the friends and relatives of Mr. Sinclair. Mr. Sinclair was a kindly gentleman whom I got to know as a member of the external affairs committee. It is true his health did not permit him to take much parf in the house, but we who were members of the external affairs committee remember him as one who took an interest in the matters that came before that committee, and who always treated his colleagues with great kindness and consideration. Therefore, Mr. Speaker, we would wish to join in the expressions of sympathy that have already been made.

Mr. SOLON E. LOW (Peace River): Mr. Speaker, the Social Credit members of the house wish me on their behalf to express keen regret at the loss that this house has sustained in the passing of the late Minister of Fisheries, Mr. Bridges, and the hon. member for Ontario, Mr. Sinclair. It was my privilege to know Mr. Bridges quite well. I will honour his memory, the splendid way in

which he always dealt with problems and questions which I brought before him. He was the type of administrator that I have always felt would go far in the administrative work of this country.

I did not know Mr. Sinclair so well, but our regrets are none the less keen because of that fact. We join in the expressions of sympathy to the friends and families of these two gentlemen.

Hon. MILTON F. GREGG (Minister of Fisheries): As the junior member of this house, as one who has watched from outside with keen interest the career of Frank Bridges, and as his friend, may I, sir, add a word to the tributes to his memory today from all quarters of this chamber. His service in war and in peace was marked with a cheerful expenditure of himself in the execution of any task to which he set his heart and mind. His career in public life, in his native province of New Brunswick and here in Ottawa, has been an inspiration to all of us, and a high example to the youth of our land. He has left behind in his few years richer bequests to his countrymen than most men have been able to leave after a lifetime of effort. In the broadest meaning of the expression, Frank Bridges was a "service casualty."

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   TRIBUTES TO DECEASED MEMBERS
Sub-subtopic:   THE LATE HON. H. F. G. BRIDGES- W. E. N. SINCLAIR
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BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

Mr. Speaker, the next item I have on my list is the debate on the address, the speeches of the mover and the seconder. It is now twenty minutes to six o'clock. It is quite apparent that the mover of the address would not have time to conclude his speech before six o'clock. In the circumstances the house might be agreeable to an immediate adjournment, with the debate on the address to commence on Monday.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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PC

John Bracken (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. BRACKEN:

I should like to ask one or two questions of the minister before adjournment.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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December 5, 1947