April 25, 1966

REDISTRIBUTION

ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS

LIB

George James McIlraith (Minister of Public Works; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Hon. G. J. Mcllrailh (Minister of Public Works):

Mr. Speaker, in accordance with the provisions of standing order 15A, I propose that the question of allocation of time for the consideration of objections made pursuant to section 20 of the Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act be referred to the business committee. Before you read my proposal, Mr. Speaker, since this is the first time this rule has been invoked in the house, I would like the indulgence of the house to make a brief explanation of the reason it is put forward at this time.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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LIB

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

Is this agreed?

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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?

Some hon. Members:

Agreed.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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LIB

George James McIlraith (Minister of Public Works; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Mr. Mcllrailh:

The reason for putting it forward is that the house leaders have been considering the method of having the debate on the redistribution objections conducted in a way that would be satisfactory to all hon. members, in the sense that it would give them a fair and equitable proportion of the time for discussing the various matters as they relate to their particular parts of the country.

There are some 33 notices of objections before the Chair, and they are distributed among nine provinces.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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PC

John George Diefenbaker (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Diefenbaker:

Could you give the numbers for each province?

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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LIB

George James McIlraith (Minister of Public Works; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Mr. Mcllrailh:

Yes. For Alberta there is one, but it relates to all the districts. For British Columbia there is one relating to all the districts and another relating to an individual constituency. For Manitoba there is one relating to all the districts. For New Brunswick there is one relating to all the districts. For Nova Scotia there are three relating to individual constituencies. For Ontario there is one relating to all the districts and four relating to individual constituencies. For Prince Edward Island there is one

relating to all the districts. For Quebec there are two relating to all the districts and 18 relating to individual constituencies. For Saskatchewan there is one relating to all the districts. That makes a total of 33, of which 24 relate to individual constituencies. Therefore it would seem that there should be some method of apportioning time to give some reasonably fair distribution of the time to discuss the various types of objections. For instance, some of the objections relating to individual constituencies concern only the use of names and things like that.

While there is every prospect that we may have a satisfactory agreement, I thought it well to give this notice under the standing order. I hope that when we start the debate on Wednesday we will not have to use the procedure under standing order 15A at all. However, if we do it will be only to have the total amount of time fixed by statute evenly distributed among the various provinces.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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PC

Lawrence Elliott Kindt

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Kindi:

Mr. Speaker, is there any possibility of having a discussion on this? I ask because I am a member from Alberta; my name is on a list along with 17 other members from Alberta, and I intend to talk on redistribution.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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LIB

George James McIlraith (Minister of Public Works; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Mr. Mcllrailh:

The whole purpose of the rule is that the discussion on the allocation of time, instead of taking place in the house, would take place among the party house leaders.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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PC

Eldon Mattison Woolliams

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Eldon M. Woolliams (Bow River):

Mr. Speaker, I would like to answer the house leader for a moment. First of all I am rather surprised that he would introduce this motion at this stage without first setting up the business committee. Actually, as the house leader himself has said, the new rules in this respect have not been applied previously, but as I understood them we would set up a business committee which would sit down and work out these proposals and then submit a notice saying, "We are going to allocate such an amount of time." This proposal could have the appearance of a guillotine, to say we would have so much time to discuss a very important question, namely redistribution. The right to discuss this question is in accordance with the act which we passed in parliament.

April 25. 1966

Redistribution

I know the house leader will agree with me that all the problems are not being raised by one party. They are being raised by members in all parties. He has only to talk to some of the members of his own party to understand the difficulties involved, because everybody in every province of Canada is concerned about the problem.

I think this is very important to our discussion. I am answering the house leader's remarks quickly now, but this could develop into somewhat of a contentious problem. If this matter could be worked out amicably then the problem probably could be solved much more easily. However, by doing it in this way before the business committee is set up and before there is a meeting of the house leaders, the government is saying in effect "We are going to serve notice that if the guillotine is needed to get on with this, we will use it".

On this side of the house we have taken a stand in respect of the redistribution act. We pointed out the difficulties which the members of the house leader's own party and the government now realize exist in that act. There are certain problems which will arise in this debate.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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LIB

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

Order, please.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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RA

David Réal Caouette

Ralliement Créditiste

Mr. Real Caouelie (Villeneuve):

Mr. Speaker, following the remarks made this afternoon by the government house leader (Mr. Mcllraith) to the effect that 33 petitions have been submitted to the house with regard to the readjustment of electoral boundaries as suggested by the various federal-provincial commissions, I wish to point out to the minister that 158 federal members of all political parties in the house have objected to the electoral boundaries proposed by those various federal-provincial commissions.

Mr. Speaker, there appears in my name on the order paper, under the heading of public bills, Bill No. C-143 entitled an act to repeal the Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act which deals with the matter now under discussion.

Now, would the government house leader agree that Wednesday, for instance, we start by considering this bill, after obtaining the unanimous consent of the house, so as to determine what the federal members, Liberal, Conservative or others, want to decide or discuss in this connection?

Mr. Speaker, I understand that the government house leader said there are 33 petitions, which means that 158 federal members are not at all satisfied about the new federal boundaries suggested by the federal-provincial commissions.

Mr. Speaker, I would like the Minister of Public Works to be clear and precise on that subject. We are not going to accept a motion limiting the debate and imposing closure on any member of the house. We want him to be precise and to give the house the opportunity to discuss freely the new electoral boundaries.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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LIB

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

Order. I am sorry to interrupt the hon. member, but I must tell him as well as the other members of the house that it is out of order to start a debate at this time. There is no motion before the house. As a matter of fact, the Minister of Public Works (Mr. Mcllraith) made this proposal in order to have the hon. members' arguments studied by the special committee. That is the minister's suggestion. We would therefore be making a mistake if we kept up a debate on the subject of redistribution when all we have is a simple suggestion made under standing order 15-A. I would ask hon. members who want to make representations along the lines of those just made by the hon. member for Villeneuve (Mr. Caouette) and which undoubtedly deserve all possible consideration, to submit them to that committee for study, when it has been set up.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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RA

David Réal Caouette

Ralliement Créditiste

Mr. Caouette:

Mr. Speaker, on a point of order.

In the same circumstances, should you not have called the Minister of Public Works to order? I do not think he had the authorization to deal with that matter the way he did a little earlier.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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LIB

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

I am under the impression that the minister wanted to explain why he wanted to make that proposal to the house. He did not have to make it. He did it as a matter of courtesy to the house.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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RA

Raymond Langlois

Ralliement Créditiste

Mr. Raymond Langlois (Meganlic):

If the

government house leader had made this proposition for consideration by the house, perhaps he did not have the right to do so. I believe, as you said, that he did so by courtesy. Now, if he was allowed to make this proposition, I think we have the right to say why we do not accept it.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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LIB

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

Order. Suggestions which hon. members would like to make should be conveyed through their spokesman during the meeting of the committee in question.

April 25, 1966

Redistribution

[DOT] (2:50 p.m.) lEnglish1

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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PC

Marcel Joseph Aimé Lambert

Progressive Conservative

Hon. Marcel Lambert (Edmonton West):

Mr. Speaker, on the point of order, and in regard to the last remarks made by Your Honour, may I respectfully submit that there is no business committee and that no request has been made of any party leader to name members to a business committee. Although standing order 15-A(3) says there shall be a report back from the business committee, there can be no compliance with rule 15-A(3), which sets a time limit, since it is non-operative in that there cannot be a reference dated from today to a non-existing committee. Therefore the first step must be to establish the business committee, and I think Your Honour will agree there is no such committee.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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LIB

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

Without entering into a discussion with the hon. member I may say that notification has been received from each of the parties as to their nominees to the committee. It is my understanding in view of that fact that the committee does exist, because that is the only requirement we have at the moment under the rules. As the Minister of Public Works has pointed out, this is a new rule and naturally there will be some difficulty in putting it into proper working order. The suggestions made by hon. members will be taken into consideration by the Chair and, I am sure, by the government house leader.

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   ALLOCATION OF TIME FOR CONSIDERATION OF OBJECTIONS
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April 25, 1966