Mr. SAM. HUGHES.
I cannot get any language that is not unparliamentary which is fit to characterize the action of the hon. the Minister of Agriculture.
We have here the ' Gazette ' brought up by Colonel Smart. At the head it is dated 174
May 19, 1904. That is the ' Gazette ' as it left the department. It is signed ' Dun-donald, Major General.' Then there is a note : 'As a special ease, so and so will be required to pass the qualifying examination.' Then we find a note : ' not approved, Sydney Fisher, for F. W. Borden,' and there it is dated for Mr. Fisher's signature, May 19, 1904. I am not going to say when that was sent to the Council, all I know is that the Minister of Militia has confessed that he slipped out of the city leaving the matter and told the deputy to arrange it with the Minister of Agriculture and that Colonel Smart also says it was prearranged, that whether Dr. Pickel withdrew or not, his name was to be dropped, but for the sake of form, in order to prevent any ruction in the regiment, Dr. Pickel was to be induced if possible to withdraw. We have the statement of the Minister of Agriculture that Colonel Smart came to him as though it was a matter of surprise with this ' Gazette ' and asked to have it shoved through Council on that day, and we have his admission, drawn from him by the leader of the opposition, that he had prearranged that whether Dr. Pickel withdrewor not that name was to be dropped. I leave it to the Prime Minister in his calm moments to supply me with a word that will cover the action of the Minister of Agri culture. 1 can find no parliamentary term harsh enough to characterize it.
The minister claimed a good deal of credit for appointing young Holland over Mr. Russell, a Liberal. He did not state that he had first insisted on Mr. Russell being appointed to command the squadron and on its being objected to, he consented to Mr. Holland being appointed. He stated that it was his action that forced Holland over Russell. I want to tell him that men who are regarded by people of the eastern townships as much more reliable than he is state the contrary, and that the minister first wished Russell's name to go and then he consented to Holland's name being placed over Russell's.