November 8, 1945 (20th Parliament, 1st Session)

LIB

William Ross Macdonald (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. W. R. MACDONALD (Deputy Speaker):

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a question of privilege.
Yesterday the hon. member for Parlcdale (Mr. Bruce) made certain observations with respect to my actions as chairman of the committee of the whole. As these observations were so completely without foundation as to be fantastic, I did not, at the time, take his remarks seriously. Also I felt it would be most unbecoming for the Deputy Speaker to enter into a controversy with another member, and I still intend to avoid it. However, as certain sections of the press have given prominence to his remarks, I feel that I should make a brief statement.
The words to which the hon. member objected were brought to my attention in committee two days after they were uttered. The hon. member for Parkdale rose in committee on a point of order. I allowed him the widest latitude possible, as I felt he should be given an opportunity to make a complete statement. I. was most anxious that I should be as fair as possible toward him. When he had completed his statement it was necessary for me to make a ruling, and irrespective of my personal feelings in any matter I am bound to see that the rules and precedents of parliament are observed. I read the rule which applied to the point of order which had been raised, and in accordance with the rule I made the finding to which the hon. member objects.
It is natural that any hon. member should be somewhat disappointed when a ruling is made against him. May I, however, Mr. Speaker, be permitted to point out that it is contrary to long established practice in this house and in the British House of Commons for any hon. member to attack the Deputy Speaker, and I trust that in future it will not be tolerated.

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Topic:   PRIVILEGE-THE DEPUTY SPEAKER REFERENCE TO OBSERVATIONS OF MR. BRUCE ON RULING IN COMMITTEE ON NOVEMBER 7
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