June 27, 1947 (20th Parliament, 3rd Session)


Angus MacInnis

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

Mr. ANGUS MacINNIS (Vancouver East):

Mr. Speaker, there is nothing much that I need add to the tributes that have already been paid by the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) and the Leader of the *Opposition (Mr. Bracken) to a man whom I *consider to have been one of Canada's greatest men and one of our most colourful political leaders.
It was my good fortune to be. elected at the general election in 1930 and to have been here during the strenuous five years between 1930 and 1935. Mr: Bennett was a man who seemed to me to welcome a fight. He never did anything to parry or ease the blows directed at him. As the Prime Minister has said, he enjoyed a fight. To me he appeared at first an aloof and forbidding character, but during the last few years that he was in this house, when I came to know him better and to know him personally, I found him a kindly and warm personality. I wish to associate this group with the tributes that have been paid in his honour today.
Mr. SOLON E. LOW (Peace River): Mr. 'Speaker, I wish to associate the group I represent with what has been said by the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King), the Leader of the Opposition (Mr. Bracken), and tthe hon. member for Vancouver East (Mr. Maclnnis). I did not know Lord Bennett

personally', but I was born and reared in the province in which he spent the greater part of his life. I knew of his great capacity, his brilliant career and I admired a number of the fine things he did which will leave their impression not only upon Canada but upon the commonwealth. I always admired the
great devotion he had to any cause he thought was right. We too sincerely regret his sudden passing.
Right Hon. L. S. ST. LAURENT (Secretary of State for External Affairs): Mr. Speaker,
may I have your indulgence and that of the house to add yet a few more words to the tributes which have been paid to the great Canadian lawyer, political leader and
parliamentarian whose memory will long remain with us all.
I wish to do so as one of the older members of the Canadian Bar Association, in the organization and development of which Mr. Bennett took so prominent a part from its very inception and of which he became the honorary life president at a meeting held in his home city of Calgary- in 1932 over which I had the honour of presiding.
The office of honorary life president was created and Mr. Bennett was appointed to it by unanimous resolution proposed by the late Mr. Rowell, afterwards Chief Justice of Ontario, and seconded by Mr. Campbell Mc-Laurin, now a Supreme Court Justice of Alberta, who had been Mr. Bennett's opponent in the preceding federal election. It was intended to be and was a unanimous tribute to Mr. Bennett's eminence as a Canadian lawyer; but even more it was a tribute to the high ideals he had constantly set and assisted in maintaining for the association itself. He had never regarded it as an association for the advancement of the professional and individual interests of its members, but rather as an instrument to further the interests of the nation as a whole and to provide opportunities to its members to be of greater service to the whole community.
There are many lawyers in Canada who never become members of parliament and who never have the opportunities which this parliament provides to form those personal contacts with their fellow citizens from all parts of Canada which are so valuable in assisting one to understand and appreciate the various viewpoints, social concepts and even honest prejudices that make up our aggregate national conscience.
The Canadian Bar Association brings all those lawy'ers together in periodical meetings where national problems are faced and discussed in an atmosphere of serious responsibility to the body' politic as a whole

The Late Lord Bennett
and from which each one carries away a deeper sense of national solidarity.
No one except perhaps the founder and first president of the association. Sir James Aikins, has done more than the 'late Viscount Bennett to make that body the effective instrument it has become for assisting in the development of a sound and enlightened Canadian consciousness. No one will be remembered longer and with greater respect and esteem than R. B. Bennett by all those who, over the years, had the privilege of co-membership with him in that association.
Mr. JOHN T. HACKETT (Stanstead): Mr. Speaker, a few words may be permitted at this time to one who as a very young man saw Mr. Bennett as he then was, from the galleries of the House of Commons, when he first came to parliament and who later knew him at the bar, in the Canadian Bar Association, and who as a Conservative member shared in a modest way his political fortunes.
Nature was generous to Richard Bedford Bennett. He was strong of body, of mind and of character. His natural endowment was enriched and developed not only by early training but by constant self-discipline; from earliest youth he learned "to scorn delights and live laborious days". He possessed gifts and graces which, taken alone, are rare, but in the abundance and variety in which they were found in his make-up, are rarer still. He had a flaming courage, a superb memory and a copious eloquence. He was a fearless and dominating personality. To his genius and daring in a period of great national peril we owe in no small degree the maintenance of peace and the preservation of many national institutions. His sleepless energy, his resourcefulness and masterful ways in any of the several fields of action in which he was called, during many years, to take part in behalf of country, never failed him.
He was a great advocate. He believed in the law and sought to make the institution of the law workable, permanent and effective. As one of the officers of the Canadian Bar Association, to the vitality of which he contributed so generously, and on behalf of my brethren in the law, and reechoing in part what has been so graciously said by the Secretary of State for External Affairs (Mr. St. Laurent), I thought it well that I should say how deeply we mourn the passing of him who served, with an unstinted measure of devotion, his generation, his country, and that great institution of the law. In the
words of St. Jerome, he was possessed of magno et erecto animo, a great spirit, upright and purposeful.

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