Mr. Deputy Speaker:
If there are no other members who would like to assist the Chair on the procedural argument, I should like to thank the hon. parliamentary secretary and the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre for their assistance on the question whether or not this is a reasoned amendment which the Chair should accept as such. When the amendment was proposed by the hon. member for Waterloo (Mr. Saltsman) I indicated that I had some doubt whether it was in fact a reasoned amendment as defined by the authorities which bind the Chair. Despite the very lucid and helpful arguments of the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre, I must tell the House that he has been unable to convince me that this amendment does meet the tests required to make a reasoned amendment acceptable to the Chair.
I think there is no disagreement on the authorities; the parliamentary secretary dealt fully with them. The hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre stated-and I agree with this-that a reasoned amendment must be declaratory of a proposition that opposes the principle of the bill before the House for second reading. This, of course, is very well established in May, in Beauchesne and in the precedents which the Chair must follow.
June 5, 1972
Foreign Takeovers Review Act
I should like to deal with this matter firstly on the basis of whether or not the proposed amendment is in opposition to the principle of the bill. With respect, I do not find that it is. The title of the bill is "An act to provide for the review and assessment of acquisitions of control of Canadian business enterprises by certain persons". I think I would fairly describe the proposed amendment and the argument of the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre if I were to say that he is proposing another way, an enlarged or different way, in which to achieve the same objective and also to do other things. If this is the case-and I believe it is-I do not think he is opposing the principle of the bill but is suggesting another way in which the objective of the bill might be obtained. On that basis, I would have to say that I cannot accept the proposed amendment.
The parliamentary secretary raised two more points. I agree with his first point that the proposed amendment does seem to go beyond the scope of the bill. It not only suggests an alternate way of dealing with the matter with which the bill attempts to deal; it also suggests that the independent review body would deal with other matters as well. I mentioned before the expansion of foreign owned corporations already existing in this country which is referred to in the proposed amendment. It would seem to me that that provision goes beyond the scope of the bill before the House.
If I may deal with the third point for the record, it was argued by the parliamentary secretary that this proposition would involve the expenditure of funds. I would agree with the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre on this point. The amendment is merely asking the government to give consideration to such expenditure, and that is all. However, that is not the point on which my decision turns and I refer to it only because both hon. members who argued the case referred to it.
For the two reasons I have mentioned, I very much regret that I cannot accept the proposed amendment as a reasoned amendment that comes within the rules.
Subtopic: FOREIGN TAKEOVERS REVIEW ACT