February 2, 1910 (11th Parliament, 2nd Session)


Thomas Beattie

Conservative (1867-1942)


I do not think I would be justified in voting for this motion especially after the declaration we have had from the Minister of Labour. Judging from what he has said, I can only come to the conclusion that the object of this motion is to shelve the question and prevent our doing anything. I charge the hon. member for Montreal (Mr. Verville) with rank insincerity. He introduced a similar Bill last year and then withdrew it without giving any sufficient reason for so doing. That hon. gentleman charged me with not keeping faith with the workingmen although he knew I supported his eight hour Bill. Two years ago he travelled all the wav from Montreal to London to oppose my election, but the workingmen were so disgusted by his tactics that they would not go to his meetings. At one meeting he managed to collect together some thirty men, although he had engaged a brass band as an attraction, he was no more successful; and the result of his agitation against me was that I was elected by about 1,200 majority, pretty nearly all workingmen. As the object of his motion is evidently to shelve the measure, and thus deceive the working people whom that hon. gentleman pretends to represent, I shall' vote against it. If instead of getting a. college professor to report on the question of labour, the government would secure six good manufacturers, who had succeeded in building up their business by the sweat of their brow, and six good respectable, honest, mechanics, who are still earning their living by their hard day's toil, I think that these two representative bodies, seated around a table, would be able to come to a satisfactory settlement of this eight hour question without very much difficulty or delay?

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