March 6, 1916 (12th Parliament, 6th Session)


Jacques Bureau


Mr. JACQUES BUREAU (Three Rivers and St. Maurice):

Mr. Speaker, I rise to a question of privilege. I read in the Toronto Star of Friday, March 3, under the heading, "Ottawa Frowns on the HydroRadial Scheme," the following:
Another member of the city deputation talked of the anti-Hydro and anti-Toronto feeling in the Railway Committee. He also criticised the attitude of Col. J. A. Currie, M.P., a Toronto man, who recently returned from the front. " The antagonistic spirit to Toronto is so strong down there that you can put your finger on it," said this man; " the French-Canadian members sit there smoking their Quebec tobacco in their little old pipes, and they vote for the corporations always."
This comes, Mr. Speaker, from a Toronto man, who w,as a member of the deputation that came to Ottawa. Coming from a Toronto man, it is treated by me with the contempt that it deserves; I shall not say anything about it except that it is a sequel to his brain power, and nothing more. There is something graver in the same paper. The Toronto Star, under date of Saturday, March 4, contains the following, under the heading, "Toronto has Few Friends in the Railway Committee:"
Even though it comes down to another fight before the Commons Railway Committee, the Hydro stands a good chance of winning out, in the opinion of Capt. Thomas Wallace, member for Centre York; who reached the city to-day. "All the Toronto members who were in Ottawa were at the committee, ready to put up a fight for the Hydro," Capt. Wallace stated, "and I think the Hydro should win out when all the suppQrters get there. The meeting last week

was poorly attended, but the next one will not be. 'As it seems to stand now, the most of the Ontario members on the committee will vote Hydro, while the strongest supporters of the Canadian Northern railway were the French members. They always seem to be out to hit anything Ontario wants."
I w ant to register my most energetic protest against this statement, and to qualify it as absolutely unfounded, unjustifiable, and unworthy of a man occupying a representative position in Canada. Let me tell this gentleman that the French members of the Railway Committee, of which I am one, sit there as representing all Canada. In their deliberations and in their judgments, they know no provincial boundaries, no parochial boundaries, no sectarian motives; to the best of their ability they devote themselves to the interests of their country. I may add that I feel deeply on this question, but at this juncture I shall say nothing more than this: I leave it to the judgment of the well-thinking .and broadminded men of this country to treat this contemptible assertion as it deserves to he treated, emanating, as it does, from a narrow mind.

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