March 20, 1903 (9th Parliament, 3rd Session)


Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)


I should imagine that the Prime Minister had been reading very carefully the Gamey debate in the local House, for I notice that that little story of his has been given down there. I thought that the late Joseph Rymal had patented that story, but since he has died, I suppose the Prime Minister thought there could be no objection to him using it after it had been used in Toronto. But, what I rose more particularly to draw attention to was the fact that the right hon. leader of the House speaks of not being held accountable for rumour. The present government have surely something more than rumour to work upon ; they have the resolution which was moved in this House and supported by the hon. Minister of Trade and Commerce at the time when it was proposed to establish the Commissioner of Customs and the Commissioner of Inland Revenue, which, they said, was increasing the number of the departments and they thought it their duty to protest strenuously against it. Then, we have the hon. Minister of Trade and Commerce and his colleagues enlarging these two commissionerships into full fledged ministerial departments and he took one of them himself. That was much more than rumour and not only that but they made it retroactive so as to enable themselves to collect a salary for the year which was past and gone. That was not rumour. That was dealing with facts which took place in this House and therefore is ample justification for referring to the matter and especially in view of the fact that the hon. Minister of Trade and Commerce has occupied the position ever since and must have assented to it before Council or otherwise it could not have come before the House notwithstanding the views he held in regard to it before he became a cabinet minister in the present government.

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