Sir WILFRID LAURIER:
This Bill has only two clauses; the first clause is in these wards:
(1) Paragraph (g) of Section two of the War-time Elections Act, Chapter 39 of the Statutes of 1917, shall apply only to a General Election.
And the second clause is:
(2) This Act shall be deemed to have come into operation on the eighteenth of March in the year one thousand, nine hundred and eighteen.
This Bill is to come to the relief of my hon. friend the member for Lanark (Mr. Stewart), who was elected a few days ago. Section (g) of the War-time Elections Act, which is repealed by this Act, provides that the delay between the nomination day and the election day shall be one month, amending the general Act, which says that the-delay, or the space of time between the nomination and the election day shall be one week. The object of this amendment is to restore the former delay and to provide that the space of time between nomination day and election day -shall not bo one month, as it was during the - last election under the War-time Elections Act, but shall be one week. There was an election in the county of Lanark, owing to the death of our friend and member for this House, the late Dr. Hanna. The Order in Council ordering the issue of the writ was made on [DOT] the, 11th April, and the nomination day was fixed to toe on May 2, and the pfiling day on May 9. The election took place, the nomination being on the 2nd May and the poll on the 9th of May, and our colleague the present member was elected. But the whole election was against the law. The delay between nomination day and the polling day should have been, nor one week, but one month, and the second paragraph of this Bill is to validate the election. So far as the election of my hon. friend from Lanark (Mr. Stewart) is concerned, I have no objection that his election should be validated, but I have very strong objections to its being made valid in the way in which it is being made valid by this Bill, that is, by amending the War-time Elections Act. For my part, I would say that that Act should not be amended, it should he abolished altogether; it should
be repealed, and if the Government were ready, or saw fit, to repeal that Act I should have nothing to say about it. But unless they will do so-I will not discuss the question at length, but I wish to record my vote absolutely, at all stages, against this Act,, which I regard as an abomination, and, therefore, I move in amendment:
That all the words in the motion alter the word "that" be left out, and the following sub-situted therefor. 'ttn the opinion of this House the War-time Elections Act should be rerepealed."
Topic: WAR-TIME ELECTIONS ACT AMENDMENT.