That is of course a very proper question. When this was done in the first instance I was not in the country. I was in London, England, when gold took the flight. It was found that in an emergency in which quick action had to be taken a decision was
Customs Tariff Amendment
made which later had to be modified by order in council. Upon arriving home I canvassed the whole situation as carefully as I could. I was told, but not with emphasis, that the govenor general in council had done something which it had not authority to do. When I inquired what that w-as, I could not find out. However someone had set on foot the story that there was imperfection in the action taken by the governor in council, and in order to remove any possible doubt, I was anxious to effect a remedy. It is not proposed to go back and take the course of making merchants pay who have not paid but have been fair. The idea is to have the matter clear beyond peradventure. I may tell my hon. friend that the closest I could get to any definite statement as to what was done by the government which it had not power to do by order in council was that we had fixed an average for duty over fortnightly periods, and that it was necessary that the amounts so fixed should be the real exchange values of the pound on the particular dates. In order, as I say, to have some degree of uniformity we had fixed fortnightly values which obtained during the respective fortnights, action which it was suggested the government had not power to take. I think that it had. But if anyone wishes to challenge the action of the government I think this House of Commons, the final authority, ought to give the governor in council full power for what has been done.
Topic: CUSTOMS TARIFF AMENDMENT