Personal Data

Laprairie--Napierville (Quebec)
Birth Date
January 30, 1866
Deceased Date
May 30, 1929

Parliamentary Career

November 3, 1904 - September 17, 1908
  Laprairie--Napierville (Quebec)
October 26, 1908 - July 29, 1911
  Laprairie--Napierville (Quebec)
September 21, 1911 - October 6, 1917
  Laprairie--Napierville (Quebec)
December 17, 1917 - October 4, 1921
  Laprairie--Napierville (Quebec)
December 6, 1921 - September 5, 1925
  Laprairie--Napierville (Quebec)
October 29, 1925 - July 2, 1926
  Laprairie--Napierville (Quebec)
September 14, 1926 - May 30, 1930
  Laprairie--Napierville (Quebec)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 64 of 67)

March 23, 1914


Mr. Chairman, I regret that the hon. gentleman who just resumed his seat (Mr. Lamarche) should have concurred in the views expressed by the hon. member for Rouville. I must say right away that I am wholly opposed to any increase of salary for the judges, because, to my mind, they are already getting too much for the work performed in the country's behalf.

the Superior Court judges of the district of Montreal are getting just now salaries of $7,000 or $8,000 per annum, and I was not a little surprised at hearing the memorandum of the judges of the district of Quebec which the hon. member for Rouville has just read to the House. When complaints are being voiced as regards the high cost of living on behalf of people who earn $7,000 per annum, it strikes me as something laughable. I admit that in the case of a poor workingman earning from $1.25 to $1.50 per day, the high cost of

living may be made a consideration towards obtaining an increase of his salary, but such considerations cannot be urged in the case of people earning from $7,000 to $8,000 per annum.

As a matter of fact are there not in the province of Quebec retired judges who get more as pensioners of the State than they earned while on the Bench?

That question was never taken up before the Canadian electorate, and I intend during the next recess of Parliament to carry on a campaign against the increase of such salaries throughout the province of Quebec, whatever may be thought of it by hon. gentlemen who belong to the profession. In this connection, I put both political parties exactly on the same plane; hon. gentlemen on either side are always ready to rise in this House and. defend the privileges of the upper set; they remain silent when the rights of the common people are in jeopardy.

We have in the province of Quebec fifteen retired judges; out of that number, three get $8,000 per annum, though they earned only $5,000 while on the bench. That makes $3,000 more per annum than during their term of office, that is to say, they get $3,000 more per annum for doing nothing.

How could it be otherwise, when we have as Minister of Justice a retired judge in person? Of course, it may be that the law makers who provided such increases had their own cases in mind. In 1905, the then Minister of Justice was Mr. Fitzpatrick. The .salary of the Chief Justice was increased to $12,000, and he was on the point of himself going over to the Supreme Court.

I was listening the other day to the hon. Minister of Inland Revenue (Mr. Nantel) when he acknowledged that there were in his department poor people earning from $500 to $600 per annum as temporary clerks, for the past fifteen or twenty years; and he added that he did not see his way to granting them any increase. Besides, he said, if they are not content with that, there are hundreds of people who are ready to take their places.

Do you suppose, Mr. Chairman, that in the event of the judges of the province of Quebec resigning to-morrow, on the ground of insufficient remuneration of their services, it would be found impossible to replace them? I can assure you, Sir, that there are on the other .side of the

House some hon. gentlemen-I "have a certain number of them in front of me who, having deceived their electors at the last elections, would be very glad to slip into those vacancies. It would not take me a half-hour to fill in the gaps.

As for me, and I speak on behalf of the farming community which I represent here, I say that the latter class is unaware of all that is going on; and in this connection I may tell you of an incident which occurred in the course of my last electoral journey. I was addressing a meeting at St. Michael de Napierville, and in conclusion was pointing out the case of the hon. Minister of Justice, who is at one and the same time a pensioner of the State, Minister of Justice and member of Parliament. On these various heads, I told them, he is drawing three salaries. After the meeting some Conservative electors came to me saying: You have not stated the truth; the Minister of Justice can not be a State pensioner. I ascended the hustings once more and told them: Go and inquire from Mr. Patenaude, the local member for Laprairie (a staunch Conservative), and if he does not confirm what I have just stated to you, I undertake to give up my mandate. Those people would not believe me.

Now, I would like to know from the Minister of Justice whether he intends applying on my behalf to the Prime Minister for an opportunity to discuss the Bill I have on the Order paper in reference to the matter we are considering just now?

The contention is that there are not enough judges in Montreal; I know the reason, and I am going to tell you what it is. Our Montreal judges, like those in other parts, often suffer from slight headaches and travel for the benefit of their health. Several of them even cross over to Europe every year. While they are on such trips their salaries are by no means cut down. But take a poor customs officer, if he be sick two days in succession, he must show a doctor's certificate-which costs some money-to draw his salary. What I now state is a fact; many a time I have witnessed such things while I was sitting on the Government side.

I stated that a judge, even in the event of a six months' absence in Europe, draws his full salary. But that is not the whole story; should he be called upon to act as chairman of a commission of enquiry, or

to fill some other office apart from his judicial functions, he draws $50 per diem besides his salary as a judge which continues to run.

That is the kind of justice which is meted out to us farmers and workingmen.

I say that the time is near when we will show our resentment of such grievances.

Quite recently, in this House, when we urged cutting off the duties on agricultural implements, the objection was raised that we would no longer have sufficient revenue to meet tire expenditure incident on Civil government. To that I answer: Let us begin with the judges,, let us cut off, to begin with, the pension of the Minister of Justice-whom I see just now occupying a seat opposite. That pension amounts to $4,666.66. Mr. Chairman, that sum is surely equal to the net revenue of forty-six farmers in my constituency?

Let us now compare the pensions paid to judges in Ontario and in Quebec. Fifteen judges in Quebec are the recipients of nearly $100,000. In Ontario, one judge gets $7,000, two get $2,500 and one gets $.3,000. The comparison is greatly in favour of Ontario. I may add that the Ontario judges remain on the Bench until 83 years of age. Indeed, there are judges in that province who might have asked to be retired eight years ago, and who have not done so yet.

In conclusion, I shall once more inquire from the Government whether an opportunity will be given me to discuss in this House the Bill which I referred to a moment ago? Should the Government stand aloof in this connection, I shall undertake to myself go through the province of Quebec and discuss the question against any lawyer appealing to the electorate.

Topic:   SUPPLY.
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March 11, 1914

Mr. ROCH LANCTOT (Laprairie-Napier-ville):

Mr. Speaker, as a farmer representing one of the foremost farming communities in the province of Quebec, I think I would be neglecting my duty should I not express my own opinion on the motion now before us.

I must first congratulate the honourable member for Moosejaw (Mr. Iinowles) for having presented this motion in amend-

ment whereby the Government is asked to remove the duty on agricultural implements brought into this country. This question does not affect but the West, it affects the whole country, and more especially the province of Quebec because there are at least fifty agricultural counties out of the sixty-five which she numbers. I have the honour to represent one of those counties in the House.

This amendment prays that the duties on farming implements be removed altogether. Is it not a fact that the manufacturers in this country have enjoyed a protective tariff ever since 1878? From that, time the child has grown up, it has reached the age of 36 years, and I think that, at this age, it could be left to depend on its own strength.

I say, that the manufacturers have been protected long enough, and as for the great mass of the people, I believe it is time that they should enjoy, in their turn, the abolition of protection duties, on farming implements first of all. Those manufacturers of farming implements, who dispose of their goods in Europe, selling them 25 or 30 per cent cheaper than here, could, one thinks, stand foreign competition in this country and make a very substantial profit. Why do they sell cheaper outside? Because there is no competition in our country. Such is always the case in every country under a protective system; the consumers have to pay a higher price for the goods, owing to an impassable gate which prevents competition. Such is the system under which we of the farming community are now labouring.

Is it not a fact that, no later than yesterday, the present Goverment has been asked, as was done under the late Administration, to grant a bounty on the steel works of this country? The late Government granted it, but when they were satisfied that this industry had enjoyed such protection long enough, they removed it. We farmers do not feel envious of' the favours granted to other industries. We do not want the Government to give us money with which to buy our implements,* we do not ask for such favours; we only believe it is now time that the protective duties should be removed and that free course should be given to competition. This is only reasonable.

During this debate, as the honourable member for Humboldt (Mr. Neely) was addressing the House, the honourable member for Peterborough (Mr. Burnham) asked him this question: 'What about a revenue tax?' Well, the Government is

going to collect this year, as customs duties, from one hundred and ten to one hundred and twelve million dollars. The removal of the duties on farming implements which we buy would mean but the small sum of $845,300 as a rebate on that revenue and surely this would not be enough to affect the treasury. At all

events, I think there should be some easy means of making compensation for this so-called deficit, for instance, by reducing certain extravagant estimates, by striking off a few estimates from the Militia Department for useless arsenals, some of which are supposed to cost as much as $500,000 or $600,000.

Mr. Speaker, after the budget speech has been delivered I shall submit to the House a few other small details which I would not like to allude to just at present.

I had no intention to take part in this debate, but it being unceasingly repeated in the press that this question is one which interests the western part of this country exclusively, I claim, on the contrary, that it does interest the whole country, the province of Quebec as well as all the'other provinces of Confederation.

Let me add, in concluding these few remarks, that I would be in favour of a general reduction of the duties. I woidd be glad if some honourable member should propose such a measure so that the duties were not higher than ten per cent as a general rule.

The honourable member for Red Deer (Mr. Clark) is accused of being a free trader. Well, I think I belong to his school and that I am a free trader myself to some extent, and I am confident that were there less protection in this country, everybody would feel more contented and more satisfied.

Subtopic:   XI, 1914
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February 26, 1914

1. Did the Postmaster General take a trip or trips in the Canadian West and other parts of the country with the Right Hon. Herbert Samuel, Postmaster General of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, during the year 1913?

2. How many stenographers and servants accompanied him and what were the travelling expenses of such stenographers and servants?

3. Was the Postmaster General accompanied by ladies, and what are their names?

4. What amount has the Government paid as expenses for that trip?

5. Were the expenses of that trip shared by the Government of Great Britain and Ireland?

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February 19, 1914

1. Was there a contract made between the Government and Messrs. NoS Poupart and Duranceau of Laprairie, for the erection of the protecting wall at the town of Laprairie, at the highlands of St. Lambert?

2. Were tenders asked for that purpose? If so, in what papers were the notices published?

3. At what date were they asked for, and when did the time for the reception thereof expire ?

4. Did the Public Works Department at Ottawa ask that 1,400 feet be completed during last fall, that is the part between St. Jacques river and the high lands of St. Lambert, in order that the road called Boulevard Edward VII, which was completed last November by the provincial Government, be utilized?

5. What are the names of the parties who have sent in tenders and the amount of each tender?

6. Was the lowest tenderer awarded the contract and to whom has it been given?

7. Is the contract signed by the contractors? If so, is it the intention of the Government to see to it that the works start next spring?

8. Is the Government aware that those works are said to be absolutely necessary, particularly the 8,000 feet of road forming part of Boulevard Edward VII?

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February 17, 1914


It is not to increase

but to reduce the pension.

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