Province of Canada, Legislative Assembly, Morning Chronicle Version, 8th Parl, 3rd Sess (16 February 1865)

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Date: 1865-02-16
By: Province of Canada (Parliament); Quebec Morning Chronicle
Citation: “Provincial Parliament”, [Quebec] Morning Chronicle (17 February 1865).
Other formats: Click here to view the original document (PDF).
You may be interested: This was a procedural portion that was missing from the Confederation Debates version. To view the debate on Confederation, click HERE.

Henri Joly [Lotbinière] arose to speak.

Hector-Louis Langevin [Dorchester, Solicitor General East] rose, apparently at the moment, and moved

The adjournment of the debate.

Christopher Dunkin [Brome] said that after having four or give long speeches form ministers, in a connected form, it was hardly fair on the part of a member of the Government to prevent the hon. member for Lotbinière [Henri Joly] from speaking.

Thomas Parker [Wellington] said that if the Government took the course which they seemed disposed to take, it would be a departure from what he had understood to be the order of debate agreed upon.

Antoine-Aimé Dorion [Hochelaga] said that, in view of the disadvantage of speaking at a late hour, he would advise his hon. friend from Lotbinière [Henri Joly] to move the adjournment of the debate.

John Sandfield Macdonald [Cornwall] said that the course which was being pursued in preventing hon. members on this side from expressing their views was unfair, and he hoped hon. gentlemen on the Treasury benches would not tolerate it in their subordinates.

Some Hon. Members—Hear, hear, and oh, oh.

George-Étienne Cartier [Montreal East, Attorney-General East] was understood to deny that there was any understanding as to the order in which the general debate was to be carried on. The members of the Government had closed the opening case, and had given the delay which hon. gentlemen required for the purpose of allowing the explanations to go to the country; and now we were into the regular crossfire—the free flight.

Hope Mackenzie [Oxford North] thought that out of courtesy the Hon. Solicitor General [Hector-Louis Langevin] ought to give way to the hon. member for Lotbinière [Henri Joly].

Some Hon. Members—Hear, hear.

Christopher Dunkin [Brome] thought there should, in all fairness, be an opportunity given for some connected expression of the views of hon. members on this side of the House.

John A. Macdonald [Kingston, Attorney-General West] said that the Government had, from the very beginning, been ready to go on with the debate in the ordinary way. The course which had been pursued was altogether in deference to the request of the Opposition. There was, however, no agreement as to the order of the general debate; and hon. gentlemen took anything but a proper view of the case when they advocated a stilted series of set speeches, instead of a fair and proper discussion in the usual parliamentary from.

Why, we should have the hon. member for Brome [Christopher Dunkin] up thirty times at least, and he would speak three days at a time? We should be here all summer. If hon. gentlemen wished to have the subject really discussed on its merits, let it be in the usual style of debate—so that when any one made a statement for or against, he might be answered. The discussion should not be muffled if we desired to elicit truth; but we should have a free and fair discussion.

Hector-Louis Langevin [Dorchester, Solicitor General East] was understood to say that he had no objection to give way to the hon. member for Lotbinière [Henri Joly]; but it must be understood that he would follow him.

Luther Holton [Chateauguay] said that Government had better allow the course to be pursued now which was the natural inference of the manner in which they had commenced, although he believed it would have been better if we had had the debate in the regular form from the outset.

Christopher Dunkin [Brome] arose amid loud cries of “Spoke,” “Spoke.” He moved a motion of adjournment for the purpose of having a right to speak; and then went on to denounce as unfair the course of debate proposed to be pursued by the Government; and to advocate the propriety of allowing the Opposition to express their opinions in a connected shape.

John Sandfield Macdonald [Cornwall] followed on the same side.

John Rose [Montreal Centre]—No argument of a specious kind can prevent me from expressing my own views at the time and in the manner I may deem best so to do. It has been suggested that members should be held to listen to a number of set speeches before they are at liberty to express their own sentiments.

Some Hon. Members—Hear, hear.

John Rose [Montreal Centre]—I should be glad to hear both sides.

Some Hon. Members—Hear, hear.

John Rose [Montreal Centre]—And I have listened with a great deal of interest to the able speeches on this side; and I do not wish, as an individual member, after the observations of my hon. friend, the member for Hochelaga [Antoine-Aimé Dorion], to be prevented from speaking when I please.

Some Hon. Members—Hear, hear.

Joseph Cauchon [Montmorency] was understood to say that the course which had been pursued in the first instance was that which the Oppositiuon desired. The Government had, therefore, shewn great liberality and great fair play in the course they had pursued.

Hector-Louis Langevin [Dorchester, Solicitor General East] had no objection to give way to the hon. member for Lotbinière [Henri Joly], but wished it to be understood that he desired to follow him.

Joseph Rymal [Wentworth South] said that all we wanted was fair play, and fair play we must have. Five of the most eloquent members of the Government had supported the scheme—let give of the ablest members on this side of the House follow, from their own point of view. When the crossing of arms, when the “free fight,” as the Hon. Attorney General East [George-Étienne Cartier] styled it, came on, he (Mr. Rymal) might have something to say. When, however, he asked the five leading gentlemen on this side be allowed to speak, he was not, he assured the House, putting in a word for himself.

Some Hon. MembersRoars of laughter.

Joseph Rymal [Wentworth South]—But if there was to be a scramble, and permission to speak as often as they pleased, then there was no saying how often he might be troubling them.

William McDougall [Lanark North, Provincial Secretary] spoke briefly in favor of the propriety of adhering to the usual order of debate, and of having a full and free discussion of this as of any other important question.

Hector-Louis Langevin [Dorchester, Solicitor General East] moved

The adjournment of the debate.


Heri Joly [Lotbinière] moved

The adjournment of the House.


The House then, at ten minutes past twelve adjourned. 

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