Province of Canada, Legislative Council, Debate on the Governor General’s Speech (16 May 1850)

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Date: 1850-05-16
By: The Globe
Citation: “Legislative Council,” The Globe (18 May 1850).
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After some routine business had been transacted, the hon. House proceeded to the order of the day; and while the Clerk was proceeding to read the Speech of His Excellency the Governor General, the Hon. J. Morris stated that, owing to some oversight, hon. members had not been furnished with printed copies of the Resolutions which it was intended to move on the occasion; and he should, therefore, propose a short adjournment, until copies could be placed in the hands of hon. members.

A short conversation arose, during which the Hon. Mr. Ross alluded to the practice in England, where it is customary to move the reply to the speech of the Sovereign, immediately after it has been delivered; a different practice, however, prevailed here, and one day usually elapsed after the opening of the Session. As the address would probably be an echo of the speech, the circumstance of not having printed copies of the Resolutions, on which would be based the reply, was of the less consequence. If, however, such was not to be the case, it was desirable that hon. members should be furnished with the printed copies alluded to.

Hon. Mr. MCKAY said, if the members of the Government in the House were determined to force their measures before the arrival of members who were on their way to Toronto, they could do so. It would only be commencing a course which they probably were disposed to continue.

Hon. Mr. FERGUSSON was opposed to any further and unnecessary delay. If it were requisite that hon. members should be put in possession of the printed copies alluded to, let it be so defined as a reason for adjournment.

Hon. Mr. LESLIE said, the members of the Government had no desire to take any advantage, or avail themselves of the absence of hon. members of the House, and would afford any time that might be requested. If hon. gentlemen were desirous of waiting another day, it would not, he trusted, be presumptuous in him to say, that the House would defer the consideration of the speech a day longer. If other members were on their way up, this would afford them an opportunity of voting; and if the friends of the Government did not attend, they would deserve to suffer from the consequences of their neglect.

Mr. MCKAY considered that hon. members should be provided with printed copies of the resolutions, which it was intended to move. If, however, the House were willing to proceed without these, he had no objection. Whatever course might be pursued was to him a matter of moonshine.

Hon. JAMES MORRIS thought the proposition he had made was a sufficiently plain one; which was, that the House should adjourn for a short time, till printed copies of the resolutions could be furnished.

The Hon. House then adjourned.

In a short time proceedings were resumed, the resolutions referred to having been obtained; when the Clerk proceeded to read the Speech of His Excellency the Governor General.

Hon. JAMES MORRIS stated that the Resolutions which he was about to submit, had been entrusted to his care, and he regretted that the duty had not devolved upon a member better qualified than him to discharge it. But fortunately no oratorical powers were required to recommend the Speech that had been delivered at the opening of the Session, and which only had to be read to be universally approved of. The first Resolution was expressive of the thanks of the House, for the speech that had been delivered at the opening of the Session, in which he was satisfied hon. gentlemen would cheerfully concur. The next Resolution was one of condolence, on account of the death of the Queen Downger, the tidings of which had been received with deep regret, as her numerous charities and virtues had endured her to many persons, even in this remote portion of the empire; in which feeling hon. members would, doubtless, participate and which he was sure they would most readily express. Reference was made in the next Resolution to the removal of the Seat of Government; and to which, from the apparent unanimity that prevailed, he deduced the best results; he thought the prerogative had been wisely exercised in this respect, and for the public good; the best assurance of which, and the highest recompense the Governor General could receive, would be found in the desire of hon. members to do all that lay in their power to promote the welfare of the country. He (Mr. Morris) hoped that the expectations contained in the next paragraph would be realised, and that the changes recently effected in the navigation laws of the empire, would be productive of advantage to the Province; whose commerce had been fettered by restrictions, the removal of which would also, doubtless, be productive of benefit in the more rapid settlement of the country, as there was reason to expect that thousands, who otherwise would find a home in the western States, now that they are made aware that foreign vessels can carry them to Quebec, will take that route, and be induced to remain in a country so fertile, and offering so many inducements, as are to be found in Canada. Even should they desire to proceed farther, on their arrival at Quebec or Montreal, they could, at a small charge, proceed to Buffalo or Chicago and other places in the United States. He hoped this information would be disseminated in Europe, and he understood that an agent from England was in Montreal for that purpose. He, therefore, inferred that before long, the Province would present a scene of bustle and activity, to which it had been hitherto a stranger. The next paragraph, the hon. gentleman said, was most interesting to the inhabitants of Canada, having reference to the increased value of its public securities. It had, hitherto, been humiliating to their pride, that its stocks were unsaleable, except at a discount. He was not surprised, however, that they could now be disposed of at par, as no country could offer better guarantees for the investment of capital; and it would be its own fault if the public securities of this Province did not enter into the London market upon the same terms as those of its neighbours. His Excellency had expressed a hope, that the Legislature would reciprocate the advances that had been made by the sister colonies in a kindred spirit; the trade between all of which, should be as free as it is between the several States of the American Union; and he had no doubt that reciprocal benefit would be derived from the removal of restrictions that had hitherto existed. A reciprocal trade Bill between Canada and the United States, was at present under consideration in the American Congress; and in the opinion of the best informed upon the subject, would become law. He admitted the advantage that would result to this Province from an increased market being opened for its products; but it would open, also, to the Americans, the free navigation of the lakes and rivers, without which, they must be confined to their own internal trade. The next resolution had reference to the postage of the Province; and its inhabitants would be glad to hear, that this had been placed at the disposal of the Legislature. The representation of the country to which the next resolution had reference, has of late engrossed much public attention; and from its present want of uniformity, it was not surprising that this subject had created very great dissatisfaction. Territory, he was satisfied, should not form the basis of representation; and at the period of the union of the two Provinces, great injustice had been done in this respect, to the people of Lower Canada—he was of that opinion at the time, and he thought so still. Its population was greater than that of the United Province, yet it only obtained the same representation; he was ignorant of the nature of the measure which the Government meant to propose, or whether they intended introducing any during the present Session. He trusted, however, that any future Legislative action would be based on population; as that was the only just principle upon which it could rest, and the only one that would give general satisfaction. The next five paragraphs of the speech, to which the resolutions applied, the Hon. gentleman said had reference to the Provincial Penitentiary—the contemplated exhibition of the industry of all nations in London, during the approaching year,—the extension of the sphere of usefulness of the inferior courts,—the recent changes in the practice and proceedings of the Court of Chancery,—and an alteration in the assessment laws, which was of importance; in all which it was evident the Government was actuated by the most enlarged and liberal spirit of the age. The hon. gentleman said, the next resolution alluded to the removal of persons holding commissions under the Crown, who had publicly expressed a desire for the separation of this Province from the Parent State; and he was satisfied hon. members would concur with him in the opinion, that had his Excellency pursued any other course, it must have been considered as a dereliction of duty. He believed few persons would deny at this day, the right of the people of a colony to discuss the question of “annexation” or separation, and to advocate the adoption of either if they deemed it advantageous to the country. But he deemed it advantageous to the country. But he (Mr. M.) could not understand how persons holding her Majesty’s commissions could pursue that course, without resigning them ere they flew in the face of their Sovereign and endeavoured to effect the dismemberment of her dominions. As had been stated by the Governor General, the people of this colony are disposed to look to their Provincial Parliament for redress of those minor grievances of which they may have to complain. The hon. gentleman concluded by saying, that he had briefly alluded to the several topics contained in the speech at the opening of the session, and which the resolutions then submitted to the hon. House embraced. He would now refer to those pecuniary matters, the consideration of which more immediately belonged to the other branch of the Legislature, and therefore was not introduced in the other portions of the Speech—he alluded to the revenue and expenditure of the Province. On that subject he would say the Administration must reduce the public expenditure; and he for one, would not continue his humble support of any administration, that would not respond in this particular to the call of the people. He had every confidence, however, in the present government, and felt assured that they would reduce, as far as was practicable, the expenditure of the public finds. Retrenchment, however, should be commenced by both houses of Parliament; the expenses of which are at present very large, and might be materially reduced. He felt that he had trespassed too long upon the time of the hon. House, and therefore should proceed to move the several resolutions in answer to the Speech; and which, he trusted, would receive the support of hon. members. The various subjects they embraced were of vital importance; and he expected would engage their undivided attention; and that hon. gentlemen would vie with each other in promoting the advancement of the colony and the welfare of its inhabitants; who, he trusted, would in future only be known, as a virtuous, contented and prosperous people/

The Resolutions having been read—

Hon. Mr. MOORE said he considered the selection of himself to second the Address as a compliment paid to that part of the country from which he came, rather than to himself. The speech from the throne at the commencement of the session, was one to which every hon. gentleman must heartily respond. The hon. member who had preceded him, had so ably treated upon the various subjects it embraced, that it was unnecessary for him to take up the time of the hon. House, with any extended observations of his own. But there were one or two allusions in the speech, to which he would beg leave to call the attention of that body.—And first, with reference to the surrender of the internal post communication of the country to the control of the local Legislature, he felt assured it would produce universal satisfaction; in relation to which the Postmaster General formerly exercised unlimited control. He apprehended that when this service should be placed under the supervision of the Colonial Parliament, that not only would the funds derived from internal postage, defray the necessary expenses connected therewith, but would become a source of additional revenue to the Province.—Another subject mentioned in the speech, he felt called upon to refer to—it was that which related to an increase in the representation, and he trusted that the administration in framing a plan, would not neglect the eastern portion of the Province. At present that section which was beyond Richelieu, and which contained by far the greatest population, had but two members in the Legislative Council. If in adding to the number, which was the prerogative of the sovereign, a judicious selection were made, the southern part would receive that attention to which it was entitled; the present representation having reference chiefly to that part of the inhabitants who are of French origin. Another paragraph in the speech, to which he begged leave to refer, alluded to the construction of courts and jails in Lower Canada; the population of the portion which he represented, felt great inconvenience from the want of adequate courts, and he hoped the administration would be prepared to recommend an increase, not only of the civil, but also of the criminal courts, for the protection of the inhabitants of that part of the Province. With regard to the paragraph in the speech of the Governor General, referring to those persons who desired a separation from the Parent State, His Excellency had only performed his duty in discharging those who were the advocates of such a measure, from the service of Her Majesty, and in depriving them of the commissions which they held. He trusted the example that had thus been made, would have a wholesome effect, and that the expression of loyal feelings manifested in all parts of the Province, would satisfy those who were the advocates of “annexation,” that they had embarked in a cause which could not possibly succeed.

Hon. G. S. BOULTON was satisfied that Hon. members would give him credit for acting independently on all occasions; and that whatever administration might be in power, he never opposed them from mere factious motives. With reference to the paragraph which alluded to the lamented death of Queen Adelaide, he was sure every Hon. member would concur in it as her loss was universally and sincerely deplored. But immediately after comes another, explanatory of the removal of the Seat of Government, which his Excellency attributed to the Address of the House of Assembly. He [Mr. B.] regretted that this reason had been given, and that no attention had been paid to the recommendation of that House. In a letter which he had received from the Secretary of the Province, the reason given for the assembling of the Legislature alternately at Quebec and Toronto, was, that such was the desire of the Legislature. This was not the case, as one branch certainly did not approve of the measure. His Excellency not having noticed the representations of that Hon. House, had placed it in a position before the country, which they ought not to occupy; as the opinion of that branch of the Legislature was entitled to equal weight with that of the other. The next paragraph had reference to the recent alteration in the Navigation Laws, which he hoped would prove of advantage. He did not profess to be a judge of the subject, but trusted the change would be productive of benefit here as well as elsewhere. As to the reciprocal trade between Canada and the United States, he did not feel qualified at present to express an opinion as to its results. It was the desire of the inhabitants of this Province, that all commercial restrictions should be removed. There was little likelihood, however, of this being the case, as it did not appear that the Congress of the neighbouring Republic was disposed to accede to the proposed measure; and the law passed here, would, in that case, remain a dead letter on the statute-book. He hoped good would come out of the transfer of the control of the Post Office to the Legislature of the Province,—that it would be placed on a different footing,—and that postage would be reduced. With regard to the dismissal of persons holding commissions, for the part they were taking in favour of “annexation,” it had his hearty approval; and in doing so, he thought the government acted correctly and in the proper discharge of its duty. The Hon. mover of the resolutions, had said that this was a subject open for discussion by other classes of Her Majesty’s subjects; he [Mr. B.] thought not. The Speech, the Hon. member said, goes on to state that the movement does not find favour with the people of the Province, who have on this occasion given fresh proofs of loyalty to the Queen, and attachment to the connection with the mother-country. This was not the only instance in which their loyalty had been appealed to, in expectations that had not been disappointed. In 1812, and again in 1837 and ’38, they had shown undoubted proofs of their attachment to that noble Empire, of which he trusted Canada would long form a party. As to Responsible Government, he was almost the only member who opposed to on its introduction by Mr. Bidwell; all his more immediate friends in the first instance voted in its favor, although they were subsequently not satisfied with the course they had adopted without proper consideration. He repeated, that he opposed responsible government contrary to the advice of his friends; and in doing do felt that he was consulting the best interests of the country; and that was the principle by which he was always guided. There was very little else in the speech that required remark. He had already referred to the reasons that had been given for the removal of the Seat of Government—and if that hon. House passed it by in silence, they would stand degraded in public estimation. While he regretted the allusion, however, he (Mr. B.) felt satisfied there was no intention to give offence. The House of Assembly, to be sure, held the purse-strings, but still the sentiments of the Legislative Council were entitled to consideration. Having made these few remarks, he would merely say, that it was not his intention to offer any opposition to the Resolutions that had been read. He had intended to introduce a motion relative to the neglect of which he complained, but he would not occupy the time of the hon. House. Other gentlemen would undoubtedly express their opinion upon the subject; and all would concur with him, that it was of consequence that the dignity of that branch of the Legislature should be upheld, and that it should be favorably viewed by the country. He understood there was a scheme on foot, to alter the construction of the Council, but he was opposed to it, and trusted it would not take place. It was then early in the session; it was probable many measures of importance would be brought forward, and he hoped no feeling of mere opposition would guide hon. members in their discussions.

The Hon. Mr. LESLIE assured his honorable friend, that there was no intention on the part of the Government, to degrade the Legislative Council in the course that had been pursued. They had to decide between that body and the House of Assembly; and as the funds necessary for the removal of the seat of Government, and fitting up of both Houses of Parliament, had to be provided by the other House, the recommendation contained in their Address had been adopted; and this reason was therefore assigned in the Speech from the Throne/

Hon. Mr. MCKAY should move an amendment with reference to the second paragraph of His Excellency’s Speech. It would be in the recollection of hon. members, that previous to the close of the last session at Montreal, emotion was made in that House, relative to the removal of the seat of Government; and if they passed over the slight contained in the Speech, they would not deserve to be called an independent body. If they were elected in the same manner as the member of the other House, would the Governor General dare to act in this manner? (From the Ministerial side, “Yes, he would.”) If he did, what would their constituents say? The day is coming when there would be an independent Legislative Council; it must arrive; and when the present Ministry must retire. That House must be constituted upon the elective principle, before Responsible Government would be established. It must come to that. Even the Governor must be elective. A representation had been made by the Legislative Council—whether it was carried up to His Excellency or not, he could not say—but no attention had been paid to it. It was essential to the public welfare, and the tranquility of the public mind, that that branch of the Legislature should be independent; the procedure of which he complained was injurious to the best interests of the country.

Hon. Mr. ROSS.—How many members were present when the Address relative to the removal passed?

Hon. Mr. MCKAY.—There were eighteen present. He regretted the absence of hon. members on both sides, who were better prepared than himself to deal with the subject; at the same time, while holding one of the first situations of the country, as a member of that House, he could not sit silently, and allow that body to be considered as a nonentity; and it must continue such, until the change he had referred to took place. As at present constituted, if the members of the Government proposed any measure, would the members of that House vote against them? He should therefore move an amendment to the Resolution, having reference to the removal of the seat of Government. (Here the hon. gentleman read his amendment, reflecting on Government for paying no heed to the representations of the Legislative Council on the subject in question.)

Hon. Mr. IRVING was opposed to the amendment. As to the remarks relative to the Legislative Council not being independent, he would ask the hon. gentleman who had just sat down, if it were half as independent under Lord Sydenham, when the appointment of Members was accompanied with a requirement that they should attend in their places? For himself, he would say, that the first intimation he had of having been called to take a seat in the Legislative Council, was a letter to that effect from the Provincial Secretary. But even under Lord Sydenham, that House was not so dependent as it was previously, when the voice of the Speaker was paramount, and who brought Bills down cut and tried with hon. members had to pass. Do Bills already cut and dried pass at present? He was willing to go for an elective Council—willing even that the Governor General should test his popularity in this way. It would silence the slanders of his unprincipled opponents, against one of the best Governors this Province ever possessed.

Hon. Mr. TACHE said that the circular which had been sent to the officers of the House, stated that the Government had acted upon the representations of the Legislature. The printed document alluded to probably stated this. This was either a clerical error, or a misprint. There was no intention on the part of the Government to show any disrespect towards the Legislative Council or to conceal the truth. The minute of Council stated, that they had had under consideration the address of the Legislative Council and that of the House of Assembly. There was much difficulty in determining the question, as the two Houses were at issue. Government, therefore, was in a dilemma, and had to choose one of two evils. The House of Assembly had stated in their address that Montreal was not a fit place for the meeting of the Legislature; the government, therefore, must have gone with a bad grace to ask supplies connected with the removal, had they not acted in accordance with the expressed wishes of that branch, whose prerogative it is to vote such supplies. In so doing, however, he was satisfied they had acted in a manner that met the wishes of the country at large; and looking at all the circumstances he felt assured the people of the Province responded to their decision, and approved of the course that had been pursued.

Hon. Mr. DE BLAQUIERE had no desire to trespass on the time of the hon. House. But the conduct of his hon. friend on his left required some explanation. He (Mr. De B.) was necessarily carried back to the period when the removal of the seat of government took place from the spot in which they were now assembled. The arguments of his hon. friend to be consistent must agree with his conduct on that occasion, when that House was desirous that the seat of government should not be removed, and when his hon. friend contended for such removal.

Hon. Mr. MCKAY—I did not.

Hon. Mr. DE BLAQUIERE was glad to hear him say so; for he had been under that impression during the last seven years. On that occasion the government had passed by the representation of that House, and had decided in favor of the peripatetic movement to the Lower Province. He felt it his duty to pass over that determination, and even the disrespect shown towards that body, now that the Legislature were resuscitated, and was brought back to where was the seat of government of the Upper Province. He meant no disrespect towards Lower Canada. He considered at the time the removal as unconstitutional, and as a violation of the compact under which the union of the two Provinces took place, and had since refrained from attending in his place; but was glad to find himself against in his seat, in the only place where it was practicable to carry into effect the great object of the union—in British Canada. He should oppose the amendment.

Hon. Mr. FERGUSSON was happy the explanation had been given by his hon. friend near him. That hon. House had been charged by an hon. member opposite with a want of independence; and reference had been made to the course pursued by Lord Sydenham. He would tell that hon. member, that the notice alluded to was a fit and proper one; which was, that members who were called by Her Majesty to take seats in that House, were not to consider it an idle honour, but that it was expected they would take their places and attend to the business of the country. It was therefore as independent a branch of the Legislature as the other. As to the removal of the seat of government from Kingston, he thought at the time that it ought not to take place. He was out-voted however, and therefore deeming the majority were right when that decision was arrived at, he attended subsequently and did his duty. He concluded by expressing his perfect satisfaction at the explanation which had been given.

Hon. Mr. ROSS said, the only paragraph in the Speech which excited any animadversion, was that which referred to the removal of the Seat of Government. He had asked the Hon. gentleman opposite [Hon. Mr. Mackay] to state the numbers who were present, when the address in opposition to that removal was passed in the Legislative Council at Montreal; because a few days before there were forty-four or forty-five members present. At that time he was handed an address for the purpose of moving it in the House, concurring with the other branch of the Legislature. He consulted older members than himself, who thought it better not to bring forward the motion, owing to peculiar circumstances which rendered unnecessary an expression of opinion of that Hon. House. Had that been given, however, when it was full, they would have concurred with the other branch of the Legislature. They were then sitting at Montreal, with an armed force at their doors for their protection, and when the mob attacked not only the Governor-General, but every person who did not encourage their incendiary spirit. He would assert fearlessly, that with a diary spirit. He would assert fearlessly, that with a full House, two-thirds of the Legislative Council would have voted for the removal. As to the Hon. gentlemen who had placed themselves and the House in the dilemma in which they now find themselves, they had only to blame themselves—their act was in fact, that of a minority. What was the situation of that branch of the Legislature at that time? Owing to the wanton destruction of the Parliament House, they had to meet at first in the vestry room of a church, then in a barn near the market, where they were subject to every noise and interruption; and the other branch having expressed an opinion as to the removal of the place of meeting of the Legislature, it became necessary that their recommendation should be carried into effect. The proper course, therefore, was for the Administration to advise his Excellency to remove the Seat of Government to a place where they could meet in security; and they deserved the thanks of the country for accomplishing this at the least possible expense. He had a word or two to say with reference to Responsible Government, and would call to the minds of Hon. gentlemen, what would be the consequence of having two elective bodies—the result would be to destroy Responsible Government altogether. The Hon. gentleman had better come out openly, and declare that he is opposed to Responsible Government—[Hon. Mr. McKay, so I am]—as if his plan were adopted, it would be destroyed. Let Hon. gentlemen turn their attention to a neighbouring nation, and they would there find the anomaly of an Executive and his Ministry holding office in defiance of both Houses of Congress; there was no responsibility in that country, such as exists in England, and had recently been introduced into this Province. There the Government is carried on by means of chairmen of the various departmental committees, who may be adverse to the head of the Government of the nation. Would it be desirable to see such a state of things here? Thus we see the superiority of our own institutions, and should thank God that we enjoy them. Hence, he was in favour of Responsible Government; and rejoiced that the people of this Province had succeeded in establishing a constitution fit for British subjects to live under. If a Governor were to come here, and attempt to rule without responsibility, instead of the present insignificant party in favour of “annexation,” four-fifths of the population would join in the cry, because he would be surrounded by a set of irresponsible idlers. So far as this Province is concerned, the people are disposed to remain loyal, happy, and free. He was satisfied the sentiments of the Hon. gentleman would not receive the support of the House, or of the inhabitants of the Province generally.

Hon. Mr. MCKAY would ask the hon. gentleman, what he termed responsible government. Was it not responsibility to the people? Was that House responsible, when every new governor who arrived could pack it by adding ten or a dozen members? That could not be the case if the Legislative Council were elective. He was opposed to the introduction of responsible government; but if the country must have it, let them have it in full. He had too great a stake in the country to wish to overturn its institutions, which he would do all that lay in his power to support. An elective Council had been granted to Australia, and that which was good for one colony must be beneficial for another. If they were to have responsible government, he was for giving the people their full sway. He thought however that they were better off before.

Hon. Mr. BOULTON was sorry the amendment had been introduced. He was perfectly satisfied with the minute of Council. He regretted that the subject of responsible government had been touched upon, and could not concur with what had been advanced by the hon. gentleman opposite, (Mr. McK.) but agreed with what had fallen from the hon. gentleman near him (Mr. Ross). He thought the amendment had better be withdrawn. As he had said before, he considered that the House had not been properly treated, but the explanations which had been given had perfectly satisfied him.

Hon. Mr. IRVING also regretted that the subject of responsible government had been introduced into the debate. The tories, when they go before the people, all profess the most unbounded liberality; and would even express themselves in favor of Annexation, when canvassing, if it would serve their purpose. He had heard of a gentleman who had gone very far in this respect—so far that had Wm. Lyon Mackenzie uttered the same sentiments in 1837 he would have been accused of treason; but nothing was heard of him now—he was perfectly quiet; such had been the effect of the dismissals that had taken place.

Mr. GOODHUE said, much as he lamented the destruction of the library, it was nothing in comparison with the indignity that had been offered to the representative of the sovereign on that occasion.—The library might be restored, not so that character which the people of this colony formerly possessed, of reverence and respect for the persons who respected that exalted personage. When assailed, as His Excellency was, it became his duty to remove the Seat of Government from Montreal—he hoped never to return there. He therefore heartily responded to the sentiments contained in the speech from the throne, and would oppose the amendment.
The question was then put upon the amendment, and lost without a division. After which the several resolutions and reply to the Speech, to be embodied in the Addresses, were passed. Before the final vote was taken.

Hon. Mr. FERGUSSON said there was a subject that occupied the attention of the people in the different counties—he meant the church endowments; and he could not refrain from expressing his regret, that circumstances had prevented it from occupying a portion of the Speech. He trusted the day would come, as come it must, when it would be discussed; and he did not hesitate to declare, that he considered the existence of a church establishment, as inconsistent with the rights, liberties and dearest privileges of a free people.

Hon. Mr. LESLIE said, were an election to take place in Upper Canada in relation to this question, it was doubtful whether the issue would be favorable to the views of the hon. member. At a meeting which recently took place at Toronto, so little interest did the members of that city feel in its proceedings, that as far as appeared neither of them attended.

Hon. Mr. FERGUSSON said, the Protestants of Canada West were not disposed to rest contented under the present order of things there; as to the eastern portion of the Province, if in that section they chose to go on under the present system, they could do so.

Hon. Mr. MCKAY thought that if the subject were taken up, it ought not to be made a question merely affecting one portion of the Province; the east had an equally deep interest with the west in the appropriation of the education funds. Any legislation therefore should be general and uniform.

The Resolutions having been passed in gross, the address to the Governor General, embodying them, was then read and adopted; and the house being informed by the Hon. Mr. Boulton that it would be received by the Governor General on Friday, at three o’clock, it was voted that it be presented by the whole House.

Hon. Mr. De BLAQUIERE said it would be in the recollection of hon. members, that he had introduced a resolution on the first day of the Session, intimating that it was their bounden duty to express their sentiments with reference to the recent movement in favor of separation from the Parent State. He trusted the House would concur with him, that this should precede all other business; and would therefore move that the subject be taken into consideration immediately after the presentation of the Address, and that the members in town should be specially summoned for that purpose; which was unanimously adopted.

The House then adjourned.

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