The Confederation Debates (1865) P. 3 (of 4)

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that I had compared the composition of our proposed House of Commons with that of the House of Representatives of the United States ; and I endeavored to shew, and I think I had shewn, that we were departing altogether from the principles upon which the British House of Commons is constituted, and taking up mal apropos, and unfor tunately, the least inviting features of the composition of the American House of Representatives. It is proposed to adopt here a plan which has a direct tendency to place on the floor of our House of Commons a number of provincial delegations, and not a number of independent members of parliament. The tendency is therefore towards a system antagonistic to, and inconsistent with, those principles on which the British Constitution reposes. With provincial delegations, rather than members of parliament, on the floor of the Federal Legislature, we are not likely to have that political longevity, whether of men or parties, without which the British system of government can hardly exist. Turning then to the Legislative Council, and comparing its constitution with that of the Senate of the United States—the principles governing the former are diametrically opposite to thuse on which the latter is founded. The Senate of the United States forms an excellent federal check upon the House of Representatives, partly owing to the way in which it is constituted, and partly on account of the powers given to it, and which are not proposed to be given to our Legislative Council. All that can be said of it is, that it is proposed to be constituted upon almost the worst priuciples that could have been adopted. It seems as if it were so constituted for the mere purpose of leading to a dead-lock. The members of it are not to represent our provinces at all, but are to be named by the Federal power itself, tor life, and in numbers to constitute a pretty numerous body, but without any of the peculiar functions w’sely assigned to the Senate of the United States. In fact, the federal battle that must be fought will have to be fought in the House of Commons and iu the Executive Council, very much more than in the Legislative Council. Turning then to the Executive Council, I had shown that it is a necessary consequence of the proposed system, that we are to have not merely a House of Commons cut up into sections, but also an Executive Council cut up in the same unfortunate way. You can get nothing else in the nature of a real federal check. Your federal problem will have to be worked out around the table of the Executive Council. But this principle, which must enter into the formation of the Executive Council, is clearly inconsistent with the principle of the British Constitution, which holds the whole Cabinet jointly responsible for every act of the Government. In our present union of the Canadas, we have latterly gone upon the plan of having almost two ministries. The plan urged upon our acceptance purposes the experiment of six or more sections in the Executive Council, instead of the two that we have found one too many Among the difficulties that will grow out of that plan is this, the absolute necessity of either having an Executive Council that will be ridiculously too numerous, or else one that will represent the different provinces in sections entirely too small. From this comparison of these thiee leading features, I had passed on to consider the relations of the Federal Government with the several provinces, comparing them with the relations subsisting between the United States Government and the governments of the several states of the American Union. The several states of the neighboring republic commenced their existence as states with all their constitutions constructed on the same general plan as that of the United States, and in fact the same republican principles underlie all their governmental institutions, municipal, state and federal. But it is here proposed, that while we are to start with a system of general government, part British, part republican, part neither, it is to be an open question, left to the decision of each separate province, what kind of local constitution is to be constructed for itself. Each province must, of course, have an elective chamber, but as to a second chamber, that is to be as each local legislature may see fit. Some, probably, will have it elective, while others may dispen e with it entirely. Then, looking to the appointment of the lieutenant-governors, and the tenure by which they are to hold office, it becomes about as clear as day that you cannot carry on responsible government in the provinces, but must have in them all a system that is neither British nor republican, and that, I believe, will be found to be totally unworkable. Turning to the assignment of powers to the Federal Government on the one hand, and the local or provincial governments on the other, we meet again with the unhappy contrast be-

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tween the wisdom displayed on that point in the Constitution of the United States, and the lack of wisdom in the arrangement proposed for adoption here. There is, in the United States’ system, a clear and distinct line drawn between the functions of the general and state governments. Some may not like the idea of state sovereignty, and many may wish that more power had been given to the General Government. But this much is plain, that it is not proposed to allow anything approaching to state sovereignty here. We have not even an intelligible statement as to what powers are to be exercised by the general, and what by the local legislatures and governments. Several subjects are specifically given to both ; many otheis are confusedly leit in doubt between them ; and there is the strange and anomalous provision that not only can the General Government disallow the acts of the provincial legislatures, and control and hamper and fetter provincial action m more ways than one, but that wherever any federal legislation contravenes or in any way clashes with provincial legislation, as to any matter at all common between them, such federal legislation shall override it, and take its place. It is not too much to say that a continuance of such a system for any length of time without serious clashing is absolutely impossible. This is in effect so declared in the despatch of Her Majesty’s Colonial Secretary, and it is clearly pointed out in the Loudon Times and in the Edinburgh Review. It seems as if our statesmen had sought to multiply points of collision at every turn. Then as to the non provision of a permanent seat of government, and the arrangements contemplated for the judiciary, we find still more ot the same sort of thing ; and as to the extraordinary pains that seem to have been taken to throw up a great wall or hedge round those institutions of Lower Canada which of late have been giving us no trouble to speak of—as to the extraordinary pains, I say, that seem to have been taken to put a wall around those institutions, and to give every possible guarantee about them on this side and on that ; why, this very machinery, provided for the mere purpose of inducing people to agree to the scheme, who would not otherwise countenance it, is calculated, at no very distant day, to cause the cry to resound throughout the land—”To your tents, O, Israel !” (Hear, hear.) I had reached this point of my argument, when I was compelled to throw myself on the indulgence of the House. There is just one consideration connected with these matters to which I have been alluding, that I wish to revert to in few words, because I believe it escaped me, in part at least, last night. A marked difference between the history of the United States just before they framed their constitution, and our late history, is this : the adoption of the Constitution of the United States followed immediately upon their successful war of independence. The men who adopted it had just gone shoulder to shoulder through the severest trial that could have been given to their patience and other higher qualities. Their entire communities had been, you may say, united as one man, in the great struggle through which they had passed, and were then equally united in their hopes as to the grand results which their new system was to bring forth. They had tried the system of mere confederation, and were agreed that it was inadequate to meet the wants of their situation. They were all trying to remove the evils that they felt and apprehended from it, and to build up a great nationality that should endure in the future. That was the position they occupied. Ours is some thing very different indeed. We have not gone through an ordeal such as that through which they had so proudly passed. On the contrary, we have ended, temporarily ended at any rate, a series of struggles it is true, but struggles of a very different kind; struggles that have just pitted our public men one against another, and to some extent, I am sorry to say, even our faiths and races against each other. (Hear, hear.) For one, I do believe that these struggles—of the latter class I mean—were dying out, but for these contemplated changes, which are threatening to revive them. But, however that may be, struggles there have been amongst us, of which we have no cause to be proud ; things have occurred since the union of which we ought to be ashamed, if we are not (Hear, hear.) Of this kind are the only struggles that we have had ; and when, from such a past and present, we are told to start with the idea, so to speak, of at once creating and developing the character of a new and united nation, under institutions giving us a something short of independence, and at the same time any quantity of matters about which to dispute and come to trouble, we may as well not shut our eyes to the fact, that we start with but poor omens

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of success. (Hear, hear.) But I have to turn now, Mr. SPEAKER, to another branch of my comparison—the financial ; and here, I may at once give the House an assurance, which I am sure it will be glad to have, that I will not trouble it wifh more figures than are absolutely necessary to my explanation of the views I have to present, and that I will not give a single figure as to which there can be the possibility of a controversy. The contrast between the financial system as a whole, with which the framers of the United States Constitution started, and the financial system with which it is proposed we shall start, is as salient as it is possible for the human intellect to conceive ; and further the contrast between this proposed financial system, and the financial system of England, is just as salient too. The framers of the United States Constitution started with the principle, that between the United States and the several states there should be no financial dealings at all. They were to have separate financial systems, separate treasuries, separate debts —all absolutely distinct. And ever since the time when the unhappy attempt on the part of Great Britain to tax the colonies was given up, almost as absolute a line of demarcation between the Imperial finances and treasury and the colonial finances and treasuries, has been maintained. We have had our own separate finances and our own separate treasury, with which the Imperial Government has had nothing to do. The Imperial Government may have gone, and may still go, to some expense on provincial behalf ; but the British principle is, that imperial finance is as distinct from the provincial, as in the United States Federal finance is from that of any state. Now, the system proposed here for our adoption is not this of entire and simple separation of the federal from the provincial treasuries, but a sys-teni of the most entire and complex confusion between them. One has to think a good deal upon the subject, and to study it pretty closely to see precisely how the confusion is going to operate ; but there it is, unmistakably, at every turn. I do not mean to say that under all the circumstances of the case something of this sort was not unavoidable. In the course of debate the other day, I remember a remark was thrown across the floor of the House upon this point and the Hon Minister of Finance in effect said : ” Yes, indeed, and it would have been a very pleasant thing for gentlemen opposed to the scheme, if it had thrown upon the provinces a necessity of resorting to direct taxation.” Of course, in the mere view of making the scheme palatable, it was clever to make the Federal treasury pay for provincial expenditure ; but the system that had need be established should bear testimony, not to cleverness, but to wisdom. Is the system proposed for our acceptance as good, then, as statesmen ought to and would have made it ? I think not; and the extraordinary thing is, that it is brought out with a flourish of trumpets, on thy ground that in some undescribable way it is to work most economically ! (Hear, hear.) Well, to test it, I will take it up in three points of view—first, as to assets ; next, as to debts and liabilities ; and, lastly, as to revenues. As to the asset part of the question, the tale is soon told. The assets of these provinces, speaking generally, are of very little commercial value. They are much like the assets of an insolvent trader, with lets of bad debts upon his books; it is of small consequence to whom or how they are assigned. The general principle upon which the scheme proceeds, is to give the Federal Government the bulk of these assets. The only exceptions of any consequence—I am not going into the details of the scheme, but still I must present to the House so much of detail as to show that I am making no rash statement, not borne out by facts—the only important exceptions, I say, to this rule are those lam aboutto notice. Certain properties such as penitentiaries, prisons, lunatic asylums, and other public charitable institutions, and other buildings and properties of the kind, which, together with those I have just mentioned, may be characterized as exceptional properties, are to be assigned by the general to the provincial governments. Also, with the exception of Newfoundland, the several provinces are to take the public lands, mines, minerals and royalties in each, and all assets connected with them—in common parlance, their territorial revenues. The General Government is, however, to have the mines, minerals and public lands of Newfoundland, paying for them of course. (Hear, hear.) Then, Upper and Lower Canada are severally to have those assets which are connected with the debts, re&erved for payment by them respectively; but these will not be worth much, and I shall not take the trouble of saying much about them. It is enough to know that the proportion of the debt, to be assumed by the two has not yet, for some reason, been stated, and that the assets connected with them, amount to very

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little. Further, I am not quite sure that I am right, but I understood the Hon. Attorney General for Lower Canada, the other night, to intimate that the seigniory of Sorel is to be somehow a provincial asset of Lower Canada. If that is not to be the case I will pass on ; but if it is, perhaps the honorable gentleman will say so.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—I will speak on that subject at another time.

MR. DUNKIN—Then, I am to take it for granted, I suppose, that it is not to be a provincial asset ?

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—I will not interrupt the hon. gentleman now.

MR. DUNKIN—Well, Mr. SPEAKER, I did suppose that I should have had an immediate answer as to whether this seigniory is to be a provincial asset or not; but the hon. gentleman does not seem inclined to give any information upon the point. By these resolutions it is provided, that all ordnance properties are to be taken by the General Government; and I never heard but that the seigniory of Sorel is an ordnance property. But from the statement made here the other day, it would seem that although this printed document purports to be the scheme, it does not give us true information on this point. The wording of the 55th resolution is, that the ” property transferred by the Imperial Government and known as ordnance property ” is to belong to the General Government; if any part of it is really a provincial asset, it must become so by one of those explanations or glosses which we are not allowed to insert in the instrument now, but are to take our chance of for some future time. (Hear, hear.) Passing over the mystery that seems to hang over the subject, I refer then to a matter about which there can be no mistake. There certainly cannot be a doabt that the lands, mines, and minerals of Newfoundland are to be a Federal asset ; and there is not any doubt either that the Federal Government will have to pay $150,000 a year for them. It is perfectly certain that these lands will cost that money; and it is perfectly certain, I think, that the administration of them will also cost a certain amount of trouble and dispute, as to the manner in which it is to be carried on. But if human nature remains human nature, we may reasonably and probably surmise that they will not yield so great a revenue to the General Government as is by some thought. We shall have Newfoundland delegations in the Commons House, and in the other House ; and in order to keep them in anything like good humor, and to enable the Lieutenant- Governor of Newfoundland to carry on his government with anything like ease and comfort, their lands, mines and minerals will have to be administered, not with a view to Federal revenue—even though to that end they are costing the direct payment of 8150,000 a year—but with a view to Newfoundland popularity. In fact, I think it will be found that the management of these properties will be carried on more with a view to the development and profit of Newfoundland, than for any profit of the people of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Upper and Lower Canada. Every man, woman and child—from the Lieutenant- Governor downwards—connected with Newfoundland, will regard it as a fit article of political faith, that they must be woiked with a special view to the great future of that great country. And the consequence will bo many little passages between the province and the Federal Government, not advantageous to the latter, but illustrative of the way in which governments too often have to deal with things for which they have had to pay. Well, sir, I pass to the matter of the debts ; and these, it m;st be acknowledged, are rather more important than the assets. (Hear, hear.) There is no mistake about that; though there might seem to be a mistake about the resolutions on this subject, were you to take their letter only. The sixtieth resolution says that the General Government shall assume all the debts and liabilities of each province; while the sixty-first has it, that part of our Canadian debt is to be borne by Upper and Lower Canada respectively. In a sense, I will presently explain. I think the sixtieth resolution about tells the truth, or rather, I ought to say, falls short of it. But it requires one to work the oracle out. to follow the calculation through, in order to see that it does so, that these debts will indeed all—and more than all—fall, directly or indirectly, on the Federal Government. Meantime, on our way to that part of my argument, I set it down that under the sixty-first resolution there is an amount of reserved debt which, in a certain manner, is to fall on Upper and Lower Canada respectively. Pretty much as it was just now in the ordnance property, so here,

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we cannot get an intelligible answer as to what these reserved debts are, as against either province, or what the assets aie that each is to take as an offset to them. But, for the purpose of constituting the stated debt of the future Confederation, Upper and Lower Canada, we are told, are to throw into it an amount of $62,500,000, the surplus of their debt being nominally left to be borne by themselves, after they shall have become confederated ; Nova Scotia, on the other hand, is to be allowed to increase her debt to $8,000,000; and Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island are to throw in theirs at the nominal figure they stand at now. But, by an ingenious contrivance, the aggregate real debt of the country is to be, in effect, a good deal more than the aggregation of these figures would give. Upper and Lower Canada, to begin with, as we have seen, are, besides, separately to pretend to bear the weight of their considerable excess of debt over the $62,500,000, or $25 a head, allowed under this arrangement. Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, should they not iucrease their debts to be assumed up to this figure of $25 a head, are to be paid interest at five per cent, on any amount of shortcoming in that behalf they may be guilty of. And Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island are to be paid interest at the some rate, on the amount to which their smaller debts fall short of this same normal $25 allowance. For practical purposes, therefore, the debts of the four Lower Provinces are thus brought up to this standard level. The Federal Government is to pay interest on them to that tune—if not to creditors of those provinces, then to the provinces themselve. And we are to start with a clear, practical debt of $25 a head for every man, woman, and child in the Confederacy. Incurred or not, we start with it as due, and pay accordingly. And there are, besides, those amounts of debt left nominally to the charge of Upper Canada, as to which I shall have a word more to say shortly. Meantime, I proceed to our third head—of revenues. And here, the first and most striking fact is, that the Federal Government is to make yearly grants, payable, by the way, semi-annually and in advance, to each province, in proportion to its population as shown by the census of 1861, and at ¡he rate of 80 cents a head. And the way in which this 80 cents a head apportionment is come at, is in itself, somewhat edifying. According to the statements made here by Ministers, the Finance Mnisters of the several provinces were invited at the Conference to come forward with a statement of their respective wants. Of course their statements were to be framed with a due regard to economy. Such things are always to be done economically. This is a diplomatic phrase, of which we understand here the full meaning; and I was not at all surprised to hear, that however economically the statements were made out, they had to be cut down. Whether they are said to have been cut down once or twice, or oftener, I do not distinctly recollect. But at last, after having been duly cut down, they were found to require this grant or subvention, at the rate of 80 cents a head all round—subject always to deduction as against the Canadas, and tc additions in favor of the four Lower Provinces, as we shall presently see. With less, the provinces could not get on at the rate thought necessary, unless by levying undesired taxes Well, besides these subventions, the provinces (all but Newfoundland) are to have the proceeds of their lands, mines and minerals; and Newfoundland is to have, instead, the further grant from the Federal treasury, of $150,000 a year, for ever. They may all, further, derive some more iudirect evenue from licenses of various sorts ; and Nova Scotia may add to these an exceptional, and exceptionable, export duty on coal and other minerals; and New Brunswick, the like on lumber. Besides which, on the mere ground that she cannot do without it. New Brunswick is to have a further federal grant of $63,000 a year for ten years ; unless, indeed, in the event of her not augmenting her debt to the full amount, in which case, any payment made to her of interest on that scare is to be deducted from the $63,000—a shrewd hint, by the way, that she had not best be too economical—and, lastly, all are to have the precious right of direct taxation, and the higher privilege of borrowing without limit. The Federal power is to have, of course, the right to tax in all sorts of ways, the special export duties made over to New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, alone excepted. Now, Mr. SPEAKER, taking this whole arranagement together, I must repeat that I see in it no principle but one. The provinces are to be able to carry on their operations according to their supposed probable future exigencies, without danger of direct, that is to say, oppressive or new taxation. Well, sir, engineers say that the mea-

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sure of strength of a fortified place is the strength of its weakest part. And this principle is here applied to our provinces in a financial point of view. The need of the neediest is made the measure of the aid given to all. The most embarrassed is to have enough for its purposes, and the rest are to receive, if not exactly in the same ratio, at least so nearly up to the mark as that they shall all be satisfied ; while, on the other hand, the debts of all the provinces are to be, for all practical ends, raised to the full level of the most indebted. To show this, sir, another word or two as to the amount of the promised subventions to Upper and Lower Canada. This is to be, as we have seen, only the 80 cents a head, less some deduction, I care not what, for the purpose of my present argument; but there is no doubt, I say, that they are to receive less than the 80 cents, because the excess of their debt over $62,- 500,000, though thrown on them, will have to be guaranteed, and the interest on it will have i be paid by the Federal Government, and that interest will be deducted by the Federal Government from the subventions payable to them respectively. The Lower Provinces, on the other hand, as we have also seen, are really to get more. Well now, suppose for the moment the arrangement had been, for the Confederation to assume at once the whole debt of Canada, and accordingly to pay proportionably larger amounts of interest to the other provinces. The two Canadas would then have needed, exactly, so much the less of nominal subvention, and the other provinces too. The cost to the Federal treasury, in the whole, would still have been exactly what it is. Indirectly, therefore, I say that for all practical purposes there is thrown upon the General Government the whole amount of the past debts of these provinces, and more ; and the whole burden, too, of the carrying on of the machinery of government, both Federal and Provincial ; unless, indeed, any of the provinces should see fit hereafter to undertake what I may “call extraordinary expenditure, and to defray it themselves. I do not think they will. I t would involve direct taxation. And I think they can do better. But for all this part of the plan, sir, it is like the rest, framed on the mere idea of making things pleasant—the politician idea of anyhow win- ning over interests or parties for to-day-—not on any statesmanlike thought as to its future working and effects. (Hear, hear.) Now, Mr. SPEAKER, with this outline of the system, I should be glad to know where the prospect of economy of administration is to be found. The Honorable Finance Minister of the future Federal Government will have to do—what ? To come with a budget, not merely to cover the outlay of the Federal Government—that is of course—but with a budget to cover also all that I may call the normal outlay, the intended outlay, the foreseen outlay of all the provinces. (Hear, hear.) The Minister of Finance—if any there is—ot the province, unless he chooses to outrun the constable ; unless, with his lieutenant- governor and local government and legislature, he chooses to spend more than he can get out of the Federal Government, by this system, or by that nice modification of it which is pretty sure to be soon thought of, and to which I shall by and by advert, need have no budget at all. He knows he is to have about so much from his lands, mines and minerals, so much from licenses and so forth, so much from the Federal Government, so many thousand or hundred thousand dollars in all ; and he will of course make the best he can of that. And by the way, it is a remarkable fact in this connection, that we find that with one accord those who are undertaking to speak to the different provinces in support of Confederation are agreed in each telling the people of his own province what a first-rate bargain has been made for it. ( Hear, hear. ) My hon. friend from Hocholaga read us an extract the other night from a speech of Hon. Mr. TILLEY, of New Brunswick, in which that hon. gentleman cyphered out, perfectly to his satisfaction, and to that of many who heard him, that New Brunswick is guaranteed an excess over her real needs, of $34,000 a year. If I am not mistaken, the Hon. Solicitor General for Lawer Canada undertook since, in this House, to shew us that some $200,000 or more ayear beyond hers, is in the same way secured to Lower Canada ; even though she does not receive the full 80 cents a head. I think I remember that the Hon. President of the Council —though I have not yet got the report of his speech to refresh my memory— made it a point that really Upper Canada, as well as Lower Canada, is comfortably off in this respect. One hears too, I think, of the same song in Nova Scotia ; and in Prince Edward Island certainly, we have the advocates of Confederation telling the people theie—” You, too, have got a capital bargain, you have so much more to spend, according

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to this arrangement, than you ever had before.” A strange comment on that earnest desire for economy, which is claimed to have dictated the whole of these arrangements. (Hear, hear.) If that was the intention, the performance has fallen far short of it. (Hear, hear.) And before I go further, there occurs to me this consideration, arising out of this state of things—out of this abundance, not to say plethora, that is meant to characterize the provincial exchequers, whatever may be the case with the Federal exchequer under the system—one consideration, I say, connected with this, which should not be lost sight of when we are talking about the application of anything in the least like responsible government to our provinces. I never yet heard of an elected legislative body that had much control over a government, unless it had hold of the strings of a purse from which the government wanted to get something. In the old days, before responsible government was thought of—in the days when casual and territorial revenues gave provincial governments all they wanted, or a little more—provincial legislatures had mighty little to do with government, and, if they complained of a grievance, were little likely to be listened to. It was even the same longbefore at home. When the English Crown had its abunlance of resources, English kings cared little for their parliaments. But when their resources were exhausted, and they could not borrow easily, and had to ask for taxes, then the House of Commons began to acquire power, and, in course of time, became the body it is now. I shall be surprised if we do not find, in the event of this Confederation taking place, that for some time our provincial legislatures, whether they consist of one chamber or of two, will be less powerful for good than many would wish to have them, that the machine of state will not be altogether driven by their moans. But there is another result, about which there can be no question. With one accord, not in Newfoundland merely—I was hinting a little while ago at what would be tke case of Newfoundland, as to its lands, mines and minerals—not there only, but in all the provinces— the provincial governments will, in a quiet way, want money, and the provincial legislators and people will want it yet more ; grants for roads and bridges, for schools, for charities, for salaries, for contingencies of the legislative body—-for all manner of euds they will be wanting money, and where is it to come from ? Whether the constitution of the Provincial Executive savors at all of responsible government or not, be sure it will not be anxious to bring itself more under the control of the legislature, or to make itself more odious than it can help, and the easiest way for it to get money will be from the General Government. I am not sure, either, but that most members of the provincial legislatures will like it that way the best. (Hear, hear.) It will not be at all unpopular, the getting of money so. Quite the contrary. Gentlemen will go to their constituents with an easy conscience, telling them : ” True, we had not much to do in the Provincial Legislature, and you need not ask very closely what else we did ; but I tell you what, we got the Federal Government to increase the subvention to our province by five cents a head, and see what this gives you—$500 to that road—$1000 to that chaiity—so much here, so much there. That we have done; and have we not done well ? ” (Hear, hear.) I am afraid in many constituencies the answer would be; ” Yes, you have done well; go and do it again.” I am afraid the provincial constituencies, legislatures and executives will all show a most calf-like appetite for the milking of this one most magnificent government cow.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—There will be more municipal loan funds.

MR. DUNKIN—Yes, that is one of the analogies, and there is another even nearer. Years ago, we in Canada said we would forever give a certain fixed sum per annum for an education fund. It was to be divided, in a certain ratio, between Upper and Lower Canada. But from time to time, as the census shewed changes oí their relative population, the division was to be altered. In a little while this alteration of ratio gave Lower Canada less money and Upper Canada more. ” Oh ! but,” said the Administration, ” we cannot do that with Lower Canada. After having had distributed to her so many thousands a year, she could not stand having ever so much less. No, no ; we cannot do that. What shall we do, then ? In our estimates we will put in a vote for Lower Canada, just to keep her figure up to the mark of what she has been receiving. And what then ? Why, of course, we must add a vote for Upper Canada in the same proportion, just to take her so much further beyond her former figure.” (Hear, hear.) To be sure, I do find, with reference to this subvention, a pleasant little expression, which one wishes may be carried out. It is to be ” in full.” ” Such aid shall be in full settlement

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of all future demands upon the General Government for local purposes, and shall be paid half-yearly, in advance, to each province.” Yes, sir, so the text runs. But suppose ourselves in the time of our first, or second, or third Federal Cabinet, consisting of its six or more sections, of course ; and, for the sake of my argument, I will suppose a great deal, that every one of these sections controls comfortably the delegations from its own province in the two Houses of Parliament, that the machine is working beautifully, that there is no lieutenant-governor crusty, no provincial administration kicking over the traces, and no provincial legislature giving any other trouble than by its anxiety to be well paid. I will suppose even that this halcyon state of things has gone on for some time. But one or two or more of the provinces begin to feel that they cannot do without having more money. And the pressure will be such upon the Provincial Legislature and upon the Lieutenant-Governor, and upon the delegations to the General Legislature, and upon the section of the Federal Executive representing each such province, that it never can be long resisted ; there will be trouble if it is, and things must be kept pleasant. (Hear, hear.) One mode—the most obvious, though the least scientific—will be just to increase the subvention from eighty to eighty-five, or even to eighty-two or eighty-one cents a head. An additional cent a head from the Federal Exchequer would be an object—a few cents a head would be a boon. Or suppose the demand took this form : suppose the people —say of Upper or Lower Canada—should say, ” Those Newfoundlanders are getting $150,000 a year for their lands, mines, and minerals ; and the Federal Government is positively administering those lands, mines, and minerals, not for Federal profit, but more for the advantage of that province than we find we can administer our own ; the General Government, therefore, must take our lands, mines, and minerals, and give us also an equivalent.” That is one way of doing the thing; and, when the time comes for making that sort of demand, depend upon it that it will sound singularly reasonable ia the ears of the provinces whose representatives shall make it ; and if two or three provinces shall join in the demand, my word tor it, the thing will soon be done. The same sort of thing may be looked for in reference to the New Brunswick timber export duty and the Nova iScotia mineral export duty. Here is one form of the cry that may be raised—” You give these exceptional privileges to New Brunswick and Nova Scotia ; give them, or some equivalent, to us also.” With common ingenuity lots of such cries may be nicely got up. But for everything so given, much or little, to whatever province, you will have to do the like for all the rest, and the figure will be alarming before you get to the end. And even this is not all. Not only will you have these comparatively direct demands—more or less ingeniously, but always irresistibly—made, but you will have demands made in a more indirect form which it will be yet easier to carry, from their consequences not being so clearly seen, and which will therefore be still worse in their effects. I speak of that tremendous catalogue of outlays which may be gone into without the appearance of a grant to any particular province—the costly favors which may be done in respect of inter-provincial ferries, steamship lines between or from the provinces, railways between or through the provinces, telegraph lines, agriculture, immigration, quarantine, fisheries, and so forth. There will be claims of every description under all these heads ; and besides them there will be the long roll of internal improvements of all kinds, whether for the benefit of one or of more than one of the provi noes. For any local work in which it can be at all pretended that it is of general interest, pressure may be brought to bear upon the General Government and Legislature, and whenever one province succeeds in getting any such grant, every other province must be dealt with in the same way. Compensation must be made all round, and no human intellect can estimate the degree of extravagance that before long must become simply inevitable. (Hear, hear.) Sir, with our Upper and Lower Canada we have had pretty good proof of this. We know that whenever anything has had to be done for one section of this province, it has constantly been found necessary to do something of the same or of some other kind for the other. If either needed anything very badly, then the ingenuity of the Minister of Finance had to be exercised to discover something else of like value to give the other. In one word, unless I am more mistaken than I think I can be, these local governments will be pretty good daughters of the horse-leech, and their cry will be found to be pretty often and pretty successfully—” Give, give, give! ” But, sir, there is very little need for our dealing with considerations of this kind as to a future about which one may be thought to be in danger of drawing more or less upon imagin-

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ation. We bare in these resolutions a something that is to come upon us, one may say, at once ; I allude to the expenditure for our defences—the Intercolonial Railway—the opening of communication with the North- West—and the enlargement of our canals. There is no doubt that all these new sources of outlay are immediately contemplated. Their cost is not given us ; it could not be given with any safety to the scheme. I do not pretend to say, sir, but that some of these expenditures are necessary; and this I am even prepared to say as to one of them — the outlay for defences—that every province of the empire is bound to do its full share towards its own defence. (Hear, hear.) I never gave a vote or expressed an opinion in any otter sense. I was always ready with my vote for that purpose. (Hear, hear.) But looking at the great outlay, I may say the enormous outlay here understood to be contemplated, I confess I cannot approach the subject in this connection without a feeling of misgiving. I can quite understand our going to the full limit of our means for all the expense that is necessary for the thorough maintenance of our militia on an efficient footing as to instruction and otherwise ; but when we hear of Imperial engineers, with Imperial ideas as to cost, laying out grand permanent works of defence, then I confess I am much inclined to think that we had need try to practice what economy we can in that direction. (Hear, hear.) Then, as regards the Intercolonial Railway, we have in these resolutions a very blind tale indeed. ” The General Government shall secure, without delay, the completion of the Intercolonial Railway from Rivière du Loup, through New Brunswick, to Truro in Nova Scotia”—and this quite irrespectively of the expense. The vague pledge is, that the General Government shall at any cost secure the immediate completion of this work. As to its commercial or military advantages, I have not a great idea of them. I believe there has been much exaggeration as to both. Unless with a strong force to defend it, in a military point of view, it would be of just no use at all. (Hear, hear.) For my own part, as I have often said, I heartily wish to see the road built ; but unless we can get it done upon terms within our means, we had better do without it a little longer, and develope whaè other means of communication are at our command. While I want to see the thing done, I am not prepared for the declaration I find in these resoutions, that, coûte que coûte, we will at once have it. I doubt the policy of that way of dealing. (Hear, hear.) Viewed in its political aspects, the work is as much an Imperial as a provincial work ; is one for which we have a right to look for aid from the Empire. I know it is said the Empire is going to aid us. Well, for a long time we held this language : if the Imperial Government and the Lower Provinces between them will combine to do the rest, we are ready with lands and subsidies, in a certain proportion and to a certain limited amount. It is unfortunate, in my opinion, that that proposal led to no result. I should have been glad to have obtained it on such terms, and even would have bid up the limit to the utmost extent of our means.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—That offer is extant yet.

MR. DUNKIN—I know it is, but those since made have left it out of sight. In 1862 the start was made to a larger and not limited outlay—five-twelfths of an unstated whole— Great Britain to reduce the cost by endorsing for us to a stated figure. I regretted that scheme; but still it was better for us than what is now being forced upon us. By this last scheme, Canada will have to bear some nine-twelfths—it has been said ten-twelfths— but some nine-twelfths, at any rate. In fact, the bulk of the burden is to fall on us ; and it is significant, though I dare say that the honorable gentlemen who drew up this resolution did not mean it, that it seems to let the Imperial Government off iron» its guarantee. This is no mere criticism of mine ; my attention was drawn to the point by the article in the Edinburgh Review from which I was quoting last night. That writer—who is not a nobody, you may depend upon it—remarks, in effect, that from the wording of this resolution, the honorable gentlemen of the Conference do not seem to be holding to the Imperial guarantee. Should it not be given, the cost to us will be frightfully increased. And this it had not need be. For the honorable gentlemen who are running us into it might do well to remember the past. We had the Grand Trunk railway offered us for what was called next to nothing. The guarantee we were to give was not for much ; and it was well secured ; and we were assured it was not meant to be made use of—was more a form than a reality. Yet the guarantee was used and extended, and made a gift of ; every estimate failed ; the cry ever sinee has been for more, more ; and the whole concern is now in such a state as to be threatening us day by day

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with yet larger demands on the public purse than ever, to keep it going. Well, sir, I pass on from these heavy outlays for permanent defences, and the Intercolonial Railway ; and I read in these resolutions that ” the communications with the North-Western territory, and the improvements required for the development of the trade of the Great West with the seaboard, are regarded by this Conference as subjects of the highest importance to the Federated Provinces, and shall be prosecuted at the earliest possible period that the state of the finances will permit.” Well, sir, we are told that this last phrase is synonymous with those unqualified words, ” without delay,” that are used as to the Intercolonial. I am reminded of a saying current in the days of Lord SYDENHAM, who was a good deal in the habit of wanting work done faster than the workers liked, and of whom it used to be said that all he ordered had to be done “immediately, if not sooner.” (Hear, hear, and laughter.) I take it, the Intercolonial Railway is to be done ” immediately, if not sooner,” and these other improvements are to wait till “immediately, if not later.” They are to be prosecuted as soon as the state of the finances will permit. I know some hon. gentlemen think that will be very soon, but if so, there must be most extraordinary means taken to borrow or otherwise raise money. (Hear, hear.) Nothing can be vaguer than the intimation given as to what these works are to be. The communications with the Great North-Western territory, where are they to begin ; what are they to be ; and where are they to end ? And the other improvements to be carried out—the communications with the seaboard—the enlargement of the canals—how much enlargement, sir, and of how many and what canals ? An honorable friend near me says canal enlargement is or should be productive. No doubt, but at what rate ? I remember reading in a Lower Province paper the other day of a late speech of Hon. Mr. TILLEY’S, in which he said that at the Quebec Conference they went into a calculation of the productive value of the entire outlay of these provinces upon productive public works, and found them to be yielding an average of one and an eighth of one per cent., or something like that, of yearly return upon their cost. I admit there may be in the widening of these canals a something of productiveness; but to say that it will be anything like proportionate to the outlay, is absurd. But what I am coming back to is this—we are to go at once into the outlay of the Intercolonial Railway, and we are to go into this other, too ; but yet, almost beyond the shadow of a doubt, these canals and other communications with the west—which western politicians think they are to get as their equivalent —are to be held back a bit. I forgot to bring here an extract from a late speech of Hon. Mr. TILLEY’S,in which he plainly said that can immediate carrying on of these western works did not enter into the calculations of the Conference, that the Intercolonial was unmistakably to be put through at once; but that the Lower Province delegates gave no promise of the like prosecution of these other works as the price of that. (Hear, hear.)

AN HON. MEMBER—Where do you find that?

MR. DUNKIN—It is quoted in a late number of the Toronto Leader ; and if anyone will bring me the fyle of that paper from below, I will read the words with pleasure. Now, Mr. SPEAKER, I am raising no question of any one’s sincerity upon this question. The politicians of the eastern provinces, I have no doubt, are thoroughly in earnest in their demand for the construction of the Intercolonial road, and are quite willing to have the western improvements begun about as soon as they can be ; and I am quite sure that the friends of this scheme in the west want their western works instantly gone on with. I even believe they both think they will get what they want; but I am surprised at their credulity, for I do not see how they can. I believe they are deceiving themselves and their friends with the bright pictures their fancy has been painting, and that my western friends, at any rate, are doomed to some disappointment. Whenever a Federal Parliament shall meet, I fancy it will become a question of grave interest whether or not the state of the finances will admit of the construction of all these works ; and if not, then what is to be done first—and how— and when ? And as I have shewn, unless the six majorities are pretty much agreed, there will be no great deal done in any hurry.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—That is worse than the double majority.

MR. DUNKIN—Yes, three times as bad, to say the least. Well, suppose the financiers of the Lower Provinces, having before their eyes the fear of direct taxation by the Federal Parliament, should oome to the

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conclusion that it will not signify for a few years, whether these western works are begun at once or not ; and should propose to sit down first a little, and count the

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—Insist on having a survey made, for instance, first ?

MR. DUNKIN—Well yes, that would probably be insisted upon before they would consent to commit themselves further to the undertaking. Suppose, then, Lower Canada to go with the Lower Provinces for staving off this commencement of these works, how will it fare with Upper Canada’s demand for them ? And what will not be the indignation of the people of Upper Canada at being tied to, and controlled by the non-progressive people of the east ? Or, suppose that Upper and Lower Canada should agree, and the Lower Provinces be seriously angry, at any over-caution eastward, or over-rashness westward ; would not they too, so left out in the cold, be making things quite unpleasant? Or again, suppose the more eastern and the western interests should continue to push on both plans, careless of cost, and that Lower Canada, for fear of direct taxation, should hold back in earnest, would that make no trouble ? Is not any one of these suppositions more probable than the cool assumption, over which western gentlemen are so happy, that when the time comes all interests will instantly work together, and by magic do everything, east and west, at once ? But, be this as it may, sir, on all three accounts—defences, Intercolonial road and western works—we are sure of cost, as well as of disputes, in plenty. And there is, besides, a fourth. I shall have occasion to shew presently that we are going to be called upon to spend money for yet another kindred purpose, and a large amount too—and this, as a part of this scheme. Our star of empire is to wing its way westward ; and we are to confederate everything in its track, from Newfoundland to Vancouver’s Island, this last included. But, between us and it, there lies the Hudson Bay territory. So, of course, we must acquire that for confederation purposes ; and the plan is, that before we get it we shall have to pay for the elephant—though, after we get him, we may find him costly and hard to keep. It will not be difficult toprove that this is contemplated by the promoters of this scheme. Between railways and canals, and western extension, before we get the scheme carried out in all its contemplated amplitude, we shall have bled pretty well, and seen some sights that we have hardly yet learnt to anticipate. (Hear, hear.) Well, with this certain prospect before us of a gigantic outlay, what is the prospect for a gigantic income ?

A MEMBER—Oh, never mind that.

MR. DUNKIN—I quite understand that many hon. gentlemen take little thought of where money is to come nom, if only it is to be spent as they wish. But, Mr. SPEAKER, before I go further, I am handed the fyle of the Toronto Leader , and, with the leave ot the House, I will read from it the extracts from Hon. Mr. TILLEY’S speech to which I was referring some minutes ago. This journal refers to it as follows :—

Mr. TILLEY, we are sorry to say, does not give us much hope of the speedy enlargement of our canals. He laughs at the idea of his opponent quoting Mr. BROWN as authority that this work is to be undertaken at once. ” The Conference,” says Mr. TILLEY, ” agreed to build the railroad without delay, the canals as soon as the state of the finances will permit.” But he ridicules the idea that the finances will be held at once to admit of this being done. ” Canada,” says Mr. TILLEY, “could not have been brought into the union on a promise to build her canals, for the railroad will cost $12,000,000, which added to the $22,000,000 for canals, would be an amount far above what they could have gained them for without Confederation.”

Such is Hon. Mr. TILLEY’S style of remark, and I do not think it is at all encouraging to the very sanguine view of the scheme taken by some western politicians. It is presumable that he will take Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia with him, and along with them he will get much of Lower Canada. If I should have the honor of a seat in the House, they may depend upon it, I shall do what I can to get them fair play. But I repeat, I do not expect to see them satisfied with the result. Well, sir, however this may be, there is going to be, at any rate, an immense amount of money required, come from whence it may. Where is it to come from ? We cannot shut our eyes to the fact, that the customs tariff must come down. (Hear.) There are no two ways about that. Our tariff is much higher than those of the Lower Provinces; and the advocates of Confederation there have to assure people that their tariffs will not be materially raised, in order to get any sort of hearing for the scheme. To tell them that the tariff of Canada is to be that of the Confederation, would be to ruin the chances of getting a favorable reception for it. (Hear, hear.)

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We are marching fast and steadily towards free trade. We must meet the views of the people of the Lower Provinces, who are hostile to high tariffs, and the demand of the Imperial authorities that we should not tax their manufactures so heavily as—in their phrase—almost to deprive them of our market. I t was distinctly and officially stated the other day, in Newfoundland, that assurance had been given to the Government of Newfoundland that the views of the Canadian Government are unmistakably in this direction. And I do not think there is any mistake about that, either. To shew how people at home, too, expect our tariff to come down, I may refer to the speech of Mr. HAMBURY TRACY, in seconding the Address in answer to the Speech from the Throne, in the House of Commons the other day. He could not stop, after saying generally that he was pleased with this Confederation movement, without adding that he trusted it would result in a very considerable decrease in the absurdly high and hostile tariff at present prevailing in Canada. I have not here the exact words, but that was their purport. Well, if the customs tariff is to come down largely, we must look for a decrease of revenue. I am free to admit that a reduction of the tariff on certain articles, or even some measure of reduction all round, might be no material loss, or might even be a gain, to the revenue— in ordinary or prosperous times, that is to say. But when the object of reducing the tariff is to meet other exigencies than those of revenue, one can hardly hope to get such a tariff as shall give us the largest revenue attainable. And besides, no one can deny that we are about entering upon a time, commercially speaking, that may be termed hard. We have had, for some time past, pretty heavy importations, and our best informed and shrewdest commercial men tell us that we are going to have, for some time to come, pretty light importations. We are not to have a plethoric purse, even under ordinary drafts upon it, for some years.

HON. MR. HOLTON—The Hard time is come now.

MR. DUNKIN—Yes, it is come, or is close on us, and it rather threatens to last. And if, with this state of things before us, to oblige the Imperial authorities and the Lower Provinces, under pressure of an inevitable state necessity, we are to reduce our customs rates, or any number of them, below what I may call their figure of largest productiveness, then surely it is little to say that we cannot look forward to an increase in the revenue, or even to a continuance of our present income, and it is rather strange that we should be called upon, withal, at the same time so to change our whole system a: to involve ourselves in the enormous extra vagances here contemplated. No taxing scheme can ever meet the case. Nothing can be looked to, but a device of borrowing without limit—the incurring of an amount of debt that, in interest and sinking fund, must prove to be simply unendurable hereafter. (Hear, hear.) But, in fact, we cannot even borrow to any large amount unless under false pretences. We cannot borrow without telling tales of our condition, resources and expectations, that will in the end be found out to be lies. We must awaken hopes in the minds of money lenders abroad, that cannot but prove delusive—the memory of which must work us hereafter an aggravation of punishment that we shall then scarcely need. And when that time of reckoning shall have come, then staggering under the load, without credit at home or abroad, the country will have to choose whether it will have heavy direct taxation— for heavy such taxation then must be —or have recourse to more or less of repudiation; or even run some risk of both. Sir, if ever that time shall come, the public men of that day and the people on whom the burthen will then press, will not bless the memory of those who held out the false hopes and inducements under which it is now sought to decoy us into wild expenditure and crushing debt. (Hear, hear.) Well, Mr. SPEAKER, I now pass to another branch of my subject altogether. There is a further salient contrast between the American system and the system proposed for our adoption. The people of the United States, when they adopted their Constitution, were one of the nations of the earth. They formed their whole system with a view to national existence. They had fought for their independence, and had triumphed ; and still in the flush of their triumph, they were laying the foundations of a system absolutely national. Their Federal Government was to have its relations with other nations, and was sure to have plenty to do upon entering the great family of naiions. But we—what are we doing? Creating a new nationality, according to the advocates of this scheme. I hardly know whether we are to take the phrase for ironical, or not. Is it a reminder

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that in fact we have no sort of nationality about us, but are unpleasantly cut up into a lot of struggling nationalities, as between ourselves ? Unlike the people of the United States, we are to have no foreign relations to look after, or national affairs of any kind ; and therefore our new nationality, if we could create it, could be nothing but a name. I must say that according to my view of the change we ought to aim at, any idea of Federation that we may entertain had need take an Imperial direction. Whenever changing our institutions, we had need develope and strengthen—not merely maintain, but maintain, develope and strengthen—the tie, not yet Federal as it ought to be, between us and the parent state. (Hear, hear.) It is the entire Empire that should be federalized, and cemented together as one, and not any mere limited number of its dependencies here or there. A general, or so called federal government, such as we are here proposing to create, will most certainly be in a false position. As I said just now, the Federal Government of the United States was to take its place in the great family of the nations of the earth ; but what place in that family are we to occupy? Simply none. The Imperial Government will be the head of the Empire as much as ever, and will alone have to attend to all foreign relations and national matters ; while we shall be nothing more than we are now. Half-a-dozen colonies federated are but a federated colony after all. Instead of being so many separate provinces with workable institutions, we are to be one province most cumbronsly organised—nothing more. How many grades of government are we going to have under this system ? The Imperial Government, the one great head of the Empire; then this Federal Government ; then our lot of provincial governments; below them again, our county municipalities, and, still below these, our township and other local municipalities. (Hear, hear.) We have thus five different sets of governmental machinery, and of these five there is just one too many in my judgment. You might as well make six while you are about it, and interpolate between our provincial and county governments a district governmental machinery. If we did that we should be doing a thing not a whit more absurd than we propose to do now, in erecting a new piece of such machinery between the Imperial and provincial governments. We do not want a third municipal government, because there is nothing for it to do ; and when we propose to create a Federal Government between the Imperial and Provincial, we are equally proposing to create a something which, having nothing of its own to do, must find work by encroaching on the functions of the Imperial and provincial governments in turn, with no place among nations, no relations with other countries, no foreign policy ; it will stand in just the same position towards the Imperial Government as Ganada now stands in, or as Upper or Lower Canada before the union used to oecupy. That intermediate work of government which is now done by the Povince of Canada, the Province of New Brunswick, the Province of Nova Scotia, the Province of Prince Edward Island and the Province of Newfoundland, is to be done, part by the Federal Government and part by the provinces. The work is simply divided that is now done by the provincial legislatures and governments, and in my opinion there is no use in this subdivision of work at all. You are putting this fifth wheel to the coach, merely to find out that a misfitting odd wheel will not serve any useful purpose, nor so much as work smoothly with the other four. (Hear, hear.) Your Federal Government will occupy about as anomalous a position between the Imperial and provincial governments as I showed, last night, will be occupied by your lieutenant governors between the Federal authority and the provinces. Both will be out of place, and to find themselves in work they must give trouble. I do not see how they can do good, but I do see how they can do any quantity of harm. (Hear, hear.) The real difficulty in our position is one that is not met by the machinery here proposed. What is that difficulty ? In the larger provinces of the empire we have the system of responsible government thoi» oughly accorded by the Imperial Government, and thoroughly worked out ; and the difficulty of the system that is now pressing, or ought to be, upon the attention of our statesmen is just this—that the tie connecting us with the Empire, and which ought to be a federal tie of the strongest kind, is too slight, is not, properly speaking, so much as a federal tie at all. These provinces, with local responsible government, are too nearly in the position of independent communities ; there is not enough of connection between them and the parent state to make the relations between the two work well, or give promise of lasting long. There is in the machinery too much of what may be called the centrifugal ten-

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dency. (Hear, hear.) All the great provinces are flying off too much, attending too exclusively to mere local considerations, too little to those of the general or Imperial kind. And at home, as we seem to be flying off, they, too, are thinking of us and of the interests they and we have in common less and less. What is wanting, if one is to look to the interest of the Empire, which is really that of all its parts—what is wanting, as I have said, is an effective federalization of the Empire as a whole, not a subordinate federation here or there, made up out of parts of it. I have neither time nor strength to-night to go fairly into the question of how this thing should be done ; but a few words more as to that, I must be pardoned for. Until latterly in Canada we have not had, and some colonies have not now, I believe, a Minister of Militia. Even we have not as yet, in our Cabinet, a minister to attend to what may be called Imperial affairs. I t is not the business of any minister, nor is it even distinctly recognized as that of the Ministry as a whole, in any of these provinces, to attend to what is really at the present juncture the most important part of our whole public business—the regulation of affairs between them and the Mother Country. I know it may be said this is in the hands of the Governor. So are other things. But for them, we see the need of his having advisers. And as to this, if a Cabinet leaves it wholly to him, that practically amounts to its neglecting these affairs altogether. Let me go back to a point or two in the history of affairs in Canada within the recollection of all honorable gentlemen. In 1862,when the then Militia Bill was before the House, it was asked over and over again by gentlemen of the Opposition, what communications, if any, had been received from the Imperial Government in respect of the defence of this province ; and the answer invariably was, that there had been none, none known to the Administration, as an administration. Now, if there had then been an officer—the Provincial Secretary, the Minister of Militia, or any other member of the Government— whose duty it had been and was to attend to that important branch of the public service ; if the relations between the Mother Country and this province had been known to be in his charge, such an answer as that could never have been given, nor the second reading of that bill lost in consequence. The other night, when the Raid Prevention and Alien Bill was before the House, we did receive the intimation that the Mother Country desired legislation of that kind at our hands ; and it passed accordingly. But that intimation was then given us exceptionally. There is a large class of questions springing up continually which affect Imperial interests and Imperial views as well as our own, and we ought to have—and if our connection with the Empire is to last, we must have—this department of our public affairs attended to by a regularly appointed Minister of the Crown here, who, whenever occasion requires, may explain them and who shall be responsible to this House. Of course, nobody denies that the Governor General is the channel of communication between us and the Imperial Government. He is the Queen’s representative and servant, and his communications with the Home Government must be of the most confidential character, except in so far as he may see fit to make them known. But fully admitting this, still besides those communications of this character which he may, have and indeed at all times must have unrestrictedly with the Imperial Government, there should be —and, if our Imperial relations are to be maintained, there must be—a further class of communications between the two governments, as to which the Governor should be advised by a minister whose particular duty it should be to manage affairs between the Mother Country and ourselves, and to be in effect a local adviser, as to such matters, of the Imperial advisers of the Crown in England. In one word, we have got to develope the Imperial phase, so to speak, of our provincial system ; to find the means of keeping our policy and that of the Mother Country in harmony ; and if we do not, we cannot long keep up our connection with the Empire. If this were done— if we had in our several provincial administrations some member charged with this department of the public service, as latterly we have come to have one charged with the cognate subject of the militia and defence of the country—if these ministers of Imperial relations made periodical visits home, so as there to meet one another and such members of the Imperial Government or others as the Crown might charge to meet and confer with them—if there were thus organized, some sort of advisory colonial council upon the precedent (so far, of course, as the analogy might hold) of the Council for East Indian Affairs lately created—if, I say, something in this way were done, then indeed we should be developing our Imperial relations in the proper direction, taking at least a step—the first and hardest— towards the framing of that Imperial feder-

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ation of which we so stand in need. But there is no provision of that kind in the system here proposed ; there is no apparent contemplation of a step of that kind in connection with this step. On the contrary, this step is all in the wrong direction. We are here proposing to create in this part of the Queen’s dominions a mere sub-federation, so to speak, tending, so far as it tends to anything, towards the exclusion of this kind of provision. This other machinery to which I have been alluding, Mr. SPEAKER, if we had had it a few years ago, would have been of extreme usefulness. Suppose we had had something of that kind when the Rebellion Losses Bill was passed, when so much excitement was thereby oreated in the country. Suppose that then when the indignation of a large class was concentrating itself against Lord ELGIN for his supposed purpose of assenting to that bill, he could have said—” It is idle for you, as you must see, to require me to listen to you against the advice of my constitutional advisers ; but you know there is a tribunal at home, to whioh you may appeal from that advice, where you will be heard and they, and from which you may be sure of justice if you have been aggrieved or injured here.” Sir, if it had been possible for the Governor General to have given such an answer at that time to the angry remonstrances of those who opposed that measure, the Parliament House would not have been burnt, nor would we haye had to deplore the long train of consequent disturbances and troubles which then and ever since have brought so much discredit and mischief to the country. Take another case. If such machinery had existed when the fishery treaty with Prance was entered into by the Imperial Government, conditioned upon the consent of Newfoundland, no such anomalous proceeding could have taken place. For the representatives of Newfoundland and of the rest of these provinces would at onee have shown the Imperial Government that it would not meet approval in that colony, nor indeed for that matter, anywhere else in British America. Great Britain would have been saved from entering into a treaty that—as matters went— had to be disallowed, with some discredit to the Empire, and some risk of a rupture of its friendly relations with a foreign power.

MR. SCOBLE—Does not the House of Commons afford that machinery ?

MR. DUNKIN—The House of Commons knows very little, and cares much less, about our local affairs. (Hear, hear.) I say, if there had then been a Colonial Council at home, where representatives of the different provincial administrations might have met and advised with any of Her Majesty’s ministers, there would have been no difficulty. It would have disposed of any number of other questions more satisfactorily than they have been disposed of. The north-eastern boundary question with the States, for instance, would never have been settled in a way so little accordant with our views and interests ; and the question of the western boundary would have been settled sooner and better, also. Take another illustration. When the difficulty arose between this country and England about our tariff, when the Sheffield manufacturers sought to create a feeling at home against us, because we, mainly to raise revenue, placed duties higher than they liked on importations of manufactured goods, if any such machinery had been in operation, no such wide-spread and mischievous misapprehension as to our acts and purposes oould have arisen, as ever since has been prevalent in England, and even on the floor of the House of Commons. In fact, I repeat that without some such system, I do not see how our relations with the Empire can be maintained on a satisfactory footing. I t is just the want of it that is leading so many at home now to think us in a transition state towards separation and independence, when, in truth, we have such need to prove to them that we are in a transition state towards a something very different indeed — the precise antipodes of separation. (Hear, hear.) Sir, I was saying that in this scheme there is no such conservative tendency as this—nothing indicative of a set purpose to develope, strengthen and perpetuate our connection with the Empire. That end we might indeed better gain without than with this extra machinery of local federation ; for disguise it how you may, the idea that underlies this plan is this, and nothing else—that we are to create here a something—kingdom, viceroyalty, or principality— something that will soon stand in the same position towards the British Crown that Scotland and Ireland stood in before they were legislatively united with England ; a something having no other tie to the Empire than the one tie of fealty to the British Crown—a tie which in the cases, first, of Scotland, and then of Ireland, was found, when the pinch came, to be no tie at all ; which did not restrain either Scotland or Ireland from courses so inconsistent with that of England as to have made it necessary that their relations should be radically changed, and a legislative

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union formed in place of a merely nominal union. Suppose you do create here a kingdom or a principality, bound to the Empire by this shadow of a tie, the day of trial cannot be far distant, when this common fealty will be found of as little use in our case as it was in theirs ; when, in consequence, the question will force itself on the Empire and on us between entire separation on the one hand, and a legislative union on the other. ” But a legislative union of British America with the United Kingdom must be, in the opinion of, one may say, everybody at home and here, a sheer utter impossibility ; and when the question shall come to be whether we are so to be merged in the United Kingdom or are to separate entirely from it, the answer can only be—”At whatever cost, we separate.” Sir, I believe in my conscience that this step now proposed is one directly and inevitably tending to that other step ; and for thatreason—even if I believed, as I do not, that it bid fair to answer ever so well in the other respects—because I am an Englishman and hold to the connection with England, I murt be against this scheme. Suppose now, on the other hand, this scheme were not to go into operation, there would be no earthly difficulty in working out, with this Canada of ours, the other plan I have been suggesting for the placing of our relations with the Empire on a better footing. Nor would there probably be any material difficulty either in bringing about a legislative union of the Lower Provinces, or in developing a very near approach to free trade, or indeed absolute free trade between us and them. I know there are those who say that this mock Federal union is necessary in order to our getting that free trade with those provinces. Well, sir, as to that, all I care to say is this, that for a number of years past we have had a near approach to free trade with the United States—a foreign country ; and I imagine we can have it with the Lower Provinces as well, without any very great difficulty. (Hear, hear. ) I say again, we had far better hold firmly to the policy of thus maintaining and strengthening our union with the parent state, than let ourselves, under whatever pretext, be drawn into this other course, which must inevitably lead to our separation from the Empire. (Hear, hear.) But, Mr. SPEAKER, there is still another point of view in which this scheme requires to be considered. The people of the United States, when they framed their institutions, were not only starting as a nation—they were so starting with no dangerous neighbor-nation near them. If we are to take the step now urged upon us, not only are we to be something less than a nation, but we are to be this with a very dangerous neighbor-nation indeed. In this connection I may be allowed to read a few words. The thirtieth resolution says :—

The General Government and Parliament shall have all powers necessary or proper for performing the obligations of the Federated Provinces, as part of the British Empire, to foreign countries, arising under trsaties between Great Britain and such countries.

It is quite right that the General Government should have such powers ; but the very fact of our having to make a reservation of this kind, is an unpleasant recognition of the fact, in itself the reverse of encouraging, of the all darkening neighborhood of the United States. It is a most singular thing that we are required on the one hand to go into this union on this very account—for downright dread of the United States—and yet that on the other, we are as confidently assured of our own immense resources, are told that we are so wonderfully great and wonderfully rich, that we are something like—I don’t know whether we are not—the third or fourth power, or maritime power, one or other, in the world. B,eally, I would not undertake to say how great we are, or are not, according to honorable gentlemen. They startle one. I had no idea how great we were ! (Hear, hear.) But yet, with air this wonderful magnificence and greatness, we are told we positively must not, for very fear of the United States—for fear of their power—for fear of their hostility, we must not any longer stay disunited, but must instantly enter into this so-called union. Just as if either their power or their hostility towards us—taking that to be their feeling—would be lessened by our doing so. Just as if they would not be only the more jealous of us and hostile to us, for our setting ourselves up ostentatiously as their rivals. (Hear, hear.) In this connection, it does seem to me that we have more than one question to answer. Many honorable gentlemen appear to think they have done all that need be done, when they have answered to their own satisfaction the one question, What is the amount of our resources ? Starting with the vastness of our territory, they go into all kinds of statements as to our trade and so forth, multiplying tonnage impossibly, adding together exports and imports—those of the Intercolonial trade and all. I only wonder they do not, on the same principle, calculate our inter-county and

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our inter-township tradings, or our dealings between cities and country, adding exports and imports of course all round, and so proving that we have done more trade than all the rest of the world put together; unless, indeed, they were to count up the trade of the rest of the world by the same rule ; and then to be sure they would find out that, after all, the rest of the world do more business, are more populous, richer, and stronger, than we. The question is not simply, What are our own resources ? We must supplement it with a second—What are they comparatively? And especially, what arc they as compared with those of the United States ? And while we are asking this question, we may as well not take it for granted as a fact, that the larger our country the stronger we must be. Suppose we are to be four millions of people in a country as large as Europe or larger. I wish to Heaven we were four millions of people—with all the adjacent unexposed territory you will—but in a country smaller thin England. Why, sir, New England alone has more population and resources, all told, than the Lower Provinces and Lower Canada together ; and with her compactness and advantage of position, she could alone, presumably, beat both.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—New England stronger than the Lower Provinces and the two Canadas ?

MR. DUNKIN—I did not say that, I said stronger than Lower Canada and the Lower Provinces.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—It is about the same in population, two and a half millions, while we have more shipping than they.

MR. DUNKIN—I fear that if we were to come into collision, a good deal of shipping might change hands. At any rate, at the best, we should have a pretty tight time of it. (Hear, hear.)

AN HON. MEMBER—Better put a bold face on it.

MR. DUNKIN—Yes, yes. “Brag is a good dog, but Holdfast is a better.” Then, there is the State of New York, which would certainly be more than a match for Upper Canada—and New York is but one of several states conterminous with Upper Canada. Who in his tenses, sir, thinks of these provinces as able, of themselves, to hold their own against New England, New York and the rest of the tier of states along our frontier ? And yet we are talked to as if Confederation were about to make us the third or fourth power, or maritune power in the world ! But what I was saying more particularly was, that too much of territory, and above all too much of exposed frontier, does not increase our strength, but lessens it. Ours is the ‘ long thin line of red,” which is not so well able to receive a charge as the solid square.

COL. HAULTAIN was understood to signify dissent to some of the propositions here advanced.

MR. DUNKIN—If the hon. member for Peterborough thinks that in a military point of view, the length and narrowness of our territory adds to our strength—if he thinks we are the stronger for our length of frontier, I would respectfully recommend him to attend one of our military schools (Laughter.) But seriously, sir, if we are to compare our íesources with those of the United States, we shall find, as I have said, that theirs are unmistakably, and beyond count, greater.

COL. HAULTAIN—Than the British Empire?

MR. DUNKIN—That is not the comparison. We are continually hearing of what Confederation is to do for ourselves, how it is going to make us a great power in the world. It is going to do nothing of the kind. But again—and here is a third question tLat in this connection we have got to answer—how is the temper of the United States going to be affected, on the one hand, by the policy here urged on us, of what I may call hostile independent effort—effort made on our part, with the avowed object of setting ourselves up as a formidable power against them ; or on the other hand, by a policy such as I have been urging, of unobtrusive development of our institutions in connection with the British Empire? In which of the two cases are they likely to be the more amiable, or, (which is perhaps more to the point), the loss aggressive or practically unamiable, as our neighbors ? Besides, there comes up still another question. What is to be the attitude of Great Britain under either of these two suppositions ? As I have said, the question ss, first, as to our own resources ; next, as to the comparative resources of the United States ; then, as to their attitude and temper towards us, upon one or other of these two suppositions ; then, as to the attitude and temper of Great Britain, in reference to each of these suppositions ; and lastly, as to the reaction (so to speak) upon ourselves, of these respective attitudes of the two countries in either case.

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If, sir, we are thinking to give other people the idea, that by uniting ourselves together in any such way as this, we are going to make ourselves able to take care of ourselves, we are merely humbugging ourselves, and trying to humbug others. The people of the United States are stronger than we are, and are known so to be ; and if we are to hold our own against or beside them, it can only be by remaining strongly, avowedly, lastingly, attached to Great Britain. This is the firm conclusion I have come to ; and I believe it is the conclusion to which any one who will give his thoughtful attention to the subject must come also. And I must and do protest against the notion which seems to prevail amoug the advocates of this scheme, that somehow or other it is going so to increase our power, as to make us a formidable neighbor of the United States. The dangar is, of its making that people more jealous of us and more hostile towards us than before. And if, besides that, it is going to give them and the people of England, or either of them, the idea that as a result of it we are to care less for the connection with the Empire than before—that under it we are before long to go alone, it is going to commit us to about the saddest fatal mistake that a people ever made. (Hear, hear.) Mr. SPEAKER, I must apologize for the length to which I have wearied the House. (Ciies of ” Go on !”) I have gone through, as well as I could, the leading points of my arguments, so far ; and have indicated a number of points of contrast between this system and that of the Unired States. I trust I have not been too prolix in my attempts to shew tha” the Constitution now offered for our acceptance presents machinery entirely unlike that of the United States, and entirely unlike that of the British Empire—that it is inconsistent with either—that so far from its proffering to us all the advantages of both and the disadvantages of neither, it rather presents to us the disadvantages of both and the advantages of neither ; that so far from its tending to improve our relations either with the Mother Country or with the United States, it holds out to us very little prospect indeed for the future, in either of these respects. (Hear, hear.) I shall not attempt to review my argument on these heads, for I do not think that to anyone at all willing tu reflect, what I have advanced can require to be proved more fully. If I am not entirely wrong, the only way in which this proposed machinery can be got to work at all, will be by an aggregation, so to speak, in the first Federal Cabinet, of the leading men of the different existing provincial administrations. The attempt must be made to combine the six majorities, so as to carry on an administration in harmony with the understood wishes of the six several provinces, irrespectively of every consideration of principle, or of sound farseeing policy, I do not see how, although this thing may be done at starting, it can be carried on—I was going to say, for any length of time—I might say, for any time, long or short, unless by a system of the most enormous jobbery and corruption. Whenever any sore spot shall show itself— and we may rely on it, there will be more than one such show itself very soon—then feuds and divisions of the worst sort will follow, and the machinery will no longer work. Unfortunately, there are in it none of those facilities for harmonious workings, none of those nice adaptations by which the stronger power is so tempered as not to fall too harshly on the weaker. Just so long as the majorities in all the different provinces work cordially together, woll and good. But they cannot possibly work harmoniously together long ; and so soou as they come into collision, there comes trouble, and with the trouble, the fabric is at an end. (Hear, hear.) For myself, I am decidedly of opinion that our true interest is to hold this machinery over, to consider it carefully, to see if something better cannot be devised. (Hear, hear.) I am sure there can. But instead of that, we are called upon emphatically and earnestly at once to throw aside all considerations to the contrary, and to adopt the measure ; and we are at the same time told, in unmistakable language, that we positively cannot—must not—shall nut—change a single word of it. Various considerations aie urged upon us for this unseemly haste ; considerations connected with the attitude of the United States, with Great Britain, with the Lower Provinces, and with our own domestic affairs. With the permission of the House, I will touch as briefly as I can on these four classes of considerations, and then cease longer to weary the House. I begin, then, with the considerations connected with the attitude of the United States, which are urged upon us as reasons why we should rush into this measure of Confederation. To some extent I have already incidentally

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touched on these in another connexion ; but they call for some further notice, and in giving it them, I will try not to repeat myself. Judging from much of the language which we have heard on the floor of this House, one would suppose we must be on the verge of a war with the United States. For my part, I believe nothing of the kind. But if we were, would it be at all the right thing for us to abstain from the more pressing questions of our defences and the organization of the militia, and to be instead discussing here these plans of a Federal Union, Provincial Constitutions, and I know not what ? These we are ealled upon, I admit, to discuss in a tremendous hurry, to settle off-hand, in workable or unworkable shape, nobody seeming to know or to care which, everybody professing to hope that all will come right in the end, whether he thinks it will or not. But, sir, I say again, if war were imminent with the United States, the one question for us would be the state of our defences, the organization of our militia, how much England can do for us, how much we can do for ourselves, how much England and we, each of us, are to undertake to do together. That is not the question at the present time at all, and I therefore take it that the outcry raised in connection with this scheme, about our defences and the militia, is just so much buncombe. (Hear, hear.) If honorable gentlemen opposite believed in it, I am certain that the pressing question would be taken up first. Further, if such danger were not even pretty far off, I for one would be disposed to think that the taking up now of this other class of questions comes a little late in the day. With any near, real danger of war with the United States, it would be quite too late for us to be sitting here, gravely discussing a political union, to be consummated months hence, at soonest, and then only to lead to the construction of railways which will take years, and defences which cannot be put in order for months or years, and to future developments of all kinds, which it will take years on years to carry out. If war, I say, is imminent, these ulterior undertakings, though begun now, would be begun all too late. Whenever there is such danger, our defence will not be found in the making of federal or other constitutions, or in paper display of any kind, but must be found in the strong arms and determined courage of our people, responding earnestly to the call of the Mother Country, and backed with all the power she can bring to bear upon the conflict. Supposing that time come, we have plenty of governing machinery for that defence. We do not need, in order to it, a viceroy and court, and lieutenant-governors, and all the complicated political apparatus of this scheme. We could get along just as well under our present system, and I think better. Certainly, if modified as I have indicated it might be—if improved by the better development of our relations to the Empire—the system which would thence result would be as good as that here offered for our acceptance—indeed, would be much better. But, sir, the real danger is not of war with the United States. It is from what I may call their pacific hostility —from trouble to be wrought by them within this country—trouble to arise out of refusal of reciprocity—repeal of the bonding system— custom-house annoyances—passport annoyances ; from their fomenting difficulties here, and taking advantage of our local jealousies; from the multiplied worries they may cause us by a judicious alternation of bullying and coaxing, the thousand incidents which may easily be made to happen if things are not going on quite well in this country, and the people and government of the States are minded to make us feel the consequences of our not getting on quite so well as we might. Whether the union of the States is restored or not, this kind of thing can go on. The danger is, that cither the whole United States, or those portions of the United States which are near us, and which are really stronger than we are, and enterprising enough and ambitious enough, and not very fond of us, and not at all fond of the Mother Country, not at all unwilling to strike a blow at her and to make us subservient to their own interest and ambition—the danger is, I say, that the United States, or those portions of the United States near us, may avail themselves of every opportunity to perplex us, to embroil us in trouble, to make us come within the disturbing influences of their strong local attraction.— Now, to pretend to tell me that the United States or the Northern States, whichever you please, are going to b3 frightened, from a policy of that kind, by our taking upon ourselves great airs, and forming ourselves into a grand Confederation, is to tell me that their people are, like the Chinese, a people to be frightened by loud noises and ugly grimaces. (Laughter.) I do not believe they are. They

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are not to be frightened by any union we can make here. They have among them politicians, to say the least, quite as bold, shrewd and astute as any we have here. The danger will just be that of our having agitation of our own going on here, and internal troubles, while these annoyances on the part of our neighbors across the border are being multiplied upon us ; and that England may at the same time be feeling that the tie between her and us is more or less relaxed, and that wrong and humiliation put upon us do not concern her so much as they would have done when our connection with her was practically more intimate. In and before 1840, after the troubles which had been distracting Canada were put down, it was declared, and perfectly well understood, that the Imperial Government was simply determined to hold on to the connection with this country. And the knowledge of that expressed determination guaranteed us a pretty long term of comparative fecdom from annoyances and trouble of the kind to which I have been referring. If, now, a different idea is to prevail—if the notion is to go abroad that we are, by creating ourselves into a new nationality, to be somewhat less connected with the Empire than these provinces heretofore have been, then I do apprehend that a very different future is before us, and that in all sorts of ways, by vexations of all kinds, by the fomenting of every trouble within our own borders, whether originating from abroad, or only reacted on from abroad, we shall be exposed to dangers of the most serious kind. And, therefore, so far from seeing in our relations towards the United States, any reason why we should assume a position of semi-independence, an attitude of seeming defiance towards them, I find in them the strongest reason why, even while regarding, or affecting to regard them as little as possible, we should endeavor to make all the world see that we are trying to strengthen our union with the Mother Country—that we care far less about a mere union with neighboring provinces, which will frighten no one in the least, but that we arc determined to maintain at all hazards and draw closer, that connection with the Mother Country which alone, so long as it lasts, can and will protect us from all serious aggression. (Hear, hear.) But we are told that, on account of a variety of considerations connected with the state of opinion at home, and out of deference to that opinion, we must positively carry out this scheme. Well, there are two or three questions to be answered here, What is that opinion at home ? What is it worth ? And what sort of lesson does it teach us ? There are some distinctions which, in my judgment, must be drawn with reference to this. There are different phases of opinion prevailing at home, which must be taken into account. I have great respect for some home opinions. Many things they know in England much better than we do. Some things they do not know so well. They do not know so much about ourselves as we do ; and they do not occupy their minds so much with that class of questions which relate merely to our interests, as we at any rate ought to do ; and on these matters I am not sure that we shall act wisely if we yield at once to the first expressions of opinion at home. But now, sir, what is the opinion at home, or rather, what are the opinions entertained at home, with reference to this measure ? Of course, I do not intend to weary the House with a long detailed statement on this subject. But I must say this—and I do not think that any one who knows anything at all about it will contradict what I state—there is at home a considerably numerous, and much more loud-speaking than numerous, class of politicians who do not hesitate to say that it is not for the interest of England to keep her colonies at all.

MR. SCOBLE—Not numerous.

MR .DUNKIN—Well, I think they are rather numerous and pretty influential, and they make a good deal of stir ; and some of them being in pretty high places, there is danger that their views may exercise a good deal of influence upon public opinion at home. There are many influences at work at home, tending to the prevalence of the idea that the sooner the colonies leave the Mother Country, the better—and especially that the sooner these colonies leave the Mother Country, the better. There is a very exaggerated notion at home of danger to the peace of the Empire from the maintenance of British supremacy in this part of the world. That is the fact ; and there is no use in our shutting our eyes to it. We may just as well take it, uncomfortable and hard fact as it may be. If we choose to tell ourselves it is not the fact, we are only humbugging ourselves. (Hear, hear.) That is one point, as regards public opinion in England. Another is, as to the appreciation, at home, of this particular scheme. I take it, that what we are told on this head by those who urge this scheme upon us, about opinion at home, amounts to this —that at home this soheme is regarded

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with very great favor, that we are expected to adopt it, and that if we do not adopt it, it will be the better for us with reference to home public opinion. Well, the questions for us are : What is the opinion at home about this scheme ? What is the opinion entertained in high quarters as to its goodness or badness ; and if there is an opinion in favor of the scheme being adopted, from what considerations does that opinion, to a great extent, prevail ? I am not going into these questions minutely, but I must be allowed to make a remark or two as to the opinion expressed by Her Majesty’s Government with regard to this scheme. I have already, to some extent, alluded to the dispatch of the Colonial Secretary ; but in this connection, I must allude to it a little further. (Hear, hear.) It is clear from that dispatch that the Colonial Secretary wrote under these impressions : first of all, he was under the idea that this scheme had been drawn up by the representatives of every province, chosen by the respective governors, without distinction of party. That was not quite the case. There were representatives from the two leading parties in each of the other provinces, but it was not so as regarded Lower Canada. (Hear, hear.) The Colonial Secretary was, besides, evidently under the impression that when these gentlemen came together, they gave the matters before them the most mature deliberation. He says :—” They have conducted their deliberations with patient sagacity, and have arrived at unanimous conclusions on questions involving many difficulties.” The “patient sagacity” was exercised for seventeen or nineteen days, and the ” unanimous contusions ” were, after all, certainly not unanimous. The Secretary goes on to say :—

Her Majesty’s Government have given to your despatch and to the resolutions of the Conference, their most deliberate consideration. They have regarded them as a whole, and as having been designed by those who framed them, to establish as complete and perfect a union of the whole, into one government, as the circumstances of the ease, and a due consideration of existing intarests, would admit. They accept them, therefore, as being in the deliberate judgment of those best qualified to decide upon the subject, the best framework of a measure to be passed by the Imperial Parliament for attaining that most desirable result.

Her Majesty’s Government thus take for granted a ” deliberate ” examination, which most unquestionably neyer has been given to this crude project. Now, with all this, with the impression that men of all parties had here acted in combination, when in truth they have done no such thing ; that patient sagacity had been expended on the framing of the scheme, when in truth there was nothing of the kind ; that the conclusions were unanimously arrived at, which again was not the fact ; with all this, Her Majesty’s Government have only come to the point of giving a very general, and, as any one who reads the dispatch can see, a very qualified approval of the scheme. First, an objection is raised as to the want of accurate determination of the limits between the authority of the Central and that of the local legislatures. I will not read the words, as I read them last night, but no one can read the dispatch without seeing that the language of the Colonial Secretary on that point is the language of diplomatic disapproval. (Hear, hear.) Though he gives a general approval, he criticises and evidently does not approve. He sees an intention, but calls attention to the fact that that intention is not clearly and explicitly expressed. He then goes on and makes another objection—the financial. His language is this :—

Her Majesty’s Government cannot but express the earnest hope, that the arrangements which may be adopted in this respect may not be of such a nature as to increase—at least in any considerable degree—the whole expenditure, or to make any material addition to the taxation, and thereby retard the internal industry, or tend to impose new burdens on the commerce of the country.

The hope that it will not be is the diplomatic way of hinting a fear that it may be. When Her Majesty’s Government is driven to ” hope” that these arrangements will not increase in any considerable degree the whole expenditure, or make any material addition to taxation, and thereby retard internal industry, or tend to impose new burdens on the commerce of the country, it is perfectly clear that they see that in the scheme which makes them tolerably sure it will. And then we have a third objection :—

Her Majesty’s Government are anxious to lose no time in conveying to you their general approval of the proceedings of the Conference. There are, however, two provisions of great importance which seem to require revision. The first of these is the provision contained in the 44th resolution, with respect to the exercise of the prerogative of pardon.

That is emphatioally declared to be entirely

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wrong. And then comes the fourth objection : ” The second point which Her Majesty’s Government desire should be reconsidered”—and this phrase is positively, so far as words can give it, a command on the part of Her Majesty’s Government that it shall be reconsidered :—

The second point which Her Majesty’s Government desire should be reconsidered is the constitution of the Legislative Council. They appreciate the considerations which have influenced the Conference in determining the mode in which this body, so important to the constitution of the Legislature, should be composed. But it appears to them to require further consideration whether, if the members be appoiuted “for life, and their number be fixed, there will be any sufficient means of restoring harmony between the Legislative Council and the popular Assembly, if it shall ever unfortunately happen that a decided difference of opinion shall arise between them. These two points, relating to the prerogative of the Crown and the Constitution of the Upper Chamber have appeared to require distinct and separate notice.

Is not that a pretty emphatic dissent ?

Questions of minor consequence and matters of detailed arrangement may properly be reserved for a future time, when the provisions of the bill intended to be submitted to the Imperial Parliament shall come under consideration.

So, sir, there are more objections still which the Colonial Secretary has not stated. He gives a general sanction, but specifies four matters, two of which he distinctly says must be altered, and the other two he does not approve of, and he says that other matters— too numerous, I suppose, to specify—must be reserved for remark at a future time. Well, just at the time that this despatch made its appearance, there was an article in the London Times, a passage from which I will read in this connection, though it may seem to bear on a somewhat different branch of the question from that with which I am just more particularly dealing. The London Times, referring to this despatch, makes use of these expressions, and I beg the attention of the House to them, because they give the key-note of a great deal of the public opinion at home with reference to this matter :—

It is true we are not actually giving up the American colonies,—nay, the despatch we are quoting does not contain the slightest hint that such a possibility ever crossed the mind of the writer; but yet it is perfectly evident—and there is no use in concealing the fact—that the Confederation movement considerably diminishes the difficulty which would be felt by the colonies in separating from the Mother Country. Even now the North American Confederation represents a state formidable from the numbers of its hardy and energetic population, and capable, if so united, of vigorously defending the territories it possesses. A few years will add greatly to that population, and place Canada, Hochelaga, Acadia, or by whatever other name the Confederacy may think fit to call itself, quite out of the reach of invasion or conquest. Such a state would not only be strong aga nst the Mother Country under the impossible supposition of our seeking to coerce it by force, but it might be separated from us without incurring the disgrace of leaving a small and helpless community at the mercy of powerful and warlike neighbors.

Here, then, is the somewhat less diplomatic utterance of the Times, on the occasion of the appearance of this despatch. It is perfectly true that no hint was given officially, when this scheme was sent hime, that it contemplated separation. Perfectly true, that in the answer there is no hint that separation is contemplated. But it is perfectly true, also, that the leading journal instantly sees in it, and seizes at, the possibility—first, of its greatly facilitating our going—and, secondly, of its greatly facilitating, on the part of the Mother Country, the letting of us go. I shall come back to this branch of the subject presently, after I shall have quoted from a much more important expression of public opinion than any article in the Times. Meantime, I must refer to the language of Her Majesty’s Speech from the Throne. I t has been read during this debate already, and has been read as if it contained the most emphatic approval possible of this whole scheme—so emphatic an approval, that even to assume to discuss it now would seem to amount almost to treason. This language, of course, it is needless to say, is that of Her Majesty’s Imperial advisers, and is to be read in connection with what Her Majesty’s Government have said about this plan in the Colonial Secretary’s despatch— that before it is passed into an enactment, it will require a good deal of revision, We may bo told here that the document before us is a treaty, on which not a line or letter of amendment can be made by us. But Her Majesty’s Government clearly understand that they are not bound by it, and that they are to alter it as much as they please. They won’t give the pardoning power to these lieutenant-governors ; they won’t constitute the Legislative Council in this way ; they won’t look with indifference to the incurring of unheard-of expenses, and the hampering of commerce which they

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consider to be implied in this scheme. No, they are to look into this thing, to look into the details of what they evidently think to be a pretty crude scheme ; while we, who are most interested, are required by our local rulers not to look into it at all, but just to accept it at their hands as a whole. The language addressed from the Throne to the Imperial Parliament is this : ” Her Majesty has had great satisfaction in giving Her sanction “—to what ? —” to the meeting of a conference of delegates from the several North American Provinces, who, on invitation from Her Majesty’s Governor General, assembled at Quebec.” Certainly ; we knew that before ; they assembled without Her Majesty’s sanction, but they got her sanction afterwards to their having so assdfobled. ” These delegates adopted resolutions having for their object a closer union of those provinces under a central government. If those resolutions shall be approved by the provincial legislatures, a bill will be laid before you for carrying this important measure into effect” —not for giving full effect to the details of this scheme, but tor carrying the measure— the closer union—in the shape the Imperial Government may give it, into effect. That is all. (Hear, hear.) Take this along with the despatch of the Colonial Secretary. If it is a declaration that this thing is a treaty, which may not be amended by us without flying in the face of Her Majesty’s Government, I do not understand the meaning of words. (Hear, hear.) In connection with the Speech from the Throne, we had, the other night, some notice taken, on the floor of this House, of language used in discussing the address in the Imperial Parliament. Lords CLAREMONT, HOUGHTON, GRANVILLE and DERBY had something to say in respect of this scheme in the House of Lords ; as also, Mr. HANBURY TRACY in the House of Commons. I do not attach great weight to what was there said, because there really was little said any way, and that little could not indicate any great amount of knowledge upon the subject treated. However, I will quote first what the mover of the address, the Earl of CLAREMONT, said. After referring to the war in New Zealand, he went on :—

My Lords, although these operations in India, New Zealand, and Japan, are matters of more or less interest or concern to the nation, and, as such, are fully deserving of notice, yet they are small in comparison to the importance of the probable change in the constitution of our North American Colonies. Since the declaration of independence by the colonies, since known as the United States of America, so great a scheme of self-government, or one shadowing forth so many similar and possible changes, has not occurred.

Now, I cannot read this sentence without asking what analogy there is between this project and the declaration of independence. Why should these resolutions suggest to any one’s mind the declaration of independence ? Did the gentlemen who signed these resolutions in order to authenticate them—pledge their lives and fortunes, and I don’t know what besides, to anything, or risk anything, by appending their signatures to the document ? Was it a great exercise of political heroism ? Why, the men who signed the declaration of independence qualified themselves in the eyes of the Imperial Government for the pleasant operations of heading and hanging. They knew what they were about. They were issuing a rebel declaration of war. But this is a piece of machinery, on the face of it at least, to perpetuate our connection with the Mother Country ! Why then does it suggest the idea that so great a scheme of self-government, or one shadowing forth so many similar and possible changes, ” hardly ever before occurred?” It is because there is, underlying the speaker’s thought, just that idea of the anti-colonial school in England, that we are going to slip away from our connection with the Mother Country ; and in this respect, therefore, it seems to him that it is like the declaration of independence. The remaining sentence indicates a curious misapprehension as to the present posture of this question. ” If the delegates of these several colonies finally agree to the resolutions framed by their committee, and if these resolutions be approved by the several legislatures of the several colonies, Parliament will be asked to consider and complete this federation of our Northern American possessions.” The noble lord, the mover of the Address, seems to take the resolutions for a mere report of a committee which (on their way here) had yet to be submitted to the consideration of the delegates ! Next, I turn to the language of Lord HOUGHTON, the seconder of the Address ; and from his lips too, we have an almost distinct utterance of the idea of our coming independence. He says :—

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That impulse which inclines small states to bind themselves together for the purpose of mutual protection and for the dignity of empire, has shewn itself in two remarkable examples, of which I may be permitted to say a few words. In Europe it has manifested itself in the case of Italy, which is not, indeed, alluded to in any part of Her Majesty’s speech, because it is an accomplished fact of European history. A convention has lately taken place between the Emperor of the French and the King of Italy, in which England can take no other interest than to hope that it may redound to the prosperity of the one and the honor of the other. At any rate, one great advantage has been accomplished. With his capital in the centre of Italy it is no longer possible to talk of Victor Emmanuel as King of Piedmont. He is King of Italy, or nothing. On the other side of the Atlantic the same impulse— [that same impulse, which, in the case of Italy, the speaker characterizes as aiming at the dignity of empire]—the same impulse had manifested itself in the proposed amalgamation of the northern provinces of British America. I heartily concur in all—[the all being as we have just seen, not much]—that has been said by my noble friend the mover of this address in his laudation of that project. It is, my lords, a most interesting contemplation that that project has arisen, and has been approved by Her Majesty’s Government. It is certainly contrary to what might be considered the old maxims of government in connection with the colonies, that we should here express —and that the Crown itself should express— satisfaction at a measure which tends to bind together, in almost independent power, our colonies in North America. We do still believe that though thus banded together, they will recognize the value of British connection, and that while they will be safer in this amalgamation, we shall be as safe in their fealty. The measure will no doubt, my lords, require much prudent consideration and great attention to provincial susceptibilities.

I repeat, Mr. SPEAKER, there is in this quotation a second pretty-plainly-expressed auticipation of our nearly approaching independence. “We are supposed, by one of these noble lords, to bo taking a step analogous to that taken by the authors of the Declaration of Independence ; and by the other, to be moved by the same impulse of empire that has been leading to the establishment of the Kingdom of Italy.

MR. SCOBLE–It is a case of want of information.

MR. DUNKIN—Yes , I have no doubt it is a case of want of correct information, aDd not the only one of its kind. And now, sir, for Lord DERBY’s remarks, which also have been quoted here. Certainly, they are in a different, and to my mind a more satisfactory, tone ; but they are suggestive, for all that , of an idea that is unwelcome. After remarking on certain passages indicative, in his view, of unfriendly feeling on the part of the United States towards Great Britain and towards us—their threatened abrogation of the reciprocity treaty, arming on the lakes, and so forth–Lord DERBY says :—

Under these circumstances I see with additional satisfaction—[Meaning of, course, though courtesy may have disallowed the phrase, “less dissatisfaction,” for he certainly did not see those other matters with any satisfaction at all]— I see with additional satisfaction the announcement of a contemplated important step. I mean the proposed Federation of the British American Provinces. (Hear, hear.) I hope I may regard that Federation as a measure tending to constitute a power strong enough, with the aid of this country, which I trust may never be withdrawn from those provinces, to acquire an importance which, separately, they coud not obtain. (Hear, hear.) If I saw in this Federation a desire to separate from this country, I should think it a matter of much more doubtful policy and advantage ; but I perceive with satisfaction, that no such wish is entertained. Perhaps it is premature to discuss, at present, resolutions not yet submitted to the different provincial legislatures, but I hope I see in the terms of that Federation an earnest desire on the part of the provinces to maintain for themselves the blessing of the connection with this country, and a determined and deliberate preference for monarchical over republican institutions.

(Hear, hear.) Now, what I have to say is this , that while I think no man ought to find fault with any of the sentiments here uttered, they are yet the utterances of a statesman who betrays in those utterances at least, as they sound to me, a certain amount of scarcely-concealed apprehension. When a man in the position of Lord DERBY, master of the whole art of expression, speaks at once so hypothetically and so guardedly, falls back upon “I hope I may regard, ” “ I trust may never be , ” ” I hope I see,” and so forth, one feels that there is an under our rent of thought , not half concealed by such expressions, to the effect that there is too much danger of the very things so hoped and trusted against coming to pass at no very distant period.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER–I see the reverse of that. (Hear, hear.)

MR. DUNKIN-Well, the hon. gentleman sees differently from what I do. If there had been no doubt whatever in the mind of Lord DERBY, as to our want of strength, the growth of the anti-colonial party at home, and the tendency of this

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scheme towards separation, his hope and trust to the contrary, would either have been unuttered, or would have been uttered in another tone. I am well enough satisfied that Lord DERBY himself has not the most remote idea of falling in with the views of the so-called colonial reformers in England, who desire to see the colonies pay for every thing or be cast off; but he knows the hold that their views have gained at home, and he speaks accordingly. And there is no doubt, sir, that this feeling has been got up in England to an extent very much to be regretted. In this connection I have yet to notice some passages—and I shall deal with them as briefly as I can—from the very important article I quoted last night, which is contained in the Edinburgh Review for January, and which, I am sorry to say, expresses this feeiing in the strongest possible form. But before citing them, I am bound to say that I by no means believe the views they express are universally or even generally entertained at home. I do believe, though, that they are entertained by many, and that there is much danger of their doing a vast deal of mischief. That they are loudly avowed, does not admit of doubt ; and when we find them set forth in the pages of so influential an organ of opinion as the Edinburgh Review, the case assumes a very serious aspect. There are other passages in the article to the same effect as those I am about to read, and which might, perhaps, be quoted with advantage, did time allow. Well, here is one occurring early in the article :—

There are problems of colonial policy the solution of which cannot, without peril, be indefinitely delayed; and though Imperial England is doing her best to keep up appearances in the management of her five and forty dependencies, the political links which once bound them to each other and to their common centre are evidently worn out. Misgivings haunt the public mind as to the stability of an edifice which seems to be founded on a reciprocity of deception, and only to be shored up for the time by obsolete and meaningless traditions.

When an utterance like this finds its way into the pages of the Edinburgh Review, a review which more than almost any other may be held to speak in the name of a large class of the ablest statesmen of England, we have reason to ask what it is all tending to. I never in my life felt more pain in reading anything political, than I felt in reading this article ; and I never discharged a more painful duty than I am endeavoring to discharge at this moment, in commenting on it. But truth is truth, and must be told. A little farther on, the same writer proceeds:—

It is not unnatural that the desire to maintain a connection with the power and wealth of the Mother Country should be stronger on the side of the colonies than it is on that of the British public, for they owe almost everything to us, and we receive but little from them. Moreover, the existing system of colonial government enables them to combine all the advantages of local in dependence with the strength and dignity of a great empire. But the Imperial Government in the meantime has to decide, not as of old, whether Great Britain is to tax the colonies, but to what extent the colonies are to be permitted to tax Great Britain—a question which is daily becoming more urgent and less easy of solution.

Further on, the writer goes on to say :—

It might puzzle the wisest of our statesmen, if he were challenged to put his finger on any single item of material advantage resulting to ourselves from our dominions in British North America, which cost us at this moment about a million sterling a year.

They do no such thing ; but that is neither here nor there. Then follow these sentences, more galling still:—

Retainers who will neither give nor accept notice to quit our service, must, it is assumed, be kept for our service. There are, nevertheless, special and exceptional difficulties which beset us in this portion of our vast field of empire.

Nearly a page follows of description of what these difficulties are, being mainly those arising out of apprehended dangers from the United States, and thereon is based this observation :—

It is scarcely surprising that any project which may offer a prospect of escape from a political situation so undignified and unsatisfactory should be hailed with a cordial welcome by all parties concerned.

But one meaning can be put upon all this. In the opinion of the writer, England does not believe that these provinces are worth anything to her, while the connection with the Mother Country is worth all to us ; and she would hail with satisfaction any way of escape from the obligations and dangers that we are said to cast upon her. I go on a little further, and I find what are his views as to the undertakings that, in connection with this project, we are expected to assume. What I am next quoting forms

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a footnote; but a foot note is often, like a lady’s postscript, more important than the text of the letter :—

A very important question, on which these papers afford no information, is that relating to the future condition of those territories and dependencies of the Crown in North America, which are not included within the present boundaries of the five provinces. “We allude more particularly to the territories now held by the Hudson’s Bay Company, under the Crown, by charter or lease. The Crown is doubtless bound to take care that Ihe interest of its grantees—[it never seems to have occurred to our friend that we, too, are grantees]—are not prejudiced by these changes ; but, on the other hand, an English trading company is ill qualified to carry on the government and provide for the defence of a vast and inaccessible expanse of continental territory.

One would think so, seeing that it is just this territory which this writer has been telling us England shrinks herself from defending:–

Probably, the best and most equitable solution would be the cession of the whole region to the Northern Federation for a fair indemnity—[probably enough, from a point of view not ours— (hear, hear)]—and this would lead to the execution of the Great Northern Pacific Railway, under the auspices of the Federal power.

Would it? (Hear , hear, and laughter.)


HON. MR. HOLTON- Is that the policy?


MR. DUNKIN–A little further on, in the article, I find some amplification of this grand programme :—

The result of these proposals, if carried into effect, would be the creation of a new state in North America, still retaining the name of a British dependency, comprising an area about equal to that of Europe, a population of about four millions, with an aggregate revenue in sterling of about two millions and a half, and carrying on a trade (including exports, imports and intercolonial commerce) of about twenty-eight millions sterling per annum. If we consider the relative positions of Canada and the Maritime Provinces—the former possessing good harbors, but no back country, the former an unlimited supply of cereals, but few minerals ; the latter an unlimited supply of iron and coal, but little agricultural produce. The commercial advai – tages of union between states so circumstanced, are too obvious to need comment. The completion of the Intercolonial Railway, and the probable annexation of the fertile portions of the North-Western territory to the new Confederation, form a portion only of the probable consequences of its formation, but in which Europe and the world at large will eventually participate. When the–

HON. MR. MCDOUGALL — The hon. gentleman should do justice to the reviewer. He leaves out an important passage.

MR. DUNKIN–What is it?

HON. MR MCDOUGALL—After the word ” formation,” the following words are given :—” The benefits of which will not be limited to the colonies alone, but,” &c. Taken with the context, these words are important.

HON. MR. MCGEE-Hear! hear!

MR. DUNKLN—An ironical cheer is an easy thing to raise; but I fancy my character hardly warrants the insinuation that I would dishonestly falsify a quotation. I wrote out these extracts hurriedly, the one procurable copy of the Review being sent for while I was writing, and I had no opportuni ty of comparing my manuscript . I am sorry if in my haste I omitted a single word. [After comparing the passage in the Review with his manuscript, the hon. member said] : I find I have omitted exactly one line—certainly by the merest accident ; indeed, if any one can suppose I did it on purpose, he mus t take me for a confounded fool. (Hear, hear.)) But to continue my quotation, reading again that last sentence, with its dropped line :—

The completion of the Intercolonial Railway, and the probable annexation of the fertile portions of the Great North-Western territory to the new Confederation, form a portion only of the probable consequences of its formation, the benefits of which will not be limited to the colonies alone, but in which Europe and the world at large will eventually participate. When the Velley of the Saskatchewan shall have been colonized, the communications between the Red River Settlement and Lake Superior completed, and the harbour of Halifax united by one continuous line of railway, with the shores of Lake Huron, the three missing links between the Atlantic and Pacific ocean will have been supplied.

Three pretty large links, by the way, and it would have been more correct if the writer had said “three out of four”– the trifle of the Rocky Mountains being still left for a fourth. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. MCDOUGALL- That is very good.

MR. DUNKIN–I don’t think so; it’s rather too good. I have read these portions

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of the article to show what we are expected by thi s writer to do. We are to buy the Hudson’s Bay territory, and take care of it, and make a grand road all across the con- tinent, which Great Britain shrinks from contemplating herself. And now I will read just two passages to show how little sanguine he is of any good to be done by the scheme as regards ourselves, and iu the conduct of our own affairs. Here is one of them :—

What we have to fear, and if possible to guard against, is the constant peril of a three-fold conflict of authority implied in the very existence of a federation of dependencies retaining, as now proposed, any considerable share of intercolonial independence.

Rather a suggestive hint , and which, further on, is expanded and emphasized thus :—

If, as has been alleged, a legislative union is unattainable, because inconsistent with due securities for the rights guaranteed to the French Canadians, by treaty or by the Quebec Act, and Federation is therefore the only alternative, the vital question for the framers of this Constitution is how the inherent weakness of all federations can in this instance be cured, and the Central Government armed with a sovereignty which may be worthy of the name. It is the essence of all good governments to have somewhere a true sovereign power. A sovereignty which ever eludes your grasp, which has no local habitation, provincial or imperial, is in fact no government at all. Sooner or later the shadow of authority which is reflected from an unsubstantial political idea must cease to have power among men. It has been assumed by those who take a sanguine view of this political experiment, that its authors have steered clear of the rock on wh ch the WASHINGTON Confederacy has split. But if the weakness of the Central Government is the rock alluded to, we fear that unless in clear water and smooth seas, the pilot who is to steer this new craft will need a more perfect chart than the resolutions of the Quebec Conference afford, to secure him against the risks of navigation.

So far, then, according to the writer of this article, we have three points settled. He considers, and those for whom h e writes aud speaks consider, and the Edinburgh Review makes known that it considers—first, that the retention of these colonies is so manifestly disadvantageous to the parent state, that it would puzzle any statesman to find any reason for keeping us ; next , that a result of this nieasuie is to be the early carrying through by us of under takings too vast now for England not to shr ink from ; and thirdly, that the measure itself, viewed as a machinery of government for ourselves, is not going to work well. There is still a fourth point. The measure embodies a proffer of fealty to the British Crown—and with no hint but that such fealty, and the correlative dut y of protection, are meant both of them to be perpetual. How does our “writer treat of this ? He says :—

If the Quebec project were to be regarded as in any sense a final arrangement, and the equivalent in honor or power to be derived by the Crown from the acceptance of so perilous an authority, were to be weighed in the balance with the commensurate risks, the safety and dignity of the proffered position might be very questionable ; but it is impossible to regard this proposed Federation in any other light than that of a transition stage to eventual independence ; and in this view the prêcise form which Imperial sovereignty may for the time being assume, becomes a matter of comparatively secondary importance.

And, as if this was not warning plain enough, the article closes thus :—

The people of England have no desire to snap asunder abruptly the slender links which still unite them with their trans-Atlantic fellow-subjects, or to shorten by a single hour the duration of their common citizenship. * * * *

We are led irresistibly to the inference that this stage has been well nigh reached in the history of our trans-Atlantic provinces. Hence it comes to pass that we accept, not with fear and trembling, but with unmixed joy and satisfaction, a voluntary proclamation, which, though couched in the accents of loyalty, and proffering an enduring allegiance to our Queen, falls yet more welcome on our eats as the harbinger of the future and complete independence of British North America.

(Hear, hear). Well Mr. SPEAKER, I can only say that if these are the opinions which honorable gent lemen opposite are disposed to ” hear, hear ” approvingly, they are not mine. I find in them an unmistakable proof that there is an impor tant party at home who take up this measure, and hope to see it carried through with the mere view to its being a step to absolute independence on our part, and a cutting of the tie between these provinces and the parent state. (Hear , hear.) Sir, I look upon the early cutting of that tie as a certain result of this measure; and of that again, I hel d the inevitable result to be our early absorption into the republic south of us—the Uni ted States, or the Northern States, be which it may. (Hear, hear.) It cannot be, that we can form here an independent state that shall have a prosperous history. I say

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again, I am far from believing that this idea of separation is by any means the dominant opinion at home; but I am sure it is entertained by a prominent school of English politicians. (Cries of “Name, name.”) It is easy to call for names ; but there are too many ; one can’t go over the names of a whole school. I indicate them well enough when I give them the well-known name of the GOLDWIN-SMITH school. There are influential men enough, and too many, among them — (Renewed cries of “Name.”) Well then, I rather think Mr. COBDEN, Mr. BRIGHT, and any number more of the Liberal party, belong to this school—in fact, most of what are known as the Manchester school. But, joking apart, if honorable gentlemen in their simplicity believe that utterances of the kind I have been reading appear in the Edinburgh Review without significance, their simplicity passes mine. I read these utterances, in connection with those of the Times and of any quantity of other English journals,as representing the views of an influential portion of the British public, views which have such weight with the Imperial Government as may go some way to account for the acceptance— the qualified acceptance—which this scheme has met with at their hands. It is recommended at home—strongly recommended, just on this account, by those who there most favor it—as a great step towards the independence of this country. Now, I am not desirous that our acceptance of the scheme should go home to be cited (as it would be) to the people of England, as a proof that we so view it—a proof that we wish to be separated from the Empire. I am quite satisfied separation will never do. We are simply sure to be overwhelmed the instant our -neighbors and we differ, unless we have the whole power of the Mother Country to assist us.

MR. SCOBLE—We shall have it.

MR. DUNKIN—I think we shall, if we maintain and strengthen our relations with the parent state ; but I do not think we shall, if we adopt a scheme like this, which must certainly weaken the tie between us and the Empire. Our language to England had better be the plain truth—that we are no beggars, and will shirk no duty ; that we do not want to go, and of ourselves will not go ; that our feelings and our interests alike hold us to her; that, even apart from feeling, we are not strong enough, and know our own weakness, and the strength of the power near us ; and that the only means by which we can possibly be kept from absorption by that power, is the maintaining now—and for all time that we can look forward to—of our connection with the Mother Land. (Hear, hear.) We are told, again, that there are considerations connected with the Lower Provinces which make it necessary for us to accept this measure, that it is a solemn treaty entered into with them. Well, a treaty, I suppose, implies authority on the part of those who framed it to enter into it.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—We are asking for that authority now, but you oppose it.

HON. MR. McGEE—Her Majesty says in her Speech from the Throne at the opening of the Imperial Parliament, that she approves of the Conference that framed the treaty. Is not the royal sanction sufficient authority ?

MR. DUNKIN—Her Majesty’s approval of those gentlemen having met and consulted together, is not even Her Majesty’s approval —much less is it provincial approval—of what they did at that meeting. At most, the resolutions are not a treaty, but the mere draft of an agreement come to between those gentlemen.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—Oh, yes, it is a treaty, and we are now fighting to uphold it.

MR. DUNKIN—Well, it is a draft of a treaty if you like, but it is not a treaty. Plenipotentiaries, who frame treaties, have full authority to act on behalf of their respective countries.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—It is the same as any other treaty entered into under the British system. The Government is responsible for it to Parliament, and if this does not meet your approval, you can dispossess us by a vote of want of confidence.

MR. DUNKIN—The honorable gentleman may have trouble yet before he is through with it.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—Very well, we will be prepared for it.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—It is not so long since the honorable gentleman was voted out, and it may not be long before he is served the same way again. (Hear, hear, and laughter.)

MR. DUNKIN—Well, I was saying that this is no treaty to which the people either of Canada or of the Lower Provinces are at all bound ; and it is very doubtful whether the people of the Lower Provinces will not reject it. I am quite satisfied that the people of Canada ought not to accept it, and I am not

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so very sure but that before the play is played out to the end, they will refuse to accept it, especially the people of Lower Canada, where, if it is carried at all, it will be by a very small majority. (Hear, hear.) But the honorable gentleman (Hon. Mr. CARTIER) has come over to my ground that it is not a treaty, but only the draft of a treaty, subject to the disapproval of the House and country. Taking it, however, as a treaty merely between those who entered into it, I am disposed to make one admission, that it has one quality such as often attaches to treaties entered into by duly constituted plenipotentiaries, and that is, that there seem to be some secret articles connected with it. (Hear, hear.)

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—The gentlemen who entered into it represented their governments, and the governments of all the provinces were represented. It is therefore a treaty between these provinces, which will hold good unless the Government is ousted by a vote of the House.

MR. DUNKIN—The honorable gentleman does not, I suppose, forget that when this Government was formed there was a distinct declaration made, that until the plan they might propose should have been completed in detail and laid before Parliament, Parliament was not to be held committed to it in any way. (Hear, hear.) But I was going on to something else, and I cannot allow myself to be carried back. I was saying that, assimilating this to a treaty like some other treaties, it seems to have secret articles in it. I find that one of the gentlemen who took part in the negotiations, the Hon. Mr. HATHAWAY, of New Brunswick—

HON. MR. MCGEE — Mr. HATHAWAY was not here at all.

MR. DUNKIN—I was under the impression he was ; though I acknowledge I have not burdened my memory with an exact list of the thirty-three distinguished gentlemen who took part in the Conference. At all events, he was a member of the Government of New Brunswick, which was a party represented at the Conference. Mr. HATHAWAY, at a public meeting lately, said that—

He occupied a very unenviable position. He was under peculiar embarrassments, more so than any other speaker who would address them. It was well known to most of his audience that he had been one of the sworn advisers of His Excellency for the past three years. As such he could reveal no secrets of Council. It was true His Excellency had given him permission to make public the correspondence that had taken place on the subject of his resignation, but whatever might be the effect upon himself, there were secrets connected with the scheme that he could not divulge.

There were secrets of the scheme that he was not free to speak of. And we, too, find here that there are secrets ; many matters as to which we may ask as much as we like, and can get no information. But the main point I was coming to is this. Call this thing what you like—treaty or whatever you please—it is not dealt with in the Lower Provinces at all in the way in which it is proposed to deal with it here. The Lower Provinces, we think, are smaller political communities than ourselves. Their legislative councils, their Houses of Assembly, we do not call quite so considerable as our own. We are in the habit of thinking that among the legislative bodies in the British Empire, we stand number two ; certainly a great way behind the House of Commons, but having no other body between us and them in point of importance. (Hear, hear.) The Lower Provinces, I say, are not so big as we are, and yet how differently has our Parliament been treated from the way in which their smaller parliaments have been. And the apology, the reason assigned why we are treated as we are, is, that this thing is a binding treaty, if not yet between the provinces, at least between the governments of the other provinces and the Government of Canada. But how does the Lieutenant-Governor of Nova Scotia address his houses of parliament ? ” It is not my provinces,” says he, ” and I have no mission to do more than afford you the amplest and freest scope for the consideration of a proposal” — ne does not call it a treaty—he calls it merely ” a proposal, which seriously involves your own prospects.” I suppose it does ; but, so far from calling it a treaty, he does not call it even an agreement.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—But what he says implies that he so regards it.

MR. DUNKIN—Does it ? Let me read the whole passage :—

It is not my province, and I have no mission to do more than afford you the amplest and freest scope for consideration of a proposal which seriously involves your own prospects, and in reference to which you should be competent to interpret the wishes and determine the true interests of the country. I feel assured, however, that whatever be the result of your deliberations, you will de-

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precate attempts to treat in a narrow spirit, or otherwise than with dispassionate care and prudence, a question so broad that it in reality covers the ground of all parties, and precludes it from becoming the measure of merely one government or one party.

He gives his parliament perfect carte blanche to deal with it as they please.

MR. WOOD—AS a whole.

MR. DUNKIN—It is a pity the same language was not addressed to us. In that case, Mr. SPEAKER, I think the motion put into your hands would have been, that you should now leave the chair, in order that we might go into committee of the whole to give the matter careful and becoming consideration. It is not pressed on in Nova Scotia, as it is here, with undue haste. The Lieutenant- Governor, in the next paragraph of his speech, goes on to say :—

I need only observe further, without in the least intending thereby to influence your ultimate determination, that it is obviously convenient, if not essential, for the legislatures of all the provinces concerned to observe uniformity in the mode of ascertaining their respective decisions on a question common to all. I have, therefore, desired to be laid before you some correspondence between the Governor General and myself on that point.

That correspondence, too, which is to be laid before the Parliament of Nova Scotia, has not been laid before us. (Hear, hear.) I have given the language addressed by this Lieutenant- Governor to his Legislature with reference to this ” proposal.” In what language do the Commons of Nova Scotia reply ? How will they deal with it ?

The report from the delegates appointed to confer upon the union of the Maritime Provinces, and the resolutions of the Conference held at Quebec, proposing a union of the different provinces of British North America, together with the correspondence upon that subject, will obtain at our hands the deliberate and attentive consideration demanded by a question of such magnitude and importance, and fraught with consequences so momentous to us and our posterity.

This, sir, is all that the Government of Nova Scotia ask the Legislature of that province to say. And I do not think that this course of theirs exactly indicates that they think they have made a treaty by which they must stand or fall, and to every letter and line of which they must force their Legislature to adhere. If they do regard it in that light, they have a very indirect way of expressing their ideas. But this is not the case merely in Nova Scotia. In Prince Edward Island, every one knows the Government is not bringing this down as a treaty ; in New Brunswick everybody knows that the Government has been more or less changed since the Conference, that a general election is going on, and that a great deal will depend on the doubtful result of that election. Every one knows that the matter is in a very different position in every one of the Lower Provinces from what it is in here ; that there is none of this talk about a treaty anywhere but here. I would like, however, by the way, to draw the attention of the House for a moment to a case in which there undoubtedly was a treaty. I speak of the proceedings which eventuated in the union between England and Scotland. In the reign of Queen ANNE, at the instance of the two legislatures, then respectively independent— of England on the one hand, and of Scotland on the other—Her Majesty appointed commissioners to represent each of her two states, and they framed what were declared to be articles of a treaty. They took months to frame those articles ; and twice in the course of their proceedings Her Majesty came down to assist personally at their deliberations. Their meeting was authorized by acts of Parliament; they were named by Her Majesty ; they deliberated for months ; and the Queen attended their deliberations twice. And after they had entered into this treaty—so called on the face of it—the Parliament of Scotland departed from it and insisted on changes which were approved of by the Parliament of England, and the treaty as thus changed went into operation. In both parliaments the bills to give effect to it passed through every stage ; originated in Committee of the Whole, and had their first, second and third readings. All was done with the utmost formality ; and yet there was there unmistakably a treaty solemnly made beforehand. Here we have an affair got up in seventeen days by thirty-three gentlemen who met without the sanction of the Crown, and only got that sanction afterwards. The document they agreed upon is full of oversights, as the Colonial Secretary states, and as everyone knows who has read it. Yet our Government regard it as a sacred treaty—though no one but themselves so regards it—and want to give it a sacredness which was not claimed even for that treaty between England and Scotland. (Hear, hear.) I am at last very near the close of the remarks I have to offer to the House ; but I must say a few words as to the

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domestic consideration urged to force us into this scheme. We are asked, ” What are you going to do ? You must do something. Are you going back to our old state of dead-lock?” At the risk of falling into an unparliamentary expression, I cannot help saying that I am reminded of a paragraph I read the other day in a Lower Province paper, in which the editor was dealing with this same cry, which seems to be raised in Nova Scotia as well as here—the cry that something must be done, that things cannot go on as they are. I have not his words here, but their general effect was this—” Whenever,” says he, ” I hear this cry raised, that something must be done, I suspect there is a plan on foot to get something very bad done. Things are in a bad way—desperate, may be. But the remedy proposed is sure to be desperate. I am put in mind of a story of two boys who couldn’t swim, but by ill luck had upset their canoe in deep water, and by good luck had got on the bottom of it. Says the big boy to the little one, ‘ Tom, can you pray ?’ Tom confessed he could not call to mind a prayer suited to the ocoasion. ‘No, Bill,’ says he, ‘ I don’t know how.’ Bill’s answer was earnest, but not parliamentary. It contained a past participle passive which I won’t repeat. It was, ‘ Well, something must be done—and that—soon!” (Laughter.) Now, seriously, what do honorable gentlemen mean when they raise here this cry that ” something must be done?” Is it seriously meant that our past is so bad that positively, on pain of political annihilation, of utter and hopeless ruin, of the last, worst consequences, we must this instant adopt just precisely this scheme ? If that is so, if really and truly those political institutions which we were in the habit of saying we enjoyed, which, at all events, we have been living under and, for that matter, are living under now, if they have worked so ill as all that comes to, or rather if we have worked them so ill, I think we hold out poor encouragement to those whom we call upon to take part with us in trying this new experiment. We Canadians have had a legislative union and worked it close upon five and twenty years, and under it have got, it is said, into such a position of embarrassment among ourselves, are working our political institutions so very badly, are in such a frightful fix, that, never mind what the prospects of this particular step may be, it must positively be taken ; we cannot help it, we cannot stay as we are, nor yet go back, nor yet go forward, in any course but just this one. (Hear, hear.) If this thing is really this last desperate remedy for a disease past praying for, then indeed I am desperately afraid, sir, that it will not succeed. The hot haste with which gentlemen are pressing it is of ill omen to the deceived Mother Country, to our deceived sister provinces, and to our most miserably deceived selves. But the truth is that we are in no such sad case ; there is no fear of our having to go back to this bugbear past ; we could not do it if we would. Things done cannot be undone. In a certain sense, whatever is past is irrevocable, and it is well it should be. True we are told by some of the honorable gentlemen on the Treasury benches that their present harmony is not peace, but only a sort of armed truce, that old party lines are not effaced, nor going to be. Well, sir, if so, suppose that this scheme should be ever so well dropped, and then that some day soon after these gentlemen should set themselves to the job of finding out who is cuckoo and who hedgesparrow in the government nest that now shelters them all in such warm quiet, suppose there should thus soon be every effort made to revive old cries and feuds—what then ? Would it be the old game over again, or a variation of it amounting to a new one ? For a time at least, sir, a breathing time that happily cannot be got over, those old cries and old feuds will not be found to be revivable as of old. Even representation by population will be no such spell to conjure with —will fall on ears far less excitable. It has been adopted by any number of those who might otherwise be the likeliest to run it down. It will be found there might be a worse thing in the minds of many. Give it a new name and couple it with sufficient safeguard against legislation of the local stamp being put through against the vote of the local majority — the principle tacitly held so, and found to answer in the case of Scotland —and parliamentary reform may be found no such bug-bear to speak of after all. And as for the bug-bears of the personal kind, why, sir, after seeing all we have seen of the extent to which gentlemen can set aside or overcome them when occasion may require, it is too much to think they will for sone little time go for so very much. Like it or not, honorable gentlemen, for a time, will have to be to some extent busy with a game that shall be not quite the old one The friends of this project, Mr. SPEAKER, never seem to tire of prophesying to us smooth things, if only it is once first adopted. To every criticism on its many and manifest defects, the ready an-

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swer is, that we do not enough count upon men’s good sense, good feeling, forbearance, and all that sort of thing. But, sir, if the adoption of this scheme is so to improve our position, is to make everything so smooth, to make all our public men so wise, so prudent, and so conscientious, I should like to know why a something of the same kind may not by possibility be hoped for, even though this project should be set aside. If we are to be capable of the far harder task of working out these projected unworkable political institutions, why is it that we must be incapable of the easier task of going on without them ? I know well that in all time the temper of those who do not think has been to put faith rather in the great thing one cannot do, than in the smaller thing one can. ” If the prophet had bid thee do some great thing, wouldest thou not have done it ? ” And here too, sir, as so often before, if the truth must be told, the one thing truly needed is what one may call the smaller thing—not perhaps easy, but one must hope not impossible—the exercise by our public men and by our people of that amount of discretion, good temper and forbearance which sees something larger and higher in public life than mere party struggles and crises without end ; of that political sagacity or capacity, call it which you will, with which they will surely find the institutions they have to be quite good enough for them to use and quietly make better, without which they will as surely find any that may anyhow be given them, to be quite bad enough for them to fight over and make worse. Mr. SPEAKER, I feel that I have taken up a great deal of the time of the House, and that I have presented but imperfectly the views I am anxious to impress upon it as to this great question. But for sheer want of strength, I might have felt it necessary, at whatever risk of wearying the House, to go into some matters more thoroughly, and more especially into that branch of the subject which relates to what I may call the alternative policy I myself prefer to this measure, and would wish to see adopted and carried out. As it is, I have but to say in conclusion, while warmly thanking the House for the attention and patience with which it has for so many hours listened to me, that I have said nothing but what I firmly believe, and felt myself bound to say, and that I trust the sober good sense of the people of these provinces, after Ml reflection and discussion, will decide rightly upon this the largest question by far that has ever been before them for decision. (Cheers.)

On motion of Hon. Mr. CAUCHON, the debate was then adjourned.

THURSDAY, March 2, 1865.

MR. ARCHAMBEAULT—In rising on this occasion, sir, my intention is not to occupy the attention of the House for a long time, nor to discuss the merits of the measure which is now before us. I intend merely to explain my own motives for the vote which I shall give, and this I shall do as briefly as possible. I am bound to acknowledge at once that when I arrived in Quebec, at the commencement of the session, I was opposed to the plan of Confederation, and so strongly opposed to it, that I was fully determined to vote against it. But after a mote serious consideration of the question, and after hearing the explanations which have been afforded to us of the scheme of the Government, I have arrived at the conviction that I had decided, if not wrongly, at least hastily, and that I ought not to aid in the rejection of the measure, merely because it did not quite coincide with all my opinions. After listening to the discussion, and the explanations of the members of the Administration, I perceived that the plan was one of compromise and could not, therefore, be adapted to suit all views, nor shaped even to meet those of the men who framed it. I can understand that those persons who are opposed to any degree of Confederation, and who would rather have representation based on population or the annexation of Canada to the United States, may be opposed to the project of the Government, and reject it accordingly ; but those who, like myself, are not opposed to it under any circumstances, and are capable of appreciating the necessity of it at the present conjuncture, together with the advantages it may produce to the country, ought not, cannot, I think, reject it, only because some of its details are not exactly to their mind. It is our business first to enquire whether some constitutional changes are not necessary, and none I think will deny that they are. The political leaders of the two parties into which this House is divided, have acknowledged this as a necessity. It remains, therefore, only to consider what changes should be made. The members of the Government have decided this question, and proposed a Confederation of all the Provinces

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of British North America. They have come to an understanding with the sister provinces, and now lay before you their scheme of a Confederation. We are not now to inquire whether all the details of the scheme perfectly agree in every point with our particular ideas, but whether the change is necessary, whether the proposed scheme is good and fit to be accepted as a whole ; for, as the scheme is a compromise between different parties, whose interests are at variance with each other, the Government who now move its adoption must be held to bo responsible for all its details. Any amendment of the plan passed by this House would really be a vote of want of confidence in the Government, and you must therefore either adopt the plan as laid before you, or pass a vote of want of confidence in the present Administration. Now, I for my part am not prepared to vote a want of confidence in the men now in power. To induce me to do that, I must see in their opponents a better security for good government, and its advantages to the country, than they are able to show ; I must hope to find in the latter something better than what I find in those whose measures they withstand. So far, I do not find that they have offered, nor do I find that they now offer, such security or such hope. Far from it ; if we are to judge them by their former acts, we must confess that we cannot give them our confidence, that they have displayed great want of capacity for the government and management of the affairs of the country. When they were in power, they had no decided policy, they were incapable of dealing with any important question : they lived from hand to mouth. Their acts in the Administration were stamped with a spirit of resentment and injustice towards their adversaries. They instituted commissions of inquiry, for instance, against public officers, in order to get a pretext for dismissing them and making room for their hungry partisans. Again, have they any bettor plan to propose to us than that of the Government ? No ! They might offer us, perhaps, representation based on population, or annexation to the United States ; but I do not think such remedies would suit our taste. In these circumstances, I have no hesitation in declaring that I shall vote for the scheme of Confederation, as presented to us by the Government, although it does not meet all uiy views, and does not promise all the guarantees which I should be glad to and in it, and although I do not consider it as likely, in its present form, to afford a sufficient safeguard for the interests of the different provinces, and to secure stability in the working of the proposed union. As I am not in a position to influence public opinion, so as to oblige the Government to modify their plan to suit my views, I take sidos with the men who have always had my confidence, and with whom I have always acted, because I have confidence in their honesty and their patriotism. I cherish a belief that in this all-important question, which affects our best interests and our national existence and social welfare, they have been actuated by the same love for their country which has ever guided them in times past. (Cheers.)

MR. BLANCHET said—Mr. SPEAKER, as no one is disposed to take the floor just now, and it wo aid seem as if all who intend to discuss this question are bent on having a large audience in the galleries, I shall take upon me to say a few words. Those who moved to have the speeches of this House printed in official form certainly did no good service to the country; for all are trying which shall make the longest speech, and 1 do not think it is altogether just to the public purse. Each one would speak at a particular hour, and to the ears of a certain audience; but the history of the Parliament of England shews that her great statesmen and orators did not concern themselves about that. The greatest and most important speeches were delivered in the House of Commons at a very late hour of the night ; thus Fox delivered his great speech on the East India Bill at two o’clock in the morning; PITT his on the aboli lion of the slave trade at four o’clock in the morning ; and we should lose nothing by speaking before half-past seven in the evening. But as the honorable member for Montmorency (Hon. Mr. CAUCHON) is to speak this evening, and I wish to explain my way of thinking on the question, I rise to do so. This question of Confederation is not a new one. It has already agitated men’s minds and been a subject of debate for a great many years. Now public opinion is completely made up concerning it. I have no occasion to enter into details respecting the scheme which we have before us. It has been discussed with much more of knowledge and precision than I bring to the consideration of the subject, by the members of the Government and the honorable membars on the opposite side of the House. I need not say

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that the territory intended to be included in the Confederacy is nearly as large as all Europe, that it will contain four millions of suuls, and that having confederation, we shall become the fourth power in the world in respect of merchant shipping. We have only to compare the statement of our present imports and exports with that of the United States a few years ago, and we shall find that our position is as good as theirs was. I hold in my hand a work lately written by Mr. BIGELOW, at present chargé d’affaires from the American Government to the Tuileries, containing valuable statistics of the commerce, manufactures and resources of the United States, as well as of the war at present raging in that country. In the chapter devoted to commerce, he writes as follows :—

After the reorganization of the constitutional government in 1798, commerce speedily grew to vast proportions. The tonnage, which, in 1792,was 561,437 tons, had reached 1,032,-19 in 1801 ; the imports valued in 1792 at 31,000,000 dollars (157,500,000 francs), were in 1801, 111,363,511 dollars (556,817,555 francs); the exports had in the same period risen from 20,753,098 dollars (1″3,765,490 francs) to 94,115,925 dollars (470, 579,625 francs). In 18 7 the tonnage was 1,268,- 548; the imports 138,500,000 dollars (692,500,- 000 francs); and the exports 108,343,150 dollars (541,715,7 0 francs). At that period, American commerce received a blow from which it did not recover for several years. The measures of the English Parliament, followed by NAPOLEON’S decrees, issued from Berlin and Milan, and by the embargo of 1807, produced a deep stagnation in the commercial atfairs of the Union, and although the amount of tonnage did not very perceptibly diminish during the fifteen following years, the imports fell in 1808 to 56,990,000 dollars (284,- 950,000 francs), and exports 22,430,960 dollars (112,154,000 francs). The war of 1812-16 gave employment to the shipping which would otherwise have rotted in the docks, and occasioned some clipper privateers to be built; but the trade of the country continued to decline, so that in 1814 the imports rose only to 12,965,000 dollars (64,825,000 francs), and the exports 6,927,441 dollars (34,6. 7,205 francs.) The ending of the war gave activity to commercial pursuits. In 1815 the imports reached 113,041,274 dollars (565,206,370 francs) and in 1816, 147, 103,000 dollars (735,515,000 francs); the exports of these same years were 52,557,753 dollars (262,788,765 francs; and 81,905,452 dollars (409,602,250 francs). This amountof imports, which was in excess of the requirements of the country at that time, fell the following year to 99,250,000 dollars (496,25 ,000 francs), and from that period to 1830, excepting the year 1818, the average amount of the imports did not exceed 78 millions of dollars (390 millions of francs), and the exports reached about the same amount.

Thus we find that the average amount of the imports and exports did not exceed $78,000,- 000 at that time. We are only a lew years behind the United States in that respect. I said a moment ago that the question of a Confederation of all the Provinces of British North America was not a new one, and in fact we find that it was mooted at a somewhat remote period of the history of the country. In 1821, the leader of the Upper Canada Radi – cals, Mr. W. L. MACKENZIE , declared that he wished with his whole heart that there could be a Confederation of the British Provinces. Ten years later the scheme became a special question of debate, and the discussion established it as a positive fact, as it will soon be an historical one. (Hear, hear.) Other s besides the members on this side of the House are in favor of a Federal union ; some incline to a Confederation of all the Provinces, others to a Federal union of the two Canadas only—all are well disposed to a Federal union of one kind or other. At the time of the crisis of 1858, the BROWN-DORION Government were to settle the difficulties then besetting us, and if I understood the meaning of one of the members of that Government , who went to meet his constituents in order that they might ratify his acceptance of a portfolio in that Administration, the remedy intended to be applied to the existing evils by that Cabinet was a Federal union of the two Canadas ; but he said also that, al though the policy of the Government to which he belonged was not yet clearly defined, he thought they would take up, at some future day, the question of a Confederation of all the Provinces of British North America. That hon. member was the Hon. F. LEMIEUX, and he was re- turned by the county of Lévis immediately after making these declarations. Nearly about the same time Mr. J.C. TACHÉ , at present Secretary of the Board of Agricul – ture, wrote a work which was almost prophetic of the question of a Confederation of the British North American Provinces. It is unnecessary to remark that that gentleman had acquired much experience in his travels, and much information by hard study and presevering labor, and was therefore perfectly qualified to form a judgment on the question. Mr. TACHÉ has written a work of some length, in which he roughly sketches the scheme of a Confederation of the Provinces,

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of which I trust the House will permit me to cite a few lines. These will show that his predictions are speedily to he realized :—

What hopes may we not be allowed to indulge respecting the material future of the immense country which includes the two Canadas, New- Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, the Hudson’s Bay Territory and Vancouver’s Island, when we reflect on the wealth of a soil which is almost everywhere remarkably fertile, (we except the extreme north,) on the re sources which the forests have treasured up for the settler in the lapse of ages, on the immense fisheries in the Gulf, sufficient of themselves to feed the whole world with fish of the finest quality ; when we consider that the whole of this vast continent offers to us, in its various geological formations mineral wealth of the most precious kinds, and that nature has arranped for us channels of intercommunication of incredible grandeur. The fertile soil of these provinces intersected throughout their entire length by the rivers St. Lawrence and St. John, bathed by the waters of the Gulf and those of the Great Lakes, the superb forests through which flow the immense Ottawa, the St. Maurice and the Saguenay, the mines of copper bordering on lakes Superior and Huron, the iron mines of Canada, the coal measures of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, the seaports of Quebec, Halifax and St. John, the ores of all kinds dispersed throughout the provinces—all those form an aggregate of means which, if we suppose them to be turned to account by a competent population, governed by a political system based on true principles of order and liberty, justifies the most extravagant calculations of profit, the most extraordinary predictions of growth, as compared with the present state of things.

Thus spoke Mr. TACHÉ at that period. Not satisfied, moreover, with sketching with a rapid pencil the general working of this mighty organization, he entered, in a subsequent part of his work, into details which, astonishing to say—although I have no doubt that the members of the Conférence had read his work—exactly coincide with the plan now submitted to us. Accordingly, in the partition of powers between the General Government and the local governments, the scheme of the Conference is nearly word or word Mr. TACHÉ’S work.

HON. MR. DORION—The hon. member is mistaken, for Mr. TACHÉ assigns the ascendancy and the highest powers to the local governments, whereas the Government plan assigns them to the Central Government.

MR. BLANCHET—This is what Mr. TACHÉ says :—

These powers of the Federal Government are not, as we understand the matter, tobe exercised, except as regards the following subjects, viz., Commerce, comprising purely commercial laws, such as laws respecting banks and other institutions of a general financial character, coinage, and weights and measures; Customs, including the establishment of a uniform tariff, and the collection of the revenue resulting therefrom ; great Public Works and Navigation, such as canals, railways, telegraph lines, great seaport works and the lighting of the coast ; Post Office arrangements, both in their entirety and in their internal and external details ; the Militia in the entirety of its organization ; Criminal justice, comprising all offences which do not come under the jurisdiction of the police courts ard justices of the peace. Everything else connected with civil law, education, public charities, the settlement of public lands, agriculture, city and rural police, road works, in fact, with all matters relating to the family life, so to speak, of each province, will remain under the exclusive control of the tespective Local Government of each one of them, as by inherent right ; the powers of the Federal Government being looked upon as merely a concession of rights, which are specially designated.

I consider that under the present plan of Confederation the local legislatures are supreme in respect of the powers which are attributed to them, that is to siy, in respect of local matters. In this respect it goes even further than the honorable member for Hochelaga himself was prepared to go in 1859, for he proposed to leave to the Federal Government the right of legislating upon the French civil laws, &c, of Lower Canada ; but, as his Government was not very longlived, I know that the honorable member for Hochelaga can deny all this. Very nearly at the same time another Government addressed to the Imperial Government a memorial, in which it asked for the Confederation of the British North American Provinces ; but the Imperial Government replied that it was not prepared to give a decided reply ; and as there had been no agreement between the provinces, the matter remained in abeyance for the time. Thenceforward no steps were taken in the matter until last year—until the crisis, with the circumstances connected with which every one is perfectly well acquainted. Different governments had been defeated, and the country was already weary of that state of affairs, when the honorable member for Hochelaga moved his vote of censure upon the Government in relation to the $100,000 affair, and the Government then finding itself in a minority, was compelled to seek a remedy for the existing state of affairs, and the result wan the Coalition, the Quebec Confer-

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ence, and finally the plan of Con’ederation, although he does not now choose to acknowledge his offspring. (Hear, hear.) That conduct releases the latter from any debt of gratitude. (Hear.) It is not my intention to discuss the question of Confederation in a commercial point of view, nor in a financial point of view, nor in a political point of view, for in these several aspects it has been ably discussed by those who have preceded me. I shall confine myself to making a few remarks upon the question in respect of defence. Every one acknowledges that in order to defend a country effectually there must be unity of action, uniformity of system, and a combination of the meaas of defence. Without uniformity, without unity, it is impossible to make any serious attempt ut defence in case of attack, and the divided country falls an easy prey to the enemy. So general is this rule that history shews us that weak nations have always united together, have always coalesced when they were attacked or were in fear of being attacked by a powerful enemy The North American colonies did so in 1775, when they wished to offer resistance to the Mother Country. They organized themselves into a Confederation, and it was in consequence of their so doing that they were able to resist what they considered as an act of oppression on the part of England. Had those colonies, instead of organizing themselves as they did, had each of them a different system of defence, and had there been no uniformity in their tactics, England would have had an easy bargain of them. And is it to be supposed, if they had not banded themselves together, so as to possess a certain amount of strength, that they would have obtained the alliance and the assistance of France ? When a feeble power is attacked by a powerful enemy, it should seek to ally itself with other states which have interests in common with it, in order that they may defend themselves in common. So far as we are concerned, if we are desirous of assisting the Mother Country in offering an effectual resistance to invasions by the American people, we ought to have unity of command, in order that we might be able to send the militia from the centre and cause them to extend towards the circumference. In case of war with our neighbors, we should, of necessity, be compelled, by the very force of circumstances, to unite with the other provinces. That being the case, why not do so at once, in time of peace, while we have time to devote to it that calm and deliberate consideration which the importance o! the subject demands. Confederation is the sole means of offering resistance to attempts at invasion by our enemies. The Federal system is the normal condition of American populations ; for there are very few American nations which have not a political system of that nature. The Federal system is a state of transition which allows the different races inhabiting the same part of the globe to unite, with the view of attaining national unity and homogeneousness. Spain, Belgium, France, and several other European countries were formerly peopled by different races, who constituted so many different communities ; but they became united, they entered into confederations, and in the course of ages all the communities were consolidated into those which we now see—into everything that is held to be beautiful, noble and great throughout the whole world. When the Federal system has been put in practice in an enlightened manner, it has always sufficed for the requirements of those who adopted it. The case of Greece has been cited by an hon. member of this House, to show the fatal nature of this system to the nations who adopted it ; but he ought to know that the decadence of Greece only began from the moment when she abandoned the Federal system. The hon member for Lotbinière sought to prove that confederations were the source of all sorts of disturbances ; and in support of what he said, he read out to us the table of contents of the history of South America, in which he found a long list of échauffourées , movements, agitations, risings, civil wars and revolutions. It is not my wish to deny the facts quoted by the honorable member, but I must say that his conclusions are not correct, and that it is not right to draw conclusions adverse to a system from merely perusing the table of contents of any work whatsoever. The history of all nations will afford tables of contents, which, if they were taken as indicating the normal and habitual condition of a people, would cause us to make strange mistakes and to draw strange historical conclusions. Even the present history of England, the history of the reign of Her Majesty Queen VICTORIA, might afford to a person, who was desirous of forming a judgment respecting it from the table of contents alone, some facts which might induce him to believe in the complete disorganization of

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the British Empire ; for in it he would find allusion made to the Chinese war, the several insurrections in India, the insurrectional movement in Ireland, the Russian war, the Sepoy rebellion, and a large number of other matters; but all tins would prove nothing against the prosperity of the empire under the rule of Her Majesty. (Hear, hear.) But, without losing time over the reply which may be made to this style of reasoning, I say that it does not follow that the Federal system is impracticable, because it has not succeeded among certain people who were not in a sufficiently advanced condition for the application of the system. No constitution suits every people equally well; constitutions are made for the people, and not the people for the constitution. When a people is sufficiently enlightened and sufficiently educated and civilized, a constitution ensuring their liberty may be given them ; but it is necessary to wait until they are able to appreciate and enjoy it, before giving it to them. A free constitution entrusted to an unenlightened people is like an edged tool placed in the hands of a child ; it is a dangerous instrument, with which it may chance to wound itself. Besides, certain forms of government are better suited to certain people than others. Thus, to endeavor to give the English Constitution to the French people would be to commit a great mistake, for the French people are not adapted to the working of the political institutions of England. Again, try to give the English people the French Constitution, and the English people will revolt. Before giving a constitution to a people, that people must be taught how to use it. It cannot be said that a table of contents is not history, but certainly one would not seek in that part of the volume for the philosophy of history. Let us suppose that some one is desirous of reading the history of the Celestial Kingdom, and that on taking up the book he finds, in the table of contents, that at a certain period there was a terrible battle between the good and the wicked angels ; if he shared the ideas of the hon. member for Lotbinière, he would say to himself : ” This country cannot have a good government, and it is not advisable to live in it.” When a person draws historical conclusions from a table of contents, it shews that he has not derived much benefit from his who are now opposing Confederation are not agreed as to their mode of attack, any more than they are upon the means to be adopted to meet the difficul- ties of the position in which we are now placed. The hon. member for Hochelaga (Hon. Mr. DORION) is in favor of Confederation of the two Canadas, and the hon. member for Lotbinière (Mr. JOLY) is against any Confederation at all. They do not even agree as to their reasons for opposition. Some are opposed to Confederation because it grants too much to Lower Canada, and others because it grants too much to Upper Canada. Yet Confederation cannot be disadvantageous to everybody, and, for my part, I am of opinion that everyone may find something good in it, if he is only reasonable in his expectations. If the hon. member for Hochelaga were called upon to arrange the difficulties in which the country is at present situated, I am satisfied that he would not bring forward any other plan than gome scheme of Confederation or other; and if he did not succeed with the scheme for the Confederation of the Canadas, he would try the more extended plan of a great Confederation of all the provinces. There is indeed, it is true, another remedy which would be more likely to meet the views of certain members—annexation to the United States; but I , for my part, am resolutely opposed to it, and am prepared to fight against it by every possible means, and to take up arms, if necessary, to resist it. If we are ever invaded by the United States, I shall ever be ready to take up arms to drive the invaders out of the country. (Hear, hear.) A great outcry which is raised against Confederation is that about direct taxation. For my part, I consider that the honorable Minister of Finance (Hon. Mr. GALT) has proved clearly that we shall not require to have recourse to it. But even supposing that such should turn out to be the case, we should not be any worse off than we should be with the gentlemen on the other side of the House in power ; for it is perfectly well known that the hon. member for Chateauguay’s plan is to establish direct taxation. With them, therefore, we should not have to wait for Confederation before we got it. The honorable members on the other side of the House have also taken occasion to find fault with the Speech from the Throne having contained an allusion to the peace and general prosperity of the country. ” Why,” they say, “the Speech from the Throne states that trade is prospering, that the people are happy and contented, that the harvests have been magnificent, and that great contentment and great prosperity everywhere prevail ;

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and yet constitutional changes are proposed in order to soothe the discontent of the people and the agitation of the country.” Well ! let us suppose that the gentlemen are right—for it is true that the year has not been a good one in respect of business, and it is natuial that such should be the case, in view of the position of the crisis through which America is now passing, and but little else can be expected; the harvest has not been a very ¡good one,—however, allowing thai these gentlemen are right, it is not the less true that we are relatively in a state of quietude and great prosperity, and it is just at the present time, when we are in a state of tranquillity and can do it in perfect liberty, that we should adopt means to settle our internal difficulties. It is not during a time of trouble or a civil war that we can do it, and therefore we ought to profit by the opportunity which is now offered us. A Constitution will not last unless it is elaborated with the care, the deliberation and the calm consideration which can be devoted to it only in time of peace. We are now at peace with our neighbors, our friends are in a large majority, the question is known to the country and has been considered for several months past, and our duty is to do now in time ot peace, what it is impossible to do in time of trouble. We ought also to labor to enlighten public opinion on the subject of this plan of Confederation, not by appeals to its prejudices, but by free and open discussion, and by wise counsel based on that truth which should always be our guiding star. I am, therefore, disposed to vote in favor of the resolutions which are submitted to us. When I became aware that the Government were bringing forward this scheme of Confederation, I said to myself that we were about to be liberated from colonial leading-strings, and that we were about to become a people, and I expected the House would approach the question with due regard to its greatness; somehon. members have undoubtedly done so, but I regret that many others have not been able to raise themselves above the narrow considerations of party. The question has been discussed by statesmen on this side of the House at least ; but on the other side it has been made a miserable question of party and of taxation. With these few remarks, I shall conclude by stating that it is my determination to vote in favor of the scheme submitted to us.— (Applause.)

MR. BEAUBIBN—Mr. SPEAKER, I do not rise to make a long speech, for I freely acknowledge that it is not in my power to do so ; and besides, the question which is submitted to us has been so well discussed by those who have preceded me, and who are in a better position than myself to judge of the condition and requirements of the country, that the subject is almost exhausted. I only wish, by rising on this occasion, to record my presence at the debates which are in progress on this question, and to state in a few words what the reasons are which induce me to support this measure. The peculiar position of the British North American colonies and their proximity to the United States, call upon them to unite together in order to form a stronger nation, and one more able to withstand the onslaught of an enemy, should it be necessary so to do, and to increase their prosperity in a material point of view. There is one fact which must not be forgotten, and which I must mention—it is that when France abandoned this country, and England took possession of it, from that moment French immigration entirely ceased and gave way to immigration of persons of foreign origin—of British origin. From that period the English population increased from day to day in this couniry, and at the present time the French- Canadians are in a minority in United Canada. Under these circumstances, I am of opinion that it would be at once an act of imprudence and one charasterised by a lack of generosity on our parts to wish to prevent the maje rity of the population of the country from displaying greater aspirations for our common country, and from desiring its advancement and more rapid progress in an onward direction, at the same time drawing closer the bonds which unite us to the Mother Country. I have reflected on these matters, and although I am not disposed to submit to injustice to my country or my countrymen, yet I am ready to enter into a compromise with persons of other origins. I consider, moreover, that since we are satisfied with our position as English subjcc. s, and with the Constitution which we are allowed freely to exercise, we should do all in our power to increase England’s interest in her colonies; and for my part, I consider that the means of so doing is to accept the Confederation which is proposed to us. Not long since discontent was manifested in England among a part of the com-

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mercial class, in consequence of the liberty which we took of imposing high duties on English merchandize imported into this country; but the English Government did not share that discontent, I am happy to say, and did not choose to interfere. This fact, however, was of a nature to cast a chili upon the interest with which we were regarded in England ; but when the news of Confederation reached England, that interest was revived, and has ever since continued to increase. If we desire to interest England in our fate, we must draw closer the bonds that unite us to her, and we must do it by means of the Confederation now proposed to us. because that measure once carried out, she will undoubtedly put forth her whole strength for our defence if we should be attacked. Moreover, in view of the events which have recently occurred in the southern portion of this continent, if we reflect that it seems to be the policy of France and of England to establish a balance of power similar to what exists in Europe, if we consider that it is for this end that France has established an empire in Mexico, it is clear that England cannot but view with a favorable eye the movement now in progress here for the Confederation of all the British North American Provinces. It is not at such a time as this, therefore, that England would be disposed to abandon her colonies, as it has been pretended by some. I stated, a moment ago, that we should not resist the just demands of the British population of this country, provided they do not ask anything involving injustice towards French-Canadians. If we were guilty of injustice towards them, they would complain, and propose a plan of constitution humiliating to the French-Canadians, and they would no longer entertain sentiments of esteem and consideration for us. I do not refer to this matter for the purpose of discouraging my own fellowcountrymen, but because I believe it is necessary that they should take this view of the matter into account in the position in which we now .find ourselves placed. To-day our position is an excellent one; we are strong as a party, we have statesmen at the head of the affairs of our country who are devoted to its interest—they have proved it again and again—and united together by the ties of interest and friendship; and above all, we have ever had confidence in those who prepared the project of a Constitution now submitted for our consideration ; it is evident, then, that a more favorable opportunity could not possibly be found for effecting constitutional changes than the present circuuistauces afford. These men, who are surely possessed of as much diplomatic skill as the representatives of the other provinces can exhibit, will undoubtedly look after the interests of Lower Canada; and their opinion, based upon justice, will prevail with those to whom the preparation of our new Constitution is to be entrusted. Moreover, what I have just stated is perfectly understood by every influential class in the country, by all men who help to form public opinion, who are the guides of the people, and who have hitherto managed to lead them aright, and to bring them into a safe harbor at the last. To-day these men and these influences are in favor of the present plan, and a11 are convinced of its necessity. But, on the other hand, what are the influences opposed to Confederation in Lower Canada ? They are confined to a party which has existed for the past fifteen years in Lower Canada, and which has always been remarkable for its opposition to all measures demanded and supported by the party representing in this House the vast majority of the people of Lower Canada. This persistent opposition to the measures of the Lower Canadian party savoured of revolution—for your revolutionist is by nature incapable of submitting to the majority; it is the same party which in other countries forms secret societies, by means of which society is thrown into disorder—and it is admitted that everywhere, in Europe as well as in America, these secret societies are composed of men who are invariably opposed to everything calculated to secure the peace and happiness of the people. Is it not true that in 1856 or 1857 a place in the Administration was offered to one of the leaders of that party by the present Attorney General, and that an opening was repeatedly made for them, because it was thought that they were acting in good faith ? Now, did they not invariably refuse the alliance offered them ? And did they not even refuse to give a cordial support to the MACDONALD-SICOTTE Adminisstration, which was composed of Liberal- Conservatives? And the reason was, thatthat Administration was not exclusively composed of the democratic element.

HON. MR. DORION—Who voted against that Administration, and who defeated it ?

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MR. BEAUBIEN— It is true that the actual vote by which that government was upset was given by us, because there was in that Government an excess of the element I have just referred to, and for other reasons; but it was that party that betrayed and spurned those who had enabled them to carry their elections. (Hear, hear.) Is that not the truth ? Then, that persistent and constant opposition to everything, shows that the members of that party were inspired by passions, not to be found in the generality of men. The Conservative party has always opposed representation by population under the present union, because under this union we are face to face with the population of a country of which the products are diiferent from ours, and of which the interests are not always identical with ours. This question was strongly agitated. The whole people of Lower Canada resisted that demand, and the whole Conservative party firmly refused to consent to it, while the other party—the Opposition party—held out hopes to those who demanded that measure, and allied themselves with them. This is a statement, the truth of which cannot be denied, for documents proving the facts exist, and have been laid before this House and the country. This cause of dissension has always existed, and will always exist in Upper Canada, not because it is necessary to the support of such or such a party, but because it is the result of a provision of the Constitution, and because the interests ot Upper Canada are not the same as ours. Aud if we do not effect a settlement of this question now, these dissensions will, ere long, be renewed and the difficulties increased. Here is an opportunity of removing these difficulties by uniting ourselves with the Lower Provinces; aud I think Lower Canada would do well not to lose the opportunity. Under Confederation, the political parties into which the provinces will be divided will find it necessary to form alliances, and our alliance will bs courted by all, so that we shall in reality hold the balance of power. Moreover, I am quite convinced that we have no grounds for fear in that respect. I have always remarked that material interests are of great weight in the formation of parties, and the conduct of tlie French-Canadians, with reference to their religious institutions, never inspired any uneasiness or distrust in our fellow-countrymun of a different origin trom ours, when they found it their interest to form an alliance with us ; and I am certain that we shall find, under like circumstances, the same disposition among the inhabitants of the Lower Provinces. The plan proposed to us being based upon the principle of justice and equity to all, it is deserving of the support of all parties. It presents a remedy for the evils of which Upper Canada complains, at the same time that it affords guarantees for the protection of the interests of the other provinces ; and inasmuch as it is founded on just bases, it will be found—more especially among a people such as that of this country, who are peaceable and well-disposed, who are, for the most part, owners of land, and have many interests to protect—it will be found, I say,that a sentiment of justice will prevail, and that every one will do his best to promote the working of the new Constitution in such a manner as to give full satisfaction to all the parties interested. Notwithstanding what the hon. member for Lotbinière has said in the course of a speech, with which he himself seemed to be so intensely amused, the sound sense and judgment of the people of Lower Canada will satisfy them that they will find in the project which has been submitted to us, guarantees for all their interests and for everything they hold dear, and that the measure will meet all their wants ; and on the other hand, the sound sense and judgment of the people of the other provinces will prevent them from committing any excess or any act of injustice towards Lower Canada, if the latter should happen to be in a minority, or if the alliance I have referred to should not be made. And, moreover, as regards our being in a minority, are we not exposed to it under the present system? And I prefer facing the larger majority, since it will be less hostile to Lower Canada. As matters now stand, we should find ourselves at the mercy of the Upper Canada majority, if they wished to commie any injustice towards us; but, under the Confederation, I believe we shall have better guarantees than we now possess against any attempt at injus-, tice on the part of the Federal Government, for the policy of England is to afford her colonies every possible reason for contentment. The hon. member tor Richelieu has spoken of the events which occurred prior to 1837, to convince us that we have every reason to distrust the sentiments of the British population. Why refer to matters so long forgotten ? The hon. member ought to know that the policy which circumstances have induced England to adopt, is no longer

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the policy which then prevailed. Does any one believe that England would now encourage any section of the British population in doing an injustice to the inhabitants of Lower Canada ? It will be said that the national life of Lower Canada is so deeply rooted, that it is impossible to destroy it ; buf, if we desire to secure its safety, we must accept the present scheme of Confederation, under which all the religious interests of Lawer Canada, her educational institutions, her publie lands, iu fact everything that constitutes a people’s nationality, will fiad protection and safety. With the control of our public lands in our own hands, we can attract the tide of emigration, retain our own people in the country, and advance in prosperity as rapidly as the other provinces. And all this is secured to us under the plan of Confederation. Every impartial man will admit that great care has been taken, in the drawing up of this project of Confederation, to protect all our interests. It may be true that it is not quite free from defect, but every one mnst acknowledge that it is the most perfect system that could possibly be obtained, and the system best calculated to afford us security. All the hon. gentlemen who have spoken on the Opposition side say that the expenses will be extraordinary, and that the revenue will not be sufficient to support the governments of the Confederation. But they base their calculations upon the revenue as it now stands, and they do not reflect that the present debt of the province has been contracted in carrying out the vast public works we now possess, and that these public works have not as yet produced a revenue, but will hereafter do so. These public works were essentially necessary for the development of our resources ; and if at this moment the Minister of Finance is able to present a budget shewing a surplus of revenue over expenditure, we are justified in hoping that within a few years our revenue will be more than sufficient to enable us to meet all the expenses of the different governments, and to extinguish our present debt For my own part, I do not think that our expenses will be greater under Confederation than they are at present. If the Federal Government works well, our expenses will be less than they are at present, for we shall be rid of factious sectional jealousies, and the system of equivalents, which, have done so much injury to the country, and which have so greatly impeded the working of the Government in times past. It is ridiculous to fancy that the Government of Canada can continue to work and maintain itself with a majority of one or two votes in this House, as we have witnessed for some years past ; for a government so placed is at the mercy of every member who has a local interest to serve, or a particular favor to obtain ; and it is thus forced to grant favors which it would refuse if it were stronger. This was the cause of all the useless expenditure ; and almost every one of our governments has been in that position. (Hear, hear.) But under Confederation we may hope tbat the Federal Government will generally have the support of a large majority, and will consequently not be compelled to yield to the demands of a small number of members. The resources at the disposal of the local governments being limited, they will practise a degree of economy which will serve as an example to the Federal Government itself. Lower Canada, when left to herself, will become highly prosperous in a few years—and perhaps Upper Canada also — provided her expanses bo kept within bounds ; and I am convinced that her Local Government will be a model for the Federal Government ; for men formed in the school of the Local Government, and who will be habituated to the practice of economy, will exert a salutary influence on the members of the Federal Legislature, to whom they will impart, and on whom they will impress, their ideas of economy and good government. (Hear, hear.) It is well that the moans at the disposal of the local governments should be limited, but at the same time amply sufficient, for they must then feel that they cannot enter into too large expenditure, and they will adopt a perfect system of economy. (Hear, hear.) Before concluding I must pay a tribute of justice to the British population of Lower Canada. We have always gone along hand in hand like good friends, acknowledging each other’s rights, and each party invariably making it a rule to accede to the just claims of the other. This will be our safety also under the Federal Government. For my part I should be sorry to see the present plan of Confederation, fail, at all events through any action of ours, for that would justly dissatisfy the British population of this country, who desire to see it carried out, and to whom we should not refuse it. We know that the British have always done everything in their power to promote the material prosperity of the country, and it is our duty to respect them and to accede to their just demands. With these few

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remarks, Mr. SPEAKER, I shall conclude by stating that I am in favor of the present plan of Confederation, not because I trust solely to the evidence of my own judgment, but because I see at the head of the movement the most enlightened men in the country, and because all the men of influence, all the men of property in the country, are in favor of the project. (Hear, hear.) And I am convinced, notwithstanding all that may have been said, that the country is sufficiently familiar with the project, and that the people now know all they will ever know about it. In every parish there are men who are the leaders of public opinion, and we know that these men are in favor of this plan. We have all these influences with us, and for my part I attach but little importance to the opinion expressed at certain public meetings held to oppose Confederation, or to the petitions presented against the project, for it is always easy to obtain signatures to petitions. And, moreover, let any one compare the signatures to these petitions with the poll-books kept at elections, and it will be found that they are the names of those who have always been opposed to everything proposed by the great national party, which has ever represented the interests of Lower Canada. (Applause.)

MR. DUFRESNE (of Montcalm)—Mr. SPEAKER, I do not rise to speak on the question now before the House, but simply to express my surprise that after six weeks of discussion the Opposition pretend that we refuse them time to discuss the measure, and that nevertheless they refuse to discuss it during the afternoon sittings, and will only take it up in the evening. For my part, I am prepared to vote at once upon this matter, and I believe that the question is perfectly mastered and well understood by every member of this House. Why are the Opposition unwilling to speak during the afternoon sittings ? Their object in speaking is to kill time, rather than to discuss the merits of the question. And why is this ? Is it because they are waiting for a few more petitions, a few more names, in order to protest against Confederation ? But we know the value of these petitions—we know what the Rouges are, and that they will sign any and every petition, provided it be against the Government and its policy. The Opposition is like a sulky child ; if you refuse him a plaything he cries for it, and then if you offer it to him he refuses to take it. The Confederation is in reality the plan of thuse gentlemen themselves, and yet to-day they will not hear of it ; they reject it as something horrible. The country is watching them, and I hold the Opposition responsible for the loss of time we are now undergoing. If they have any reasons to advance, let them do so, but let us come to a vote. Their conduct will receive it? due reward at the hands of the people. (Hear, hear.)

After the recess,—

HON. MR. CAUCHON said—Mr. SPEAKER, when so many eloquent voices have spoken on the great question which occupies us so seriously, which stands preeminent over all others in the present situation, which pre-occupies all minds, which agitates to its farthest limits all British North America, which includes within its immense scope two oceans and nearly half a continent, and which is pregnant with the destinies of a great people and a great country—when the whole of the motives which can be advanced for and against the project have been so luminously discussed, when 1 myself have, elsewhere, at such considerable length and so completely developed, with the feeble abilities which Providence has conferred upon me, the considerations which militate for or against the entirety and the details of the work of the Quebec Conference, I might—perhaps I should—have remained a simple spectator of these solemn debates, while awaiting the hour at which I should be permitted to record my vote in accordance with my convictions. I considered, however, that as one of the oldest representatives of the people, after having spoken elsewhere, I should speak again within the parliamentary precinct, in order to accomplish to the letter my trust, and in order to obey that voice which has a right to command me. I have therefore come this evening in order to bring my feeble tribute of ideas to the decisive ordeal which is being accomplished. For my part I should have wished for the bringing forward of fewer personal questions, fewer criminations and recriminations, fewer allusions to the past ; in a word, I should have wished to see the debate rising at its very outset to the dignity of the question itself, so as to place us in a position to judge of it on its own merits, without considering the names or the antecedents of those who may defend or may oppose it ; I should have wished to see the conscience of our public men in harmony with the public conscience, and that under such grave circumstances, men had forgotten that they were party men, in order to remember only their national character. (Hear, hear.) But sev-

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eral of the speakers have not appreciated the situation in this manner ; they have not believed that was of such importance as to exact the development of great virtues and great sacrifices. One honorable gentleman amused himself by making jeux de mots of doubtful merit on the complexion of two pamphlets ; another devoted a third of his long speech to the task of endeavoring to make his present position agree with his antecedents, and the other two-thirds almost entirely to an effort to make his opponents contradict themselves, without any regard to the question under discusión, imitating the Trojan hero of whom VIRGIL sings, and of whom ROUSSEAU says :

” Pouvait-elle mieux attendre
De ce pieux voyageur,
Qui, fuyant sa ville en cendre,
Et le fer du Grec vengeur,
Quitta les murs de Pergame
Tenant son fils par la main,
Sans prendre garde à sa femme,
Qui se peidit en chemin? ” (3)

(Hear, hear, and laughter.) I scorn to defend here my past opinions on Confederation. I wrote from conviction in 1858, just as I have written from conviction in 1865. My two works are there—provoking discussion, and throwing down the gauntlet to those who may desire to take up. It will soon be a third of a century since I commenced to write, and if I had no other recommendation to public attention than that of being the oldest journalist in the country, appears to me that people ought, if they could, not to have allowed me to pass without asking me the reason of my present doctrines. How is it, then, that from the midst of the democratic and opposition press not a single voice has been heard against the long commentary of the Journal on the scheme of the Quebec Conference? (Hear,hear.) Is it inability ? Is that talent is wanting among this phalanx which believes itself to have been specially ushered into existence in order to enlighten and govern the country ? Even if I had not written under a strong sense of duty, I should feel sufficiently strengthened by the high and disinterested approbation which greeted my humble work, to bear undisturbed the scratches and pin pricks of the honorable member for Lotbinière, and, all unworthy though may be, I should not hesitate to place in the balance against, I will not say the episode, but the speech by which he seems to hope to arrive at the position of a statesman, to which he aspires. It is to be regretted also that the honorable member for Hochelaga kept himself almost constantly, during three hours and a half, in the lowest level of personal recriminations. Wa s he unable to raise himself to a more dignified ground, or is it the natural level of his talents and his habits ? It seems to me that the occasion required more serious debate, larger views, wiser appreciation drawn from more profound thoughts, a truer idea of the situation, greater truth in the statement of facts, greater exactness, more sequence, and more logic in the reasoning. But , instead of this, we have had a jumble of ideas and assertions, dates which give each other the lie, and a history sadly made and sadly told. The honorable gentleman challenged me, and I must accept this challenge before entering upon the consideration of the question which is now before us. The honorable gentleman (Hon. Mr. DORION) said the other evening :—

This speech has been tortured and twisted in every possible sense. I have seen it quoted in order to prove that I was in favor of representation by population pure and simple ; I have seen it quoted in order to prove that I was in favor of the Confederation of the provinces, and, in fact, to prove many other things, according to the necessities of the moment or of those who quoted it. (Hear, hear, and laughter.) The fiist time the question was put to a practical test was in 1858. On the occasion of the resignation of the MACDONALD-CARTIER Government the BROWN-DORION Government was formed, and it was agreed between the members that the constitutional question should be met and settled, either by means of a Confederation of Upper and Lower Canada, or by means of representation by population, with checks and guarantees ensuring the religious faith, the laws, the language and the local institutions of each section of the country against any attack from the other. Pretended extracts from this document as of my speech have been given and falsified, in the press and elsewhere, to prove every kind of doctrine as being my views ; but I can show clearly that the proposition which it contains is exactly the same as that which was made in 1858, that is to say, Confederation of the two provinces, with some joint authority for the management of affairs common to both. My speeches have been late y paraded in the ministerial journals ; they haye been distorted, ill translated, and even falsified, in order to induce the publie to believe that I

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formerly held opinions different from those which I now hold. A French journal has said ” that I loudly called for a Confederation of the provinces.” But I shall say now, as I stated in 1856, and as I stated in 1861, that I have always been and am still opposed to Confederation. I find by the Mirror of Parliament, which contains a report of my speech, although an exceedingly bad report, that I stated in 1861—”A time may come when it will be necessary to have a Confederation of all the provinces ; * * * but the time has not yet come for such a scheme.” This was the speech which was misrepresented as meaning that I was calling loudly for Confedertion, and that nothing would give me greater pleasure. And yet I explicitly stated on that occasion that although a time might come when Confederation would become necessary, it was not desirable under actual circumstances.

The honorable gentleman already admits two things with which he has been charged—representation on the basis of population, with checks, guarantees and assurances, and the Confederation of Upper and Lower Canada. We shall now see if, in extending the field of my investigations, I shall not find that the honorable member for Hochelaga has—to use a felicitous expression of the honorable member for Lotbinière—occasionally enlarged the circle of his constitutional operations. Here is what the honorable gentleman stated on the 6th July, 1858 ; the extract is from the Globe, of which, at that period at least, he did not question the veracity :—

The honorable member for Brockville, the Honorable Postmaster General, the Speaker, and other members representing Lower Canadian counties in the present Parliament, have voted for representation by population. Before long, it will be impossible to resist the demands of Upper Canada in this respect. If representation by population is not granted now, it will infallibly obtain it at a later period, but then without any guarantees for the protection of the French- Canadians. The repeal of the union, a Federal union, representation based on population, or some other great change must in all necessity take place, and for my part I am disposed to consider the question of representation by population, in order to see if it may not be conceded with guarantees for the protection of the religion, the language, and the laws of Lower Canadians. I am equally ready to take into consideration the project of a Confederation of the provinces, leaving to each section the administration of its local affairs, as for example the power of regulating its own civil, municipal and educational laws ; and to the General Government the administration of the public works, the public lands, the post-office department, and commerce.

I now quote the Mirror, the orthodoxy and veracity of which are denied by the honorable member for Hochelaga and his organ?. The date of the report in the Mirror is the 3rd May, 1860 :—

I hope, nevertheless, that a day will come when it will be desirable for Canada to unite federally with the Lower Provinces ; but the time is not yet ripe for such a project. And even if Canada should be favorable, the Maritime Provinces would not like to enter into it on account of our great debt. As to the joint authority, it ought to have the least authority. But those who are in favor of the Federal union of the provinces ought to see this Federation of Upper and Lower Canada is the best mode of creating a nucleus around which, at a later period, the Confederation of all the provinces might be formed.

Thus the honorable member for Hochelaga had all sorts of wares, jus t as the keeper of a “general store” possesses all sorts of merchandise, great and small, on his shelves. To some he sells lace and to others cutlery. (Laughter.)

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER–It is a pot pourri. (Laughter)

HON. MR. CAUCHON — The honorable gentleman calls it a pot pourri. I think my comparison of It as a general store is much more accurate and characteristic.

A MEMBER — Music is sold there. (Laughter.)

HON. MR. CAUCHON—Yes, on his shelves loaded with all sorts of goods, even old music is to be found. (Laughter . ) Here there is a conflict of authorities as there is in relation to dogmatic questions between Protestant and Catholic writers ; and the Pays expressed itself as follows with respect to the Mirror of Parliament :—

But here is the crowning of the edifice. The editor of the Journal finds strange things in the Mirror of Parliament, a publication which was never controlled by any committee of the House, and the authority of which is worth less than that of a solidly founded newspaper such as the Globe, the Herald, the Chronicle, or the Journal de Québec itself. It is notorious that the reporters for this Mirror were not over particular as to their correctness, and that but little importance was attached to their reports ; so much so that the sheet iu question had only an ephemeral existence.

Whout admitting the truth of the pretensions of this organ of the honorable member for Hochelaga, I did not hesitate to follow the honorable gentleman on the ground which he himself has chosen, and I found the following in the Morning Chronicle of the 4th

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May, 1860, to which he referred me for a more exact and veracious report—it being the same speech of the third May, a report of which I have read from the Mirror of Parliament. [Here the honorable gentleman read a French translation of the Chronicle’s report.] And in order that there may be no doubt as to the exactness of the translation, with the exception of a word which I shall explain after reading the extract, I shall now quote the English text as reported in the Chronicle, viz. :—

Mr. DORION argued that when Lower Canada had the preponderance of population, complaints were of the inequality of the representation of that section. The union of Belgium and Holland, which was somewhat similar to that at present existing between Upper and Lower Canada was dissolved when it was found it did not work advantageously to both countries. He instanced a number of questions on which it was impossible for Upper and Lower Canada to agree ; public feeling being quite dissimilar—subjects popular in one section being the reverse in the other. He warned Lower Canada members, that when the time came that the whole of the representatives from the western portion of the province would be banded together on the question, they would obtain representation by population, and secure the assistance of the Eastern Township members in so doing. He regarded a Federal union of Upper and Lower Canada as a nucleus of the great Confederation of the North American Provinces to which all looked forward. He concluded by saying he would vote for the resolution, as the only mode by which the two sections of the province could get out of the difficulties in which they now are. He thought the union ought to be dissolved, and a Federal union of the provinces would in due time follow.

The translation into French says, ” que j’appelle de mes voeux,” and the original text is ” to which all looked forward.” Thus, instead of rendering the desire for a Confederation of the provinces, as his own he made it general. Instead of speaking for himself, be spoke for all, and as the whole comprises the part, in expressing the general thought he bad most naturally expressed his own thought. (Hear, hear.) I take this opportunity of correcting this involuntary error of translation, and of saying that the honorable gentleman affirmed then that not only himself, but that all turned their eyes from the mountain top towards the promised land of Confederation of all the British North American Provinces. Did not the honorable member for Hochelaga say in his famous manifesto of the 7th Nov., 1864 :—

The union which is proposed appears to me premature, and if it is not altogether incompatible with our colonial state, it is at least without precedent in the history of the colonies.

And the other day, in this House he stated :—

Necessarily, I do not mean to say that I shall always be opposed to Confederation. The population may extend itself, and cover the virgin forests which exist between Canada and the Maritime Provinces, and commercial relations may increase in such a manner as to render Confederation necessary.

It is, therefore, in every respect merely a question of time, and of expediency as between the majority of the House and the honorable member for Hochelaga. But he has not thought proper to tell us why Confederation of all the provinces of British North America is to-day a crime, an anti-national act, yet would have at one period, been good and acceptable to Lower Canada. In the same manner he has also preserved silence on the character which Confederation should possess, in order to merit the sanction of his word and his vote. Always to condemn, always to destroy, never to build up—this appears to be the motto of the honorable member for Hochelaga, and those who follow his lead on the floor of this House. (Hear, hear.) They always keep to themselves the easiest share of sacrifice and patriotism—the task of casting blame and censure upon others. (Hear, hear.) The honorable gentleman thinks that the union proposed to us, that is to say Confederation, is without precedent in Colonial history. He has, therefore, not read the Federal history, scarcely accomplished, of the colonies of Australia. But if it be true that the Confederation of the six colonies is without precedent in Colonial history, will the honorable gentleman at least tell us where he found his precedent for the Confederation of the two provinces ? (Hear, hear, and laughter.) In order to get out of the difficulty again this time, the honorable gentleman will hardly deny that which he affirmed so categorically only the other evening. It is evident that logic and a recollection of facts are not among the most prominent features of the honorable member’s eloquence. Since he desires so much to establish that he was at all times in favor of a Confederation of the two Canadas as an alternative for representation by population, it appears to me, and it ought to bo evident to the House and to the country which we represent, that he should have stated the motives of such a deep and constant

[Page 558]

conviction. Why conceal from us the fruits of so many and such serious meditations? Why, setting aside the facile and convenient task of censor, does he not come forward as the architect of a political edifice capable of sheltering and protecting against tempest from without, our nationality and the institutions of which it is composed. It is because ” if criticism is easy, art is difficult.” This truth enunciated by a poet, nearly two thousand years ago, evidently belongs to all ages, and it finds, to-day more particularly, its application in the person of the honorable member for Hochelaga. (Hear, hear.) Tempora mutantur et nos mutamur in illis—and behold, the honorable gentleman told us on the 16th February, 1865:—

Representation “based upon population was one of the least causes of this project. [And further on] : But, as soon as the Government found itself, after its defeat, obliged either to resign or to appeal to the people, gentlemen on the other side of the House, without there being the slightest agitation on this question, prepared to embrace their most violent adversaries, and said to themselves: ” We are going to forget our past differences, provided we can preserve our portfolios. “

Had the honorable gentleman, therefore, forgotten that which he stated with so much emphasis and apparently with so much conviction in 1858 :—

The honorable member for Brockville, the Postmaster General, the Speaker, and other members representing Lower Canadian counties, in the present Parliament, have already voted for representation by population. Before long, it will become impossible to resist the demand of Upper Canada in this respect. If representation by population be not granted now, it will infallibly obtain it later, but then without any guarantee for the protection of the French Canadians.

Had he changed his opinion in 1859 when he wrote conjointly with Hon. Messrs. DRUM- MOND, DESSAULLES and MCGEE:–

It is with the settled conviction that an inevitable constitutional crisis imposed upon the Liberal party of Lower Canada duties proportionate with the gravity of the circumstances in which the affaiis of the country were, that your Committee has undertaken the task with which it is charged. It has become evident to all those who, for several years back, have given their attention to daily events ; and above all to those who have had to mingle actively with public affairs, that we are rapidly reaching a state of things which will necessitate modifications in the relations existing between Upper and Lower Canada ; and a search for the means most likely to meet the difficulty, when it presents itself, has not failed to be the subject of the most serious consideration and frequent discussion in and out of Parliament.

* * * * * * *

The proposition for the formation of a Confederation of the two Canadas is not a new one. It has frequently been agitated in Parliament and in the press for several years past. The example of the neighboring states, in which the application of the Federal systeln has shewn us how fitting it was to the government of an immense territory, inhabited by people of different origins, creeds, laws and customs, has no doubt suggested the idea; but it was only in 1856 that this proposition was enunciated before the Legislature by the Lower Canadian Opposition, as offering, in its opinion, the only effective remedy for the abuses produced by the present system.

* * * * * * *

Lower Canada wishes to maintain intact the present union of the provinces. If she will not consent to a dissolution nor to Confederation, it is difficult to conceive what plausible reasons she can advance for refusing representation by population. Up to the present time she has opposed it by alleging the danger which might result to some of the institutions which are most dear to her; but this reason would be no longer sustainable if it resisted a proposition the effect of which would be to leave to the inhabitants of Lower Canada the absolute control of those same institutions and to surround them with the most efficient protection which it is possible to imagine— that which would procure for them the formal dispositions of a written constitution, which could not be changed without their consent.

* * * * * * *

It appears therefore that the only alternative which now offers itself to the inhabitants of Lower Canada is a choice between dissolution pure and simple, or Confederation on one side, and representation by population on the other. And however opposed Lower Canada may be to representation by population, is there not imminent danger that it may be finally imposed upon it, if it resist all measures of reform, the object of which is to leave to the local authorities of each section the control of its own interests and institutions.

We should not forget that the same authority which imposed on us the Act of Union, or which altered it without our consent, by repealing the clause which required the concurrence of twothirds of the members of both Houses in order to change the representation respecting the two sections, may again intervene to impose upon us this new change.

* * * * * * *

The customs, postal matters, laws regulating currency, patents, copyrights, public lands, and those public works which are of common interest to all parts of the country, should be the principal if not the only subjects of which the Federal Government would have the control, while all that related to purely local improvements, to edu-

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cation, to the administration of justice, to militia, to laws of property and internal policy, should be left to the local governments, the powers of which, in a word, should extend to all those subjects which do not come within the domain of the General Government.

Your Committee believes that it is easy to prove that the expenses absolutely necessary for the support of the Federal Government and the several local governments ought not to exceed those of the present system, while the enormous indirect expenses occasioned by the latter system would be avoided by tho new—both on account of the additional restrictions which the Constitution would place upon all public expenditure, and of the more immediate responsibility of the several officers of the Government towards the people who are interested in restraining them. The Federal Legislature having only to occupy itself with a limited number of affairs, might, in a short time every year, perform all necessary legislation ; and, as the number of members would not bo very great, the expenses of the Federal Government would not, therefore, be a fraction of the present expenses, which, added to the cost of the local governments, if they were on the plan of those of the United States, which are the best and the most economically administered, could not exceed the figure of the present budget.

The system proposed could not in any way diminish the importance of this colony, nor damage its credit, inasmuch as it offers the great advantage of being able to suit itself to any territorial extension which circumstances might, in future, render desirable, without troubling the general economy of the Confederation.


MR. PERREAULT—I rise to a question of order. We have listened with much pleasure to the excellent pamphlet which the honorable member has been reading out to us for half an hour past. I can understand that the honorable member having written a pamphlet in 1858 against Confederation, and another in 1865 in favor of Confederation, now feels tho necessity of writing a third pamphlet to make the two others agree. But, as the honorable member for Montmorency possesses great powers of improvisation, the House, I think, ought not to be more indulgent to him than to other members, who are compelled to speak under all the disadvantages of improvisation, which is always difficult. I have, therefore, to ask whether the honorable member for Montmorency is in order in reading his magnificent speech from beginning to end ?

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER–I see nothing extraordinary in this particular case. I see that my honorable friend the member for Montmorency has notes before him to which he refers, but I do not see any speech. The honorable member for Richelieu, with his eccentric genius, requires no notes when he makes those splendid speeches with which he regales us from time to time. I can easily understand that for such lucubrations no very lengthy preparation is necessary. (Laughter.)

HON. MR. CAUCHON–Every one has not the genius of the honorable member for Richelieu. I know also that ho is one of those who can talk a long time, because they do not always know what they are saying. (Laughter.) The honorable member may talk as long as he likes, without being afraid of my interrupting him, for his speeches can do no harm except to the person who utters them. (Laughter.)

THE SPEAKER said it was not exactly in order for an honorable member to read a speech quite through, but he might make uso of notes.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—From all these extracts one must conclude that either the honorable member for Hochelaga was ready to sacrifice everything in order to attain power in 1858, or else that in 1858, as in 1859, he was deeply convinced that nothing but representation by population or a Federal union of the two Canadas could prevent the storm then lowering on the horizon. We find therein, firstly, that we were rapidly reaching a state of things which would necessitate modifications in the relations between Upper and Lower Canada ; secondly, that the proposal to form a Federation of the Canadas was not new ; thirdly, that the example of the neighboring States, where the application of the Federal system shewed how suitable it was to the government of an immense territory, inhabited by people of different origin, belief, laws and customs, had suggested the idea ; fourthly, that Lower Canada would not have any legitimate motive to resist representation based upon population if refused a written Constitution, under which it would have protection for and control of its institutions ; fifthly, that would be in imminent danger of seeing imposed upon it representation based upon population, if the Confederation of the two Canadas were obstinately resisted, and that those who imposed the Union Act upon us, and afterwards altered it to our detriment, could oblige us to accept tho former ; sixthly, that customs, currency, patents, copyrights, public lands, public works and things of common

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interest should be among the attributes of the Federal Parliament; seventhly, that the expenses of the Federal and local governments should not exceed those of the present system. The following extract, taken from the same document, must be added to those already cited :—

Your committee has therefore become convinced, that whether we consider ths present wants with regard to the future of this country, the substitution of a purely Federal Government for the present legislative union, presents the true solution of our difficulties, and that such substitution would free us from the inconveniences, while at the same time securing to us all the advantages which the present union may possess.

(Hear, hear, and laughter.) At the same period the Pays, with a conviction as profound as that of the honorable gentleman whose organ it is, thought that if we did not make some constitutional concessions we should not be able to resist the torrent of publie opinion of Upper Canada, which threatened to break through the feeble barrier opposed to it by the Union Act of 1840. The honorable member for Hochelaga went on with his fears and his convictions to the time when, by an accident unfortunate for the country, he again came into power. (Hear, hear.) It is not then merely the holding of a ministerial portfolio which is cast up to us to-day. The time has then arrived when constitutional changes become necessary—the question of Confederation under any form is, therefore, not new. (Hear, hear.) To take the United States, as the honorable member for Hochelaga has done, for example, I will say that the Federal system is suitable for the government of an immense territory, inhabited by people of different races, laws and customs, and consequently more suitable to the Confederation of the British North American Provinces than to the smaller one of Upper and Lower Canada. Lower Canada, ” unless she wish representation based upon population, should not reject a written Constitution under which she has protection for and control of her peculiar institutions.” (Hear, hear.) Finally, the expenses of the federal and local governments and legislatures will not exceed those of the present system. According to the Montreal manifesto of 1859, the Federal Government and Parliament, having very little to do, ought to cost but little, so as to leave more to be done by the local legislatures. According to the scheme of the Conference held at Quebec, the tables are turned, and it will be the local legislatures that, having but local affairs to attend to, will have to practise economy for the benefit of the General Government. It is therefore evident that the honorable member for Hochelaga is not more of a conjuror than others. It is again still more evident that the honorable member would be less hostile to this project, had he been the author of it, or if he had been sitting on the right instead of on the left side of the House ; for after all it is but a question of expediency, at least as regards principle. The honorable member for Hochelaga also told us :—

I would never have attempted to make a change in the Constitution of the country without being convinced that the population of that section of province which I represented was favorable to such a scheme.

(Hear.) I do not wish to doubt his sincerity, but has he not also said, ” I know that the possession of power leads to despotism ?” Did he not say, before the events of 1858, that were he in power, never, no never, would he consent to govern Lower Canada with the help of an Upper Canada majority, and yet how did he act in 1862 ? How did he act on coming into power in 1863, after having ejected in such a loyal and sympathising manner his illustrious predecessor and chief, Hon. Mr. SICOTTE ? (Hear, hear.) It was not despotism, but thirst for power, which made him adopt means to attain that end, which I shall not designate by their proper name in this solemn debate. (Hoar, hear.) How did he act ? Forgetting his declarations of 1858, he governed Lower Canada with a weak minority of its representatives, and as, according to his ideas, “power led to despotism,” he ruled it with that rod of iron which the radicals alone know how to wield. But happily those days of painful memories are passed, and the level of the political soil, which had sunk down, from some of those secret causes known to Providence alone, again suddenly rose up to escape from the overflowing torrents of demagogic principles which threatened society at large. What the Opposition detest the most in the project of the Quebec Conference, is its monarchical character, as also those words found at the commencement of that remarkable work :—

The best interests and present and future prosperity of British North America will be promoted by a Federal union under the Crown of Great Britain, provided such union can be effected on principles just to the several provinces.

In the Federation of the British North American Provinces, the system of government best adapted, under existing circumstances, to protect the diversified interests of the several pro-

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vinces, and secure efficiency, harmony and permanency in the working of the union, would be a General Government, charged with matters of common interest to the whole country ; and Local Governments for each of the Canadas, and for the Provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island, charged with the control of local matters in their respective sections. Provision being made for the admission into the union, on equitable terms, of Newfoundland, the North-West Territory, British Columbia, and Vancouver.

We move in a different circle of ideas from that in which the Opposition moves. We wish in America, as elsewhere, for a monarchy tempered by parliamentary system and ministerial responsibility, because, without interfering with liberty, it renders institutions more solid and secure. We have all seen British democracy holding its existence under the protection of the immutable aegis of Royal Majesty, and exercising over the destinies of the country that salutary control which has made Great Britain so rich, so powerful and so free. (Hear, hear.) We have also seen, not far from our own homes, that same democracy wrapped in the mantle of republicanism, moving at a rapid pace towards demagogy, and from demagogy to an intolerable despotism. (Hear, hear.) We have seen military rule extending over the entire face of the great neighboring republic, lately so proud of its popular institutions. And we have also seen that people, so proud of their liberty, humbly bend their necks to the sword of the soldier, allow their press to be muzzled, after haying condemned the system of censorship legalized in Franco, and suffer their writers to be imprisoned without a protest. (Hear, hear.) M. DE TOCQUEVILLE has lived too long ; his admirable work on democracy in America produces upon our minds, at the present day, only the effect of an heroic poem ; it is the Isle of Calypso, so admirably sung by FENELON, but which fades away when you have closed Telemachus. (Laughter.) Instead of those institutions, framed with such mathematical precision, and that mechanism so finished and so regular in its course, there is to be seen but violent and jerking motions, overturnings, and the collision and smashing of the component parts of the disconnected machinery of state ; instead of peace and harmony we find civil war on a gigantic scale, universal desolation, formidable battles, and the blood of brothers mingling in streams on the soil of their common country. (Hear, hear.) What has become of that race of giants who, after seven years of a glorious struggle, laid the foundation, in 1783, of the American republic ? Disdaining to use the means employed by the smaller spirits of the age to grasp at the helm of the state, they have retired from the public arena, so as to live in an honorable and dignified manner in private retirement—for the genius of the American people is not dead, and the country which still produces great judges and learned jurists could also, under another order of things, and in a different moral condition, give birth to new WASHINGTONS, FRANKLINS, HAMILLTONS, ADAMS, and MADISONS. (Hear, hear.) They did not act wrongly then, those forty chosen men of British North America who came to Quebec to erect a new nation on the monarchical basis, and as much as possible on the principles of the Parliament of Great Britain. It seems to us that that authority was imposing enough to merit the respect of men of much less experience, and much less versed in the science of government. (Hear hear.) And yet when the honorable member for Joliette asked with much reason of the honorable member for Lotbinière why he did not speak of Confederation based upon monarchical principles, the latter gentleman answered that he could not speak of what did not exist, and of what was absurd. He was like the French savant who, in 1836, proved by arguments not to be refuted, that it was impossible to cross the ocean with steam as the motive power. But while he was thus floundering through his powerful and learned arguments, the Sirius was steaming majestically across the Atlantic as if to mock the wisdom of science. Facts are stubborn and positive things. (Hear, hear.) We are not here, like COLUMBUS, looking for an unknown world ; yet the honorable member who went as far back as the heroic times of Greece to find arguments against all Confederations, who unfolded pompously to our gaze Roman history to prove to us that what was strong and durable was formed piece by piece, and that even what is actually strong must also perish, as the Roman Empire had ended by succumbing under the weight of its own power ; who, bent on finding out Confederations in confusion, and in the midst of pronunciamentos, of movimentos and of échauffourées, travelled through without seeing them, those non-federative Spanish- American republics, so irritable and so agitated ; who, to be faithful to this system, attributed the five hundred years’ existence of the Swiss Confederation to every other causo than to the stability of its principle, and to the conservative and national character of its

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inhabitants ; and who, in his enthusiasm for his doctrines, did not see that the European equilibrium would have been secure just as well by the existence of one or more distinct states as with a Confederation in the Helvetic Mountains — he failed to see not far from the native land of his ancestors, the noble Helvetia which conquered and maintained for five centuries its independence in the midst of the most terrible conflicts which shook the soil of Europe, which overturned thrones and transformed nations—he has not seen, in flesh and blood, a Confederation resting almost entirely on the monarchical principle— the Germanic Confederation—of which Austria is the head, and for which this latter power and Prussia alone can decide questions of peace and war. (Hear, hear.) This was preceded by the Confederation of the Rhine, which had found like it its elements and its mode of being in the ancient empire founded by CHARLEMAGNE, ” the strongest hand that ever existed,” to use the splendid expression of OZANAM ; the Germanic Empire, a true confederation of princes, becoming really independent in the course of centuries, and kings in their respective states under the Imperial suzerainty. The Golden Bull promulgated by the Emperor CHARLES IV., in 1356, gives us some useful information on this subject. I would refer the honorable member for Lotbinière to it. (Hear, hear.) But why should we ransack history to establish a fact which is as clear as day ? Is it not sufficient to open the first dictionary at hand to know that the word ” confederation ” means simply ” league,” union of states or sovereigns, of nations, or even of armies for a common object. (Hear, hear.) The honorable member has therefore ill-chosen his time to be witty at the expense of a man of sense. He declared himself by turns against the Federal principle and against legislative unity. Appealing alternately to every prejudice to attain his object, he said to the French-Canadian Catholics—” Resist Confederation, because it will leave you without protection in the Federal Government and Parliament.” Then, turning towards English Protestants, and reading complacently to them an extract from Lord DURHAM’S report, he said :—” Do not vote for Confederation ; you would be at the mercy of a French and Catholic majority in the Local Government and Parliament.” (Hear, hear.) Although the direct reverse in every other respect of the honorable member for Hochelaga, his conduct proves that he believes with that honorable gentleman ” that power engenders despotism.” But, in his place, at the outset of my public career, full of youth and of the generous sentiments which it inspires, instead of setting the torch to such inflammable elements as national and religious prejudices, I should have imitated the example of the honorable member for Montreal Centre ; and in order to calm mutual distrust, I should have endeavored to fulfil my duty by recalling the eminently honorable, christian and civilising history of the last quarter of a century. (Cheers ) But the honorable gentleman was evidently incapable of so doing. He had just emerged terrified from amidst the pronunciamentos, the echauffourées and the movimentos of the very civilized Spanish Confederations of Central America, and full of feverish agitation, he launched himself on spreading pinions towards the rain-bow and the aurora borealis. (Laughter.) We know what the rainbow is physically. It is composed of drops of water, which, placed at a certain angle facing the sun, refract and reflect its light with all the colors of which it is composed (Laughter.) As to the aurora borealis, some attribute it to the reverberations of solar light on the snows of the North Pole, whither the honorable gentleman proceeded in order to find the vast territory with which he wishes us to form the Confederation domain But the opinion most generally accepted is that it is, in a manner, something imponderable and unsubstantial. (Laughter.) Our people, seeing them moving in all directions with the most prodigious rapidity, rising, falling, doubling backward and forward on each other with such inconceivable rapidity, have given them the true and picturesque name of dancing puppets (marionnettes). Hear, and laughter.) It is, therefore, easily seen that if they hold in horror the prejudices which are productive of so much evil, their mind is at least not so torpid as the hon. member for Lotbinière believes, and it is at least not recessary to arouse them in this manner (Hear, hear.) We know what invariably happens to all these luminous meteors. Jack o’ the Lanterns and Will o’ the Wisps having complacently expanded themselves on the confines of the infinite horizon, after having gambolled at their ease, become serious and solemn—they are seized with the ambitiofn of ascending to the zenith. But as they have, ” with the stature of a giant, but the strength of a

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child,” they soon diminish and disappear, to be, in the words of BOSSUET, “ qu’un je ne sais quoi qui n’a plus de nom dans aucune langue (a thing which has no name in any tongue).” (Hear, hear.) On close examination, however, it would be seen that thhon- member was not so sarcastic as might have been at first supposed, when he suggested the iris as the emblem of the new Confederation. The rainbow, from a figurative point of view, is the emblem of alliance, and consequently of strength and durability— it is the symbol of peace and calm after a long day of storm and tempest—it is the pledge of promise that, in future, the flood-gates of demagogy will no longer be opened on the country, to leave upon its surface that morbid sediment, the fetid odors of which still offend the moral sense of the people after their unwholesome waters have retired. (Cheers.) It is the unity of many-colored rays which, combined, produces light and heat and fecundity. I should, therefore, advise those who will be charged at a future day with our new destinies to adopt the rainbow as our national emblem, and to give credit to the bon. member for Lotbinière, who will doubtless be astonished to find that he has been so wonderfully inspired, jilear, hear, and laughter.) If there were never to be any mutual confidence among men ; if we were for ever destined to fear and suspect each other reciprocally, we would be obliged to renounce all idea of government as well as all the relations of social life The very laws which protect persons and propertywould be without value, because they are expounded by men. (Hear, hear.) Fortunately such is not the case, as our own history sufficiently proves. Before the union, the parliamentary majority in Lower Canada was Catholic, and although it was long involved in a struggle with power, was it ever guilty of an injustice towards the Protestant minority ? (Hear, hear.) On the contrary, did it not emancipate the latter, civilly and religiously, and did it not give that minority privileges which it had not hitherto possessed ? If our people are inflexibly attached to our faith, it is also full of toleration, of good-will towards those who are not of the same belief. Since the union the parts have changed. Protestantism dominates in the government and in the legislature, and yet has not Catholicity been better treated, and has it not been better developed, with more liberty and more prosperity than under the regime of the Constitution of 1791. (Hear, hear.) Living and laboring together we have learned to know, to respect, to esteem each other, and to make mutual concessions for the common weal. We Catholics have therefore no fear of the ill-will of a Protestant majority in the Federal Government and Legislature, and we are certain that the Protestants of Lower Canada need not fear for themselves in the local legislature. (Hear, hear, and cheers.) The hon. member for Hochelaga has declared that he was willing to accord to the Protestants the guarantees of protection which they sought for the education of their children ; but in this he has been forestalled by the Quebec Conference and by the unanimous sentiment of the Catholic population of Lower Canada. If the present law be insufficient, let it be changed. Justice demands that the Protestant minority of Lower Canada shall be protected in the same manner as the Catholic minority of Upper Canada, and that the rights acquired by the one and the other shall not be assailed either by the Federal Parliament or the local legislatures. (Hear, hear.) This is all I feel called upon to say, – on this occasion, respecting a question which will again arise in the course of the debate. The hon. member for Lotbinière has attacked the scheme as being too federal, and the hon. member for Hochelaga has condemned it as not being sufficiently federal, and as tending too much towards unity. Neither one nor the other is strictly accurate—it is not absolute unity, nor the federal principle in the American sense. In the American Confederation, bupreme authority proceeded at the outset from the delegation of the states, which nevertheless divested themselves of it forever—at least according to the opinion of the Northern jurisconsults, who hold that no state is free to break the compact of 1788. In the scheme of the Quebec Conference there was no delegation of the supreme authority, either from above or below, inasmuch as the provinces, not being independent states, received, tbeir political organizations from the Parliament of the Empire. There are only distinct attributes for the one and the others. (Hear, hear.) Unity does not obtain in an absolute sense, because local interests and institutions required in the local constitutions, guarantees and protections which they feared they would not find in the united Parliament and Government. But it is as complete as possible,inasmuch as unity gives to institutions chances of duration, and an initiatory force which is not given, which

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cannot be given, by confederacies in which authority is scattered, and where it is consequently without value and without real existence. Every constitutional mode of existence has its advantages ; but assuredly that state of existence which gives permanence and stability to institutions should be preferred to others. Let us bear in mind that the Constitution of the United States has been but a compromise between state sovereignty and the need of a supreme authoriy to ensure the working of the state machinery, and that it was not perfect even in the opinion of its authors. In order to prove thib statement, I shall call to my assistance words of greater weight than my own— those of JOSEPH STOREY, probably the greatest constitutional authoriy of the United States :—

Any survey, however slight, of the Confederation will impress the mind with the intrinsic difficulties which attended the formation of its principal features. It is well known that upon three important points touching the common rights and interests of the several states, much diversity of opinion prevailed, and many animated discussions took place. The first was as to the mode of voting in Congress, whether it should be by states or according to wealth or population The second, as to the rule by which the expenses of the Union should be apportioned among the states. And the third, as has been already seen, relative to the disposal of the vacant and unappropriated lands in the western territory. But that which strikes us with most force is the increasing jealousy and watchfulness everywhere betrayed in respect to the powers to be confided to the General Government. For this several causes may be assigned. The colonies had been long engaged in struggles against tne superintending authority of the Crown, and had practically felt the inconveniences of the restrictive legislation of the parent country. These struggles had naturally led to a general feeling of resistance of all external authority, and these inconveniences to extreme doubts, if not to dread of any legislation, not exclusively originating in their domestic assemblies. They had, as yet, not felt the importance or necessity of union among themselves, having been hitherto connected with the British sovereignty in all their foreign relations. What would be their fate, as separate and independent communities , how far their interests would coincide or vary from each other as such; what would be the etfects of the union upon their domestic peace, their territorial interests, their external commerce, their political security, or their civil liberty, were points totliem wholly of a speculative character, in regard to which various opinions might be entertained, and various and even opposite conjectures formed, upon grounds apparently of equal plausibility. Nothwithstanding the declaration of the articles, that the union of the states was to be perpetual, an examination of the powers confided to the General Government would easily satisfy us that they looked principally to the existing revolutionary state of things. The principal powers respected the operations of war, and would be dormant in times of peace. In short, Congress in peace wrs possessed of but a delusive and shadowy sovereignty, with little more than the empty pageantry of office. They were indeed clothed with the authority of sending and receiving ambassadors ; of entering into treaties and alliances ; of appointing courts for the trial of piracies and felonies on the high seas ; of regulating the public coin ; of fixing the standard of weights and measures ; of regulating trade with Indians, of establishing post offices; of borrowing money snd emitting bills on the credit of the United States ; of ascertaining and appropriating the sums necessary for defraying the public expenses, and of disposing of the western territory. And most of these powers required for their exercise the assent of nine states. But they possessed not the power to raise any revenue, to levy any tax, to enforce any law, to secure any right, to regulate any trade, or even the poor prerogative of commanding means to pay its own ministers at a foreign court. They could contract debts, but they were without means to discharge them. They could pledge the public faith, but they were incapable of redeeming it. They could enter into treaties, but every state in the union might disobey them with impunity. They could contract alliances, but could not command men or money to give them vigor. They could institute courts for piracies and felonies on the high seas, but they had no means to pay either the judges or the jurors. In short, all powers which did not execute themselves were at the mercy of the states, and might be trampled upon at will with impunity.

One of our leading writers addressed the following strong language to the public :—

By this political compact the United States in Congress have exclusive power for the following purposes, without being able to execute one of them : they may make and conclude treaties, but can only recommend the observance of them. They may appoint ambassadors, but cannot defray even the expenses of their tables. They may borrow money in their own name on the faith of the union, but cannot pay a dollar. They may coin money, but they cannot purchase an ounce of bullion. They may make war, and determine what number of troops are necessary, but cannot raise a single soldier. In short, they may declare eveiything, but do nothing.

St rong as this language may seem, it has no coloring beyond what the naked truth would justify. WASHINGTON himself, that patriot without stain or reproach, speaks, in 1785,

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with unusual significance on the same subject. “In a word,” says he, ” the Confederation appears to me to be little more than a shadow without the substance, and Congress a nugatory body, their ordinances being little attended to. ” The same sentiments may be found in many public documents. One of the most humiliating proofs of the utter inability of Congress to enforce even the exclusive powers vested in it, is to be found in the argumentat ive circular addressed by to the several states, in April , 1787, entreating them in the most supplicating manner to repeal such of their laws as interfered with the treaties with foreign nations. ” If in theory,” says the biographer of WASHINGTON, ” the treaties formed by Congress were obligatory, yet it had been demonstrated that in practice that body was absolutely unable to carry them into execution. “—

In this state of things, the embarrassments of the country in its financial concerns, the general pecuniary distress among the people from the exhausting operations of the war, the total prostration of commerce and the languishing unthriftiness of agriculture, gave new impulses to the already marked political divisions in the Legislative Councils. Efforts were made on our side to relieve the pressure of the public calamities by a resort to the issue of paper money, to tender laws, and instalment and other laws, having for their object the postponement of the payment of private debt, and a diminution of the public taxes. On the other side, public as well as private creditors became alarmed from the increased dangers to property, and the increased facility of perpetrating frauds, to the destruction of all private faith, and credit. And they insisted strenuously upon the establishment of a government and system of laws which should preserve the public faith and redeem the country from that ruin which always follows upon the violation of the principles of justice and the moral obligation of contracts. ” At length,” we are told, ” two great parties were formed in every state, which were distinctly marked and which pursued distinct objects with systematic arrangement.” The wonder indeed is, not under such circumstances, that the constitution should have encountered the most ardent opposition, but that it should ever have been adopted at all by the majority of the states. In the convention itself which framed it, there was a great diversity of judgment, and upon some vital subjects an intense and irreconcilable hostility of opinion. It is understood that, at several periods the convention were upon the point of breaking up without accomplishing anything. On the other hand, if the votaries of the national government are fewer in number, they are likely to enlist in its favor men of ardent ambition, comprehensive views and powerful genius. A love of the union, a sense of its importance—nay, of its necessity to secure permanence and safety to our political liberty ; a consciousness that the powers of the national constitution are eminently calculated to preserve peace at home and dignity abroad, and to give value to property, and system and harmony to the great interests of agriculture, commerce and manufactures ; a consciousness, too, that the restraints which it imposes upon the states are the only efficient means to preserve public and private justice, and to ensure tranquillity amidst the conflicting interests and rivalries of the states—these will doubtless combine many sober and reflecting minds in its support. If to this number we are to add those whom the larger rewards of fame or emolument or influence connected with a wider sphere of action may allure to the national councils, there is much reason to presume that the union will not be without resolute friends.

The events now occurring in the United States sufficiently prove, I think, that the fears of the illustrious founders of the Union were not without some foundation. The scheme of Constitution which is submitted to us is also a compromise, but a compromise in the best conditions of existence, and in those least dangerous to the stability and the strength of the nation to which is to give being. Unity moves more at ease, and the checks placed therein for the benefit of the sections are placed in such a manner as not to obstruct the general action. It is not so much against the Federal principle that the greater number of the arguments of the hon. member for Hochelaga are directed. For him it is a party question which he puts to himself in this manner :—”How shall we find ourselves, my friends and myself, in this Confederation ? Shall we be strong or weak ? May we hope to regain power, or shall we be lost like so many drops of water in the ocean ?” In order to convince the House that I have correctly appreciated the motive of the hon. gentleman’s (Hon. Mr. DORION’S) opposition, I shall quote from his speech of the 16th inst. :—

Hon. -Mr. DORION—But, sir, I may be asked) admitting all that—admitting that the scheme now submitted to us is not that which has been promised us, what difference will the immediate admission of the Provinces into the Confederation make? I will try to explain it. When the ministers consented to the votes in the Conference being taken by provinces, they gave a great advantage to the Maritime Provinces. This mode of procedure had for its result the most conservative measure that was ever submitted to the House. The members of the Upper House are no longer to be elected, but nominated—and by whom ? By a Tory or Conservative Government for Canada, by a Conservative Government in Nova Scotia, by a Conservative Government in Prince Edward Island, and by a Conservative

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Government in Newfoundland, the only Liberal Government concerned in the nomination of the Upper House being that of New Brunswick, where there is a Liberal Administration, whose fate depends on the result of the elections now taking place in that province. A similar scheme would never have been adopted by the Liberal members from Upper Canada, the people of which section, to the number of 1,400,000, with those in the Lower Province, making in all 2,500,000, have been controlled by the 900,000 people of the Maritime Provinces. Have we not been told in set terms that it was the Lower Provinces which did not want an elective Legislative Council ? If, instead of inviting to a Conference the delegates of the Lower Provinces, our Government had done what it engaged to do, namely— had itself prepared a Constitution, it would never have dared to draw up a proposal like this now laid before us ; it would never have proposed a Legislative Council nominated for hie, with a limited membership, and which has to be named by four Tory Governments. Reckoning 15 to 20 years, as the average of the time each Legislative Councillor will hold his seat, a century would elapse before its composition could be entirely changed ! We will have, thus, a Legislative Council lasting for ever—at least as regards this, and the next generation—controlled by the influence which to-day preponderates in our Government and in those of the Maritime Provinces ; and are we going to believe, as the present document promises us, that a government like that which we possess now, will employ itself in getting the Opposition represented in the Legislative Council? (Hear, hear, and laughter.) I thank the delegates for their solicitude as regards the Opposition, but I rely but little on their promises. Did we not hear the Honorable Attorney General West say the other day, turning towards his supporters : ” If I had the recommending of the nominations, I would advise the choice of the most qualified—but of course, of my own party. (Hear, hear.) It would be done in this way, sir ; and, if this precious scheme is put into operation, we shall have a Legislative Counci. divided in the following manner : for Upper Canada, we shall probably have Liberals in the proportion of 3 to 9, for I suppose that the honorable member for South Oxford (Honorable Mr. BROWN) has made enough sacrifices to deserve at least this concession, and as his friends constitute a fourth of the Executive Council, I suppose we shall have also one-fourth of the Executive Councillors for Upper Canada, Liberals.

Hon. Attorney General MACDONALD—Hear, hear.

Hon. Mr. HOLTON—Exactly 25 per cent.

Hon. Mr. DORION—Yes ; precisely 25 percent. Besides, we shall have for Nova Scotia ten Conservatives, from Prince Edward Island four more, and four from Newfoundland. Thus we are to have eighteen Conservatives from the Lower Provinces, who, added to the thirty-six from Canada, will make fifty-four Conservatives, against twenty-two Liberals, supposing that the ten Legislative Councillors from New Brunswick will all be Liberals. Now, supposing that the average of deaths amounted to three per cent, in a year, it would need a term of thirty years to bring about a change in the character of the majority of the Council, taking it for granted that the additions which might be made to it would be taken from the ranks of the Liberal party. Yet that would be scarcely possible. In some of the Lower Provinces there would be from time to time Conservative Governments, and there might be also a Conservative Government in Canada. (Hear, hear, and laughter.) And the present generation will have passed away before the opinions of the Liberal party will have any influence in the dhisions of the Legislative Council.

Mr. MACKENZIE—That makes no difference.

Hon. Mr. DORION—The hon. member for Lambton says that makes no difference ! The honorable member is ready to accept everything, but for those who are not so well disposed, the difference would be that we would be bound by this constitution which will permit the Legislative Council to throw obstacles in the way of all measures of reform wished for by the Liberal party. If the hon. member for Lambton thinks that that makes no difference, I will take the liberty of differing from him, and I think that the Liberal party generally will differ from him also. The Government told us that they were obliged to consent to the introduction of certain measures in the project of Confederation which did not altogether please them, so as to come to an understanding with the Lower Province delegates, and that they bound themselves to cause the scheme to be adopted by this House without amendment. Does the hon. gentleman not see a difference now ? If the two Canadas were the only interested parties, the majority would act as they pleased, would examine minutely the Constitution, and erase all measures which did not suit them, and a proposition such as that relative to the Legislative Council would have no chance of being adopted—it is too short a time ago since this House voted, by a crushing majority, the substitution of an elective Council for a Council nominated by the Crown. In fact, the Council named by the Crown had so fallen in public estimation—Ido not say so on account of the men who composed it, but still such was the fact, that it exercised no influence ; it was even difficult to assemble a quorum of members—a change had become absolutely necessary, and up to the present time the elective system has worked well —the elected members are equal in every respect to those nominated by the Crown. Well, it is just as public attention commences to be bestowed upon the proceedings of the Upper House, that we are to change its constitution to give it the piase of the same one we so short a time ago condemned. I said same Constitution—I mistake, Mr. SPEAKER, we want to substitute for the present Constitution one much worse than the old one, and one for which it is impossible to find a precedent.

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Here, then, is the solution of the enigma; here, then, is the reason why Federal union is wor thless—whout us there is no country —it is no longer the doctrine : “Let the country perish rather than a principle be abandoned,” but “let the country perishrather than a political party should succumb.” It is less absurd, but at the same time less noble, and if it be not cynical in words, it is so undoubtedly in conception. (Hear, hear.) What! must we resist in future all progress, all strength and national greatness, solely because a party, which exhaus ted itself almost at its birth, thiuks it cannot discern in the new order of things the stepping stones to power ? But is it our fault that the doctrines and the acts of that party are not in accordance with the feelings of the country, and that the country persists in discountenancing them? The hon. member for Hochelaga would hope more for his party in a Confederation of the two Canadas only; he has said to himself, no doubt, “In this last order of things the increase of the Upper Canadian representation would augment the Badical majority of Upper Canada, and that majority, added to the small minority I command, would have placed me in a position to rule Lower Canada as I have already done, against its will, and in spite of my former declarations.” Either he must think us very blind, or else he must expect that placing the question in a party point of view, he would rally around him only those who, leaving aside all national sentiments, follow him nevertheless. (Hear, hear.) But the extract which I have jus t now read brings us naturally to the question of an elective Legislative Couucil, to which system the honorable member for Hochelaga grant s a great degree of superiority over the nominative one. Just now he told us that the Council nominated by the Crown had fallen into imbecility, and had lost public respect. (Hear, hear.) Now, to prove how logical he is, he tells us :

It is true that the House of Lords, Conservative though it be, finds itself removed from all popular influence ; but its numbers may be increased upon the recommendation of the responsible advisers of the Crown, if such a measure were to become necessary to obtain the concurrence of both Houses, or to prevent a collision between them. The position which its members occupy in it establishes a sort of compromise between the Crown and the popular element. But this new House, after Confederation, will be a perfectly independent body ; its members will be nominated for life, and their number cannot be increased. How long will this system work without bringing about a collision between the two branches of the Legislature ? Let us suppose the Lower House composed in a great part of Liberals, for how long a time would it submit to an Upper House named by Government ?

Be kind enough to observe, Mr. SPEAKER, that under the old system, the Legislative Council possessed the same elements of existence as the House of Lords, and that the Crown could increase its numbers at need ; it augmented it in 1849, as it threatened to augment the House of Lords in 1832. Observe, again, that it is precisely this control exercised by the Crown over the Upper House that the hon. gentleman found so fatal to legislation previous to 1856. But ther e is a more rational manner of appreciating the part susiained by the House of Lords in the British Constitution. No one denies to the Sovereign the abstract right of increasing at will the House of Lords ; but such right has never been exercised but for the purpose of rewardiug men distinguished for great national services ! and when, in 1832, WILLIAM IV. granted Earl GREY the tremendous power to swamp the representative body of the great landed nobility, it was because the country was moving with rapid strides towards revolution, and because there remained to the Sovereign but two alternatives, either to lessen the moral weight of the House of Lords, or to see his own throne knocked to pieces from under his feet. (Hear, hear.) To convince the House that I do not exaggerate, I will read an extract from LINGARD’ S History of England :—

It is known that justice and common sense were wounded by the electoral system of England, when such a rock, such a building, such a hamlet belonging to noble families sent representatives to Parliament, where cities of 100,000 inhabitants were not represented, where corporations of twenty or thirty individuals had a right to elect members for large cities, and so forth. All this was the consequence of a social order, founded on privilege, and in which property was the mistress of all power. To reform the electoral system was then to make an attempt not only on the Constitution, but society. And the Tories offered a desperate resistance. Such vas their attitude, that the Ministry proclaimed Parliament dissolved on the 11th May, 1831, a course which was joyfully welcomed by the people. New elections were had, and resulted in a ministerial majority. The Reform Bill was adopted by the Commons, but the House of Lords threw it out by a majority of forty-one votes. The intelligence of this result was received throughout the three kingdoms with the most lively agitation.

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Petitions were sent in from all parts, praying for the upholding of the Ministry, and for a new creation of peers ; reform associations were formed, and serious disturbances took place at London, Bristol, Nottingham &c. Parliament was prorogued, and at its re-assembling the Reform Bill was again presented with some alterations. The Commons accepted it; it pissed a first and a second reading in the House of Lords, but the third reading was adjourned, and WELLINGTON and seventy-four peers protested. Agitation became almost universal ; societies met, petitions took a threatening character; everything was tendingtowards armed insurrection. England never before presented such a spectacle. Meantime the Ministry had demanded of the king a new creation of peers to change the majority of the Upper Chamber. It was refused,—they immediately resigned on the 9th May, 1832. The Duke of WELLINGTON and his friends were then called in to form a Minist y ; he tried it several days in vain. The nation was astir ; whole aimies were being created ; riots broke opt everywhere ; the lives of the principal Tories were threatened, and the House of Commons seemed disposed to snpport a measure which would have overturned both the Government and the aristocracy. The King called back the GREY Ministry, and the Bill was presented to the House of Lords for a third reading, on which the Tories, knowing that the Cabinet had decided to create an unlimited number of peers, so as to obtain a majority, abstained from attending the discussion, and the Bill passed by 106 votes against 22. The Parliament was immediately dissolved, and new elections took place according to the new electoral law, and on the 5th of February, 1833, the first Reformed Parliament was opened.

It must then have been a real revolution, thi s nomination of one hundred new peers, a revolution as real as that which menaced the Throne ; and do we not feel persuaded that if one day our Federal Legislative Council were to place itself obstinately and systematically in opposition to popular will, matured and strengthened by ordeals, it would not be swept away by a revolutionary torrent such as threatened to sweep away the House of Lords in 1832 ? This Council, limited as to numbers , because the provinces insist on maintaining in it an equilibrium without which they would never have consented to a union, this Council, sprung from the people—having the same warns, hopes and even passions, would resist less the popular will in America, where it is so prompt and active, than could the House of Lords in England, where the masses are inert because they have not political rights ; reason tells us thus because they would be a less powerful body socially or politically. The honorable member for Hochelaga has spoken to us oí the elected senate of Belgium, which he says works admirably. But let us examine the manner of its construction and the reasons of its organization. We find in a note under the 53rd article of the Belgian Constitution, section 2 of the Senate in HAVARD’S Public and Administrative Law, vol. I :—

89. Elected by the People.—Three principal opinions divided the Congress on the question of the senate. One wanted no kind of senate. Another wished the senate named with or without conditions, by the head of the state ; and another wished for the senate but elected by the people. These two last opinions carried the existeuce of the Chamber to be admitted, but it was difficult to fix the majority on the mode of nominating the senators. Among the members who desire a senate, ihe greater number sustained nomination by the king, as being more in harmony with the nature of the institution ; but those who wished only one Chamber directly elected being in despair, and in order to popularize an institution which they accused of not being sufficiently so, joined with those favoring senators elect, named without the intervention of the royal power, so that this opinion prevailed. The senate and its mode oí existence was not, therefore, the result either of the same opinion or of the same majority. The central section proposed, with a majority of sixteen against four, nomination by the king without presentation and in unlimited number. The question was discussed at the sitting of the 15th, 16th and 17th December. Nomination by the king was rejected by 96 against 77. Two leading opinions still divided the partisans of election. One would confide it to the ordinary electoral colleges, and others to the Provincial Councilor States. ” We desire,” said M. BLARGNIES in proposing the last mode of election ” a neutral power which can resist the dangers which might result from the preponderance of the head of the state or from an elective Chamber. It is, therefore, necessary that this power should emanate neither from the same elements as the elective Chamber, nor from the chief of the state.” To confide election to a particular class, was said on the other side, is to create privileged electors with a double vote, and to introduce into our country all the inconveniences of the division of electors which has just been abolished in France. Provincial Councils should, moreover, be administrative bodies. The system of article 53 was adopted by 136 votes against 10. The opinion which was in favor of only one Chamber, and consequently only one mode of election, determined the majority.

Thus we find that the constitution of this senate is a compromise similar to that of the Federal Government of the United States. But let us go on a little further : —

In order to be elected and to continue to be a senator, one qualification, among others, is to

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pay, in Belgium, at least one thousand florins of direct imposts, patents included.

Is not this last provision of the Belgian Constitution a hundred times more conservative than all the provisions of this scheme, which the honorable member condemns ? What ! no one can be a senator in Belgium without paying $500 direct taxes, over and above indirect taxes, municipal and local impositions of all sorts. And the honorable member for Hochelaga calls that a popular House ! Who but men powerful and rich in titles and fortune can enter it ? (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. DORION—What is the qualification of the electors of the Belgian House of Representatives ? Is it not much higher than elsewhere ?

HON. MR. CAUCHON—It is the same for both Houses. And this is an argument against the honorable member; for if, in a country like Belgium, in which every fourth person you meet is a beggar, it has been found requisite to make the elective franchise and the electoral qualification of the senators so high, it is a proof that he has made a bad selection of examples ; it is a proof that the tendencies of Belgium are conservative. Why, then, should we adopt another course in Canada, where there is not one beggar in a thousand inhabitants ?

HON. MR. EVANTUREL — Will the honorable member for Montmorenci allow me to interrupt him in his argument in relation to the qualifications and appointment of the legislative councillors. Like him, I am quite of opinion that the conservative element ought, of necessity, to be the basis of the Legislative Council, to counterbalance the popular element. This principle governed the constitution of the House of Lords in England, that of the Legislative Council in Belgium, and that of every wellorganized representative government. It is that element of conservatism which I desire to see introduced into the Constitution of the Confederation now before us ; but the honorable member for Montmorency will allow me to remark that the whole of his argument applies only to the antagonism which might arise between the two branches of the legislature, in a monarchical government like that of Belgium, which is not based on a Federative system like that now submitted to us by the Government. But wo have not only to avoid the differences which might arise between the conservative and the popular elements; we have also to protect the rights of the several provinces which are to form part of the proposed Confederation. That is the all important question we have to consider. We have accorded the principle of representation based upon population in the House of Commons of the Federal Government, and that is without doubt a great sacrifice ; but we ought only to make so important a concession on the condition that we shall have equality of representation in the Legislative Council, and the right reserved to ourselves to appoint our twenty-four legislative councillors, in order that they may be responsible to the public opinion of the province and independent of the Federal Government.— Without this essential guarantee I affirm that the rights of Lower Canada are in danger. For my part I am ready, on behalf of Lower Canada, to give up her right to elect directly her twenty-four legislative councillors, although the retention of the elective principle might perhaps be the surest means of preserving our institutions; but I am anxious that the new Constitution now proposed should give us adequate guarantees that the legislative councillors to be appointed for life should, at all events, be selected by the Local Government of Lower Canada, which would be responsible to the people. These not ill-grounded sources of anxiety I should like to see removed. I would bespeak the earnest attention of the honorable member for Montmorency to this point, which is of the very highest importance to us Lower Canadians ; and I hope that he will pardon me for having interrupted him, and that he will be in a position to give me such an answer as will dissipate the anxiety which I am aware has been evinced on this subject.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—The honorable gentleman has not understood me ; my object has not been to attack the representative system of Belgium as being too conservative ; on the contrary I use it as an argument in my favor, because the qualification there is so high, that hardly one in six thousand can be found who can aspire to the post of senator. Parties having been unable to come to any understanding at the time of the revolution of 1830, and neither the hereditary peerage or the life peerage having been able to prevail, the most conservative principle next to these was adopted, viz., that of a large property qualification. All those who have drawn up constitutions, either theoretical or for practical purposes, have never omitted to provide counterpoises to prevent, on the one hand, too

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precipitate and hasty legislation, and on the other hand the encroachment of the power of the executive. In our Constitution it is the duty of the Legislative Council to exercise the conservative influence, and to modify the legislation too energetic and too full of outside eifervescence, which is sent for their consideration from the House of Commons. But when puhlic opinion gains vigor from the obstacles which it encounters, and the reforms demanded are rational and come before them in due course, there is no danger that the legislation which embodies them will be obstructed in its progress ; for the people will rise in their majesty and in their sense of justice, as did the people of England in 1832, and the obstacles they might meet with on their way would be swept away as by a torrent. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. DORION—That is exactly where the danger lies.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—That is the danger which assailed the House of Lords in 1832, but no one would venture to confront to the last extremity a danger such as this. But the honorable member for Quebec tells us, if I understand him rightly, that we have not sufficient guarantees lor Lower Canada in the appointment of the legislative councillors. The selection of legislative councillors has no bearing whatever on the question we are now considering, viz., whether the appointment by the Crown is or is not preferable to the elective principle. But in answer to him I will say, that the scheme before us seems to be quite clear. According to this plan the candidates for the Legislative Council will be recommended by the bcal governments and appointed by the General Government, and it is by this very division of powers that the selections are sure to be good, and made in conformity with the desire and sentiments of the provinces.

HON. MR. DORION—Only the first nominations are to be made in this manner, not those which may be made afterwards.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—The first nominations will be made by the present Governments, and the federal councillors will be taken from the present legislative councillors to the number prescribed, 24, provided so many can be found who will accept the post, and who possess the requisite property qualification. The Conference has engaged, bv the terms of the scheme, to respect the rights of the Opposition, and any government who should fail to carry out so solemn an engagement would well deserve to lose the public confidence. (Hear, hear.) I repeat that the mode of appointing the councillors in no wise affects the conservative principle of nomination on which the constitution of the Legislative Council ought to be based.

HON. MR. DORION—In the course of my observations the other night, I did not examine the question from the point of view from which the honorable member from Quebec is now looking at it. That honorable member, if I have understood him rightly, affirms that in the proposed constitution of the Federal Legislative Council there is no conservative principle to guarantee that the provinces will be represented in that Council, and he does so with justice. If the honorable member for Montmorenci will examine it attentively, he will see that the first nominations are to be made by the existing governments. Thus the Government of Canada, that of New Brunswick and that of Nova Scotia will appoint legislative councillors, but afterwards the Federal Government will make the appointments. The honorable member for Quebec can, with reason, draw the conclusion that there is no guarantee that the views of the provinces will be respected. I for my part have investigated the matter, more in connection with the power that will be vested in the legislative councillors. I asserted that by appointing them for life and limiting their number, an absolute authority would be created, which would be quite beyond the control of the people and even of the Executive; that the power of this body will be so great, that they wilt always be in a position to prevent every reform if they thought proper, and that a collision between the two branches would be inevitable and irremediable. The danger arising from the creating of such a power is exactly that of being obliged to destroy it if they resist too obstinately the popular demands. In England there is no necessity for breaking down the obstructions sometimes presented by the House of Lords, because the Crown having it in its power to appoint new peers, can overcome the difficulty. Here there will be no means of doing it, when the number of councillors is fixed. Accordingly, I have looked at the question through the medium of the powers assigned to the councillors, whereas the honorable member for the county of Quebec fears lest the Government should make choice of men who would not represent public opinion in the provinces ; that they might appoint members all of French origin or all of English origin to represent Lower Canada, or take them all from among

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a class of men who would not represent the province for which they are appointed, and who could give no pledge that they would maintain its institutions.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—It is evident that the honorable member for Hochelaga has not read the resolutions ; but I have read them. Lower Canada is in a peculiar position. We have two races of people whose interests are distinct from each other in respect to origin, language and religion. In preparing the business of the Confederation at Quebec, we had to conciliate these two interests, and to give the country a Constitution which might reconcile the conservative with the democratic element ; for the weak point in democratic institutions is the leaving of all power in the hands of the popular element. The history of the past proves that this is an evil. In order that institutions may be stable and work harmoniously, there must be a power of resist mce to oppose to the democratic element. In the United States the power of resistance does not reside in the Senate, nor even in the President. The honorable member for Hochelaga says that the objection of the honorable member for the county of Quebec is well founded, because the Federal Government may appoint all English or all French-Canadians as legislative councillors for Lower Canada. If the honorable member had read the resolutions, he would have found that the appointments of legislative councillors are to be made so as to accord with the electoral divisions now existing in the province. Well, I ask whether it is probable that the Executive of the Federal Government, which will have a chief or leader as it is now—I ask whether it is very probable thao he will recommend the appointment of a French-Canadian to represent divisions like Bedford or Wellington for instance?

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—You will be in a minority in the Federal Government.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—Am I not in a minority at present in appointing judges ? And yet when I propose the appointment of a judge for Lower Canada, is he not appointed ? Did the honorable member for Cornwall (Hon. J . S. MACDONALD), when he was in the Government, ever attempt to interfere with the appointments recommended by the honorable member for Hochelaga ? And now, when a chief justice or a puisne judge is to be appointed for Lower Canada, I find myself surrounded by colleagues, a majority of whom are English and Protestants; but do they presume to interfere with my recommendations ? No, no more than we Lower Canadians interfere with the recommendations of my honorable friend the Attorney General for Upper Canada in making appointments to office in Upper Canada. There will be in the Federal Government a leader for Lower Canada, and do you think that the other Ministers will presume to interfere and intermeddle with his recommendations? But I am told that I am in a minority. So I am now, so I have been for eight years—

MR. GEOFFRION—YOU have equality between the two provinces.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—Yes, we have equality, but not as a race, nor in respect of religion. When the leader for Lower Canada shall have sixty-five members belonging to his section to support him, and command a majority of the French-Canadians and of the British from Lower Canada, will he not be able to upset the Government if his colleagues interfere with his recommendations to office ? That is our security. At present, if I found unreasonable opposition to my views, my remedy would be to break up the Government by retiring, and the same thing will happen in the Federal Government.

HON. MR. DORION—The honorable member will be allowed to retire from the Government; as there will then be a sufficient number of English members to be able to do without him, he will be allowed to retire, and nobody will care.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—The honorable member for Hochelaga put a question to me relative to the constitution of the Legislative Council, and said that he had not looked at the question, while speaking the other evening, in the same light as the honorable member for the county of Quebec. He spoke of the conservatives as a party, and his fear was, not that the Upper House would not be conservative enough, but that it would be too much so.

HON. MR. DORION—I looked at it both ways, both as it involved the interests of parties, and in regard to the power which that House would exercise from the nature of its constitution.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—I did not see the two ways of looking at it. I saw but one. It is the same idea in a different form. He said that even if the Lower House were altogether liberal, the Upper House would remain comp os ed of conservatives ; this was his fear. He has been a long while trying to gain predominance for his democratic notions, but it is evident he will not succeed. I recur to the real medium through which the honorable member looks at the question, namely, his fears

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that his party will sink out of sight. In the present day, parties disappear and become fused with others, while others arise from passing events. In New Brunswick, conservatives join the liberal government to carry Confederation, and we see no parties there but the partisans and the opponents of the union, as in 1788, in the United States, there were no parties but the adherents of royalty and those of Federal Government. We see the same thing in Nova Scotia. This is true patriotism and the real dignity of public men. It is unfortunate for us that we do not follow their example here.


HON. MR. CAUCHON—The honorable member from Verchères says ” Hear ! ” Is it not a fact that the Opposition vote as a party on the present question ? If it is not so, will he name a single member of the Opposition who does not vote against Confederation ?

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—Hear ! hear !

HON. MR. CAUCHON—The honorable member for Cornwall says ” Hear ! hear ! ” He may well say so—he who never had a party. He came into power, nobody expected he would. He will never get it again, everybody expects that. (Continued laughter.) I am bound to shew him respect because he is my senior in this House, my senior by three years. It is true he has not always represented the same county, his brother having fraternally driven him out of Glengarry, and obliged him to take refuge in the rotten borough of Cornwall. (Laughter.) But although we have almost always been unlucky enough to do duty in dilferent camps, we have not on that account ceased to be good friends. (Laughter.) I will not look at this question in a party light, because parties expire, and we do not know whether in thirty years the present parties will exist. We ought to look at the question apart from party considerations, and on its own merits : that is to say, we ought to place in the Constitution a counterpoise to prevent any party legislation, and to moderate the precipitancy of any government which might be disposed to move too fast and go too far,—I mean a legislative body able to protect the people against itself and against the encroachments of power. (Hear, hear.) In England, the Crown has never attempted to degrade the House of Peers by submerging it, because it knows well that the nobility are a bulwark against the aggressions of the democratic element. The House of Lords, by their power, their territorial possessions, and their enormous wealth, are a great defence against democratic invasion, greater than anything we can oppose to it in America. In Canada, as in the rest of North America, we have not the castes—classes of society— which are found in Europe, and the Federal Legislative Council, although immutable in respect of number, inasmuch as all the members belonging to it will come from the ranks of the people, without leaving them, as do the members of the House of Commons, will not be selected from a privileged class which have no existence. Here all men are alike, and are all equal ; if a difference is to be found, it arises exclusively from the industry, the intelligence, and the superior education of those who have labored the most strenuously, or whom Providence has gifted with the highest faculties. (Hear, hear.) Long ago the privileges of caste disappeared in this country. Most of our ancient nobility left the country at the conquest, and the greater number of those who remained have sunk out of sight by inaction. Accordingly, whom do we see in the highest offices of state ? The sons of the poor who have felt the necessity of study, and who have risen by the aid of their intellect and hard work. (Hear, hear.) Everything is democratic with us, because everyone can attain to everything by the efforts of a noble ambition. The legislative councillors appointed by the Crown will not be, therefore, socially speaking, persons superior to the members of the House of Commons ; they will owe their elevation only to their own merit. They will live as being of the people and among the people as we do. How can it happen, then, that having no advantage over us greater than that of not being elected, they will not be subject in a legitimate degree to the influence of public opinion ? There are some men who have enough patriotism to approve of everything done elsewhere, but to find fault with everything done at home—it is a pitiful crotchet in the human mind. If there had been as much danger for the liberal party in this union as you say there was, would Hon. Mr. TILLEY, the leader of the Liberal government of New Brunswick, a man of such foresight and judgment ; would the honorable member for South Oxford, your former leader, whose talent and experience you will not deny, have accepted it ? (Hear, hear.) But look rather at what is now passing in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia ; what they have agreed to designate as the Federal electoral ticket is composed of six candidates for the town and

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county of St. Johns, N.B. ; and in Nova Scotia, Hon. Mr. TUPPEK, the leader of a Conservative government, and Messrs. ARCHIBALD and MCCULLEY, two of the chiefs of the Liberal party, are working hand in hand for Confederation. (Hear, hear.) One must be short-sighted not to see that this new order of things will produce new combinations similar to those produced by the American Constitution of 1788, when the citizens and public men divided into two camps, the camp of the supporters of national union and that of the friends of the state sovereignty. (Hear, hear.) Let us not then be anxious about the future of parties. What does it matter to this country what position the honorable member for Hochelaga or myself may occupy in this new Constitution ? (Laughter.) What matters it to the country if we be above or below, the first or the last, the victors or the vanquished, so long as it is happy under the new rule, and finds happiness, greatness, power and prosperity in the free development of its resources and institutions? (Hear, hear.) The opponents of Confederation do not desire the union of the provinces for the purpose of military defence; two and two will always make four, say they, and in uniting the populations of the different provinces, you will not give us more strength to resist the common enemy, unless, as facetiously remarked the honorable member for Lotbinière, we make a treaty with the enemy, which would bind him to attack us at but one place at a time, so as to allow us to oppose all our forces to the invasion. Yes, two and two will always make four. You are right. War between England and the United States would expose us in our colonial position to the attacks of the enemy at all vulnerable points of the respective provinces. But, firstly, the union carries with it the construction of the Intercolonial Railway, and that railway which does not particularly please the two annexationist taaders of the Opposition, would allow England and the provinces to transport troops rapidly from the furthest limits of the country to the threatened points of the national territory. Without the aid of railways how could NAPOLEON III. have been able, in a fortnight, to throw two hundred thousand men on the plains of Italy, to defeat the Austrians at Magenta and Solferino, and to gain one of the bloodiest and most glorious victories of modern times? But in the advanced condition of our civilization, our commerce and our manufactures—with so many elements of greatness, with so many prodigious sources of prosperity and wealth—with a population of nearly four millions already —should we have so little ambition as not to aspire to take our place one day in the rank of nations ? (Hear, hear.) Shall we forever remain colonists ? Does the history of the world afford examples of eternal subjection ? (Hear, hear.) It is not, for my part, because I do not feel myself proud and happy under the glorious flag which protects and shelters in safety one hundred and fifty millions of souls. It is not because I do not feel myself free as the bird of air in the midst of space, under the mighty aegis of the British Empire—a thousand times more free than I should be, with the name of citizen, in the grasp of the American Eagle. (Hear, hear, and cheers.) But we must not conceal from ourselves the fact that we are attracted by two centres of attraction—the opposing ideas which are developed and which make war upon each other, even within these walls, sufficiently attest the fact. Everything tells us that the day of national emancipation or of annexation to the United States is approaching, and while the statesmen of all parties in the Empire warn us affectionately to prepare for the first, a few of our own public men drive us incessantly towards the second, by propagating republican ideas, and by endeavoring by all possible means to assimilate our institutions to those of the neighboring republic. (Hear, hear.) If we remain isolated, what will happen at the moment of separation from the Mother Country ; for that moment will come, whether we wish it or wish it not? Each province would form an independent state, and as to attack the one would no longer mean to attack all, inasmuch as we should have ceased to be the subjects of the same empire, the United States, if they covet them, would devour them one by one in their isolated position, following therein the able tactics of the Romans in Asia, Europe and Africa, of the English in India, and of NAPOLEON, the greatest warrior of modern times, in Europe. I understand that the annexationists insist on the status quo and on isolation ; but others would be blind did they listen to them, inasmuch as reason commands them to organize, so as to be ready when danger comes. If we are four millions to-day, we shall probably be eight millions and over then,with proportionate means of defence, and the alliances which we would find in the necessity on the part of the European powers to keep within bounds the too extensive development of that nation which

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is now struggling in the horrors of oivil war. (Hear, hear.) Honorable gentlemen do not desire Confederation, because there must be an outlay for its defence. But are those, who argue thus, logical ? If two and two did not make more than four a moment ago, why would they make five now ? If each province, standing in an isolated position, would be obliged to expend money to organize the defence of its territory, why would the combination of all these various outlays in Confederation amount to more than the total of these same expenses otherwise added up ? Would this be the case because a single organization ought to be, necessarily, less expensive than six distinct commands ? The honorable member for Hochelaga has exaggerated the expenses of the Confederation, as he has everything else ; as he exaggerated and perverted, the other day, the words of the Hon. President of the Council.

ME. GEOFFRION—And besides this, the Maritime Provinces have to be paid to come into the Confederation.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—That question will naturally come up in its turn. But it is not the less true that all the provinces come into the Confederation on an equal footing, as their debt is placed in equilibrium ; and as, for the purposes of the union, the arrangement is strictly based on the total population of each of them. On a previous occasion, as I have elsewhere quoted, the honorable member for Hochelaga stated that the Maritime Provinces did not choose our alliance, because our debt was too great. Now he does not choose their alliance, because he is afraid we shall have to pay for them. Now that the debt is perfectly equal, in proportion to the total population, and the Conference has so equalized it in order to found Confederation on justice, the Atlantic Provinces consent to the union.

HON. MR. DORION—What provinces are those ?

HON. MR. CAUCHON—I allude to New Brunswick and Newfoundland, and I am convinced that the decision of those two provinces will sufficiently influence Nova Scotia to cause her to resolve to come into the Confederation. The Nova Scotian newspapers, even those of them which are most hostile to the scheme, acknowledge that that province cannot remain isolated ; and accord ingly shs awaits the result of the elections in New Brunswick before taking action. In the meantime the journals in question are making incredible exertions to prevail upon New Brunswick to refuse the great Confederation, because they wish for another and a smaller one, that of the Maritime Provinces alone. Another motive which will induce Nova Scotia to accept the scheme of the Quebec Conference, if New Brunswick should declare herself in favor of it, is that the terminus of the Intercolonial Railway would be fixed at St. John instead of at Halifax ; and what would become of Nova Scotia so isolated ? She would not consent toit ; her writers and her statesmen positively assert it. For our part, we require an outlet upon the Atlantic seaboard, and that we can only have by means of Confederation. (Hear, hear.) To those who cherish different ideas, I can conceive that this matter is not one of equal importance, for they wish to fix their terminus at another point on the Atlantic seaboard. (Hear, hear.) I feel that I have already spoken at length, and I have yet some important points of the scheme to examine. I will not, then, enter into calculations of figures to prove the extravagance and absurdity of t’aose of the hon. member for Hochelaga, preferring, moreover, to leave them in the more skilful and powerful hands of the Hon. Minister of Finance. I shall content myself with telling the hon. member for Hochelaga—and that will suffice for myself as well as for the House and the country—that I prefer Confederation with its prospects of expense, to annexation to the United States with an actual debt of close upon three thousand millions, and with an annual tax of five hundred millions of dollars. The 34th paragraph of the 29th clause of the scheme reads thus : ” The establishment of a General Court of Appeal for the Federated Provinces.” What is the object—what will be the character of the tribunal ? These two questions will naturally present themselves to those who have given any attention to that part of the scheme which refers to the civil and criminal law, and the working of the judiciary. The whole of the clauses which refer to the latter are as complete as the most ardent supporters of union could desire, tempered by the lew exceptions by means of which the provinces have wished to shelter their local institutions from attack. (Cheers.) To convince the House of this, I need but read the following :—

31. The General Parliament may also, from time to time, establish additional courts, and the General Government may appoint judges and officers thereof, when the same shall appear

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necessary or for the public advantage, in order to the due execution of the laws of Parliament.

32. All courts, judges and officers of the several provinces shall aid, assist and obey the General Government in the exercise of its rights and powers, and for such purposes shall be held to be courts, judges and officers of the General Government.

33. The General Government shall appoint and pay the judges of the Superior Courts in each province, and of the County Courts in Upper Canada, and Parliament shall fix their salaries.

35. The judges of the courts of Lower Canada shall be selected from the Bar of Lower Canada.

37. The judges of the Superior Courts shall hold their offices during good behaviour, and shall be removable only on the address of both Houses of Parliament.

45. In regard to all subjects over which jurisdiction belongs to both the General and Local Legislatures, the laws of the General Parliament shall control and supersede those made by the local legislature, and the latter shall be void so far as they are repugnant to, or inconsistent with the former.

38. For each of the provinces there shall be an executive officer, styled the lieutenant-governor, who shall be appointed by the Governor General in Council, under the great seal of the Federated Provinces, during pleasure : such pleasure not to be exercised before the expiration of the first five years, except for cause : such cause to be communicated in writing to the Lieutenant- Governor immediately after the exercise of the pleasure as aforesaid, and also by message to both Houses of Parliament, within thefirstweek of the first session afterwards.

39. The lieutenant-governor of each province shall be paid by the General Government.

50. Any bill of the General Parliament may be reserved in the usual manner for Her Majesty’s assent, and any bill of the local legislatures may, in like manner, be reserved for the consideration of the Governor General.

51. Any bill passed by the General Parliament shall be subject to disallowance by Her Majesty within two years, as in the case of bills passed by the legislatures of the said provinces hitherto, and, in like manner, any bill passed by a local legislature shall be subject to disallowance by the Governor General within one year after the passing thereof.

The evident object of this organization is to reassure the Protestant minority of Lower Canada against any apprehension for the future; it is also perhaps in the interest of national unity, to prevent local parliaments and governments from infringing the attributes of the Central Parliament. The nomination of judges, the veto, the reservation and even certain directions to be found in the project itself, tend to the same end, and must necessarily attain it. I see nothing wrong in that, provided that this formidable engine in going out of its course does not crush the rights which we are bound to respect and maintain forever in their integrity. (Hear, hear.) I am not of the same opinion as the hon. member for Brome, who pretends to see in those clauses that the judges would be under two masters at the same time. If they could possibly be controlled at all, it would be by the Federal Government, which alone will appoint them, pay them, and have the power of dismissing them in certain cases. There is no anomaly here, because one thing follows another ; all are linked together and harmonize perfectly. If anything could possibly arise, it would be danger. However, so far as we can see, there will be no danger in the administration of justice— the question of veto, and reserve with regard to legislation, being a totally different thing, and suggesting considerations of a different nature. But here is the point to which I wish to draw thé attention of this House. Among all the things guaranteed to Lower Canada in the Constitution, and in fact to all the provinces, we find their own civil laws. Lower Canada has been so tenacious of its civil code, that it is laid down in the project before us that the Federal Parliament shall not even be able to suggest legislation by which it may be affected, as it will have the right to do for the other provinces. The reason is obvious—the civil laws of the other provinces are nearly similar; they breathe the same spirit and the same principles ; they spring from the same source and the same ideas. But it is not so with regard to those of Lower Canada, with their origin from almost entirely Latin sources ; and we hold to them as to a sacred legacy ; we love them because they suit our customs, and we find under tho protection for our property and our iamilies. (Hear, hear.) The Conference has understood and respected our ideas on this point. However, if a Court of Appeal should one day be placed over the judiciary tribunals of all the provinces, without excepting those of Lower Canada, the result would be that those same laws would be explained by men who would not understand them, and who would, involuntarily perhaps, graft English jurisprudence upon a French code of laws.— (Hear, hear.) Such was the spectacle presented in Canada after the conquest, and no one, I am sure, would wish to see a repetition of the scene. (Hear, hear.) We have, it

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is true, Her Majesty’s Privy Council as a last resort, but we owe it to necessity ; we have not asked for it ourselves. At any rate it is composed of chosen men, all or nearly all of whom are well versed in Roman law—men who, when they have a doubt upon some point, avail themselves of the counsels and advice of the most eminent jurists of France. Nor does the proposed Constitution speak of doing away with this tribunal, which will dominate by its imperial character even over the Court of Appeal which the Federal Government has the power of creating. Here the Convention had national views; it foresaw evidently in the future the day of colonial emancipation. Nevertheless, whatever the intentions of the delegates, their project does not define the attributes of this Federal court; and as there is some apprehension on this point, I would wish to put the following question to the Government:—If this Court of Appeal be established, will it be a purely civil tribunal, or a constitutional one ? Or will it be at the same time civil and constitutional ? If it be a civil tribunal, will it have jurisdiction over Lower Canada? (Hear hear.)

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER —The question put by my hon. friend the member for Montmorency is one which it is not easy for the Government to answer, inasmuch as the power conferred by that article is only that of creating a Court of Appeal at some future day, and the jurisdiction of that court will depend on the causes which lead to its creation. The hon. member has very justly remarked that it may become necessary at a future period to constitute such a tribunal. At present the several provinces which are to form part of the Coniederation have the same court cf final appeal. As long as we keep up our connection with the Mother Country, we shall always have our court of final appeal in Her Majesty’s Privy Council. But when the British Provinces on this continent are united by the bond of Confederation, we shall have one uniform system, common to all, in regard to imports, bills of exchange and promissory notes, as well as universal jurisprudence. Accordingly, when we have lived some years under the Federal regime, the urgent need of such a Court of Appeal with jurisdiction ia such matters will be felt, and, if it is created, it will be fit that its jurisdiction should extend to civil causes which might arise in the several Confederate Provinces, because it will necessarily be composed of the most eminent judges in the different provinces, of the jurists whose reputation stands highest, of men, in short, profoundly skilled in the jurisprudence of each of the provinces which they will respectively represent. Well, if this court is called upon, for instance, to give final judgment on a judgment rendered by a Lower Canada court, there will be among the judges on the bench men perfectly versed in the knowledge of the laws of that section of the Confederation, who will be able to give the benefit of their lights to the other judges sitting with them. I must observe to my hon. friend the member for Montmorency, that he disparages the civil law of Lower Canada in the estimate he makes of it ; but he need be under no uneasiness on that head. He should not forget that if, at this day, the laws of Lower Canada are so remarkably well understood in Her Majesty’s Privy Council, it is because the code of equity, which is a subject of deep study and familiar knowledge amoug the members of the council, is based on Roman law, as our own code is. All the eminent judges, whether in England, in the Maritime Provinces or in Upper Canada, are profoundly versed in those principles of equity, which are identical with those of our civil code. Now, as to my own personal opinion, respeciing the creation of that tribunal, I think that it is important not to establish it until a certain number of years shall have elapsed from the establishment of Confederation, and to make it consist of judges from the several provinces; for this court would have to give final judgment in causes pronounced upon in the courts of all the sections. Neither can I tell what functions and powers might be assigned to it by the act establishing it. Time alone can tell us that ; but I do hold, and the spirit of the conference at Quebec indicated, that, the appeal to the judicial committtee of Her Majesty’s Privy Council must always exist, even if the court in question is established.

HON. MR. EVANTUREL—I acknowledge the frankness which the Hon. Attorney General for Lower Canada has evinced in giving the explanations to the House which we have just heard ; and I trust that the honorable minister will permit me to ask him one question. Paragraph 32 gives the Federal Government the power of legislating on criminal law, except that of creating

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courts of criminal jurisdiction, but including rules of procedure in criminal cases. If I am not mistaken, that paragraph signifies that the General Government may establish judicial tribunals in the several Confederate Provinces. I should much like to be enlightened on this head by the Hon. Attorney General for Lower Canada.

HON. MR. CARTIER- I am very glad that the honorable member for the County of Quebec has put this question, which I shall answer as frankly as that of the hon. member fix Montmorency. My hon. friend will find, if he refers to the paragraph which he has cited, that it gives the General Government simply the power of providing for the execution of the laws of the Federal Government, not of those of the local governments.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—I have listened to the explanations of my hon. friend the Attorney General for Lower Canada, and I find them perfectly satisfactory, as they regard criminal law ; for that is the same or nearly the same in all the provinces. For my own part, I infinitely prefer the criminal law of England to that of any other country. It affords more protection to the party accused, than, for instance the criminal code of France does. The civil laws of the latter, by the way, have my warm admiration, as have also their administrative talent and their aptness for civilizing influences. ( Hear, hear.) If the English criminal law gives the criminal too great a chance of escaping, it at least saves society the stigma of condemning the innocent. The accused is tried for the single act for which he is indicted, and is not questioned concerning his whole past life and conversation The laws of commerce are nearly the same in all countries, and those which rule the trade of two continents may be said to be founded on an ordinance of a king of France. Accordingly, there will be no inconvenience in bringing commercial causes, as well as others, for adjudication before the Court of Appeals mentioned in the scheme of Confederation. I am convinced that if ever that tribunal comes into existence, it will be composed Qf the most eminent men in the several provinces, who will devote their whole energies to the causes brought before them, but the majority of whom will have studied and practised a code different from ours ; although the laws of Upper Canada, for instance, have a constant tendency to coincide with our civil code : BLACKSTONE, with his national common law which he aimed at establishing, being no longer the great authority which he was in former days, and England, like Germany, drawing rather from the pure spring of Roman law, as the most perfectly rational code in existence. We have not, however, yet come to this position of things in our provinces, and, up to the present hour, English law consists rather of precedents and decisions of eminent judges, like Lords MANSFIELD, COKE, and others; and as the scheme of a Constitution makes an exception in favor of our civil laws, it would be most prudent, in my opinion, to leave the decision of our causes to those judges who have studied and practised them. Nothing is as yet written in the Constitution concerning them, and nothing stands in the way of the desired exception. (Hear.) I am aware that it may be attended with some inconveniences and that in this behalf concessions may have been, perforce, submitted to in order to obtain others ; but I think that on reflection it will be found best for all concerned to have the laws enforced rather by those who understand them than by those who do not. (Hear, hear.) I now come, Mr. SPEAKER, to the question of marriage and divorce. The word divorce has sounded strangely upon Catholic ears through the length and breadth of Lower Canada; for the Catholic, whether he live in Rome, in London, Paris, New York, Halifax or Quebec, does not recognize any authority on earth with power to sanction or legalize divorce. Such is what the Catholic believes, whether he be the Sovereign Pontiff, ruling spiritually over 200,000,000 souls, or the humblest or poorest of the faithful, with nothing to shelter him from the fury of the elements but the thatched roof of his cabin. (Hear, hear.) That is what I believe, in common with all the Catholics of the world ; but here, in this House, composed of Catholics and Protestants, I feel that I need, in order to be understood, to speak in another language, which will be understood by all, because it is based upon principles anterior to Christianity and universally admitted. What is marriage, considered as a natural contract? It is the social formula ; it is, as I had occasion to write elsewhere, the natural mode of transmitting property, which is the fundamental base of society, and, to go farther, society itself in its constitution. (Hear,

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hear.) If we cannot suppose a body without a form, so we cannot suppose society without its formula, and in destroying its formula you destroy society. That is the reason why the marriage tie should be indissoluble ; it is it which constitutes the family, and in breaking that tie you destroy the family, in breaking that tie you strike a mortal blow at society, because family ties are its only base, its only foundation. its only element of composition (Hear.) It is from those fundamental truths that spring the rights, duties and civil laws which prove their existence and at the same time protect them. (Hear.) I have heard in another place than in this House, men who, forgetting the natural law and the principles of society, become affected at the recital of the domestic miseries of one of their fellow-beings, and even invoke the Divine word to justify them in granting a divorce for cause of adultery. Let us see if the language of the Saviour of the world, who taught here upon earth a social doctrine, by preserving the inviolability of domestic ties and surrounding them with duties which rendered them still more sacred, justifies such an interpretation—” I say unto you, that he who putteth away his wife, except for adultery, and marrieth another, committeth adultery, and he who marrieth her who hath been put away also committeth adultery.” Are not these words as clear as day, and do they not expressly forbid divorce, since they declare an adulterer the man who shall marry the woman separated from her husband. (Hear, hear.) These words permit the sending away, the separatioü of the body, but they expressly forbid divorce— that is, the rupture of family ties (Applause.) I have said that those Divine words had a social object ; in fact what other object could they have but to preserve intact the social formula for the transmission of property ; and if they surround that formula with a supernatural sanction, accompanied by a prospect of reward or punishment, it is to protect it still more. It is for this reason that, in Catholicism, marriage, a natural contract, is elevated to the dignity of a sacrament, but it was inviolable and indissoluble before that sanction. (Hear, hear.) Now, if we drop the consideration of these great philosophical Christian ideas, we come to the region of material facts, and we are forcibly led to distinguish between force and right, between power and duty. The sovereign legislative authority, as a superior power everywhere, in spite of right and duty, has ruled with a high hand questions in the social order, among which may be found divorce ; everywhere, in ancient Rome, in France, in England, in the United States, and in Canada, has this authority acted, and the judiciary was bound to execute its commands. (Hear, hear.) This power is inherent to Parliament, and is exercised without opposition. Our present Parliament possessed that power, as did those of ’74 and ’91, and several of us have had, at some time or other, to give our vote on a bill of divorce. Catholics invariably voted against those bills, denying the right, but unable to deny the power, of Parliament, thus reconciling their consciences with their principles. (Hear, hear. ) This scheme of the Conference does not ask us to-day to proclaim a principle, but simply the transposition of the exercise of a power which exists in spite of us. Now, in weighing the advantages and inconveniences” I, for my part, say—and I believe, in so speaking I express the general sentiment of Catholics—that, since the evil is a necessary one, and cannot be got rid of, I would rather see it where its consequences would be less serious, because they would be more cramped in their development, and consequently less demoralizing and less fatal in their influence. (Hear, hear.) Marriage presents itself to us here under another aspect —that is, marriage with regard to its civil effects. This project attributes the civil laws and legislation as to property to the local legislatures. Now, marriage, considered as a civil contract, becomes necessarily a part of these laws, and, I might even say, it affects the entire civil code, containing in its broadest sense all the marriage acts, all the qualities and conditions required to allow marriage to be contracted, all the formalities relative to its celebration, all its nullifying causes, all its obligations, its dissolution, the separation of the body, its causes and effects ; in a word, all the possible consequences that can result from marriage to the contracting parties, their children and their estates. (Hear, hear.) If such had been the intention of the delegates, we might as well say that the civil laws will not be one of the attributes of our Local Legislature, and that these words, “Property and civil rights,” have been placed ironically in the fifteenth section of the forty-third clause of the scheme. But I was sure beforehand that such could not be the case, when the Honorable Solicitor General for Lower Canada declared the other day, in the

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name of the Government, that the word marriage, inserted in the project of Confederation, expresses the intention to give to the Federal Parliament the power to declare that marriages contracted in any one of the provinces, according to its laws, should be considered as valid in all the others. Then am I to understand that that part of the Constitution relating to this question will be drafted in the sense expressed in the declaration of the Honorable Solicitor General, and will be restricted to the case mentioned?

HON. SOL. GEN. LANGEVIN —I made, Mr. SPEAKER, the other day, in the name of the Government, the declaration now alluded to by the honorable member for Montmorency, relative to the question of marriage. The explanation then given by me exactly accords with that which was affixed to it at the Quebec Conference. It is undoubted that the resolutions laid before this honorable House contain in all things only the principles on which the bill or measure respecting Confederation will be based. I can assure the honorable member that the explanations I gave the other evening, relative to the question of marriage, are perfectly exact, and that the Imperial Act relating to it will be drawn up in accordance with the interpretation I put upon it.

HON. MR. DORION—I thought I understood from some one, whom I had reason to consider well informed, that that article was intended to protect mixed marriages.

HON. SOL. GEN. LANGEVIN—In order that I may be better understood by the hon. member, I will read the written declaration which I communicated to the House the other evening. This declaration reads as follows :

The word marriage has been placed in the draft of the proposed Constitution to invest the Federal Parliament with the right of declaring what marriages shall be held and deemed to be valid throughout the whole extent of the Confederacy, without, however, interfering in any particular with the doctrines or rites of the religious creeds to which the contracting parties may belong.

The hon. member for Hochelaga will please to remark that I have been careful in reading this declaration ; and in order that no doubt may exist respecting it, I have given to the reporters the very text of the declaration.

HON. MR. DORION—I may have been mistaken ; but the question on which I wish to be enlightened by the Hon. Solicitor General for Lower Canada is this : Will a Local Legislature have the right of declaring a marriage between parties not professing the same religious belief invalid ?

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—Has not the Legislature of Canada now the power of legislating on that matter, and yet has it ever thought of legislating in that way ? (Hear, hear.)

vHON. MR. CAUCHON—If I understand the explanation of the Hon. Solicitor General for Lower Canada correctly, it will be nothing but the application between the provinces of public international law, namely, that a marriage lawfully contracted in one province should be equally binding in all the others. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. DORION—In that case you have no need of that clause.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—If the principle is just, I do not see what harm there can be in having it written in the Constitution, particularly as it is desired in the provinces, and we, for our part, are interested in knowing that marriages contracted in Lower Canada are valid in all parts of the Confederation. That declaration is satisfactory and reassuring. Some of the speakers, imbued with democratic- republican ideas, have gone so far as to deny one of the most essential and fundamental principles of the British Constitution —that is to say, that the Parliament may change the Constitution without special appeals to the electoral body, and without recourse to popular conventions. It is evident that they wish to lead us towards a social republic, government and legislation in full force. The Roman armies in the days of the decadence of the empire, made and unmade emperors ; but it never occurred to them to make laws and administer affairs of state. This had to be reserved to our republicans, who are against Confederation because they desire annexation to the United States, and who raise all kinds of obstacles in order to attain their end. (Hear, hear.) Here there are useless debates provoked in order to kill time ; there, petitions covered with false signatures or names obtained under false pretences ; and the forlorn hope of democracy, who in the streets threaten with riots and gibbets all who wish for the union of the provinces, and thereby, in its time, constitutional monarchy and parliamentary government. (Hear, hear.) But for those who, like myself, move in another circle of ideas, who have other aspirations, and who are unwilling to accept on any condition their share of a debt of three thousand millions, and of an annual burthen of five hundred mil-

[Page 580]

lions of dollars; for those the theory and practice of English constitutional law alone possess attractions. (Hear, hear.) These convictions on my part are not of yesterday. When, in 1849, after a commercial crisis, which had everywhere caused discouragement, ruined merchants sighed for annexation, because they hoped to find in it a remedy for the ills and the tortune they had lost ; they supplicated Great Britain to allow them to go over, arms and baggage, to the Washington Government ; to them became immediately allied the republicans by inclination and principle, among whom were the honorable members for Chateauguay and Hochelaga. (Hear, hear.) The prosperity which followed brought back the merchants to affection for British rule, but the others remained republicans and annexationists. Their leaders are here before us. Their acts betray them, and were it permitted to us to hear them in their familiar counsels, I am sure their words would also betray them. (Hear, hear.) The annexation movement had scarcely commenced in Montreal, when the two similar classes of men began to agitate in Quebec, and called an annexationist meeting in the St. George’s Hotel, now occupied as the Executive Council Chamber. This meeting was inaugurated under evil auspices. It was presided over by a bankrupt merchant. It was evening, and the meeting wag held by gas-light. An orator was chanting with stentorian lungs the praises annexation and republicanism, from which we were to derive prosperity and happiness. Respectable leading citizens, indignant at what they beheld, implored me to speak, and by a spontaneous movement I was borne towards the platform. The annexationist orator, losing his balance with the shock, in order to keep himself upright, seized the gas-burner above his head, but the frail support gave way. (Laughter.) The flames ascended in a threatening manner towards the ceiling, and the terrified hotel-keeper immediately ran to the cellar and put a stop to the sources of illumination— and thus annexation was quenched in utter darkness. (Cheers and continuous laughter.) The republican annexationists, their hearts bursting with rage, in order to avenge themselves, proceeded to break my windows. This occurred nearly sixteen years ago, and time has only strengthened within me the opinion which guided my action then. It is neither hatred nor prejudice which has inspired me since I have been able to read and reflect. My opinion is the result of matured conviction. It is, therefore, in the parliamentary history of Great Britain, and not in that of American institutions, that I shall seek a rule of conduct to guide me under the circumstances. In 1717 the British soil was invaded by the Pretender. The tories, who were not in power, but who wanted to rise to it precisely like the honorable members in opposition whom I see before me, exclaimed, like them, that the church and religion of the country were in danger. Observe well the similarity. These tories wished to elevate a Catholic prince to the throne. (Laughter.) The Whigs, who held the Government, and who saw in the approaching election the certainty of the downfall of the reigning dynasty, determined to prolong the existence of the Parliament for four years more without an appeal to the people. Their adversaries exclaimed, as do ours to-day, about violation of the Constitution, and accused them of evading, by violent means, an appeal to the people, to maintain themselves in power.

MR. GEOFFRION—-In proportion to their numbers, there are more Protestants than Catholics in favor of Confederation.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—In the first place, there are a great many more Protestants in the House than Catholics—Upper Canada being entirely Protestant with the exception of two votes, and the Opposition of Lower Canada pronouncing themselves, as a party, against Confederation, it is not to be wondered at that there should be proportionably more Protestants than Catholics in favor of Confederation. (Hear, hear, from the Opposition benches.) And this leads me to say that Catholic institutions have been much better maintained by Protestant votes than by certain Catholic votes in the Legislature. If Catholicism has been insulted, the insult has come from the Opposition newspapers. (Hear.)

MR. GEOFFRION—The Globe, the organ of the Honorable the President of the Council !

HON. MR. CAUCHON—Yes, the Globe has made attacks on Catholic institutions and the Catholic clergy—it was wrong, there is no doubt, and so was its proprietor. But at that time, and more particularly when the Honorable the President of the Council accused Catholicism of demoralizing society, who was it who replied on the floor of this House, at great length, and I believe victoriously, in disproof of that assertion ? (Sensation.) I am then justified in saying that the Honorable the President of the Council was wrong in speaking and writing as he did. He was unjust, but he was a Protestant, and he adhered to his opinions. What, however, has

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he written in comparison with what has been written by certain newspapers of the Catholic opposition, among which the Avenir takes the highest place ? They have ransacked the history of the world from the beginning of the Christian era in search of the calumnies of past ages, with the view of overwhelming, if it were possible, our bishops and priests. They have even gone so far as to cast their venom upon the august Pontiff who now rules over the Catholic Church ; and what has not been done by the Institut Canadien of Montreal, which is patronized by the leaders of the Opposition ? (Cheers. )

HON. MR. CARTIER—And the Avenir, which asserted that the Pope ought to be a schoolmaster.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—Ah ! we now well know those who pretend to be the defenders of Catholicism, those former editors of the Avenir; we know what has been done by the Avenir, and the Pays also, in certain circumstances. (Hear , hear.) Bu t here is what we find in a great constitutional authority, the value of which honorable gentlemen opposite will probably not contest—” HALLAM’ S History of England” :—

Upon the prevalent disaffection and the general changes of the established government was founded that measure so frequently arraigned in later times, the substitution of septennial for triennial parliaments. The Ministry deemed it too perilous to their master, certainly for themselves, to encounter a general election in 1717 ; but the arguments adduced for the alteration, as if it was meant to be permanent, were drawn from its permanent expediency. Nothing can be more extravagant than what is sometimes confidently pretended by the ignorant, that the legislature exceeded its rights by this enactment ; or if that cannot legally be advanced, that it at least violated the trust of the people, and broke in upon the ancient Constitution. Tha law for triennial parliaments was of little more than twenty years’ continuance. It was an experiment which, as was argued, had proved unsuccessful ; it was subject, like every other law, to be repealed entirely, or to be modified at discretion. As a question of constitutional expediency, the septennial bill was doubtless open at the time to one serious objection. Everyone admitted that a parliament subsisting indefinitely during a king’s life, but exposed at all times to be dissolved at his pleasure, would become far too little dependent on the people, and far too much so on the Crown. But if the period of its continuance should thus be extended from three to seven years, the natural course of encroachment of those in power, or some momentous circumstance like the present, might lead to fresh prolongations, and’ gradually to an entire repeal of what had been thought so important a safeguard of its purity. Time has happily put an end to apprehensions, which aie not on that account to be reckoned unreasonable.

Against those who pretended that the Parliament of England could not effect, without an appeal to the people, a legislative union with Ireland, WILLIAM PITT, that other great constitutional authority, maintained that Par – liament had the right to alter even the succession to the Throne, to incorporate with itself another legislature, to deprive of the franchise those who elected it, and to create for itself other electors. To be more exact I will quote from a speech made by the illustrious Sir ROBERT PEEL, on the 27th March, 1846, on the Corn Law question. You will find there the opinion of PITT, FOX and PEEL himself, the most weighty Engl ish constitutional authority of this century. It is found in HANSARDS Parliamentary Debates, third series, vol. 85, pages 224, 225 and 226. Sir ROBERT PEEL said :—

But my honorable friend says he did not object to it as impeding the formation of a protection government, but as preventing a dissolution ; and my honorable friend and others have blamed me for not advising a dissolution of Parliament. In my opinion, it would have been utterly inconsistent with the duty of a Minister to advise a dissolution of Parliament under the particular circumstances in which this question of the Corn Law was placed. Why should it be so utterly impossible for this Parliament to deal with the present proposition? After its election in 1841, this Parliament passed the existing Corn Law, which diminished protection ; this Parliament passed the tariff destroying altogether the system of prohibition with respect to food ; this Parliament passed the Canada Corn Bill; why should it exceed the functions of this Parliament to entertain the present proposition ? But upon much higher ground I would not consent to a dissolution. That, indeed, I think would have been a “dangerous precedent” for a Minister to admit that the existing Legislature was incompetent to the entertainment of any question ; that is a precedent which I would not establish. Whatever may have been the circumstances that may have taken place at an election, I never would sanction the view that any House of Commons is incom petent to entertain a measure that is necessary for the well-being of the community. If you were to admit that doctrine, you would shake the foundations on which many of the best laws are placed. Why, that doctrine was propounded at the time of the union between England and Ireland, as it had been previously at the time of the union between England and Scotland. It was maintained in Irelaed very vehemently, but it was not maintained in this country by Mr. Fox. It was slightly adverted to by Mr. SHERIDAN at the time when the message with regard to the union

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was delivered. Parliament had been elected without the slightest reason to believe it would resolve that its functions were to be fused and mixed with those of another Legislature, namely, the Irish Parliament ; and Mr. SHERIDAN slightly hinted it as an objection to the competency of Parliament. Mr. PITT met that objection at the outset in the following manner. Mr. PITT said :—” The first objection is what I heard alluded to by the honorable gentleman opposite to me, when His Majesty’s message was brought down, namely, that the Parliament of Ireland is incompetent to entertain and discuss the question, or rather, to act upon the measure propose without having previously obtained the consent of the people of Ireland, their constituents. This point, sir, is of so much importance that I think I ought not to suffer the opportunity to pass without illustrating more fully what I mean. If this principle of the incompetency of Parliament to the decision of the measure be admitted, or if it be contended that Parliament has no legitimate authority to discuss and decide upou it, you will be driven to the necessity of recognizing a principle the most dangerous that ever was adopted in any civilized state, I mean the principle that Parliament cannot adopt any measure, iiew in its nature and of great importance, without appealing to the constituent and delegating authority for direction. If that doctrine be true, look to what an extent it will carry you. If such an argument could be get up and maintained, you acted without any legitimate authority when you created the representation of the Principality of Wales or of either of the counties palatine of England. Every law that Parliament ever made, without that appeal, either as to its own frame and constitution, as to the qualification of the electors or the elected, as to the great and fundamental point of the succession to the Crown, was a breach of treaty and an act of usurpation.” Then, Mr. PITT asked, if they turned to Ireland herself, what would they say to the Protestant Parliame t that destroyed the exclusive Protestant franchise, and admitted the Roman Catholics to vote without any fresh appeal ? Mr. PITT went on :—

” What must be said by those who have at any time been friends to any plan of parliamentary reform, and particularly such as have been most recently brought forward, either in Great Britain or Ireland ? Whatever may have been thought of the propriety of the measure, I never heard any doubt of the competency of Parliament to consider and discuss it. Yet I defy any man to maintain the principle of those plans without contending that, as a member of Parliament, he possesses a right to concur in disfranchising those who sent him to Parliament, and to select others, by whom he was not elected, in their stead. I am sure that no sufficient distinction, in point of principle, can be successfully maintained for a single moment ; nor should I deem it necessary to dwell on this point in the manner that I do, were I not convinced that it is connected in part with all those false and dangerous notions on the subject of Government which have lately become too prevalent in the world. ” Mr. PITT contended, therefore, that Parliament had a right to alter the succession to the Throne, to incorporate with itself another legislature, to disfranchise its constituents, or associate others with them. Why, is it possible for a Minister now to advise the Crown to dissolve Parliament on the ground that it is incompetent to entertain the question what this country shall do with the Corn Law? There could not be a more dangerous example, a more purely democratic precedent, if I may so say, than that this Parliament should be dissolved, on ground of its incompetency to decide any question of this nature. I am open to the charge, therefore, if it be one, that I did advise Her Majesty to permit this measure to be brought forward in the present Parliament.

The principle which I hold is so firmly established, that at the time of the flight of JAMES II. in 1688, the English Parliament, that is to say two branches of it on!y, declared the succession vacant and gave the Throne to a new dynasty.

HON. MR. DORION–Hear! hear!

HON. MR. CAUCHON—I wish to be well understood. I do not cite this example as an authcrity, because the Parliament was incomplete without its third legislative branch, but only for the purpose of shewing to what length the Parliament of Great Britain has carried the exercise of its great prerogative. Dur ing the illness of GEORGE III., as it had been impossible to foresee that such a misfortune would happen, and as without the action of the Sovereign, neither the administration of the government, which is conducted in the name of the king, nor legislation, which is only effectual after receiving the assent of the three branches of the legislature, were possible ; under these unforeseen circumstances, the two Houses, at the suggestion of the Ministers created a mechanism to act during the illness of the king, and all that was done under its operation became law, and was regarded as such by the whole British nation and all those charged with the execution of the laws of Par – liament. Bu t setting aside these extraordinary circumstances, which demanded extraordinary remedies, we assert that Parliament in its integrity has power to alter the Constitution and even the succession to the Throne. As to us, we do not propose to go so far ; we simply ask the Imperial Parliament to give us a new Constitution, and even that Parliament will only with our consent make use of that power which it has a right to exercise without our consent. (Hear, hear.) Let it be ob-

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served, Mr. SPEAKER, that I am only considering now the question of power and right ; the question of what is fit and expedient is quite another matter. We might do well or we might do ill by taking this course, but as we act in our capacity of representatives of the people, it is for us to decide whether it is expedient or advantageous that an appeal should be had to the people under the circumstances. (Hear, hear.) As regards the sentiments of Great Britain in relation to us, the events which have taken place since the union show that they are altogether changed. In 1840 we had a Constitution imposed upon us against our will, and by so doing Great Britain was guilty of injustice towards us. Now they await our decision before they act. In past days England looked upon the colonies as her own special markets, and fortified them by prohibitory duties against foreign trade. Now they are open to the whole world. Formerly we were under a despotic and. oligarchical government, and since 1841 we have had that British Parliamentary Government which the great economist TURGOT, more than sixty years before, had advised England to extend to her colonies. (Hear, hear.) Thus the Parliament of Great Britain, which had just proclaimed the union with Ireland, incorporated into its legislature the representation of the latter, and constituted itself, by its own authority, the first Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain, without recourse to a dissolution and new elections. At the meeting of the Houses they proceeded to the election of a new Speaker for the Commons, precisely as after a general election, and all the other formalities were observed which, according to custom, accompanied the opening of new parliaments. You will find those details in the Parliamentary History, vol. 35, page 857. Here is another authority which the republican-annexation adversaries of Confederation will hardly care to doubt. I find it in pages 164, 165, and 166 of SEDGWICK on Statutory and Constitutional Law :—

or are these merely speculative or abstract questions. We shall find them presenting themselves in a large class of cases which I am about to examine. The difficulty, generally, seems to have arisen from a want of accurate notions as to the boundary line which, under our system, divides the legislative and judicial powers. I now turn to a more detailed consideration of the cases in this country, where these questions have been considered and which, so far as they go, tend to give a practical definition to the term law, and to define the boundaries which separate the legislative from the judicial power. And first, of causes where the legislature has sought to divest itself of real powers. Efforts have been made, in several cases, by the state legislatures to relieve themselves of the responsibility of their functions, by submitting statutes to the will of the people, in their primary capacity. But these proceedings have been held, and very rightly, to be entirely unconstitutional and invalid. The duties of legislation are not to be exercised by the people at large. The majority governs, but only in the prescribed form ; the introduction of practices of this kind would remove all checks on hasty and improvident legislation, and greatly diminish the benefits of representative government. So where an act to establish free schools was, by its terms, directed to be submitted to the electors of the state, to become a law only in case a majority of the votes were given in its favor, it was held, in New York, that the whole proceeding was entirely void. The Legislature, said the Court of Appeals, have no power to make such submission, nor had the people the power to bind each other by acting upon it. They voluntarily surrendered that power when they adopted the constitution. The government of this state is demccratic ; but it is a representative democracy, and in passing general laws, the people act only through their representatives in the Legislature. And in Pennsylvania, in the case of an excise statute, the same stern and salutary doctrine has been applied. In some of the more recent state constitutions this rule has been made, a part of the fundamental law. So in Indiana, the principle is now framed into a constitutional provision which vests the legislative authority in a Senate and House of Representatives, and declares that no act “shall be passed, the taking effect of which shall be made to depend upon any authority except as provided in the Constitution.” And under these provisions it has been held that so much of an act as relates to its submission to the popular vote, was null and void.

HON. MR . DORION—In England there are seven or eight acts of Parliament which were submitted to the popular vote before becoming law.

HON. MR . CAUCHON—In England it is admitted that Parliament may do anything and even change the sexes if necessary, according to the doctrine of the honorable member for Brome. (Laughter.) The honorable member for Hochelaga is an admirer of written constitutions; I am citing authorities to suit him, and which it is quite impossible for him to reject. (Hear , hear.) All these authorities establish, by incontestable evidenoe, the power of Parliament in regard to every question that may come before it. There only remains now the question of convenience and expediency, and that question can only be considered by Parliament. In 1717, 1800,

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and 1846, the British Parliament decided it without appealing to the people. In 1832 it decided the question after an appeal to the people, acting in all those circumstances under the constitutional responsibility of its trust. That is what we shall do in the present difficult conjuncture, awaiting in the approaching elections the approval or condemnation of our initiative. But let the opponents of the scheme be well convinced that we understand, quite as well as themselves, the entire importance of the vote which we are going to give. In closing, Mr. SPEAKER, I may be allowed to say to the House, that in a debate of such a solemn character, and when such great destinies as regards the future of the whole of British North America are at stake within these walls, let us have the courage to rise superior to passions, hatreds, personal enmities, and a miserable spirit of party, in order to allow our minds to soar more freely in the larger sphere of generous sentiments, and of great and noble national aspirations. We possess all that we want— all the necessary elements of greatness and prosperity to found an empire in America. Let us boldly set to work, sheltered by the flag and protected by the powerful aegis of the Empire which leads us on to undertake the task. (Prolonged applause.)

HON. MR. DORION—Mr. SPEAKER, the honorable member for Montmorency, who has just sat down, having given it as his opinion that all those who are opposed to Confederation are annexationists and infidels, I must congratulate him upon having at last opened his eyes and escaped the danger of being drawn into the vortex of the American Union, and perhaps into something worse—(laughter) —as but a short time ago he was in the bad oompany of those who are opposed to Confederation. He has even written a whole volume in opposition to the union of the British North American Provinces. (Hear, hear.) I suppose that at that time he did not look upon himself as an annexationist, and still less as an infidel, for the simple reason that he combatted with all the power at his command, not only Confederation, but also union of any kind with the British American Provinces. (Hear, hear.) In that book, which I have just referred to, and which was written at the end of 1858, the honorable member, after having described the different systems under which the union might be projected, says :—” We do not desire it, because we do not want union in any form, inasmuch as the same object will always be attained, no matter under what form the union may be established.” That object, according to the hon. member, was the depriving Lower Canada of the small influence which she exercises on the legislation of the existing union. It is true that the honorable gentleman has written another book lately. According to that book he no longer sees any other danger for Lower Canada than that of annexation, and invites everyone to turn round as he has done, and to follow him with the view of avoiding these dangers. (Hear, hear, and laughter.) Once more I congratulate him that he is now out of danger, and I will endeavor to follow him with his two books in his hand. As it is too late to-night, however, I will do it at the next sitting, and for that purpose I move that the debate be now adjourned.

HON. MR. CAUCHON — The honorable member for Hochelaga alludes to the two pamphlets which I have written, one in 1858, and the other in 1865, on the subject of the Confederation of the provinces. The difference between the honorable member and me is simply this, that I do not deny what I have written, whilst in order that he may enjoy greater freedom of discussion, he has thought proper to deny his actions in the past. (Hear, hear.) There is another contradiction which it is of importance to remark. After having asserted, up to 1861, that there was danger for Lower Canada in not granting to Upper Canada representation based upon population, or its substitute, the Confederation of the two Canadas, and that the danger was so menacing that it was more prudent to give way than to allow it to be forcibly taken by her—to-day he comes down and maintains that the horizon is quite serene ; that there is no necessity for constitutional changes. Does he then so easily forget the days of 1858, ’59, ’60 and ’61 ? (Hear, hear.) For my part, Mr. SPEAKER, I think we should be acting with more dignity, and would render more service to the country, if we devoted ourselves exclusively to the consideration of the question, setting aside those accusations of contradiction from which no one is ever exempt. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. DORION moved the adjournment of the debate to the sitting to-morrow night at half-past seven.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER moved in amendment that it be adjourned till half-past three to-morrow, to be then the first order of the day after routine business.

After some discussion, the amendment was carried, and the House adjourned.

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FRIDAY, March 3, 1865.

MR. PERRAULT—Mr . SPEAKER, it is not without a degree of hesitation easy to be understood that I venture to give my reasons for my vote on the question of the Confederation of the Provinces of British North America. I hesitate, because I am conscious how much I fall short in respect of solid information and political experience to enable me to form a healthy and reliable judgment of the various reasons to be alleged on both sides of that vast question, the decision of which is pregnant with such serious consequences to the future welfare of the country. A further cause of my hesitation, Mr. SPEAKER, is that I see on the Ministerial benches men grown old in political warfare—men who for many years have bean the leaders and guides of the majorities in the two Canadas—supporting the scheme now submitted to us, and assuring us that it is the only remedy for all the difficulties of our present position. Still another cause of my hesitation is that I am aware of the great severity with which the Ministerial press visits all the adversaries of the plan of Confederation, and of the small measure of justice which it metes out in estimating the motives of those who oppose this constitutional scheme, however upright their characters or honest the motives which actuate them. Bat I should consider myself wanting in my duty as a member if, swayed by these misgivings, I did not state my motives in this House for my opposition to the project of Confederation. OB SO important a question it is a duty to my constituents, it is a duty which I owe to myself, that I should justify the responsibility which I take upon myself in resisting a measure which is so strongly supported in this House, and I should think I failed in my duty and was unworthy of the seat which I fill in it, if I did not add force to my opposition by citing the history of the past, by pourtraying the prosperity of the present, and by pointing out the dangers to be feared in the future which is preparing for us. I have been long studying the general question of a Confederation, and I am of opinion that the Provinces of British North America are destined to form, at some future time which may be more or less remote, a vast Confederation, in which the two races of French and English origin will be seen struggling in the career of progress for the common prosperity of both ; and for the better convenience of studying the question, I visited the Lower Provinces in 1863, by way of the Gulf, and in 1864 by the Bay of Fundy. I am bound to say that I found the people everywhere in ca»y circumstances, and intelligent, and doing honor to that part of the country. I was then enabled to appreciate the advantages and the inconveniences attending on the decision of the question of Confederation generally. On my return from my last journey, which I made in the month of August, 1864, in company with a certain ruuibcr of the members of both Houses, it was said by the press that I had in several companies declared myself favorable to the plan of a Confederation of all the provinces. At that time the Conference at Charlottetown had not taken place, and public opinion had already busied itself with classifying the members of this House as favorers or opponents of Confederation. I had already, at that time, publicly expressed my opinion on the question through the press, in order that I might bring it under the notice of my constituents, and I must declare that the opinion which I then expressed coincides with the line of conduct to which I still adhere, and that I have not found it necessary to alter my position in any one point from what it then was. In order that I may show this in the clearest manner, I shall read what I wrote in the mouth of August last, as perfectly explanatory of what I always thought of the scheme of confederating the Provinces of British North America. Here is what I wrote :—

This question of serious import, on which the minds of all our political world are so busy, in the present crisis, is so difficult of solution, that it would be an act of pre-umption in me to attempt even to discuss it, while our public men of the highest mark are still doubtful whether to favor it or not. As the Minerve, however, in its last number, claims me as one of the new converts to the great scheme of Confederation, I should think myself wanting to my duty and my convictions if I failed to let the world know my im-iressions of the present position, as I understand it. Those who consider the inexhaustible resources of the Provinces of British North America have no doubt that we possess all the elements of a great power. In territory we have a tenth part of the habitable globe, capable of suppoiting a population of 100,000,000 of persons Bounded on the east by the Atlantic, on the west by the Pacific, our territory is further accessible by the navigation of the internal seas, which bound it on the south. Our rivers complete the incomparable net-work of communica-

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tion by water, and, like vivifying arteries, bear on their bosom to the ocean and the markets of the world the heavy produce of the western plains, the lofty pines of our forests, our ores of gold and copper, our furs collected in our hunting grounds, and the produce of our fisheries in the gulf. In this vast field of productiveness, wheie all the materials of immense wealth exist, we need a moving power, and the inexhaustible coal fields of Nova Scotia are at hand to furnish it. British North America, therefore, looms in the future with gigantic proportions, and it depends only on ourselves to decide whether the French element shall have a large share of the power which is to grow up within its limits. With energy and union, we shall keep the ground we have gained in a struggle oí a hundred years. The past is a warranty of success in the future. Yet must we not hurry matters, nor overrun the natural progress of events. While we arc still too few to take the offensive, our policy should be one of resistance. Accordingly, before pledging myself to the support of Confederation, which is a total change of the basis of our present Constitution, I would be perfectly sure that we shall not lose an inch of ground. More than this ; I would permit no change to be made in our present Constitution, except in ns far as it would ensure a larger measure of prosperity for our country, more powerful protection for our institutions, and the absolute inviolability of our rights. For I have not deviated in the smallest degree from the terms of my address to the electors of Richelieu, when I had : he honor to solicit their votes as their representative in the Legislative Assembly. In that address, I declared myself opposed to any concession whatever to Upper Canada. Accordingly, if it should appear that the scheme of Confederation, which is to be laid before the Provincial Parliament in its next session, would assure to French-Canadians greater advantages than they enjoy under the present Constitution, I should, as a thing of course, be in favor of Confederation. But if it should be otherwise ; if, in however small a degree, Confederation should appear to be a concession to Upper Canada, to the detriment of our institutions, our language or our laws, I shall to the utmost extent of my power oppose any change whatever in the present Constitution. Of course I am not one of those who would bound our political horizon and place limits to our greatness as a people ; on the contrary, nothing would render me happier than the creation of a vast political organization, spread over an immense territory. The heart-burnings between localities and individuals would thenceforward cease and die out from mere insignificance, as compared with the great interests which would be confided to the watchful guardianship of our statesmen, and become the subject of their deliberations in the councils of the nation. Then the laudable ambition of achieving a great name in a great country would produce a race of great men, of whom we might be justly proud. But if this glorious future is to be purchased only at the price of our absorption, of pur language, and all that is dear to us as Frenchmen, I for one could not hesitate between what we may hope for while still remaining what we are, and the bastardizing of our race paid as the price of advantages to come. To sum up ail, therefore, I declare for the Constitution such as it is, which, so far, has yielded us a greater amount of advantage than all the proposed changes would; and such, I venture to say, is the opinion of the majority of our Legislative Assembly. But if the projected scheme secures to us in the convention all the privileges which the French-Canadians now enjoy in the present Parliament, and if. in the whole and in every part, it secures to us greater advantages than those which are guaranteed to us by the Constitution, I shall prefer Confederation to all other changes.

I am bound to declare that this way of looking at the question, in the month of August last, has undergone no change in my mind, since I heard the explanations given by the members of the Administration. The skill which they have evinced certainly does them great honor, but nei ther the argument s of Ministers, nor those of the members of the House who support the scheme, have convinced me ; and I rely on being able to show in my remarks what are the grounds of my opposition, and to justify, according tomy way of looking at it, the responsibility which I under take in opposing a project which has found such powerful supporters in this House. I trust I shall be able to show, first, the inexpediency of a constitutional change ; second, the hostile object of Confederation ; third, the disastrous consequences of the adoption of the project of Confederation. The inexpediency of a constitutional change must be perfectly evident to any one who considers for a moment the present prosperity of Canada, and who takes the trouble to examine the progress made by United Canada since 1840. The Hon. Attorney General East says that “the union has done its work.” But is that quite certain? When we compare the past with the present, have we not reason to be proud of our growth since 1840, and of the fact that within the past twenty-five years, our progress, both social and material, has kept pace with that of the first nations in the world? During the past twenty-five years we have progressed politically in a manner unprecedented in colonial history; and Canada has furnished a magnificent instance of the good result of responsible government in an English colony, notwithstanding diversity of races and religions. In 1840, we had just terminated a glorious struggle, during which, unfor- tunately, many lives had been lost–

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struggle undertaken in order to secure responsible government, which had, up to that time, been refused, and which was then accorded us as the reward of the straggle. At that period Lower Canada was united as one man ; she had forwarded to England petitions, bearing 60,000 signatures, asking for responsible government. We then had in our ranks men who did not shrink from the struggle, men accustomed to resist oppression, men who had grown up in the midst of a strife with an arrogant minority, which sought to overrule the majority; and these were the great men who secured the triumph of our nationality, and upheld the rights of Lower Canada, by securing responsible government at the same time that the union was forced upon us. Let us now see the result of their labors. Is it true that we have progressed both socially and materially since that period ? Any one who reflects on what Canada was in 1840, and what it is in 1865, cannot but admit that we have progressed in a degree almost unprecedented in the history of the prosperity of nations ; that we have immensely extended our territory, by clearing away the forest ; that our population has increased in a wonderful manner, that that population is prosperous and contented, and that we have progressed materially and socially in a manner heretoforce unprecedented under the colonial system. In the social order, let us examine, first, our legislation and system in municipal matters. Can a more perfect system be found anywhere ? Has not every locality ili the powers necessary for effecting all improvements of real necessity? It is since the union that we have perfected this system, and that we have endowed our rural districts with the means of effecting all improvements they may desire, and particularly as regards road matters and the making of new roads, in order to facilitate the transport of farm produce to market. (Hear, hear.) But I need not dwell on the progress we have made and the reforms we have carried out, as regards legislation. That which had chiefly contributed, from the first establishment of English rule, to arrest our progress in this respect was the Legislative Council of the foriuer Legislature, and that which existed from the union up to 1856. Since that period have we not obtained an elective Legislative Council, and must not our greatest reforms be considered the consequence ? With the union and responsible government, did we not also secure the right of being represented by French-Canadian fellow-countrymen in the Executive Council ? And since then have we not enjoyed all the advantage of a system of government under which the people can, not only express their wants, but enforce their wishes ? These are reforms of the highest importance, but we have obtained yet more. When, in 1840, the union of the Canadas took place, landed property in Lower Canada was subjected to the feudal system, which had been introduced with all its features derogatory to the dignity of man, with all its charges upon property, and all its vexations for the censitaire, tinder that system no property whatever could change hands without being submitted to a heavy charge in the form of lods et ventes for the benefit of the seignior, and to cens et rentes which considerably reduced its value. With the political rights conferred on us by the union, the seigniorial system of necessity disappeared, giving us property in freehold, the same as in the neighbouring States and in all civilized nations. It is also since the union that we have consolidated our laws ; that we have created a system of public instruction which imparts the blessings of education to the most remote parts of the province. At the present moment we have a school system which does honor to the country, and the intelligent, however poor they may be, can, almost without charge, acquire an education. Now, each village, each concession has its school, and the child of the backwoodsman dwelling in the midst of the forest, can there obtain a degree of elementary instruction sufficient to enable him to enter upon a career of honor and fortune, should his talents, his industry and his energy fit him for playing a part in polities, in the sciences, in the arts or in the ranks of the clergy of his country. It is a remarkable fact, Mr. SPEAKER, and one which I deem it right to mention, that the majority of the notable men who have attained seats on the judicial bench, in the Ministry and even in the Episcopal chair, came forth from our humble country homes, and qualified themselves in our educational institutions, where instruction is afforded all but gratuitously, by dint of talent, perseverance, study and industry. It was the pressure of want in the family homestead that in many eases created in the breasts of our most eminent public men, the eager desire of attaining a high position by means of study and labor. Since the union our system and means of public

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instruction have made immense progress. Before the union we had no Catholic university in the country. Young men intending to enter the liberal professions wore compelled, instead of following a regular course, to content themselves with what they could acquire in the office of their patrons, who were not in all cases competent for the task they undertook, or else to go abroad at great expense for many years, in order to obtain in England or France a certificate of qualification. To-day we have in Lower and in Upper Canada universities rivalling European universities of the same clas?, and we have also a body of young students, who, fifteen or twenty years henee, will give proof of the excellence of our university system, and of the high curriculum of studies these institutions have now rendered universal. Now, in face of the degree of progress I have just referred to, in the social order, can it be truly said that the union has run its day, when all these marvels are its creation ? When we are stronger and better educated than we were twenty years ago ; when we have new political rights ; when we have a free right to the soil, and when we have created a system of public instruction such as we now enjoy, can it be said that the union has done its work, and that it must be broken up ? For my part, Mr. SPEAKER, I am not prepared to support that asseition. The union has been for us a great means of progress, since it has enabled us to secure all these results in the social order. The Hon. Attorney General East has told us that Confederation will procure us material advantages still greater, and that that is all we want. I deny, Mr. SPEAKER, that material interests form the sole ambition of the French-Canadian population. We attach a far higher importance to the preservation of our own institutions. But even as regards material interests, apart from the advantages, in the social order, derived from the union, we have still a vast field before us as regards the progress we have made since 1840. In order to see what the union has done in this respect, it is sufficient to look at our system of railroads, and above all, at the great Giand Trunk line from Sarnia to Rivière du Loup, which has increased our commerce tenfold, opened our dense forests to colonization, and multiplied our resources to an incalculable extent ; it is sufficient to look at our ports of Montreal and Quebec during the season of navigation, filled with vast forests of shipping, to see our trans-atlantic steamers bearing off weekly the products of our country to the most distant European markets, in exchange for the articles of import we require. And if we ascend our great River St. Lawrence, what do we see ? We find canals, which in their dimensions, the materials of which they are constructed, and in their extent, are unsurpassed in any part of the world. I maintain, Mr. SPEAKER, that there is nothing to be found in Europe to compare with our artificial water communications. In England, for instance, the canals are only miserable gutters, and the little boys, in rowing their boats, can touch both sides at once with the ends of their oars. Here our canals pass through the whole country, and connect the most remote parts of it with the markets of Europe. And, in fact, a ship of tour hundred tons burden can now sail from Chicago, cross the ocean, and discharge her cargo in the docks at Liverpool. The union which has given us such canals, such railways, has not run its day, has not done its work, as the Hon. Attorney General East pretends. On the contrary, with such means as these, we are justified in anticipating from the union still greater results in the future. If we look at our colonization, we behold the forest receding before the axe of the cettler, the products of our land increased tenfold, and our settlers locating in advance of the surveyor on our wild lands. What the union has already done for us is certainly great, but the advantages it has in store for us are still greater, if we know how to avail ourselves of the means it places at our command. Therefore it is that I do not think the union has done its work, but that, on the contrary, it will yet secure our prosperity. And hence it is that I wish to preserve the union and remain under allegiance to Her Most Gracious Majesty the Queen of England, and refuse to accept constitutional changes which must of necessity imperil our future as a nation. (Hear, hear.) It has often been said that Lower Canada was a drag on Upper Canada, retarding her advancement in the march of progress, and that a new Constitution was necessary. I deny the justice of the accusation, and I maintain that such a charge could only emanate from Upper Canadian fanaticism. True, the French-Canadian race has been characterized at Toronto by a Governor General as an “inferior race,” but the insult thus offered to Lower Canada has not a single fact to bear it out. Moreover,

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I am happy to bring forward the testimony of the Hon. Finance Minister (Hon. Mr. GALT) to refute these assertions, to answer these insults, and to prove that the prosperity of Canada is due to the active co-operation of the French-Canadians—not only in the Executive, but in the Legislative Assembly. In a letter written from London in 1860, the Hon. Minister of Finance says :—

From 1849 up to this day, the French Canadian majority has been fairly represented in the Ministry, and it is with its powerful co-operation and the part it has taken in initiating every measure, and the support of its votes in Parliament, that all great reforms have been realized.

Well, if it be true that the French-Canadian members of the Governmenc, since 1849, have, by their unceasing efforts, obtained the realization of these reforms, why is it now sought to destroy the Constitution under which they were obtained, and to create a new state of things which will diminish that influence which we now enjoy ? It is because, notwithstanding our material prosperity, the old aggression of race against race, the former state of antagonism and ill-will, has not disappeared. The end proposed to be attained by the Government in making these changes is a vast and noble end, I admit. It is the creation of an immense Empire, which will redound to our glory and to that of England. But it seems to me that this will not be the necessary result of the mean? which are being taken to attain it. (Hear, hear.) Whenever the great measures of reform to which I have already referred have been submitted to- Parliament, we have seen public men devote themselves exclusively to these measures, and labor for their realization. We have seen parties arrayed for or against these great questions—the abolition of the Seigniorial Tenure, the election of the members of the Legislative Council, the construction of our railways and canals, &c. In view of these great questions, there was no room for the contemptible personal considerations, and the miserable wrangling of the church door ; but as soon as these great reforms were obtained, there was no longer any ground for opposition to the Government on these subjects; yet subjects for the exhibition of discontent and opposition had to be devised, with the view of attaining power, and of satisfying individual ambition. They then addressed themselves to the prejudices of race and religion. A cry was raised in Upper Canada that French-Canadian domination could no longer be endured, and that an end must be put to it. No heed was taken of the progress that had yet to be made, but it seemed as though nothing required to be done in order to attain success?, but to destroy the national character of a large section of Canada. They complained of French domination, the influence of the clergy, and of the great number of religious institutions in Canada ; and what was the remedy proposed to put an end to all these evils which Upper Canada could no longer tolerate ? The lion, member for South Oxford (Hon. Mr. BROWN) was imported, and brought out here from Scotland, to cast the flaming torch of discord between the two populations, and to inflame them one against the other. I emagine that since that time the Hon. Mr. BUCHANAN must have more than once regretted this importation, which was not quite in the regular line of his commercial operations. And when this gentleman had been imported, who has been the cause of all our dissensions up to the present time, parties were organized under his command as they are this day. To diminish or destroy the influence of the French-Canadians in Parliament, the hon. member for South Oxford raised a clamour for representation based upon population, which was reechoed from One end of Upper Canada to the other. Those cries, the offspring of fanaticism, were rejected by Lower Canada with unanimity on the part of our public men. The hon. member for South Oxford, finding that this cry for representation based on population was a magnificent war-horse, made use of it to form a party. Since that period he has allowed nothing to stand in his way. He has calumniated every public man and all the institutions which were held in respect by the inhabitants of Lower Canada; he has attacked, with the greatest fury, all that was dear to us as Frenchmen and Catholics ; and by this means he gained his object ; and we have seen all the western farmers, all the inhabitants of Canada West, cry out that here we were all under the domination of the clergy, and that the English and Protestant population ought not to submit to so heavy a yoke. He knew that the English element was fanatic and aggressive, and by means of this cry the then leader of the Opposition in Upper Canada succeeded in forming a phalanx so strong, that Lower Canada has been compelled to yield some portion of the

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ground which she had conquered in her struggles of former days. I do not believe that there is a single member for Lower Canada who would wish to change our present Constitution in the manner now proposed, were he not forced to it by Upper Canada. We are, then, about to give up some of our franchises and our rights in this new struggle against the spirit of encroachment and domination manifested by the English race. Hon. members who support the measure will tell you that they are giving up a part of our rights, in order that what remains may be saved from destruction, and that they may not lose all they now enjoy, before any lengthened period shall have elapsed. But was this clamor in favor of representation based upon population sincere on the part of those who used it as a means of attacking us ? Was it in reality a remedy for the evils of which they complained ? No, Mr. SPEAKER, I do not think it was. It was simply an electoral platform, by which to attain power and consummate the encroachment upon our rights contemplated by the leaders of the movement. I do not deem it necessary to repeat here all the arguments brought to bear against the demand for representation by population, in eighty speeches delivered in 1860, during the discussion of that exciting question ; but I remember that debate with all the more pleasure, that the French-Canadians shewed that they retained some vestiges of firmness in the day of battle, and of perseverance in the maintenance of our rights, which our fathers had so often manifested. On that occasion the Hon. Attorney General East (Hon. Mr. CARTIER) deserved the approbation of his country for the resistance he made to that unjust demand on the part of Upper Canada, with that energy and tenacity he is so well known to display ; he was the champion of our rights. Why, then, does he to-day come down and propose a compromise with his opponents of those days ? Is it just at the moment when the leaders of the Upper Canadian Opposition had, by entering the MACDONALD-SICOTTE Government, absolutely rejected the priuciple of représentation based upou population, that he should abandon the struggle ? Is it at the noment the MACDONALD-SICOTTE Government had obtained separate schools for the Catholics of Upper Canada, that the party led by the honorable member for South Oxford was to be dreaded ? Is it at the moment when the law providing separate schools for the Catholics of Upper Canada was the subject of a triumph, which the Hon. Attorney General had never succeeded in obtaining during the whole time he has been in power, that the Hon. Attorney General should cease from further efforts, throw down his arms, and declare as a French-Canadian that we could no longer hold the breach, and that we must make concessions to Upper Canada ? Did not the MACDONALD-SICOTTE Administration make a close question of representation by population ? Were not all the members of that Government bound to oppose it? Yes, Mr. SPEAKER, the Hon. Attcrney- General East was guilty of a grievous wrong, when he defeated that Government by a hostile majority composed of French-Canadians. It was after that hostile vote that Upper Canada insisted on her right to renew her claims to representation based on population, and that we are compelled to-day to make concessions. For my part, Mr. SPEAKER, I have never been convinced of the sincerity of those who made use of the cry for representation based on population, for I have never seen any other means employed to obtain the aid of the western farmers in securing more easily the reins of power. Has the principle of representation based on population ever served as the basis of a government having monarchical ideas, like those which actuate the existing Government? Now we are seeking fora Confederation for which there is no precedent—not a Confederation like those to be found in other countries which have adopted that form of government, but a monarchical Confederation. (Hear, hear.) It is sought to retain the English Constitution, and yet it is asserted that representation by population is a just principle, and that it must be extended to Upper Canada. Does not the Honorable Attorney General East (Hon. Mr. CARTIER) remember the arguments he urged in 1860 against this principle ? Did he not then declare with the view of showing that the principle was neither a just one nor one recognized in the British Constitution, that if it were applied to the British Parliament the city of London alone would have thirty members instead of sixteen, and that Scotland would send many more members to Parliament than she does now ? Did he not assert that rotten boroughs, containing only a few hundred inhabitants, had one representative, and that counties containing 100,000 inhabitants had no more ? Have these argu-

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ments, then so full of power, lost all their force and value to-day ? Have they become futile since the alliance of the Honorable Attorney General East and the lion, member for South Oxford ? Can they no longer be used to save our Constitution and our liberties? How can the party which has so long been kept together by its opposition to the principle of representation by population, say to-day that it is a just principle, and that it must be conceded ? I confess, Mr. SPEAKER, that I cannot understand why we should concede to-day what we refused in 1860. It is true that I do not possess the experience of the hon. gentlemen who now occupy the Ministerial benches, and that, perhaps, it may be wiser to bend to-day than to be broken to-morrow ; but when I study the history of the past, when I look at things as they are, and look forward to the future which is now proposed for us, T only see in the scheme of Confederation a remedy which is more violent than the disease, and which, instead of removing the difficulties it is proposed to eradicate, will only have the eflect of producing results the most unfavorable to the peace and prosperity of our country. I state i then, Mr. SPEAKER, that the question of representation by population, which has been the principal cause of the Confederation scheme, was excluded froftt the political programme of the MACDONALD-SICOTTE Government, and that the Upper Canada majority, the leaders of which, throughout their whole political career, had so loudly demanded this concession in favor of Upper Canada, had bound itself not to raise that excitiüg question within the halls of the Legislature, at least during the existence of the MACDONALD-SICOTTE Ministry. (Hear, hear.) I stated that, thanks to the patriotic firmness of that Administration, Lower Canada was enabled for two years to live in peace and enjoy the fruits of a tranquillity unknown for ten years previous, and during two sessions the question of representation based on numbers ceased to be a subject of strife and fanatical attack on the part of Upper Canada. (Hear, hear.) It was at that period that the honorable member for South Oxford asked for a committee to enquire as to the means of settling the sectional difficulties, by effecting a change in the basis of the present Constitution. (Hear, hear.) Well, Mr. SPEAKER, what took place then ? We saw that able speaker, that indefatigable and powerful advocate of the claims of Upper Canada against the Lower Canada section, unable to find in this House more than forty men prepared to support him in his unjust demand for a constitutional change which the present Administration are about to grant. (Hear, hear.) We saw that powerful politician humbled, and giving up in despair all hopes of succeeding with the House—and, for my part, Mr. SPEAKER, I must say that I felt pained at his position —asking a leave of absence in order to avoid a humiliating defeat, and returning to his home to lament his fall and the loss of an influence based solely on fanaticism and prejudice. (Hear, hear.) Subsequently, Mr. SPEAKER, the House witnessed an act which I do not desire to characterise now ; we saw the Administration which had the courage to chain down the monster of representation by population, overthrown by a French-Canadian majority ! (Hear, hear.) Yes, Mr. SPEAKER, that Liberal government, which had afforded so much security to our institutions by maintaining intact our present Constitution, was defeated by a French-Canadian majority of this House. I do not intend, when I say this, to attack my fellow-countrymen, far from it ; but I wish to trace the parliamentary history of our country, and I do not hesitate to assert that that vote gave a fatal blow to our influence as French-Canadians, and that posterity will record that vote, which is now a matter of history, as a fatal act by which our public men sacrificed io party spirit the dearest of our interests. (Hear, hear.) I fearlessly assert, Mr. SPEAKER, that for fifteen years our affairs had not beeu administered by men more sincerely devoted to our interests and better able to protect the political liberties, the interests and the institutions of Lower Canada. What have we seen, during the past fifteen years in this House ? We have witnessed party appeals to prejudices and the most insulting personalities ; and, in fact, the lowering of the moral status of our national representatives, as the natural result. We have seen the men best qualified to enforce, on the floor of this House, the rights of the people, refusing to come forwar at elections, because they saw that the position of a member of Parliament no longer conferred that degree of dignity and position which made it an object of ambition in better times. We have seen men of eminence, who had labored in behalf of the interests of their constitut nts for many long years, abandoning their political

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career in disgust, and retiring to the seclusion of their homes. Then it was that we saw a French-Canadian majority voting down a Ministry whose political programme afforded more effectual guarantees for Lower Canada interests than that of any previous government. (Hear, hear.) But a blind and paltry party spirit induced them to sacrifice, for a momentary triumph, the general interests of their country ; and the majority, by its vote, decreed our national downfall. (Hear,hear.) Well, Mr. SPEAKER, under the new Government we found representation by population again made a subject of discussion in our Legislature ; and now, there is no denying it, that unfortunate concession, which places us at the mercy of Upper Canada, has become an accomplished fact. (Hear, hear.) I stated, just now, Mr. SPEAKER, that the hon. member for South Oxford was unable to obtain his committee under the MACDONALD-SICOTTE Administration, an essentially liberal one. (Hear, hear.) On reierence to the Journals of this House of that period, what do we find ? The Ministry which succeeded that Government had hardly taken possession of the Treasury benches, when the Hon. Mr. BROWN again came before the House asking for a committee, and in that instance with more success. I had the honor to propose an amendment to his motion, but my amendment was rejected, and amongst the members who figure in that unfortunate division, I find the names of the Hon. Minister of Public Works, the Hon. Provincial Secretary, and the Hon. Attorney General East. Mr. SPEAKER, this is a very significant fact, and one extremely deserving of attention at the present moment. In pressing that motion upon the House, I maintaiaed that our policy was to act on the offensive, instead of merely defending ourselves, as we had up to that time done ; that we ought to unit» as one man to obtain the re-enactment of the proviso to the 26th clause of the Act of Union, which had been shamefully struck out in 1856, when we obtained an elective Legislative Council (Hear, hear.) Now, on this point, which was perfectly clear, we found these same Ministers voting for the rejection of the amendment,which asserted aright sacred to French-Canadians. Bid not this vote imply that those who made this cowardly concession were prepared to yield again in the proposed constitutional changes Yes, Mr. SPEAKER, I do not hesitate to assert, that from that moment, Upper Canada understood that our political leaders, who, up to that time, had shown an unyielding front, were about to give way. And when the Hon. Mr. BROWN submitted his proposition to the House, all the English members united in an overwhelming majority, and he carried his point successfully, notwithstanding that all the French-Canadian members voted against it, except the hon. member for Rouville (Mr. POULIN), who displayed the questionable courage of thus comuiittiug an act I shall not attempt to qualify. (Hear, hear.) I need not dwell upon the consequences of that vote, for they are now patent to the whole country, and the hon. member for South Oxford himself has told us in this House that the scheme of Confederation was the creation of his constitutional committee ; that the appointment of that committee was the first step in the direction of the object for which he had struggled during his whole political career, and that the scheme of Confederation now before the House was an ample reward for his unremitting efforts, and a complete justification of the principles he has supported in the struggle between Upper Canada and Lower Canada. Subsequently, Mr. SPEAKER, the TACHE-MACDONALD Government succumbed on a question of finance, and, finding that they could not sustain themselves without the assistance ol the Opposition, that same Government called into the Cabinet the man who had proved most hostile to Lower Canadian interests, and with whom they had ever lived in unexampled antagonism. From that alliance resulted the scheme of Confederation which is now submitted to us, and which concedes the principle of representation based on population. Ought the Lower Canadian party to have made so important a concession to Upper Canada ? I am prepared to establish by figures that that question contained within itself its own remedy ; and those who voted in iavor of its concession are in no way justifiable, looking at the question in any point of view whatsoever. The future held out to us a positive assurance that the grounds of this demand would no longer exist at a period which is close at hand ! When we look into the question of the respective populations of the two Canadas, we shall observe at a glance that that of Upper Canada is in great part English and Protestant, and, by reference to the last census, we I shall find that a very large proportion of the

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annual increase in that section is the result of emigration. From 90,000, which was the total amount during the single year 1847, immigration gradually fell to 10,000 in the year 1860. Hut there is another important fact which it would be well to bear in mind ; it is that Lower Canada, which increased slowly at first, because her material and moral development was impeded by the political institutions under which she was governed, and because she had no colonization roads through her forests, still beheld her sturdy children emigrating from their native soil to the United States in search of daily bread and liberty. The increase in the population of Lower Canada was slow and small then; but as railways were built and highways were opened, the population was found to increase in nearly the same proportion as the diminution was observed to be going on, in respect of annual increase, in Upper Canada. I maintain further, Mr. SPEAKER, that the census of 1861 is no basis from which to estimate exactly the total population of the two sections ; that census is merely a tissue of errors of a serious nature, which demonstrate the inaccuracy of the whoie. Thus when we find it stated that at Three Rivers there is not a single Catholic church ; that at Hamilton there is but one ; that in the year 1861 there were but three vessels built in Lower Canada, while we know that at Quebec alone more than sixty were constructed, we may with perfect safety assert that similar inaccuracies must needs have occurred in the totals of the populations of the two sections. We know that in Upper Canada the true total of the population has been greatly exaggerated. Did not all their journals declare that the census of 1861 must indicate a very large total population in favor of Upper Canada over Lower Canada ? And, accordingly, the result shewed a majority of nearly 300,000 souls in favor of that province. To such an extent was the number of the living increased, and the number of the dead diminished, that the total number of liviug children under oneyear old was 8,000 more than the total number of births in the year. (Hear, hear.) I am quite willing to admit that the climate of Upper Canada is most salubrious and highly favorable to the development of that part of the population of a less age than one year, but even then there is some difficulty in understanding how it is that in twelve months some of them do not die, and how there can be 8,000 more of less than a year old than were born during the preceding twelve months. (Hear, hear, and laughter.) When I observe such results accruing from our official census, I am compelled to believe that it is inaccurate, and that it may be quite as erroneous in respect ot the general population. But if in the census the population of Upper Canada was exaggerated, in the case of Lower Canada, on the contrary, it has been considerably diminished. Here our farmers have always stood in dread of the census, because they have a suspicion that it is taken with the sole object of imposing some tax, or of making some draft of men for the defence of the country. Under these circumstances, I consider that the difference between the totals of the population of Upper and Lower Canada is not so well proved as it is wished to have us believe that it is. I maintain that it is less in reality than it is in appearance, and that the figures of the census are not sufficiently accurate to allow of our taking them as the basis of a demand for constitutional changes of so important a character. But if we study the increase of the French-Canadian population in America, we shall find the increase of the French-Canadians to have been 1,700,000 betweeu the years 1700 and 1860, the total having increased tenfold two and a half times in that period, and this is equivalent to 3.40 per cent, per anuuin, or a doubling of the population in twenty-one years ; otherwise an increase of twenty-five times their number in one hundred years. The increase, since 1860, having been 3.60 per cent, in Lower Canada, these figures shew that the natural increase in the Lower Canadian population is greater than it is anywhere else. In Upper Canada the average of births has been 3.40 per cent, per annum, and in Lower Canada it has been 4.10 per cent, per annum; this is equivalent to a greater relative increase of 20 per cent, in favor of Lower Canada over Upper Canada. If a calculation is made of the progressive increase of the French population in Lower Canada, from 1781 to 1851, the following results will be arrived at :—

Per ct. per ann.
From 1784 to 1831 the increase was equal to 2.60
do. 1831 to 1844 do. do. to 3.20
do. 1844 to 1851 do. do. to 4.25

But the growth of population that would have resulted from this increase has been

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diminished by emigration to the United States. The difficulties between the sections of the province have, during long years, driven our youth to foreign countries, and that is why that considerable increase does not appear, by the census, so great as in reality it has been. Thus the total number of French-Canadian emigrants to the United States amounted, in 1841, to 31,000; from 1844 to 1850 the total amounted to 30,000; making, in 1 50, a grand total of 64,000 of our countrymen who had passed into foreign lands. With such an emigration going on, it is clear that our population could not increase with rapidity ; but now, fortunately, the movement of our population has assumed a contrary direction Many families have already returned to us, whilst many others are only awaiting a favorable opportunity to return to the country, which they ought never to have left. The French-Canadian population in the Uuitad States is still very considerable, as the following figures will show : in the State of Vermont there are 14,000 French-Canadians ; in the State of New York 20,000 ; in Ohio and Pennsylvania, 6,000 ; in Michigan, 30,000 ; in Illinois, 20,000; ia Wisconsin, 12,000; in Indiana, 5,000 ; in Minnesota, 15,000—without taking into consideration the fact that nearly 35,000 of our young men, besides,’are enrolled in the army of the United States. What took place in Canada also took place in Acadia, where the French population also increased iu a manner which was truly astonishing. From 1707 to 1737 this increase amounted to a proportion of 6 per cent, per annum ; in thirty years the total had increased fivefold. It continued to increase in nearly a like proportion up to 1755, the memorable date of the deportation of the Acadians, From 1755 to 1855 the Acadians increased tenfold by themselves, and now the French-Acadian population in the Maritime Provinces and in the State of Maine is distributed as follows :—

Newfoundland 15,000
Cape Breton 16,000
Prince Edward Island 15,000
Nova Scotia 22,000
New Brunswick 25,000
State of Maine 5,000
Giving a total of 98,000

Let us now enquire, Mr. SPEAKER, what the annual increase has been in Upper Canada. This consideration is an important one, for it goes to prove that in ten years the total population of Upper and Lower Canada will be equal, and that, consequently, the constitutional changes resulting from the question of representation based on population are not called for:—

In 1830 that increase was 10 per ct. per annum
1832 do. 8.77 do.
1842 do. 6.42 do.
1852 do. 5.62 do.
1861 do. 4.35 do.
1865 it will probably be 3.00 do.

This amounts to saying that in thirty years the proportion of increase has diminished by more than 50 per cent., and that diminution of annual increase has been consequent upon the diminution of immigration. The following figures, which shew the number of immigrants who have come into Upper Canada since the year 1829, shew this clearly :—

Years. Immigration.
1829 to 1833 167,697
1834 to 1838 96,351
1839 to 1843 123,860
1844 20,142
1845 25,375
1846 32,753
1847 90,150
1848 27,939
1849 38,494
1850 32,292
1851 41,076
1852 39,176
1853 36,699
1854 53,183
1855 21,274
1856 22,439
1857 32,097
1858 12,810
1859 8,778
1860 10,150
1861 19,923
1862 22,176
1863 19,419
1864 19,000

In 1854 we had no railways as we have today, and consequently the European emigration which was directed to the United States did not pass through Canada, as it does now, towards the Western States. In 1854 the immigration was 53,000, and all who landed in Canada settled there at once ; but in 1864 the immigration fell to 19,000, of whom not more than one half remained in the country ; the remainder went on to the Western States. Thus it may be said that the immigration, which numbered more than 53,000 souls in

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1854, has fallen in ten years to 8,000 only for Upper Canada, whilst in Lower Canada we have increased, by natural progress, in the proportion of from 2.20 per cent, to 2.60 por cent, during the same period. And it is just at the time that our population is increasing in this proportion that it is proposed to grant to Upper Canada representation based on population. Why do we not still resist ? We are told that if we wait longer the disproportion will be increased. I maintain, according to the above calculations, and in view of other considerations that I shall by and by have the honor to submit to this House, that we can only be the gainers in this matter, because the proportion of our natural increase is increasing, while that of immigration is diminishing. In thirty years, from 1829 to 1860, 942,735 immigrants landed on our shores, nearly all of whom settled in Upper Canada. And there is another fact to which I beg to call the attention of the House, and that is, that the Irish emigration, which amounted in 1851 to 22,381, diminished during the ten following years to 376 in 1861, and it is a well known fact that it was this wholesale deportation from the Emerald Isle which has made the population of Upper Canada what it is to-day. But it is not necessary to consult the census to arrive at the conclusion that the proportionate difference in the increase of the populations of the two sections of the province is only due to the arrival in the country of this million of immigrants. If we study the proportion of births, or of the natural increase, we shall see that Lower Canada has increased its population more rapidly than Upper Canada, and that there are more births in proportion in our section of the province. As these artificial sources of increase diminish in Upper Canada, wo may be certain that the equililbrium will be established between the two populations. There is yet another cause which must contribute to reestablish this equilibrium, and I find it in an official report written by the present Honorable Provincial Secretary (Hon. Mr. MCDOUGALL) when he was Commissioner of Crown Lands. The cause of colonization has attracted, for several years past, the special attention of our clergy and of the influential inhabitants of the country, so soon as it became generally known that the increase of the population in Upper Canada would lead very soon to constitutional changes, having for their object representation based upon population, with all its disastrous results for the minority. Since that period new colonization roads have been opened for the surplus population of the old counties, and our youth, instead of expatriating themselves, plunge into the forests to clear the land, and thus to increase the strength of the French element. The cause of the diminution in the increase of Upper Canada, of which I have just spoken, may be found in the important fact that the best disposable lands are nearly exhausted—I do not mean to say that they have lost their fertility, but that they are nearly all occupied. We require no better proof of my assertion than the report of the Honorable Commissioner of Crown Lands for 1862, from which I ask permission to cite the following paragraph :—

It will be observed that the whole quantity ot land sold dining the past year is less by 252,471 acres than in 1861. The falling off is equal to about 38 1/2 per cent. The fact is significant, and suggests enquiry as to the cause. It muy, I think, be attributed to the commercial and monetary derangements resulting from the civil war in the neighboring country ; to the retarding influence of that war upon immigration, and to the diminished means of purchasers within the country by reason of the generally deficient harvest of 1862. Another cause may be mentioned, which, in an official view, is more important than either of these, because its influence is not accidental or temporary. It is the fact that the best lands of the Crown in both sections of the province hare already been sold. The quantity of íeally good land now open for sale is, notwithstanding recent surveys, much less than formerly, and is rapidly diminishing. The new surveys in Upper Canada have added, duiing the last five years, no less than 2,808,172 acres to the land roll of the department. The addition during the same period, in Lower Canada, was 1,968,168 acres. Yet it may be doubted if there are to day as many acres of wild land of the first quality at the disposal of the department as there were in 1857. The clergy, school and Crown lands of the western peninsula, the most desirable, both as to quality and situation, of all the public lands of the province, are mostly sold ; the few lots that remain are generally of inferior quality. The new township» between the Ottawa and Lake Huron contain much good land, but they are separated from the settled townships on the St. Lawrence and north shore of Lake Ontario by a rocky, barren tract, which varies in width from ten to twenty miles, and presents a serious obstruction to the influx of settlers. Moreover, the good land in these new townships is composed of small tracts, here and there, separated from each other by rocky ridges, swamps and lakes, which render difficult the construction of roads, and interrupt the continuity of settlement. These unfavorable circumstances have induced the better class of settlers in Upper Canada to seek, at the hands of private owners, for lands of a better quality and more desirable

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location, though the price and terms of sale are more onerous than for the lands of the Crown.

I think that this official report contains a statement of great importance to Lower Canada, and which it is desirable should be clearly demonstrated before we decide whether we ought to change the present Constitution. As the population of Upper Canada is no longer sensibly increased by immigration, and as the natural increase of the population of Lower Canada is more rapid than that of Upper Canada; as the emigration of our countrymen to the United States is ceasing, and as the best lands in Upper Canada arc occupied, whilst the territory of Lower Canada is only just beginning to be opened up for settlement, I see no reason why we should make such haste to give up the struggle we have so successfully maintained up to the present time, and, without any just reason, grant representaticn by population. This is w hat is said in the same report by the present Hon. Provincial Secretary, and his words agree exactly with my statements :—

In Lower Canada the sales in 1862 reached a little more than double the quantity sold in Upper Canada. The discovery of copper and other minerals in the Eastern Townships and the opening of better means of communication have caused a considerable influx of population into that part of Lower Canada, and a corresponding increase in the demand for unsold public lands. The new surveys on the southern slope of the high landj which border the St. Lawrence between Quebec and Montreal, have developed a very considerable quantity of good land, which is being rapidly taken up.

And what is the consequence of this fact pointed out by the Hon. Commissioner of Crown Lands ? It is that if the public lands arc sold only to settlers, so soon as it is established that the quantity of lands sold in Lower Canada is double that sold in Upper Canada, I am justified in concluding that the extent cleared is also double, and as a necessary consequence, that the population must be increasing in the same proportion. Thence I conclude that the question of representation based upon population tends every day to its own solution. Thus we have a man, who certainly cannot be accused of partiality to Lower Canada, and whose extensive knowledge no one will deny, declaring officially that we arc increasing in a much greater proportion than Upper Canada. And it is at the very moment that we are on the point of turning the scale of victory, that we are about to give way and cease from further effort. Our rising generations were emigrating to the United States a few years ago, because we had no colonization roads to give them access to the forests of Lower Canada, as we have now ; and why had we them not ? Because until quite recently, the Hon. Minister of the Department of the Crown Lands, as well as the Hon. Minister of the Department of Agriculture and Emigration, were always Upper Canadians. Upper Canada always understood the importance of those departments as regards the material development of that section of the province. Accordingly, all the measures of improvement were in favor of the western section, and all the immigration was carefully directed thither. Now that we have found out the results of that cleverly devised policy, the Lower Canadian party are more attentive to the colonization of our wild lands, and we find the clergy and all our political and influential men seconding their efforts. We have colonization societies in every quarter, and the result of their labors is the settlement and occupation of our public lands as soon as they arc surveyed. Frequently we even see the settlers getting ahead of the parties employed in opening the roads through the forests. These facts are important enough to deserve our serious consideration, more especially as the report of the Hon. Provincial Secretary confirms my statements in every particular. The Canadian families now in the United States are glad to return among us to aid in developing the resources of our country, and if the Government, instead of making changes in the Constitution, were to establish a vast system of colonization, to draw hither our fellow-countrymen from the United States, and an immigration from Europe of those who own a common origin with ourselves, we should hive no need to trouble ourselves about the political changes now proposed to us, of which the object is evidently to destroy our influence in America. (Hear, hear.) The intention of the Confederation scheme, we are told by the Ministry, is the formation of a vast Empire, bounded by the Pacific ocean on one bide, on the other by the Atlantic ocean, and on the south by the American Union, while on the north it would extend to the Pole, leaving Russian America on the west. No doubt the scheme is a grand one, magnificent in conception, and likely to tako with the ambitious minds of the most aspiring men in British North America. The Opposition perfectly understands the noble object of the promoters of the Confederation, which it is proposed to establish on a monarchical basis, in opposition to the American Union,

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based on the democratic and republican principle ; but the Opposition is also aware that this creation of an Empire presents difficulties of an important character, not only because it is starting into existence in opposition to the neighboring powerful republic, which is essentially opposed to monarchical institutions, but also because the differences of nationality, religion and sectional interests are so many stumbling blocks with which the principal provisions of the scheme of Confederation will come in contact. It must not be believed that the Opposition only oppose the scheme because they do not understand its import. On the contrary they do undei stand it, and see in it nothing but provisions of a nature hostile to them. At the present day, with sectional equality, Canada constitutes but a single people, who have tendencies and aspirations in common ; but under Confederation such will no longer be the case ; we shall have a minority opposed to a majority, the aggressive tendencies of which have always manifested themselves whenever the power of numbers was in their favor. If the populations of all the provinces were homogeneous ; if their interests, their ideas, their belief and their nationality were identical, we might perhaps be more disposed to accept the by no means judicious provisions of the scheme which is submitted to us. But as none of these are identical, we consider that we should be in danger if we did accept them. Formerly France possessed all this part of the continent ; the settlers of that period, the farmers, fishermen, hunters and trappers travelled over the whole extent of those immense possessions which were known by the name of New France. At this moment what remains to her of a territory that was equal in extent to Europe itself? A wretched little island at the entrance of the Gulf, a foothold for her fisheries, and a few acres of beach on the coast of Newfoundland. When we consider that fact, when we see French power completely destroyed on this continent, are we not justified in looking closely into the project of Constitution now submitted to us, which has for its object, I repeat, simply to complete the destruction of the influence of the French race on this continent ? Has not the past taught us to dread the future? Fes, Mr. SPEAKER, the policy of England has ever been aggressive, and its object has always been to annihilate us as a people. And this scheme of Confederation is but the continued application of that policy on this continent ; its real object is nothing but the annihilation of French influence in Canada. If we examine history in order to ascertain whether a precedent h to be found for the course of action adopted to-day, we shall derive a valuable lesson from the experience of the past. There was a period, after the conquest of England by the Normans, when the French language was the general and official language of that country, but subsequently the conquerors were com- pelledto adopt the language of the vanquished. The history of the Parliament of England shews that up to 1425, every bill introduced in the Legislature, without a single exception, was in the French language. But at that datethe first English bill was presented to Parliament; and twenty-five years later, in 1450, the last French bill was presented in the English Parliament. After that date we no longer find a trace of the French language in Parliament ; twenty-five years had sufficed to do away with it completely. There is another historical fact connected with the political existence of a people, which it is right to recall. We know how long Scotland and Ireland resisted the encroachments of England The struggle was protracted and obstinate- But these two nations were compelled to sue. cumb to political encroachment, under the pressure of the powerful assimilating tendencies of the English nation. But let us see what means England used to attain her ends. Impartial history tells us, as it will tell of the means employed to-day to annihilate our race on this continent. History records, in letters of gold, the names of those who have bravely struggled for the lives and liberties of nations, but it also holds up to execration the memory of those who barter those liberties and those rights for titles, honor, power, or gold. We now enjoy responsible government, dearly earned by a century of heroic struggles, and before yielding an inch of the ground we have conquered, we should see what we are likely to gain by the proposed constitutional changes. Let us profit by the experience of the countries we now see lamenting the loss of their political rights resulting from constitutional changes similar to those now proposed to Lower Canada. I find the following with reference to the union of Scotland with England in 1706 :—

Queen ANNE carried out, ia 1706, a project vainly attempted by WILLIAM III., the union of England and Scotland into a single kingdom, under the dominion of Great Britain. The uncontrollable character of the Scotch, the mutual antipathy of the two people, and the constantly recurring difficulties resulting from these principles,

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rendered the measure highly useful at the same time that they increased the obstacles.

Thus, it is clear that the antipathies between the two races produced many obstacles to the English project, and, in order to remove these obstacles, England had recourse to means precisely similar to those adopted here as a preparation for Confederation, namely, the appointment of a conference of commissioners charged with the preparation of the Act of Union. Says M. EMILE DE BONNECHOSE:

These commissioners agreed on the general question, but differences arose as regards the manner in which the English proposed to constitute the new Parliament of the United Kingdom, and whiie the population of Scotland amounted to a sixth of the population of England, they allowed that kingdom but forty-six members in the Commons, or a thirteenth of the total representation. Sixteen peers only, out of the whole peerage of Scotland, were to be chosen by election, to sit in the English House of Lords. The stringency of these latter clauses, by which the people of Scotland felt themselves aggrieved, excited universal discontent ; it was to be expected, particularly at the outset, from a treaty of union between the two nations, that there would be a clashing of material interests prejudicial to the welfare of very many persons, as occurs at the outset in every important political connection. The wounding of their national self-love would of itself have been sufficient to render the people of Scotland insensible to the remote advantages of the compact, and all parties—Whigs and Tories, Jacobites and Williamites, Presbyterians, Episcopalians and Cameronians, combined to defeat it.

Thus we have nearly the whole people uniting to oppose the union it was sought to impose upon them, and yet in face of the all but unanimous opposition of the people of Scotland, England succeeded in forcing them into the union by the use of means she never hesitates to adopt :—

The commissioners of the Government were insulted by the populace, who destroyed the dwellings of many state officials favorable to the union, while they were loud in praise of the Duke of HAMILTON, one of the chief opponents of the msasure. The Dukes of QUEENSBERRY and ARGYLE, Earls of MONTROSE, STAIR, ROXBURGH and MARCHMONT strove in vain to allay by argument and reasoning,the explosion of patriotic feeling and national fury, and what the best arguments could not obtain was carried by corruption. A portion of the gold promised by the English Commissioners as a compensation for the fresh burdens about to be imposed upon the sister kingdom, was divided amongst their Scotch colleagues and many influential members of the Parliament sitting in Edinburgh ; thenceforward all obstacles were removed ; the treaty of union, which the Scotch people looked upon as an act of suicide, and which the purest and best men would not have sanctioned, received the assent of avenal majority. In fine, that famous compact, which was denounced as a dishonor to Scotland, which that country looked uoon as the yielding up of her interests and her glory, and which was destined to open for her, in subsequent times, an era of unparullefed peace and prosperity, was signed on the 1st May, 1707, and was considered a gieat triumph by the people of England, already at that time intoxicated with joy at the success of their arms on the continent.

There, Mr. SPEAKER, is an instance of the manner in which the policy of England can overcome even the most justifiable resistance, supported by the unanimous wishes of a people. Scotland looked upon a union with England as an act of suicide, and yet the union was carried by a majority in the Parliament of Edinburgh. I need not dwell at length upon these facts ; they speak eloquently for themselves. (Hear, hear.) There is another fact in th ; parliamentary history of England, of which it is well to remind the House—I mean the abolition of the Irish Parliament. The Honorable Minister of Agriculture (Hon. Mr. MCGEE) has told us , in that flowery language which characterises the children of his native soil, that he himself, when scarce twenty years of age, struggled to emancipate his country from the tyranny of England, and not succeeding in his noble under taking, preferred to exile himself to American soil rather than remain to be a daily spectator of the misfortunes and suffcringsof his native land. And yet, what is he now doing ? He is trying, with the help of a hostile majority, to thrust upon Lower Canada, his adopted country, a union which is repugnant to her , and to revive here the system of oppression over which he wept in Ireland. (Hear, hear.) Let us see what the means were which were employed to impose upon Ireland that union which was destined to entail the wholesale exodus of her population :—

In the case of Ireland, the contest was a longer one, but England was ultimately triumphant. After the crisis of 1798, (says M. GUSTAVE DE BEAUMONT,) England, holding down rebellious and vanquished Ireland, chastised her unrelentingly and pitilessly. Twenty years previously Ireland again came into possession of her political liberties ; England preserved a bitter recollection of this success of Ireland, and took advantage of the depression of the latter to replace her under an absolute yoke. The Irish Parliament, after recovering its independence, became troublesome

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to England ; it was necessary, in order to master it, to take great pains in corruption, in spite of which great resistance on the pait of the Irish Parliament was met with; the opportunity was favorable to suppress it, and in consequence the English Government abolished it.

On the reception of this news, poor Ireland was in an instant in agitation, just as a body which has just been deprived of life stirs again under the steel which mutilates and rends it. Of thirty-two counties, twenty-one loudly exclaimed against the destruction of the Irish Parliament. That Parliament, from whom an act of suicide had necessarily to be asked, refused to consummate it, and by its vote maintained its constitutional existence.

Indignant at the servility which it was dared to ask for from the body of which he formed part, GRATTAN vehemently opposed the Ministarial scheme. But all this resistance was in vain. The only resistance which definitively opposed a serious obstacle to the views of England, was that of the Irish Parliament, which would not vote its own abolition. Hitherto its acts had been bought, and now its death was in like manner purchased. Corruption was at once made use of on an enormous scale; places, pensions and favors of all kinds were lavished in every direction, and the same men who, in 1799, rejected the scheme of union, adopted it on the 26th May, 1800, by a majority of a hundred and eighteen votes against seventy-three, and that majority consisted of either state pensioners or public functionaries. And so, through violence, aided by corruption, was accomplished the destructive act of the Irish Parliament, not without stirring up in Ireland all that remained of national passion and feelings of patriotism.

Mr. SPEAKER, when we have such acts as these from which to form an opinion of the politics of England, it is reasonable that those who have not the same reasons for desiring constitutional changes as the hon. members who sit on the Ministerial benches, should, at least, have an opportunity of carefully studying all the details of the measure which is submitted to us. For my part, I am satisfied with the present Constitution, and am ready to defend it against every enemy which may come forward to attack our territory. But I am bound to declare that if that Constitution is changed despite the will of the people, we shall no longer find among the Lower Canadians that impulse for which they have always been distinguished in days gone by, and which enabled them to vanquish a hostile force of double their number. (Hear, hear.) There would appear to have been no reason why the antagonism between the English and French races, to which I alluded as existing in Europe, should have been carried into America ; and yet the strife was continued in the New World, after it had arisen in the old hemisphere. At the present day that strife continues, and despite the protestations of sincere friendship interchanged between Paris and London, we see France and England continually facing each other, sword in hand, feeling for each other that respect which mutual fear alone can inspire. Aud could it be expected that those feelings of rivalry and antagonism which have always existed, and which still exist at the present day, between the two races, would be effaced from among their Canadian descendants, that we may be fused into one nation ? It is an impossibility ! Do what you may, the same feelings will always exist. They are blameable, perhaps, but the fact remains—they exist, and form part of the very nature of the two races. The language, the religion, the institutions and the customs of a people are so many obstacles to its union with another people, whose language, religion, institutions and customs are different from theirs. And is it supposed that these feelings of rivalry and these causes of estrangement will be removed on the adoption of the scheme of Confederation which is proposed to us? For my part, I would wish in Canada to see the two nationalities rival each other in progress in the useful works of peace. This rivalry, not of strife hand to hand, but a rivalry in the laudable ambition which has for its object the realizing of the greatest prosperity known, the attaining of the highest excellence in the sciences, and of the most profound secrets of art, would confer upon our country a degree of power equal to what has resulted from the combined strength of England and France, which has, up to the present, been employed to impel the world towards the prodigies which have beeu realized in the nineteenth century. With equality of numbers, and of sectional representation, the two nationalities cannot fall foul of each other; but with Confederation, as we shall be in a great minority in the General Parliament, which has all the important powers in relation to legislation, we shall have to carry on a constant contest for the defence and preservation of our political rights aud of our liberty. Under the union the French Canadians are divided in this House into two camps, opposed the one to the other, because they have nothing to fear in regard to their national interests; but under Confederation, as we shall have but forty-eight

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French members against one hundred and forty-six in the Federal Legislature, those members will have to go together like one man to maintain their influence, and the simple fact of that union of the French- Canadians into a solid phalanx will cause the English element to unite on its side to crush and vanquish it . It is because I fear such a strife that I cannot approve of a Constitution which does not secure our political rights , and the working of which will necessarily entail disastrous consequences to our race. (Hear, hear.) The strife of nationalities which has been too long maintained in Europe appeared to have no cause of existence in America. It appeared that there was on this continent room enough and prospects enough to allow everybody, of all principles and of all nationalities, to live in peace upon it , without jostling and falling foul of each other. It appeared that those who had emigrated from the old world should have at heart the formation of powerful nations on this continent, without introduc ing the religious and national hat red which had for so long a time divided Europe, and deluged her in blood. And yet what do we see here ? We have seen France, who first of all despatched the apostles of Christ ianity into the vast solitudes of North America—France , who first planted her noble flag on the Island of Montreal and the heights of Quebec—we have seen France deprived of the last inch of the soil which she had concucred on this continent, bequeathing to her children, abandoned in Canada, but a future of struggles and contests against the encroaching spirit of her powerful rival. (Hear , hear.) From the commencement of the French domination in America, we have seen reproduced here the strifes which divided the European continent. Towns and villages were destroyed as though there was not room enough in this new world for the few handsfuls of men who came to in- habit it. The first scene of this inexcusable description occurred in Acadia, in 1613. GARNEAU makes the following remarks on this subject :—

In 1612 LA SAUSSAYE began, on the left bank of the Penobscot river, a settlement which he vailed St. Sauveur. All went well at first, and flattering hopes were entertained at once of success beyond all expectation, when an uulooked for storm burst over the colony and stifled it in its cradle.

England claimed the country as far as the 45th degree of north latitude—that is to say, all the continent to the northward as far as the heart of Acadia. France, on the other hand, maintained that her boundary ran southward as far as the 40th degree. From this dispute it resulted that, while LA SAUSSAYE thought himself within the boundary of New France at St. Sauveur, the English declared that he was deep in their territory. To maintain the claim, Captain ARGALL of Virginia resolved to go and dislodge him, incited by the hope of obtaining a rich booty, and by his ptejudices against Catholics, who had been the cause of the ruin of POUTRINCOURT.

Thus in 1612, in other words only two or three years after the founding of Quebec, we already find religious and national strife beginning their work of exclusiveness on our continent, and that strife we shall again have to engage in, disagreeable as it may be. I proceed :—

He appeared suddenly before it. Sauveur with a vessel mounting 14 guns, and spread dismay among the defenceless inhabitants, who took him at first for a pirate. Father GILBERT DU THET vainly endeavored to offer a slight resistance ; he was killed, and the settlement given up to pillage. Everything was carried off or sacked, ARGALL himself setting the example.

To legalize this act of piracy (for such it was), he stole LA SAUSSAYE’S commission, and pretended to look upon him and his people as unacciedited adventurers. Gradually, however, he seemed to soften, and proposed to those who had trades to follow him to Jamestown, from whence, after having worked for one year, they should be sent back to their native land. The oiler was accepted by a dozen of them. The remainder, with LA SAUSSAYE and Father MASSE, preferred to risk themselves in a trail vessel with the object of reaching La Hève, where they found a vessel of St. Malo, which conveyed them to France.Those who trusted to ARGALL’S woid were gieatly surprised, on their arrival at Jamestown, to find that they were thrown into prison and treated as pirates. In vain they claimed the fulfilment of the treaty which they had made with him; they were condemned to death. ARGALL, who had not supposed that the abstraction of LA SAUSSAYE’S commission would have such serious íesults, did not think that he ought to carry dissimulation any further, and gave up the commission to the Governor, Sir THOMAS DALE, and confessed all. That document, and information which was obtained in the course of the enquiry into the matter, caused the government of Virginia to resolve to drive the French from all the places occupied by them to the south of the line 45. A squadron of three vessels was placed under the command of the same man, ARGALL, in order to put that resolution in execution.The fleet began by destroying all that remained of the old habitation of Ste. Croix—a useless vengeance, as it had been abandoned for several years ; its course was then directed towards Port

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Royal, where nobody was found (all the people being in the fields, two leagues away), and in leas than two hours all the houses, together with the fort, were reduced to ashes.

Well, Mr. SPEAKER, this scene of devastaand vandalism on our continent, which at that period contained hardly a thousand white inhabitants, gives the clue to all the events which followed from that date up to the conquest of Canada by the English. This fact is a corroboration of the principle that provides that the stronger nation shall oppress the weaker, unless by special circumstances the one is protected against the other. This is the proof that the sectional equality secured by the system of government which we now possess has alone been effective iu Canada to enable different nationalities to live together on terms of equality, and to labor successfully for the advancement of the common prosperity. (Hear, hear.) But the strife which began in 1613, between France and England, became more deadly after a century and a half of occupation ; it spread along the whole frontier of New France. At the instigation of the rival race, Indian tribes fell upon all the French settlements in the country, and an incessant and vindictive war was kept up with the sole object of driving the French off the continent. We know at the present day what the result of that contest was. We are told that we have no reason to complain of the system of government which we now have. That is true. But if we have that government it is because, ever since the conquest, the remnant of the French nation which remained in the land have striven bravely to obtain it. Had it not been for the American revolution, we too would have bad our large share of suffering and humiliation, similar to that which the Acadians were made to undergo. The treatment to which they were subjected by England is an example of what might have happened to us, but for our number, and, subsequently, but for the vicinity to us of the American Republic. There was in Acadia a nucleus of French people, who lived peaceably and happily, and who had submitted to English domination without a murmur ; and yet, because they were weak and had no longer the arm of France to protect them, they were transported, like negroes on the coast of Africa, by philanthropie England. This is an important historical fact which must not be forgotten, and the details of which it is well to set before the eyes of our population, at a time when the English element is pursuing,with a persistence worthy of a better cause, the aggressive and encroaching policy concealed under the scheme of Confederation which is submitted to us. The hon. member for South Lanark (Mr. MORRIS) told us the other day that we ought to thank England, and be most grateful to her for the system of government which we received from her. But to whom do we owe that system ? Do we owe it to the liberality of England ? Did we not obtain our political rights only at the time wheü she could no longer refuse them to us with safety ? No, Mr. SPEAKER, our gratitude and our thanks are only due to those fellow-countrymen of ours who at all times bravely strove to obtain them. When we see French colonies which still groan under the English colonial system, and which complain to Europe of the treatment to which they are subjected, the conclusion must be come to that we owe nothing to England, but that on the contrary we owe all to those who, after an age of strife, obtained for us that governmental reform which we enjoy. In order that our people may iorm a correct opinion of that liberality which is so highly vaunted to us, allow me here, Mr. SPEAKER, to quote a few pages of the history of the Acadian people

The war of 1774 began their misfortunes; that of the seven years completed its total ruin. For some time the English agents acted with the greatest severity ; the courts, by the most flagrant violation of the law, by systematic denial of justice, had bacoine to the poor inhabitants an object at once of terror and of hatred. The most subo dinate official insisted on obedience to his will. “If you do not supply wood to my troops,” said a certain Captain MURRAY, ” I will tear down your houses and use them for fuel.” ” If you will not take the oath of fidelity,” added Governor HOPSOÍÍ, ” I will turn my cannon against your villages.” Nothing could induce these honorable men to do an act against which their consciences exclaimed, and which, in the opinion of many people, England had no right to demand from them. ” The Acadians,” objerves Mr. HALIBURTON, “were not British subjects, as they had not taken the oath of allegiance, and they could not, therefore, be considered rebels ; nor were they to be looked upon as prisoners ot war. nor to be sent to Prance, as for nearly half a century they had been allowed to retain their possessions, on the simple condition of remaining neutral.” But many schemers and adventurers looked at their fine farms with an envious eye. What fine inheritances, and, consequently, what a bait ! It was not difficult for them to find political reasons to justify the expulsion of the Acadians. By far the

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greater number had committed no act whatever inconsistent with neutiahty, but, in the gieat catastrophe which was impending, the innocent were to be placed in the same category with the guilty. Not one inhabitant had been deseiving of mercy Their fate was decided in Governor LAWRENCE’S Council, at which were present Ad- mirals BOSCAWEN AND MOSTYN, whose fleets were cruising on the coast It was resolved to dis- perse through the English colonies the lemnant of this unfortunate people ; and in order that none might escape, the most profound secrecy was enjoined up to the moment fixed for the re- moval, which was to take place on the same day and at the same hour in all parts of Acadia at once. It was decided also, in order to make the success moie complete, to bung together the in habitants of the principal places Proclamations, prepared with perfidious skill, muted them to meet in certain places under the most severe penalties. Four hundied and eighteen heads of families, relying on the British faith, so assembled on the 5th of September in the Church of Grand Pré Colonel WINSLOW went thither with a large attendance. There he showed them the commis sion which he held irom the Governor, and in- formed them that they had been called together to hear the final decision of the King with respect to them He declared to them that, although the duty which he had to perform was a most painful one to him, he was compelled, in obedience to his orders, to inform them ” that their lands and their cattle, of al kinds, were confiscated to the Crown, together with all their other property, ex- cept then money and their clothing, and that they themselves were to be deported from the pro- vince. ” No motive was assigned for this decision, and none could be assigned. In full civilization and in a time of political and religious quiet, such an act of spoliation was inexcusable, and, like the usurer, had to conceal its criminality by silence. A body of troops which had been kept concealed up to that point, emerged from their ambush and surrounded the church. The in- habitants, taken by surpnse and unarmed, offered no resistance. The soldiers collected the women and children, 1,023 men, women and children weie collected at Grand-Pré alone. Their cattle consisted of 1,269 oxen, l,057 cows, 5,007 calves, 493 horses, 3,090 sheep, and 4, 197 swine A few Acadians having escaped into the woods, the country was devastated to prevent their obtaining subsistence. At Les Mines, 276 barns, 155 other small buildings, 12 mills and one church were burned. Those who had rendered the greatest services to the Government, such as the old no- tary LE BLANC, who died at Philadelphia of grief and misery, while seeking his sons scattered through the English provinces, were no better treated than those who had favored the French. No distinction was made. The men included in both classes were allowed, and it was the only consolation allowed them, before their embarka- tion to visit, in parties of ten, their families, and to gaze for the last time on that country which was once so calm and happy, in which they were born, and which they were never to see again The 10th was the day fixed for their embarkation A calm resignation had succeeded to their first des pair But when the time came for them to bid a last adieu to their country, to go and live dispersed in the midst of a people foreign language, in cus- toms, in manners and in religion, the courage of these unfortunate people gave way, and they gave themselves up to the most profound grief. In violation of the promise which had been made them, and by an unexampled refinement of bar- barity, families were separated and dispersed throughout different vessels. In order to put them on board, the prisoners were arranged in sixes, with the young people in front These having refused to march, and having claimed the fulfilment of the promise made them, that they should be put on board with their relatives, they were replied to by the advance of soldiers with their bayonets crossed The road from the Grand- Pré chapel to the river Gaspereaux was a mile in length, it was lined on both sides by women and children, who, on their knees and bathed in tears, encouraged them by calling down blessings on then heads. The sad procession moved slowly along, praying, and singing hymns. The heads of families walked after the youth; at last the piocession reached the shore, the men were put into some vessels and the women and children into others, pellmell, without any regard what- ever for their comfort. Governments have com- mitted acts of cruelty under the impulse of unreflecting anger, but they had been provoked and irritated by aggression and repeated attacks There is no example in modern days ot chastise- ment inflicted on a peacable and inoffensive people with so much premeditation, barbarity and cool- ness as that to which allusion is now being made On the same day and at the same hour, all the other Acadian settlements presented the same spectacle of desolation. The vessels, laden with the numerous victims, sailed for the different provinces where they were to be dispersed. They were thrust ashore on the coast between Boston and Carolina, without bread and without protec- tion, and were left to the charity of the inhabitants of the country in which they might happen to be.

For many days after their departure, their cattle might be seen collecting around the ruins of their dwellings, and their dogs passed the nights in pitiful howlings at the absence of then masters Happy even in their grief, they did not know to what extremes avarice and ambition can impel mankind.

Well, Mr. SPEAKER, these are facts which it is important to remember. Here is a French colony, situated a few hundred leagues from Canada, deported in a body, and the remnant of which long after return- ed to the same territory. Still more, it is with the descendents of a small part of these exiles that is now proposed to unite us. But a few months ago, I went among those people, and when I saw the magnificient

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properties of which they had been so brutally despoiled, in order that they might be conferred upon their executioners, in spite of myself, I remembered their moving history, and that sight, I must say, did not tend to induce me to accept the scheme of Confederation without carefully considering all its details. I repeat, Mr. S PEAKER these are facts which must not be forgotten. (Laughter, and whispering on the right.) To see the manner, Mr. SPEAKER, in which certain members of this House receive the account contained in one of the saddest pages of the history of New France, one would really believe that the facts which I have cited never occurred, and do not convey any instruction for the future. However, I am not surprised at such conduct on their part, when they can approve of a plan of a Constitution which contains a clause by which the Imperial Government is enabled even to chauge our name of Canadians to give us any one they may think proper. The recollection of our struggles cannot be very vivid in their memory, and the love of their nationality must be very weakly rooted in their hearts, to allow of their consenting to lose, with the name of Canadians, the memory of an heroic past. (Hear, hear.) Under Confederation, Canada will be nolonger a country possessing a distinct individuality, and her own history and customs, but she will be a state in the Confederacy, the general name of which will cause the special name of each province of which it is composed to disappear. Look at the states of the American Union ; the name of the United States does away with that of the individual states. So with Canada ; the name of the Confederacy will be that by which we shall be known in foreign lands. For my part, I am proud of our history and of my designation of Canadian, and I wish to ketp it. I am not one of those who can listen without interest to the recital of the heroic struggles of the French race in America, as the hon. member for Rouville (Mr. POULIN) can do ; for I am of opinion that considerations of nationality, of family, of language, and of origin ought to be most dear to a people, although they would appear to possess no importance or interest whatever in the eyes of the hon. member. (Hear, hear.)

[It being six o’clock, the House rose, to resume at half-past seven, P.M. At that hour Mr. PERRAULT continued.]

Mr. SPEAKER, at the time when I broke off in my observations in consequence of the adjournment at six o’clock, I was engaged in shewing what was the spirit of antagonism and strife which prevailed on the American continent up to 1755 We saw Acadia made a prey to the attacks of New England, and lastly, we saw her population dispersed over the inhospitable shores of this continent which border on the Atlantic ocean. New France had thus lost the greater part of her territory in America. The seven years’ war advanced with the strides of a giant, and every day saw the French element confined within narrower boundaries. After a prolonged contest, during which handfuls of men struggled with armies of ten times their number, when they were without bread, without munitions of war and almost without hope, the battle of the Plains of Abraham struck the last blow to the French power in America. In the following year the battle of Ste. Foye. which took place on the 28th April, 1760, soon compelled the Canadians to capitulate, although they were the victors in that battle, and the English were compelled to take shelter behind the walls of Quebec. In the treaty of capitulation, England guaranteed to the French-Canadians the free exercise of their form of worship, the preservation of their institutions, the use of their language and the maintenance of their laws. After this struggle on the field of honor, which called down upon the French-Canadians a most magnificent tribute of praise from their Governor, we shall find them engaged in a new struggle, a political struggle, yet more glorious than that which had preceded the cession of Canada to England. But permit me here, Mr. SPEAKER, to quote the eulogium pronounced on the Canadians by Governor VAUDREUIL in a letter which he wrote to the ministers of Louis XIV. :—” With this beautiful and extensive country France loses 70,000 souls, who are of a nature so seldom found,that never yet were people so docile, so brave, and so attached to their prince.” These qualities, for which the French-Canadians were distinguished at that period, still exist in the hearts of the population at the present day. At the present day still they are loyal, brave and attached to monarchical institutions; they love firmly-established institutions, and the guarantees of peace accorded by a great power, and the struggles through which they have had to pass under English domination have been the best proofs of their loyalty. If we study the history of our struggles since the cession of Canada, we

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shall find that our public men were always attached to the Crown of England up to the time when they were compelled by the arbitrary and unjust conduct of the Imperial Government to have recourse to arms to obtain respect for our political rights and our liberties; and it was thus in 1837 that we gained responsible government. (Hear, hear.) But in order to hold up to view the spirit of aggression and encroachment which has always characterised the English population in America, I shall give an historical sketch of the struggles through which we had to pass, in the course of a century, to attain at last our present Constitution, which it is my wish to preserve, but which our Ministers wish to destroy in order to substitute for it the scheme of Confederation. This historical sketch will demonstrate to us that we owe no gratitude to England for those political reforms which were obtained for us only through the unyielding patriotism of our great men, who, with intelligence, energy and perseverance, valiantly strove for the constant defence of our rights. We shall also see that, if they obtained the system of government and the political liberty for which they struggled, it was because we had for our neighbors the states of the American Union, and that side by side with the evil was its remedy We shall see that whenever England stood in need of us to defend her power, she made concessions to us ; but that when the danger was once over, colonial fanaticism always attempted to withdraw those concessions and to destroy the influence and the liberties of the French race. Each page of the parliamentary history ot our country offers a fresh proof of this. But we then had men who knew how to struggle for a noble cause, aud who did not shrink from the danger which that struggle entailed. I hope, Mr. SPEAKER, that we have still some of those men without fear and without reproach in Lower Canada; I hope the present Ministry are sincere at the moment when they are giving up the guarantees of the existing Constitution. If they can arrive at a happy conclusion with their scheme of Confederation, I shall be the first to congratulate them, and posterity will thank them for having had the hardi- hood to propose so vast a scheme. But I must say that there are men as intelligent and as devoted to the dearest interests of our country as the hon. gentlemen who are sitting on the Ministerial benches, who are convinced that this scheme, far from being a remedy for existing difficulties, is but a new engine prepared by our natural adversaries more easily to destroy the influence of the French race in America, an influence for the preservation of which we have had to fight step by step ever since the com- mencement of English domination in Canada. (Hear, hear.) The first political struggle between the French and the English elements in the country occurred only a few years after the treaty of capitulation had been signed. The general then commanding in Canada established a system of military government. There may have been ground for such a system after so long and bloody a war as that which was just over, and which had loft behind it so much legitimate animosity in the hearts of the conqueror and the conquered. However, the treaty of capitulation declared that the Canadians should be ” subjects of the king,” and as such they were entitled to representative government. The faith of treaty was therefore violated from the commencement of the English domination in Canada, and as I shall have the honor of shewing, this was but the first link in the long chain of arbitrary acts to which we ave been subjected since that period. The following, Mr. SPEAKER, is the first aggressive act that I shall cite in support of my statement

In 1764 General MURRAY, in accordance with his instructions, formed anew council, uniting the executive, legislative and judicial power, and composed of the lieutenant-governors of Montreal and Three Rivers, the chief justice, the inspector of customs, and eight influential persons. But one obscure man of the country was taken to make up the number.

This was the first act that had to be complained of.

It was proposed to take possession of the bishopric of Quebec, together with the property attached to it, and to confer it on the Bishop of London, and to grant to the Catholics only limited toleration, to exact from them the oath of allegiance, and to declare them incapable, as Catholics, of holding any public office. Justice was administered by men ignorant of the laws of the country, and in a language with which the Canadians were unacquainted.

It is unnecessary to make any lengthened comments on the entirely unjust manner in which the Canadians were thus treated, and on the flagrant violations of the conditions of the treaty of capitulation of Montreal.

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But we shall soon see that the fear of impending danger was alone effective to obtain for us political liberty, for at that time the French element alone could sustain the English power in America

The English partisans assembled at Quebec in October, 1773, to prepare an address with the view of obtaining a House of Assembly.

And this was the reply made to them by the Imperial Government through one of the Ministry

As to an Assembly of Protestants only, I see no objection to the establishment of one ; but the danger of disobliging the Catholics of the Province, who are so much superior in number.

This was the sole consideration which was effective to prevent the carrying out of the proposition of 1773, to establish a Canadian House of Assembly composed of Protestants only, and yet out of a population of 80,000 souls, 500 families only were at the time English and Protestants. What greater injustice could be done us ? But the English element made yet other propositions to the Imperial Government

Six different suggestions were made in relation to the new forms of government which it was wished to introduce : 1st—The establishment of a House of Assembly composed exclusively of Protestants, as the English understood the proclamation of the month of October, 1873, to provide, was asked for. 2nd—An Assembly composed of equal numbers of Catholics and Protestants. 3rd — An Assembly composed almost entirely of Protestants, with a limited number of Catholics. 4th—To delegate to the Governor and his council sufficient power to control the province by increasing the number of the members who should be all Protestants ; or, 5th—Protestants and Catholics. 6th—Or again, Protestants with a restricted and limited number of Catholics.

Thus, from the very first attempt made to give to French Canada a political organization, we find the most shameless exclusiveness forming the basis of the propositions suggested. There were hardly 3,000 English colonists against 75,000 French, and already we were denied any represention in the Governor’s Council, there to set forth the requirements of the country and to watch over the defence of our rights.

The Cursitor Baron (MASERES) prepared a bill by which he suggested the raising of the number of the members of the Council to thirty-one ; that the latter should be independent of ihe governor, instead of being subject to suspension ; that the quorum should be fixed at seventeen ; and further that it should not have the power of imposing taxes; that it should be appointed for seven years, and should be composed of Protestants ; provisions which were calculated to exclude from the management of affairs and from office the French and Catholic element.

Always exclusion of Catholics, and consequently of the French element. But what resulted ? Did the French remain unmoved in view of the danger which was impending over them ? No ! On the receipt of the news they signed petitions, and obtained from England the justice which was refused to them here

Our unfortunate ancestors, however, did not remain idle under the threats and injustice of their adversaries—the colonies were possessed of men capable of judging and of foreseeing events. Petitions were prepared and signed, in the month of December, 1773, of which the tenor was as follows: ” In the year 1764 Your Majesty was pleased to terminate the military government in this colony and to introduce civil government into it, and from the date of those changes we began to be aware of thp inconveniences resulting from the British laws, which up to that time had been unknown to us. Our old citizens who bad, without cost, settled our difficulties, were thanked ; that militia, which considered it glorious to bear that great name, was suppressed. We were, indeed, allowed the right of being jurors, but at the same time we were shewn that there were obstacles to our holding office The introduction of the laws of England was talked of—laws which are infinitely wise and useful for the Mother Country, but which could not be made to coincide with our customs without overturning our fortunes and entirely destroying our possessions.

Deign, illustrious and gracious Soveieign, to remove these fears by granting us our ancient laws, privileges and customs, with the limits of Canada such as they used to be * * * Deign to distribute equally your benefits to all your subjects, without distinction * * * And to grant us in common with the rest, the rights and privileges of English citizens ; then * * * we shall be always ready to sacrifice them for the glory of our prince and the well-being of our country.”

And such has always been the sentiment of the French population in America; it has always been loyal to authority, from the moment of obtaining that protection to which it was entitled. In view of the difficult position in which England was placed, the requests of the Canadians having been favorably received, constituted the basis of the Ac t of 1774. Circumstances were indeed difficult. The policy of the Mother Country had alienated her subjects in New England. The idea of taxing the colonies to provide

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for the requirements of the Imperial Treasury had given rise to deep indignation on this side of the Atlantic. And that ill-advised colonial policy it was that lost to England her American colonies. Taught by this revolt, England perceived that she must grant greater political liberties to her French colonists in Canada. They would not withdraw themselves from English domination ; on the contrary, they wished to remain under her flag, for they feared being drawn into the neighboring republic, the future greatness of which was not at the time foreseen. Impelled by the dread of losing what possessions remained to her in America, England had to yield the concessions which Canada asked for from her at a time when the war of independence called for the cooperation of the French element. GARNEAU says :—

When war with the English colonies in America was apprehended, prejudice was overcome in order to make the Canadians favorably disposed, by granting them the Act of 1774, known as the “Act of Quebec.” This imperial statute, establishing a Legislative Council, entrusted, together with the Governor, with the duty of making laws, again guaranteed to us the free exercise of our religion, maintained our laws and our customs, and released the Catholics from the necessity, in order to become members of the Council, of taking an oath contrary to their religion.

This was what the war of the independence of the United States was worth to us. Eng- land saw that if she dissatisfied the Canadians there would be an end to her power in America, and then only did she grant to French Canada the Quebec Act, which was a step towards the obtaining of greater liberties. The other day, the Hon. Attorney General for Lower Canada read us several passages from our history, to prove to us that French-Canadian hands had alone prevented the annihilation of English domination on this continent. But he did not draw all the conclusions which he might have derived from the premises which he adduced, and the facts which he cited. He ought to have told us whether, in the face of those services valiantly rendered, it is just that the English element, supported by its number, should to-day impose upon us representation based on population ; ought the English element, by this aggressive measure, to shake our loyalty to England by creating a system of government which is repugnant to us, and in which the French element will lose its just share of influence in the administration of the affairs of our country ? At this period it was that an address was sent to the Canadians by the American Congress, calling upon them to unite with them in the insurrection against the Mother Country:—”Seize,” said the Congress, ” seize the opportunity which Providence itself affords you ; if you act in such way as to preserve your liberty, you will be effectually free.” Mr. SPEAKER, everyone knows the reply made by the Canadians to this appeal. Armies invaded our territory, and took possession of a part of the country. Quebec alone held out, thanks to a garrison composed in part of French-Canadians. And if we are now sheltered beneath the folds of the British flag, it is to French-Canadians that we owe it, and it is them that England ought to thank. But if it is proposed now to thrust upon us a political system, the sole object of which is to submerge us in a hostile majority, we have to thauk the English for it—the English for whom our lathers saved the country in 1775. After the defeat of the Americans before Quebec, Congress did not lose courage. A second manifesto was despatched to Canada, promising fresh reinforcements; eminent men even came into the country; FRANKLIN, CHASE and CARROLL in vain solicited the Canadians to unite with them. Dr. CARROLL, who died in l8l5 Bishop of Baltimore, was sent among the Canadian clergy with no better success, and all hope of obtaining possession of this important colony had at last to be relinquished. These facts necessarily tended to enlighten public opinion, and England perceived that it would be better for her to comply with the just demands of the Canadian people, in order that reliance might, bo placed upon them in the day of danger, and that they might be used as a rampart against the United States. Then it was that a more liberal Constitution was granted to us, that of 1791

PITT, taught by the former faults of England in the administration of the United States, and by the great example of his father, Lord CHATHAM, presented to the House of Commons a bill for granting to Canada a new Constitution, sanctioning the elective principle and dividing the colony into two distinct provinces, Upper and Lower Canada. The bill, after undergoing some amendments (one of which was to increase the repre sentation from thirty to fifty members), passed on a division in both Houses. The celebrated statesman BURKE, when giving in his assent to the bill,

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said: “To attempt to unite people who differ in language, in laws and in manners, is very absurd. To do so is to sow the seeds of discord, a thing most undoubtedly fatal to the establishment of a new government. Let their Constitution be adapted to their nature, the only solid basis of every government.” The no less celebrated leader of the Whig party, Fox, opposed to the division of the provinces, spoke to obtain an elective Legislative Council for Canada. ” With such a colony as this,” observed that orator, “which is susceptible of progress, it is important that no ground should be given her to envy her neighbors. Canada ought to remain attached to Great Britain by the choice of her inhabitants ; it cannot be preserved in any other way. But that this may be so, the inhabitants must feel that their situation is not worse than that of the Americans.”

This Constitution of 1791 was a great concession to Lower Canada. At last it had an elective chamber, in which the people might express their views, and through which they could convey their wishes to the foot of the Throne. And also at once was seen a generation of eminent men, of whom history will honorably preserve the sainted names, representing the interests which were entrusied to them with wonderful skill and most uncommon success.

The elections were fixed for the month of July, and the meeting of the Houses for the month of December. Of the fifty members elected sixteen were English, notwithstanding the constant opposition which these latter had displayed to French- Canadian interests.

Thus on the organizing of the first elective chamber , and in spite of all the opposition which the French-Canadian party had met with from the English party, we find sixteen English members elected in great part by the votes of individuals of our nationality. In this House, some days since, we heard Upper Canadian members, praising our liberality, and acknowledging that never had national or religious fanaticism been displayed by us. That is true ; we are essentially liberal and tolerant, and a sufficient proof of it, is given in the most striking manner, by the number of members of this House who, al though of religion and origin differing from ours, yet represent counties in great part or exclusively French and Catholic. This is a subject of pride for us. Unfortunately we have no return in kind made to us, and we do not meet with the like liberality from the English population. Whenever it is in a majority, it closes to us the door of honors and of office; it excludes us everywhere, where it is powerful enough to do so. From the very first Parliament of Lower Canada, the English, although in an insignificant minority, endeavored to proscribe the use of the French language, and from that day began between the two races the same contests of which we are to-day witnesses. We are told that times have changed ; it is true, but if the at tempts at oppression ar e less barefaced, if they are concealed under an exterior better calculated to deceive us, it is only because we are more numerous now than we were then, and that greater dread than ever is enter tained of the vicinity of the American Union, in which, now more than ever, it would be easy for our population to find a powerful remedy for the evils of which it might have to complain. But let us see, Mr. SPEAKER, what occurred at the opening of our first House of Assembly. I quote an author who has always supported the party of the Honorable Attorney General East.

Parliament opened ou the 17th December, in the Episcopal Palace, which had been occupied by the Government since the conquest. A Speaker had to be chosen, and Mr. J. PANET was proposed. Then it was that the English members were found to renew their attempts to obtain the supremacy and to slight the interests of those by whom they had been elected. Without the least delicacy and in spite of their being in a minority, they proposed in opposition to Mr. PANET, Messrs. GRANT, MCGILL and JORDAN Mr. PANET’S election was carried by a majority of 28 to 18, two Canadians having voted against him. The hatred which the English party bore to the name of Canadian manifested itself again when a proposition was made that the minutes of the proceedings of the House should be prepared in both languages. A lively and animated debate arose between the two opposite parties, and this very reasonable demand was treated as a species of rebellion against the Mother Country. The French members were accused of insubordination; the motives which induced the act seemed to be misunderstood, and attempts were even made to intimidate them ; but it was in vain. The unassailable arguments upon which the Canadians rested their claim, and their words, like their eloquence, bearing the stamp of dignity, finally triumphed over the attacks of their fanatical opponents.

Thus the French element demanded the preparation of the proceedings of the House in its own language, but we find that the English element opposed it with all the power at its command. This was regarded as rebellion against the Mother Country ! It can hardly be believed. Here was a legislative body almost entirely French in its com-

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position, and at the very first sitting the few English members which it contained, after having attempted to force on the very great majority a Speaker of their own origin, subsequently refused to nine-tenths of the population of the country the imprescriptible right to their language as the official language. But they were counting without taking into consideration the resolute firmness of which the Canadians of old so often gave proof in the defence of their rights ; and I can convey to the honorable members of this House no higher opinion of the lofty sentiments of these great patriots of the olden time, than by quoting the remarks made by one of the members, Mr. DELOTBINIÈRE, during the debate in question

The second reason, which is to assimilate and attach more promptly the Canadian race to the Mother Country, ought to set aside every other consideration, if we were not certain of the fidelity of the people of this province ; but let us do justice to their conduct at all times, and especially let us remember the year 1775. These Canadians, who spoke nothing but French, showed their attachment to their sovereign in a manner which admitted of no doubt being cast upon it. They assisted in the defence of the province. This city, these walls, this very House in which I have the honor to raise my voice, were, in part, saved by their zeal and their courage. We saw them unite with the faithful subjects of His Majesty and repulse the attacks made by people who spoke very good English, upon this town. It is not uniformity of language, theiefore, Mr. SPEAKER, that makes people more faithful or more united among themselves. To convince ourselves of this, let us glance at France at this moment and at all the kingdoms of Europe. No, I repeat, it is not uniformity of language that maintains and ensures the fidelity of a people ; it is the certainty of its present good fortune, and of this our people are at present perfectly convinced. They know that they have a good king— the best of kings. They know that they are under a just and liberal government; and, lastly, they know that a change or a revolution would entail certain loss upon them, and they will ever be prepared to oppose any such proceeding with vigor and courage.

MR. DUFRESNE (.Montcalm) — Mr. SPEAKER, I hope the honorable member for Richelieu will excuse my interrupting him for a moment. I wish to ask a simple question. Will the hon. member inform me what difference there is between a member who reads his speech and another who reads the history of Canada to the House?

MR. PERRAULT—I reply to the hon. member for Montcalm, that the speech read to us by the hon. member for Montmorency, the other evening, was written out from the first line to the last. Not only did he read to us the passages which he took from history or the quotations which he made from the speeches of other members of this House, but also his own remarks on those extracts. I only read here quotations from authors, which serve as vouchers upon which to base my arguments. If I did not read them, it might be supposed that I only expressed my own private opinions, whereas they are those of a friend of the present Government. Although I coincide in the ideas and opinions which I quote, yet I do not choose to appropriate them as my own, but wish to leave all the merit and the responsibility of them to the author of them.

MR. DUFRESNE (Montcalm) — The only difference I can discover between the hon. member for Montmorency and the hon. member for Richelieu, is that the former read his own work, and that the latter is rendering hiaiself guilty of plagiarism. (Hear, hear, and laughter.)

MR. PERRAULT —Everyone knows, Mr. SPEAKER, that the hon. member for Montcalm has no reason to fear a similar accusation, for the excellent reason that his writings and his speeches are nowhere to bo found. At the time when the member for Montcalm interrupted me so very inoffensively, Mr. SPEAKER, I was quoting a passage from M. DE LOTBINIÈRE’S speech on the subject of the opposition offered to the publication of the proceedings of the House of Assembly in 1791 in French, in order to demonstrate the spirit of exclusiveness which animated the English element from the commencement of our parliamentary system, notwithstanding the insignificant minority in which they were at the time. But that barefaced attempt was unsuccessful, and the amendment proposed, having for its object the proscription of the French language, was refused by two-thirds of the House. It was finally resolved that the minutes of the proceedings of the House should be in both languages, and that the English or the French version should be the text of the Legislative acts according as they related to the English or the French laws. Thus opposition to the French element manifested itself from the commencement of our parliamentary system in this country, by the refusal to adopt the French as the official language. But, thanks to our sturdy resistance, the use of that language has always been one of our privileges, a privilege which has

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always been preserved in all its integrity until its introduction into the scheme of Confederation which is proposed to us. Had it not been for the courage and energy displayed by the men of those days, the French element would have lost ground, and its importance would have diminished, so that at last it would have been assimilated by the English element. At that time, our public men already wished for responsible government, and we shall see that the struggle which they carried on for half a century in order to obtain it, was productive of no important result, until they had reoourse to rebellion; and it is since that gloomy period of our history that we have our present Constitution and responsible government. Now that we have obtained our most sacred political rights after passing through a century of persecution and through rivers of blood, shed on honorable fields of battle and on the scaffold, are we going to relinquish them in order to accept a new Constitution, the evident object of which is to do away with our influence as a race in this country ? Has not the French majority, for fifteen years, always carried its point in the Executive and in the Legislature, thanks to sectional equality in the representation ? Why should we then relinquish the advantages conferred upon us by our present Constitution, for a scheme of Confederation in which we shall be in a minority, and which is fraught with danger to us and to our institutions ? The responsibility assumed by the French section of the Ministry in uniting the whole of Upper Canada with the English minority of Lower Canada is enormous. And now, at this very time, should that section wish to withdraw from the struggle, perceiving the danger for the future, it could not do so ; it would be carried away by the torrent of the English element. It is to shew the danger that exists for the future, Mr. SPEAKER, that I am now presenting a sketch of the struggles of the past. The circumstances which gave rise to them still exist, and will entail the same attempts at aggression ; I must say this to stay my countrymen, while there is yet time, on the verge of the abyss towards whioh they are allowing themselves to be drawn. From 1809 Le Canadien discussed, in an animated manner, the question of responsible government, and took to heart the interests of its fellow-countrymen. A cry of violence and treason was raised. But, says GARNEAU the historian

We have carefully perused the journal in question, page by page, up to the time of its seizure by the authorities, and we found combined with a demand for rights which were perfectly constitutional, an ever-recurring expression of the most unbounded loyalty and attachment to the English monarchy.

She important question of the voting of the supplies was also the subject of the most violent debates. Mr. BÉDARD insisted on this imprescriptible right of every legislative body under the Crown of England. But it was constantly refused by the English minority in the House and by the Mother Country. Led with greater strength by Mr. BÉDARD, the House by a large majority declared itself in favor of the voting of the supplies by the representatives of the people. In the division whioh was taken, we find the English element on one side, and the Frenoh element on the other. I ask you, Mr. SPEAKER, what rights are left to the British subject if that of voting the supplies is taken from him ; if he has not the control of the funds levied from the people for the administration of the affairs of state,— if he is thus deprived of the most important of the privileges which are secured by constitutional government? Is this great injustice to be consummated ? Shall the most precious of their rights be refused to the representatives of the people ? Yes, Mr. SPEAKER, there will be no shrinking from this infamous proceeding. Our most eminent patriots, those whose eloquent voice on every occasion uemanded our threatened liberties, were the first to be accused of treason for having made such a demand, and then confined for fourteen months in the gloomy cells of a prison, regardless of the articles of the capitulation of Montreal, which guaranteed to us the rights and liberties of British subjects. That proposal to vote our public expenditure, which now appears to us so simple, then raised throughout the country a violent tempest, which was never entirely allayed until the annihilation of the existing Constitution. In spite of the rage and calumny which was displayed, Mr. BÉDARD’S proposition was carried, and the following is the division upon it

IN FAVOR.—Messrs. Bédard, Durocher. T. L. Papineau, LEE, Borgia, Meunier, Taschereau, Viger, Drapeau, Bernier, St. Julien, Hébert, Duclos, Robitaille, Huot, Caron, C. Panet, Le Roi, Blanchet, Debartzch, and Beauchamp—21.

AGAINST.—Messrs McCord, Bowen, Mure, Bell, DENECHAUD, Jones of Bedford, Blackwood, Gugy, and Ross Cuthbert—9.

A single English name, that of Mr. LEE,

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appears among the French-Canadian phalanx, but in compensation we find a French-Canadian name in the list of those who voted for that inexcusable denial of a right which we were to purchase so dearly. It is not my desire, Mr. SPEAKER, to nuke any comments on this division, but I cannot refrain from observing that it demonstrates that on every occasion we have had to struggle against the encroachments and antagonism of the English element in Canada. Yet there was no cessation in the demand for the voting of the supplies so long as it was not obtained, and it is a remarkable fact that during the whole time that the French-Canadians were in a majority in our country. England systematically refused us our most just demands and the control of the general administration. Still more, the most arbitrary acts were thrust upon us by the Mother Country, aided in every way, moreover, by colonial English fanaticism, which lost no opportunity of turning its well-known exclusiveness to our disadvantage. But so soon as their countrymen exceeded us in number, so soon as the English element obtained a preponderance in the House of Assembly by means of the union of 1840, the English authorities granted us all the political rights for which we had asked in vain for a century. They perfectly well knew that those rights would be controlled, and in case of need utilised against us by an essentially hostile representative majority. But, thanks to the patriotism of our men of that day, we succeeded in baffling the schemes of the British Government. Up to the union those men had had to keep up a constant struggle, marked by a degree of heroism worthy of the cause which they served, against the English autocracy, which was banded together against our countrymen. We, their descendants, are ready to recommence the same struggle with the same energy, to maintain our rights so dearly purchased, and to proserve the inheritance which we have received and which it is our wish to transmit intact to the children of the soil. (Hear, heir.) Let us now see what was the condition of the liberty of the press and of the liberty of the subject at this gloomy period of our parliamentary history. The Canadien having dared to ask for responsible government, and Mr. BÉDARD having obtained in the House a majority of twenty-one against nine in favor of the voting of the supplies, the Executive Council resolved at any cost to injure the influence of the Canadien, and to paralyze the efforts of the Canadian leaders. It kept a watch on the Canadien to find grounds of accusation, and on the deposition of two individuals, caused the printing office to be seized by a squad of soldiers, its contents to be conveyed to the vaults of the court, and Mr. BÉDARD to be imprisoned on a charge of treasonable practices. And this act of tyranny was grounded on the fact that these political martyrs had had the courage to demand for Canada the right of voting the supplies I The Canadien gave an account of this atrocious imprisonment in the following paragraph.

The infamous conduct of the Council did not end here. The latter, with the view of striking terror into the great national party, caused Messrs. LAFORCE, PAPINEAU (of Chambly), CORBEIL, TASCHEREAU and BLAHCHET to be imprisoned.

Thus, Mr. SPEAKER, at this period a representative of the people was cast into prison for having asked for the granting of a right which was unjustly withheld, and to crown the act of tyranny, he was left to rot in his cell for fourteen months, and was refused a trial before the courts in which he could have easily justified himself, and proved that he had acted in a constitutional manner. I cannot pass over this page of our parliamentary history without quoting it.

The leaders, however, who had been basely imprisoned, did not stoop before ;he storm, Mr. BEDARD, from the depths of his cell, braved the fury of the enemies of his country ; his great soul remained calm and undisturbed, and he did not give way to despair. Proud of his rights and confident of the justice of his cause, he in vain demanded from his persecutors a justification of their conduct The ears of his jailers were deaf to his demand, and refusing the liberty which they wished to grant him, he even insisted on being brought to trial. The new elections caused no change in the national representation. The Governor, in his speech, made no allusion to the severe measures which he had taken with respect to Mr. BEDARD and his companions, and the session passed over without the noble prisoner having been liberated. It was not until after a captivity of thirteen months, and after having contracted a mortal disease, that this great man left the prison to go and rejoin a beloved family, who were deprived of their all and who were indebted for their means of existence to the honorable generosity of the citizens of Quebec.

Notwithstanding these crying injustices, Mr. BÉDARD did not complain ; he considered that it was not too high a price to pay for the liberties of the people, and that a few months’ imprisonment was a mere nothing in view of

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the great liberlies for which he struggled and suffered. Listen to the noble utterances of that great patriot, in presence of his electors, after regaining his liberty.

The past must not discourage us, or diminish our veneration for our Constitution. Any other form of government would be subject to the same drawback, and in fact to drawbacks far greater ; the peruliarity of our present system is, that it furnishes the means of remedying its own defects. [And he added] : We must, moreover, be prepared to make some sacrifices for the securing of these great advantages.”

Such was the language of that great patriot ; not a word of bitterness, complaint, or recrimination, but dignity of expression and a sincere conviction of the advantages of the Constitution. What a contrast, alas ! between those days of devotedness and civic courage, and the egotism and frigid indifference of our own, in which self-interest overrides everything, and patriotism has ceased to exist. The page of our history I have just read, is one wLich certainly should not remain unnoticed ; it is a page which our legislators would do well to consult. They would there find an example of patriotism well deserving of imitation. It is well to contemplate and study the great struggles of our forefathers, to see how victory crowned the efforts of those noble patriots—a victory dearly purchased, and of which we have up to our own day preserved the precious fruits. (Hear, hear.) But the war of 1812 broke out, and England —who has never granted us any liberties or privileges except when she needed us for her own defence on this continent—changed her tactics. She trembled for hor supremacy in these British provinces, and immediately she deemed it prudent to secure our good-will, and cooperation in the struggle then about to commence—in the first place, by calling Mr. BÉDARD to a seat on the judicial bench. She understood clearly that she could do nothing against the United States without the assistance of the French-Canadian element. And the Imperial Government also hoped to recover the control of the influence and the services of the race it had treated so tyrannically. Thus it was that the man who had been cast into prison, and whom the Government had accused of treason, became the judge of the highest court in the country. The adoption of every base means of gaining adherents constituted the tactics of the Government at that period. They hoped that by thus giving a place to the man who had been the most valiant defender of our right and of our nationality, they would secure the adherence of the children of the soil, and they were not mistaken. In adopting that means, Mr. SPEAKER, the Imperial Government showed that they understood the character of the nation they thus sought to gain over to their cause. For it must be admitted—and it is perhaps our misfortune—that it is the peculiar characteristic of the French element, that they very often too soon forget the persecutions of which they have been the victims, and which ought to inspire them with an honest indignation when they reflect on the past. Over-confident of the sincere good will of our adversaries, we are always taken unawares at each new attempt at aggression. And even now, a few years of prosperity has been enough to dazzle us and make us anticipate a brilliant prospect in a measure which involves nothing short of the annihilation of our influence as a race, which is in fact decreed in the scheme of Confederation now sought to be forced upon the people. (Hear, hear.) But the American army threatened the frontier, and it was necessary to think of defence. With a view of being prepared for an attack, the Governor assembled Parliament twice in 1812, and measures were taken for arming the militia and voting the sums required for the organization and defence of the province. Sir GEORGE PRÉVOST, at the opening of Parliament in 1813, complimented the people for their courage and energy, and the proceedings were less stormy than usual ; fresh supplies were voted for the war, and a good understanding subsisted between the Government and the two Houses during the session. At that heroic period of our history, we find our French-Canadian fellow-countrymen, to whom fresh concessions had been made, obedient to the voice of their chiefs, rushing to the frontier and driving back the invader. But in 1812, as in 1775, the devotedness and patriotism of our people were destined soon to be forgotten. The moment of danger had scarcely passed away when those who had saved the power of England in America, at the price of their blood, were once more made the object of incessant attacks on the part of the English oligarchy, as I shall shortly shew. GARNEAU gives the following graphic sketch of the conduct of his countrymen at that critical period of our history.

A second time was Canada preserved for England by the very people whom it was sought to annihilate ; by their bravery the colony was pre-

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served from the inevitable woes of a frightful war. For a moment the hatred entertained to wards the Canadian name was stifled ; the Colonial Office, sensible of the difficulties of the moment, silenced the fanatical yells of its trans-atlantie minions ; but once the danger over and Canada safe, the old antipathies were soon again to burst forth, the war upon our language, our institutions and our laws to recommence, and ingratitude to take the place of gratitude in the hearts of the children of Albion.

Forbearance, it was evident, had been thus used solely because circumstances rendered it impossible to give grounds of discontent to so important a portion of the population, by whom alone the country could be saved. England has never been liberal except in presence of danger. At this moment she is endeavoring to attain the same end by attempting to destroy our nationality by means of the Federation scheme submitted to us. But she finds at her back now an element of strength which she did not then possess, to aid her in the task—the support of a French- Canadian majority. (Hear, hear.) In the following year occurred the glorious battle of Chateauguay. On that memorable day a handful of brave men, commanded by DESALABERRY, confronted an enemy thirty times superior in number to themselves, arrested the advance of the invader, and by their devotedness and bravery saved this rich province for the Crown of England. Now, Mr. SPEAKER, what the French-Canadians did in the war of 1812, that they are once more prepared to do under the Constitution as it is at this moment. It was because they felt at that time that they had something more precious to defend than a Confederation which can afford no better protection to their material interests than to their institutions, their language, their laws, and their nationality, that ihey took no account of the numbers of the enemy, but fought valiantly when they were outnumbered in the proportion of ten to one. And now again, in defending the Constitution as it is, with the rights and privileges it guarantees to us, the Canadians will not hesitate a moment to sacrifice themselves for the safety of the precious deposit entrusted to their keeping. Surely, Mr. SPEAKER, it is not necessary to go far back into our history for an instance of this. In 1862, at the time of the affair of the Trent, when a rupture with our neighbors seemed imminent, the French-Canadians rushed to arms with the eagerness and irresistible impulse of the heroes of New France. It is not, Mr. SPEAKER, that the French-Canadian desires war, but he loves to nerve his arm by calling to mind the battle-fields of former days ; and if the present generation were called upon to meet the enemy, they would show the whole world that their blood has not degenerated, and that they are worthy in every respect of their heroic ancestors. (Hear, hear.) After the war of 1812, which had so greatly imperilled the possessions of England on this continent, the same attempts at aggression were renewed without delay ; so true is it that danger alone could interrupt them. The troops having gone into winter quarters, the Governor, Sir G. PRÉVOST, went down to Quebec to open Parliament, and the disagreements between the popular branch and the Legislative Council soon broke forth again little by little. STUART again brought up the question of the rules of practice, and made the most serious accusations against Judge SEWELL—charging him, for instance, with having attempted to enforce his rules of practice without the authority of Parliament ; with having dismissed the Solicitor General from his place in order to instal therein his own brother, E. SEWELL; with having violated the liberty of the press, by causing the Canadien to be seized without any plausible grounds; and the liberty of Parliament, by imprisoning several of its members. These accusations, some of which were true, were transmitted to England, but STUART having been unable to cross the sea in order to follow them up, SEWELL got rid of the charges. The same occurred as regards Judge MONK, who was accused at the same time of sundry malversations; and, as Mr. F. X. GARNEAU remarks, Judge SEWELL determined that the best revenge he could take for the accusations brought against him was to suggest to the Prince Regent the union of all the British provinces, with a view to compass the destruction of French-Canadian nationality. Such, Mr. SPEAKER, were the circumstances under which the scheme of Confederation was first proposed. And it must be admitted that, bearing in mind the recommendation of Mr. SEWELL, it ought to excite many fears on the part of every true French-Canadian. Who was the first man to pronounce the word ” Confederation” ? A man who violated the liberty of the press and the liberty of Parliament ! A man who had for years longed for the destruction of the French-Canadian race ! At a subsequent period, after the revolution of 1837, Lord DURHAM proposed Confederation as the political organization best adapted for our annihilation. And at this moment our

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fellow-countrymen in office submit, nay, propose, to the people this scheme of annihilation, specially prepared for our destruction, and which must destroy us, Mr. SPEAKER, if the people outside this House do not protest in every constitutional way against the political suicide of the French race in Canada. At the prorogation of Parliament in 1814, the Speaker, L. J . PAPINEAU, addressed the Governor, Sir GEORGE PRÉVOST, in the following words.

The events of the late war have drawn closer the bonds of connection between Great Britain and Canada. These provinces have been preserved for England under circumstances of great difficulty.

These words are, in many respects, deserving of serious consideration ; and I call the attention of honorable members of this House to this remarkable passage.

When the war broke out—continued Mr. PAPINEAU— this country had neither troops nor money, and Your Excellency commanded a people in whom, it was said, the habits acquired during more than half a century of peace had destroyed all military spirit. Despite these predictions, you succeeded in deriving from the devotedness of a brave and faithful, though calumniated people, sufficient resources to defeat the plans of conquest of an enemy great in numbers and full of confidence in his own strength. The blood of the children of Canada was shed, mingled with that of the brave men sent here to assist in our defence. The repeated proofs of the powerful protection of England and of the inviolable fidelity of her colonies, constitute for the latter fresh titles, in virtue of which they claim to enjoy the free exercise of all the rights and advantages guaranteed to them by the Constitution and the laws.

The Speaker of the Legislative Assembly, then twenty-six years of age, who struggled so heroically to secure our political rights and liberties, is the same whose name, during a recent sitting of this House, was ignominiously dragged forward by the hon. member for Montmorency and the Honorable Attorney General East (Hon. Mr. CARTIER) . His name, venerated by the entire country as that of its liberator, has been cast as an insult in the teeth of honorable members of this House, who deem it an honor to own his leadership, and who still continue to carry on his work— the protection of our political rights against the underhand plots of a hostile majority. But, Mr. SPEAKER, that venerable old man, who has grown grey in the service of his country, is sheltered from base insinuations, which can as little penetrate his peaceful retirement as they can the hearts of the sincere friends of our country. In that quiet retreat the great patriot of our evil days, after having nobly fulfilled his task, enjoys in peace and with pride the esteem of those he successfully defended with his powerful voice in the darkest hour of our political history. Gross insults, shameless calumnies, when uttered against such a man, redound with double weight upon those who thus basely vilify a citizen justly admitted to be an honor to our country. The name of the Hon. L. J . PAPINEAU is surrounded with a luminous halo which malignant calumny can never succeed in tarnishing. His memory is safe from these envious assaults, for it is under the protection of the people whom he rescued from the systematic colonial oppression which I am attempting to describe. Eeally, Mr. SPEAKER, the cause of the Honorable Attorney General East must be in very great straits when he is compelled to resort to such means in order to save it. The Honorable Attorney General East must have very little confidence in the success of that cause, when he endeavors to excite the prejudices of his supporters by heaping insults on one of the greatest names in our history. Such language on the part of the Honorable Attorney General East is the more culpable in that he himself was one of the rebels of 1837-‘8, and one of the most zealous partisans of that great patriot whom he now insults. Did he not himself vote in favor of the ninety-two resolutions— that imperishable monument of Canadian rights ? Yes , Mr. SPEAKER, the man upon whose head a price was set, the man who was compelled to fly from his country and to seek from a neighboring country that right of asylum, which he refuses to-day to the Southern refugee, has the audacity, now that he is Attorney General, to call that great statesman “Old Mr. PAPINEAU, ” and the opposition in this House, ” Old Mr. PAPINEAU’S tail.” I do not hesitate to assert, Mr. SPEAKER, that such expressions are unworthy of this House, and unworthy of the position occupied by the Honorable Attorney General East, who has had the questionable courage to pronounce them. (Hear, hear.) Such expressions, if they are to be tolerated anywhere, find their proper place in the common streets, and the standard of this House must have fallen very low, when such language is permitted here. All sense of dignity must be lost, when the Hon. Attorney General is permitted to insult, on the floor of this House, the name of a man whom every true French

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Canadian holds in veneration. Let the honorable gentleman not deceive himself—opinions and ideas tending to promote the happiness of the people, and the men who sustain and struggle for their interests, will ever be victorious over the assault of calumny and envy. And what has been the aim of the Hon. Attorney General and the honorable member for Montmorency, in their attack upon the Hon. Mr. PAPINEAU ? Their object, in the first place, was to injure the Opposition, who represent him ; and next, to elevate themselves, by dragging down to their own level one of the great men of our history, beside whom they are but pigmies. For there are two ways of being great : the first is by rendering to one’s country eminent services, and by exhibiting undeniable superiority ; but inasmuch as the Hon. Attorney General and the honorable member for Montmorency possess neither the material nor the superiority that go to make great men, they adopt the second mode of attaining greatness. It consists in depreciating and crushing all those who are superior to one’s self. Thus they hope to rise over the ruined reputation of those they enviously calumniate and unceasingly attack. They recklessly carry on their work of demolition ; they are not arrested in their course even by the names that personify a whole epoch in our history, and when one of the great figures of the past confronts them in all its dignity, like a statue of glory, their sacrilegious hands are eagerly raised to mutilate it ; then, standing alone upon its scattered fragments, they contemplate with pride the prostrate victim of their vandal labors ! Such, Mr. SPEAKER, are the motives which explain the efforts made by those who thus attempt to injure one of the greatest men of our race, (Hear, hear, and cheers.) But we have not yet reached the termination of our struggles. At the opening of Parliament in 1816, a message was communicated to the House stating that the charges brought against Judges SEWELL and MONK had been dismissed. The bitter words in which the message was couched greatly incensed the House, and a proper answer was just about to be adopted, when a dissolution was resorted to in order to prevent a manifestation of the feelings of the House. And what was the position taken by the Imperial Government with reference to those difficulties ? We find it stated in the letter written by Lord BATHURST to Governor SHERBROOKE, who pointed out to them the false step taken by the Colonial Office in thus oppressing our race.

Hitherto the Government has found, on all ordinary occasions, an abiding resource in the firmness and disposition of the Legislative Council, and there is no reason to doubt that the Council will continue to counteract the most injudicious and violent measures of the Legislative Assembly.

In truth, the measures of the Legislative Assembly of that day were very injudicious, very violent ! They demanded that the people should have a voice in the disposal of the moneys contributed by themselves ! And hence it was that the Legislative Council counteracted all the measures demanded by the people. I continue the quotation

It is therefore in every way desirable that you should avail yourself of its assistance to counteract any measures of the Assembly you may deem objectionable, instead of placing your own authority or that of the Government in direct opposition to that of the House, and thus affording them a pretext for refusing the supplies necessary for the service of the colony.

Yes, Mr. SPEAKER, the nominative Legislative Council was always the stumbling-block in the way of the French-Canadians whenever they endeavored to carry any measure of reform. The elective House invariably met, on the part of that body, a systematic opposition to every measure desired by the people— an opposition it was impossible to overcome. It was in 1856 that we succeeded, after a constant struggle of fifty years, in introducing the elective principle into the Upper House. At this moment, despite the lesson» of the past, recorded unfortunately in letters of blood, an attempt is made to return to the old system; we are about basely to abandon a privilege, a political right, which was the reward of so many struggles and so many woes. Yes, Mr. SPEAKER, such is the scheme of the present Government; they intend that in the Confederation the members of the Legislative Council shall be appointed by the Crown, as in the darkest period of our history. Happily, the people thoroughly understand the value and bearing of life nominations. They know that the great majority of the men so appointed by a General Government, numerically hostile to our race, would ever be ready to reject measures the most favoiable to our interests as a nation. The Legislative Council under Confederation will be what it wis in the days of oppression, when Lord BATHURST, in pursuance of the instructions of the Imperial Government, said to Governor SHERBROOKE—” Be careful to make use of the Legislative Council to counteract the measures of the elective

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body.” That is just it—they shield themselves behind a Legislative Council composed of their own creatures brought back to life, and then while lauding to the skies the colonial liberality of England, they pull the strings and make their puppets play the part of oppressors. It is precisely the same political organization that is proposed in the scheme of Confederation. In a Legislative Council composed of life-members, we shall have men prepared invariably to refuse the people the measures they require, if such measures in any way affect the privileges of the aristocratic classes. However eager may be the efforts of the members of the elective body, it will be constitutionally impossible for us to obtain such measures. Moreover, these councillors, of whom the majority will be hostile to us, will do everything in their power to gratify the Imperial Government, by whom they are to be appointed— a Government which has ever liberally subsidised its creatures. Such, Mr. SPEAKER, are the dangers in our path if we return to the old system of life-appointments proposed by the Government in the Confederation scheme. (Hear, hear.) But the first instructions given by Lord BATHURST to Governor SHERBROOKE were not sufficiently explicit, apparently ; for shortly afterwards he transmitted the following—” I strongly recommend you to see that the Legislative Assembly does not dispose of public moneys without the oonsent of the Legislative Council,”—thus unscrupulously violating the very essence of the Constitution, evidently under the impulse of rabid national feelings. It is a principle of the Constitution of England that the popular House, which represents the opinions of the people, has alone the right of voting supplies for the administration of the government, and that moneys levied for that purpose from the people can be expended only with the consent of that House and not otherwise. Well, Mr. SPEAKER, what do we find in this instance ? We find the Imperial Government expressly instructing Her Majesty’s representative in Canada not to allow the supplies to be voted without the consent of the Legislative Council, appointed for life by the Crown, and whose constant efforts were directed to resisting the just demands of the French-Canadians. This question of the supplies, the chief cause of all the difficulties by which we have been beset, both previous to and since that period, was not to be thus disposed of. We then had men who were not to be baffled by difficulties or rebuffs. And thus it is that we find those noble champions of our rights and liberties coming forward, year after year, with the same demands ; never disheartened by defeat, and struggling on until at last their legitimate claims were acceded to. In January, 1819, the Houses were opened, and the first question which brought on an animated debate was, once more, the question of the finances. A discussion arose as to whether the Lower House, after having obtained the annual vote of supply, could moreover obtain a detailed civil list and vote on each item separately. The majority desired this in order to assure themselves of the integrity of the public officials, and to hold in check the members of the Executive Council, over whom they had no control. Others opposed it strongly, as a new principle and violating the rights of the Crown. A committee, appointed to examine into the question, reported in favor of a reduction of the expenditure— which they declared to be far too great in proportion to the revenue—and the abolition of pensions, which tended to grave abuses. Adopting a middle course between the two extremes, some wished to vote the supplies under certain heads, giving a gross sum for each department. But the supporters of a detailed vote carried the day. The bill was passed, sent up to the Council, and, as was anticipated, rejected by that body in the following terms

That the mode adopted for the granting of the civil Hat was unconstitutional, unprecedented, and involved a direct violation of the rights and prerogatives of the Crown ; that if the bill became law, it would not only give the Commons the privilege of voting supplies, but also of prescribing to the Crown the number and character of its servants, by regulating and rewarding their services aa they thought proper, which would render them independent of their electors, and might lead to their rejecting the authority of the Crown, which their oath of allegiance bound them to sustain.

Thus, Mr. SPEAKER, the Council nominated for life rejected that eminently just measure —the voting, item by item, of the supplies by the Lower House ; that is to say, the distribution of the moneys levied from the people— and even went the length of declaring the measure unconstitutional. Is it possible at this time to understand how servility could be carried to such an excess ? At that period the population of Upper Canada had increased to a proportionately considerable extent, and the British population of Lower

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Canada was sufficiently numerous to suggest the scheme of uniting the two Canadas under one government, and in 1823 the proposal was made in England. It was, therefore, at that period of trouble and agitation, and rivalry between the Houses, that a plot was entered into in England to annihilate at one blow French-Canadian nationality. The war only postponed the scheme for the union of the two provinces ; for the assistance of the French-Canadian people was needed. Peace having been established, it was resolved to carry out the measure, and a bill for the purpose was presented to the Imperial Legislature, unknown to the parties whose fate was being decided, and without their being consulted, for it was known that they were opposed to that act of oppression. Yes, without consulting the people of Lower Canada, it was sought to force upon them a Constitution under which they were to have a smaller representation than Upper Canada ; moreover, Lower Canada was to be charged with the debt of the other province, which was a considerable debt, and the language of Lower Canada was to be banished from the Legislature. Happily, the scheme found opponents in the Imperial Parliament, and, despite all the intrigues and efforts of our enemies, the bill was thrown out At the second reading. Then, as at the present day, those who aimed at our destruction were loud in favor of passing the bill, at any price, before the people had an opportunity of protesting. At the present moment, those who desire to force us into Confederation, in the face of the petitions against the scheme, tell us that we must accept the new Constitution before the people are made aware of its monstrous details. ” I beg of you to pass this bill at once,” said Mr. WILMOTT ; ” if you wait until next year you will receive so many petitions protesting against the measure, that it will be very difficult to adopt it; however useful it may be to those who oppose it through ignorance or through prejudice ; moreover, it is essential to the removal of the difficulties existing between the Executive and the Assembly.” When the news of those unjust, but happily abortive, attempts reached Canada, the greatest agitation was produced, and the whole Canadian people felt indignant at such proceedings. Several meetings were held at Montreal and Quebec to protest against the bill, and petitions to the English Government were signed by 60,000 persons. At that period, as in this instance, the union was to be carried without consulting the people, and the Imperial Parliament submitted to the Legislature a measure against which 60,000 French-Canadians protested. Mr. SPEAKER, I have no hesitation in asserting it, the scheme of Confederation which it is now attempted to force upon the people is destined to be rejected, not by 60,000 French-Canadian signatures merely, but by 100,000. Yes, our people are waking up, and in this united and general protest we shall not lag behind those who showed us the example of an effective protest whenever it was sought to inflict injustice upon them. We will send to England thousands of signatures to protest against the Constitution we do not desire, and if justice is then refused, well “fiat justitia ruat coelum,” we shall have employed every constitutional means, and the responsibility for the consequences of that refusal of justice will fall on the heads of those who labor to bring about such a state of things. The Hon. DENIS BENJAMIN VIGER, one of the boldest ohampions of our rights, said of the bringing forward of the scheme of union in the Imperial Parliament, without consulting the people

After fifty years of peace and prosperity, when the generation that witnessed the conquest has passed away ; when there remains hardly a living witness of that event among the present generation ; when the memory and the impression of it has died out in the breast of French-Canadians ; when, in fine, there no longer remains in the Province any but British born subjects, enjoying all their rights in that capacity alone—now it is that a scheme is concocted under which we are to be treated—I will not say as a conquered people, for the public laws of civilized nations no longer permit the vanquished to be robbed of their institutions and laws, any more than of their property— but like a barbarous race to whom the enlightenment and the arts, the principles and the duties of social life, are unknown.

And in truth, Mr. SPEAKER, those words were not too strong to qualify justly the conduct of the Imperial Government at that period. Blood had to be shed at St. Denis and St. Charles, and heads to fall by the axe of the executioner, before justice could be obtained. It was only then, when it was found that the people did not hesitate to sacrifice the lives of their noblest children, in order to secure their political rights and liberties, that we received responsible government as we now enjoy it and as we desire to preserve it. At the opening of the ensuing Session it was expected that the debate on the finances would be resumed ; but the Governor having separated, in the estimates, the civil list from the other expenses, the supplies were voted.

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Thus it was that whenever the struggle for rights was persevered in, the result was success ; and why is it, I ask, that our statesman who have struggled since the union to preserve the Constitution as it is, with such signal success, now give way to the demands of Upper Canada ? Let us, then, maintain our present position, the most fruitful in advantages to French-Canadians. The question of finance had been for some time looked upon as disposed of, but on DALHOUSIE’S return the question arose again in a more threatening form than ever, and the supplies were refused (1827). The Governor on the following day prorogued Parliament, insulting the dignity of the Commons and eulogizing the Legislative Council. This act of tyranny caused great excitement amongst the people. The press attacked the Government, and in order to show the exasperation of men’s minds at the time, I quote an extract from one of the newspapers of that period

Canadians, chains are being forged to bind you; it would seem that we are to be annihilated or ruled with a rod oí iron. Our liberties are invaded, our rights violated, our privileges abolished, our complaints despised, our political existence menaced with utter and complete ruin. The time has now come to put forth all your resources and to display all your energy, so as to convince the Mother Country and the horde who for half a century have tyrannized over you in your own homes, that if you are subjects you are not slaves.

The elections resulted favorably for the popular party. At the meeting of Parliament, Mr. PAPINEAU was elected Speaker, but the Governor refused to sanction the choice, and told the Legislative Assembly to elect another. What was the proper course for the House of Assembly to pursue in the face of such conduct ? To give way ? No, Mr. SPEAKER ; there were at that time men in our House of Assembly, men who did not shrink from their duty, nor from the responsibility of their just opposition. On motion of Mr. CUVILLIER, it was resolved that the election of the Speaker must be made freely and independently of the Governor ; that Mr. PAPINEAU had been so elected ; that under the law, no confirmation was needed, the latter being, like the presentation, a simple matter of form and usage. Mr. PAPINEAU having been reinstated in the chair, the Governor refused to approve the selection made, and the same evening Parliament was dissolved. Thus, Mr. SPEAKER, Parliament existed but one day, because the Speaker was a man who valued his independence too highly to sub- mit to the dictates of an ill-advised government. In truth, if these are the liberties we owe to the colonial system, I need not stop to prove their utter hollowness. The people understood the position in which it was sought to place them, and took steps to repel these fresh attempts at aggression. The question created increased agitation ;public meetings were held in city, town and country ; the speeches made betokened the disturbed state of the public mind ; proceedings were taken against the press, and Mr. WALLER, editor of the Spectateur, of Montreal, was arrested for the second time. Addresses, bearing over 80,000 signatures, were forwarded to England in the hands of Messrs. NELSON, CUVILLIER and D. B. VIGER. Mr. GALE took the petition of the partisans of the oligarchy. A great meeting of the inhabitants of the counties of Verchères, Chambly, Rouville and St. Hyacinthe was held at St. Charles ; the people protested energetically against the existing state of things, and in fact it was broadly declared that the natural consequences must be expected to follow upon so flagrant a violation of the most sacred rights of the French-Canadians. Mr. SPEAKER, the Canadian people, in the person of their leaders, at that period traversed the ocean in order to obtain justice from the British Government, and laid at the foot of the Throne the protest of 80,000 of our fellow-countrymen, a people who, in the trying days of our history, had not hesitated to sacrifice their lives to maintain British power on this continent ; and once more, in this instance, when an attempt is made to force upon us a Constitution we have never asked for and which the people of Lower Canada energetically condemn, the same means of protesting is open to us, and the Government may rely upon it that we shall be as firm in defence of our political rights and liberties as were the representatives of the people in former days. Our protest will be, if anything, still more energetic against the proposed scheme of Confederation which it is sought to impose on us.

The Houses met in 1831, and the Governor, in the course of the session, communicated to Parliament the reply from England relative to the question of the supplies. The Imperial Government gave to the repiesentatives of the people the control of the revenue, with the exception of the casual and territorial items, consisting of the Jesuits’ Estates, the King’s Posts, the droit du quint, the lods et ventes, woods and forests, &c, for a civil list of £19,000 voted for the lifetime of the king.

In 1831 power was granted for voting, item by

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item, a part only of the supplies. The restriction was not consented to by those who represented the people in the Legislative Assembly. Such a state of things could not continue without leading to a collision ; and the events of 1837 justified the apprehension of those who had all along warned the Government that it was impossible for the people any longer to endure so flagrant a violation of their rights, and that there was imminent danger of exhausting their patience. Events followed each other rapidly, and the clergy then, as at this time, were opposed to any energetic demonstrations. Monseigneur LARTIGUE, Bishop of Montreal, published a pastoral letter, in which he said : ” Who will dare assert that the whole people of this country desire the destruction of the Government?” Mr. SPEAKER, no one desired it ; but the minority at that period, like the minority at present, complained of the injustice they suffered, and the clergy were opposed to them. The minority of that day struggled for the political rights of the people as they are struggling now, and they found arrayed against them every powerful influence and all established authorities. This contrast points to a fact deserving of notice. To-day the Government constantly insult us by crying out : ” You represent nothing in this House ; public opinion is against you! ” Well, Mr. SPEAKER, I ask the Hon. Attorney General for Lower Canada whether he himself and his honorable colleague the Prime Minister, had the majority of the Lower Canada people and clergy with them when, in 1837, they protested energetically against the injustice done to their fellow-countrymen? No, Mr. SPEAKER, at that time they formed part of the little phalanx who went so far as to raise the standard of rebellion on the plains of St. Denis and St. Charles ! How times are changed ! At the present moment the same men, the revolutionists of former days, strain every nerve to deprive the people of the right of pronouncing for or against the constitutional changes sought to be forced upon them So complete a forgetfulness of their own past is extremely deplorable. Mr. SPEAKER, for weighty reasons, I do not desire to dwell on the events of 1837. In 1838 there remained to be brought on the trials of those who had been implicated in the troubles. Lord DURHAM found himself placed in an embarrassing position, for it is always difficult for a government to carry on political prosecutions; by such a course it frequently loses its strength and its popularity.

To escape from the difficulties of the moment, the Governor resolved to adopt a great measure. On the day of the coronation of Queen VICTORIA he proclaimed a general amnesty, and granted pardon to all the ‘Canadians, except twenty-four of the most earnest of the revolutionary party. It is important, Mr. SPEAKER, to know who were the twenty-four daring revolutionists against whom the British Government displayed so much severity, and against whom the clergy had pronounced so strongly. These men were Messrs. WOLFRED NELSON, R. S. M. BOUCHETTE, BONAVENTURE VIGER, SIMEON MARCHESSAULT, H. A. GAUVIN, T. H. GODIN, ROD. DESRI – VIÈRES, L. H. MASSON, LOUIS J . PAPINEAU, C. H. COTÉ, JULIEN GAGNON, ROBERT NELSON, E. B. O’CALLAGHAN, ED. E T . RODIER, T. S. BROWN, LUDGER DUVERNAT, ED. CHARTIER, Ptre., G. E T . CARTIER, J. RYAN, Jr., Ls. PERRAULT, P. L. DEMARAY, J . F. DAVIGNON, and Ls. GAUTHIER. Thus, Mr. SPEAKER, among those sanguinary men I find the Honorable Attorney General for Lower Canada (Hon. Mr. CARTIER). (Hear, hear.) Far be from me the thought of reproaching him with his conduct at that period. I have always looked upon it as that of a patriot and of a true friend of his country. Besides, that honorable member has declared to us on many occasions that he did not regret the struggles which he had formerly maintained in order to claim the political liberties of his country, and I can perfectly understand that he does not waver in those sentiments, for it is now an historical fact that all those who took part in those struggles nobly staked their lives for their convictions, and the minority then, like the present minority, could expect nothing but misinterpretation of their opposition to power. It is not for me to decide how far this insurrectionary movement was excited by the deplorable circumstances of the time, but I am perfectly satisfied that those who were at the head of it were impelled by sentiments of patriotism, by the generous desire of obtaining for their fellow-countrymen the political liberties which were refused them. They have therefore laid their country under a great debt of gratitude for the sacrifices which they made. Now see, Mr. SPEAKER; the men who, twenty years ago, constituted a revolutionary minority, braved the clergy and raised the standard of revolt against Great Britain, are to-day in a majority and supported by the powerful influence of England and of the clergy, whose entire confidence they possess. They have their

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little entries to Windsor, they fill the highest and most lucrative offices in our country, and are even decorated with the titles with which Her Majesty is used to reward Her most loyal subjects. To-day, as in 1837, the minority do not wish to have recourse to the means furnished by revolutions, after having exhausted those which the Constitution affords, but they have an inward conviction that in twenty years, when the people have succeeded in appreciiting what that minority is doing for them to-day, they will feel for the opposition to which it is devoting itself, a sentiment of gratitude, the result of which will be, that on it they will confer their entire confidence, after having refused it in the day of trial. Yes, Mr. SPEAKER, as the minority of 1837 constitutes the majority of to-day, so will the present minority constitute the majority at some day which is more or less near. I will not, Mr. SPEAKER, follow the victims of that melancholy period of our history to the scaifold. With their lives they paid the price of their devotion to the cause of their country, and if, to make a people deserving of the rights of existence, life’s blood and devotion are necessary, we have theirs to show that French Canada freely and nobly sacrificed her noblest descendants to the genius of Liberty. (Hear, hear.) But before concluding this sketch of our struggles, from the conquest to the melancholy occurrences of 1837-38, it is important to show that it is to our heroic resistance in the Parliament and to force of arms that we owe the political liberties which are secured to us by the present Constitution. I am unwilling to leave this review of the colonial system of England in Canada without destroying the false impression which exists, that that colonial system was sensibly improved by the liberality of the views of the statesmen of Great Britain, that the struggles through which we passed were owing to the ideas of other days, and that now all the liberties which we enjoy extend to all the English colonies, to which the colonial system of our day secures the advantages and the benefits of responsible government. I believe, Mr. SPEAKER, that I shall be able easily to controvert these erroneous arguments, and to do so I have onlj to consider the colonial system of England at the Mauritius. That French colony, which is not of such old standing as ours, and which became a conquest of England, fell under the yoke of Great Britain in 1810. It was then the Isle of France ; since the conquest its nai^e has been changed to the Island of Mauritius. It contains a pop- ulation which is almost entirely French, but unfortunately for their political rights it has not, as we have, the advantage of living in the immediate vicinity of a great republic, like the United States, serving, so to say, as a guarantee for the protection of its liberties. The Isle of France, in consequence of its isolated position, is precisely in circumstances which allow of our forming an opinion of what the pretended liberties of the colonial system are worth when there is nothing to fear from the weakness of the colonists or the intervention of a neighboring power in favor of the oppressed. Thus, Mr. SPEAKER, we have a splendid opportunity of judging whether the colonial system, applied under such circumstances, possesses that liberal character which is attributed to it. Well, I say it with regret, we see there, as we saw in Canada, the same aggressive and tyrannical policy against which we had to strive for a whole century. The colonial system gave rise here to deep dissatisfaction. I shall enumerate the grievances which are complained of, grievances for which there is but too great foundation. When the Isle of France was ceded to England, it was stipulated, as in the case of Canada, that the French population should retain the use of their language and their religious institutions, together with the laws under which they had up to that time been governed—three liberties of great value to the descendants of old France. Well, Mr. SPEAKER, we shall now see whether England respected these three articles of the treaty. I hold in my hand a correspondence of no older date than the 6th May, 1862. It is written by a French colonist in the Mauritius, and contains an account of the colonial system under which his countrymen are governed. Before reading this correspondence, I must premise that the population of the island consists of two hundred thousand souls ; that population is governed by an Executive Council and a Legislative Council appointed for life, consisting of eighteen members, eight of whom are publie officers appointed and paid by the Government of the colony. The other ten are nearly all of English origin. Thus the French element in the Legislative Council of the Mauritius is in the proportion of about one to five, although the population is nearly entirely French.

To the Editor of the Economiste Français.

You promise to the ancient colonies of France aid and protection in your columns ; it is therefore natural, that relying on that promise, I should apply to hold up to the view of your readers, and to lay before an intelligent public,

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before impartial judges, the acts of a government which, since 1810, has exercised the most absolute despotism over us, concealed under the great name of liberty. We have indeed the liberty of the press, but it is not listened to. Vain are all cries ; the Government “stop their ears and let us cry.” Then they tell us that we shall never have a more wise, a more paternal, a more liberal government. ” What would you have more than the liberty of thinking and writing?” they ask. What we would have is that the liberty of the press should be of some use to us ; that the Government should listen to the mouth-pieces of public opinion ; that they should not waste our funds in spite of the protestations of the press;(4) that they should cause the laws, as they were made, to be observed, and by all alike ; that among other laws, that of quarantine should be faithfully observed, and that no exception should be made in favor of H. B. M.’s ships of war and transports with troops ; that more attention should be paid to the subject of communication with the ships arriving from India ; that we should be more effectually protected from the epidemics which decimate our population ; that the cholera should be prevented from becoming endemic in the country, so that the French and Creole population of the Mauritius may be preserved ; that enquiry should be made as to the causes which may have brought the cholera upon us ; that insufficient laws may be revised ; that our reserves should be kept at home instead of being lent to the Mother Country or to other colonies; that our treaty of capitulation should be respected ; that no attempt should be made to introduce here English laws, when it is agreed that by the French codes only are we to be governed ; that the use of the French language, of which we have been deprived in defiance of sworn faith, should be restored to us ; that no flagrant injustice should be committed in favor of the English and to the detriment of the Creoles ; that the latter may be appointed to the different offices, and that these should not be conferred on incapable favorites ; we would have the Legislative Council and self-government, &c, &c. This is what we would have. You see that we wish for a great many things. But are they not all just and reasonable ? Let us now proceed to the enumeration of some of them, and, in chronological order, let us begin with the French language. The deed of capitulation, signed in 1810 by the representatives of France and England, contained the following articles, which we, the conquered people, imposed on our conquerors

1st. Respect for our religion. 2nd. The maintenance of our laws. 3rd. The guarantee that we should be allowed to speak French. Well, of these three principal articles (inscribed in large characters in our deed of capitulation, accepted and promised under the faith of an oath, signed and approved by England), one has been already violated, and the work of undermining another is going on! Setting at naught all scruples, the English Government first robbed us of the use of the French language before the high courts of justice. We have expressed our claims, but a deaf ear has been turned to them. This first step taken, what bounds will be set to this gieat work of destruction oí all that we hold from France ? On the application of a few English, the revisal of our code is already being considered ; and when the whole population apply to the Mother Country for the revocation of an order which renders the transaction of business impossible, without the very costly intervention of legal men and translators, and which, moreover, inflicts a deep wound on the Creole heart, they are told to hold their tongues ! When they loudly call for the revision of insufficient laws which facilitate the propagation of mephitic miasmata they are not listened to ! When they demand an enquiry into the circumstances which have caused the introduction into their midst of the cruel epidemic, which for more than four months has carried death into their ranks, they are told that they are indulging in idle fancies ! At the same time, and as though to turn the public mind from this fixed idea, there is a semblance of bringing up a question already decided upon and voted—that relating to railways I Another grievance. Whilst the epidemic is raging among us, and whilst our municipality stands in need of money for the relief of the poor classes, the Government has none to lend, because the financial reserves of the colony are lent to the Cape, to India, to Ceylon, and to the Mother Country itself.

Thus , Mr. SPEAKER , the Mauritius, which, by the terms of her treaty of capitulation, was to have preserved to her the use of her language, hor peculiar institutions and her laws, has soon found herself deprived of the use of her language ; her laws have been changed, and her institutions have been subjected to oppression. This , Mr. SPEAKER , is the sort of liberty which a French colony may enjoy under the colonial system of England, when the colony is weak and is not situated, as Canada is, in the vicinity of a powerful republic such as the United States. I think, Mr SPEAKER, that I have now shewn what has ever been the spirit of antagonism between the two races of English and French origin, on the two continents, and what has been the spirit of aggression of the English element against our population, from the founding of the colony up to our own time ; we have seen colonial fanaticism attacking our institutions, our language and our laws, and we have seen that our annihilation as a race has been the evident

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object of those constant efforts. Can we to-day believe that the case is otherwise ; and ought not the unanimity of the English element in favor of Confederation to fill us with terror ? Is not our loss concealed under this outward semblance of conciliation ? Yes, let us consult the history of our country before effecting so radical a change in our Constitution. Let us remember with terror the strife and antagonism which prevailed in days gone by, and let us endeavor to judge with certaiuty what will be the necessary consequences of a constitutional change of such serious importance as that which is proposed to us. Let us now consider, Mr. SPEAKER, the disastrous consequences of the adoption of the scheme of Confederation. The members of the Government have told us that Confederation would constitute us a military power of the first class, and would enable us to resist the aggressions of the American Union. The defence of our frontier is certainly a question of the highest importance, for no one is unaware that our relations with our neighbors are in a position of extreme tension. They have established a passport system, the sole object of which is to hamper our trade. A resolution has been adopted by Congress, almost unanimously, for the repeal of the treaty of reciprocity which exists between the two countries. In a few months the waters of our lakes will be ploughed by vessels of war, the armaments of which can only be directed against Canada. Such, Mr. SPEAKER, is the position of the United States with respect to us, and to meet this danger the Government proposes to form a Confederation which will, they tell us, constitute a first class power, able to maintain on this continent the supremacy of Great Britain. But will the object proposed be attained ? Shall we be stronger under Confederation than we are now? Cannot the Governor General of the Provinces of British North America laise troops throughout the whole extent of the provinces placed under his jurisdiction ? Is not the militia of all those provinces under his immediate command ? We are told, Mr. SPEAKER, that Confederation will give us a more uniform military organization than that which we now possess. But there is nothing to prevent the formation of that organization under tlie present Constitution, and I have no hesitation in saying that under that Constitution the several provinces will defend themselves to better advantage than under Confederation. Is it not precisely by creating here a military power, hostile to the adjoining powerful republic, that we shall bring on war and its attendant calamities ? The moment the United States perceive in this Confederation an organization, the object of which is the establishing of the balance of power in America, they will not wait until our fortifications are constructed, er until the Intercolonial railway is built, but they will attack us at once. On another hand, we offer defiance to the American republic by creating here a political organizaion which is contrary to the principles of the democratic government which prevails there, and contrary to the famous Monroe doctrine, which, as is well known, is opposed to the establishment ofmonarchicalgovernments on this continent. The plan of the prcseut Government is, therefore, to establish here a political system which is essentially hostile to the United States, as it will be essentially monarchical, and instead of proving to us a means of defence, it can entail nothing but war and the disastrous consequences attendant upon it. To promote the security and prosperity of our country, the Government, instead of bleeding the people as they propose to do, to erect here and there ruinously expensive, and after all insufficient fortifications, ought to apply the revenues of the treasury to the establishment of new industries, the improvement of our public highways, and the colonization of our wild lands. These inexhaustible sources of wealth, if wisely managed, would double our numbers, our revenue and our power, and would in that way confer upon us means of defence much more effective than those which we should receive from Confederation, which would crush the people under taxes imposed to meet the expense of imperfectly defending our frontier And is it suppose for a moment that when we have in so urgent a manner decreed the fortification of our frontier, the arming of our militia men, and the establishment of a fleet on our inland seas, that the United States will do the same and that they will follow the example set them of such ruinous folly? Is it supposed that the American statesmen will not immediately pen eive, as we are desiious of raising ourselves up as an enemy on their frontier, and of entailing upon them an enormous outlay in order to hold us in check, that it will be for them a mere question of economy to attack us now and to take possession of the country, before it is in our power to oblige them to keep up that

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ruinously expensive war footing ? And what could we do against an invading army of two or three hundred thousand men, with our treasury exhausted by the fortifications, and with hardly any assistance from England, whose policy at this moment is anti-colonial ? I cannot understand how, in face of the danger which is impending over us, and for which we are so little prepared, the Government can thus cast defiance in the teeth of the powerful nation who are adjacent to us, and whose armies now in the field could set at naught any resistance to immediate invasion. I assert it positively, Mr. SPEAKER, the United States have not the least intention of attacking us, so long as we remain peaceable spectators of their fratricidal struggle, and so long as we continue to confine ourselves to peaceful occupations. But if, on the contrary, we create here a hostile military power, if we establish here the throne of a viceroy or of a foreign monarch, in defiance of the principles which form the groundwork upon which rests the political system of the United States, we may then rest assured that the neighbouring republic will sweep away that monarchical organization, established in rivalry to its own demo cratic system. (Hear, hear.) Such, Mr. SPEAKER, is the question in its most serious aspect. I shall not enlarge upon the details of the scheme ot Confederation, which have been so ably criticised by the hon. members who have preceded me ; and besides I shall have an opportunity of discussing them when the amendments to the scheme are submitted to the House. But I may now say that those details cannot be accepted by the people. We have already received numerous petitions praying for the rejection of the measure, and those petitions continue to reach us every day. Now, I ask you, Mr. SPEAKER, what the sentiments of the people will be if that scheme is adopted, and if in the course of two months it is returned to us from England, after having receivt d the sanction of the Imperial Parliament, without its having been possible for us to alter the most trifling of its details ? Is it supposed, after a Constitution shall have been forced on the French-Canadians, which they have opposed to the utmost, that they will be very enthusiastic in the defence of that Constitution which shall have deprived them of a part of the political rights which they enjoyed ? And, it cannot be denied, by adopting the proposed Confederation, we yield up some of the privileges which we now enjoy have not our Ministers themselves told us that under the pressure of the demands of Upper Canada it was necessary to make concessions at the Quebec Conference, in order to ensure the adoption of the present scheme? The hostile majority of Upper Canada have obtained representation based on population, against which Lower Canada has so energetically struggled for fifteen years, because she saw in that concession the annihilation of our influence as a race. Under these circumstances, Mr. SPEAKER, is it supposed that reliance is to be placed on the assistance of the French-Canadians, who were formerly so terrible in the attack, and who fought, without hesitation, one against ten, a proportion in which we shall again find ourselves opposed to the Americans in the probable event of a war ? To hope that they will fight with the same impulse now, when they are being deprived of the surest guarantees of their natural existence and of their most sacred political lights, is greatly to deceive ourselves, and to betray ignorance of what has always been the cause of their heroism in the conflict. Under the Constitution as it is, they would again fight with similar courage, regardless of numbers, because they love that Constitution which secures to them all that they hold most dear, and because they wish to preserve it. Under Confederation, on the contrary, we have nothing left to defend ; our influence as a race is gone, and sooner than be absorbed in a Confederation, the existence of which will prove a source of constant strife without bringing with it compensating advantages, the people dissatisfied will seek other and more advantageous political and commercial alliances, and for this reason it is that I consider that the scheme of Confederation will lead us directly to annexation to the United States. When the commissioners from the North and the South recently had an interview in order to decide the possible conditions of an honorable peace, one of the three propositions submitted by the North was to the effect that the two armies should not be disbanded after the cessation of hostilities, but should be united for the purpose of earning on a foreign war Now, Mr. SPEAKER, what does the expression, “foreign war,” when used by the United States, mean, except war upon Canada ? And what could the fifty battalions which England could send us du against the combined armies of the North and the South, the strength of which amounts to a million of

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men ? Situated at a distance of a thousand leagues from us, Great Britain, with all her material of war and our militia, could not defend Canada against so powerful an enemy, except at the cost of the greatest sacrifices. It is not, therefore, at a time when we are placed in such great straits, that we should exclaim loudly that we do not fear the struggle, and that we are ready to measure our strength against that of the States of the American Union. It is equally absurd to give umbrage to their institutions by creating beside them a political organization to which they are fundamentally opposed. Is it believed that our monarchical pretensions and our threats are of a nature to intimidate the American statesmen ? In their eyes we are but pigmies hurling threats at giants. Let the war come with the Constitution as it is, and we shall find a hundred thousand volunteers ready to deiend our frontier. But if the Government impose on the French-Canadians the scheme of Confederation, from which they have so much fear, and which may prove to be productive of the most disastrous consequences to their institutions, their language and their laws, then, I am bound to say, there will be hesitation in our ranks at the time when every man will be marching towards almost certain death for the defence of a flag which will no longer confer upon our race the guarantees of protec tion which it to-day secures to us. I say, then, that the time is ill-chosen to make such serious changes, and to lay the foundation of an Empire the existence of which, threatened both from the interior and from the exterior, will be of but a few days’ duration. For with dissatisfaction among the French- Canadians, deprived of their rights and privileges, it is impossible for England to maintain her power here against three hundred thousand men invading our territory at ten different points along our frontier. The wisest policy which we can pursue, at this critical moment, is therefore remain peaceable spectators of the struggle between our neighbors, to open our forests to colonization, to turn to account our mines and water-powers, to clear our wild lands, and to labor without ceasing to to recall our unfortunate countrymen who are now scattered over American soil. Let us construct raiways, let us double our manufacturing industry, let us enlarge our canals, let us extend our network of railways to the Maritime Provinces ; and when we have attained great proportions as a peo- ple, when our prosperity shall have increased fivefold, and, above all, when the terrible hurricane which threatens to destroy everything in North America shall have terminated its work of ruin, and finally when we shall be strong enough to protect ourselves from external attacks, and the French-Canadians especially shall have obtained sufficient power to have nearly equality of representation in the General Parliament, it will be time enough to lay the foundation of a great Confederation of the British North American Provinces, based on the protective principle of the sovereignty of the states. Under these circumstances Confederation will produce abundant fruits, and will be welcomed by the people of this country, and especially by the French-Canadians, who, having doubled in number in the interval, will be in a position to demand infinitely more advantageous conditions than those which are forced upon them to-day. We shall not then have our present political rights, which were so dearly obtained by the struggles of a century, replaced by local governments, which will be nothing more thao municipal councils, vested with small and absurd powers, unworthy of a free people, which allow us at most the control of our roads, our schools and our lanas ; but we shall then obtain local governments based on the sovereignty of states, as is the case under the Constitution of the United States. The fact is not to be denied: the American Constitution was created by great men in face of a crowd of considerable and opposite local interests, and it cost them several years of deep study to reconcile those various interests, and finally to build up that admirable Constitution which, as the hon. member for Brome has so well said, defies the most severe criticism in relation to its most important bases. With a Constitution like that of the United States, based upon state sovereignty, Lower Canada would elect her own governor and her representatives in the Federal Parliament and Legislative Council, and also all the Executive Ministers.

MR. DUFRESNE (Montcalm) — We should also appoint the judges.

MR. PERRAULT—If the hon. member for Montcalm had listened attentively to the remarkable speech of the hon. member for Brome, he would have learned that in the majority of the states composing the American Union, the judges are not ap-

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pointed by the people, but by the Executive branch of the local government, in precisely the same way as in Canada, and that they are in every respect as upright and as distinguished as our own judges. If our French-Canadian Ministers had not been in so powerless a minority in the Quebec Conference (four to thirty-two), they would certainly not have accepted a scheme of Confederation so fraught with danger to the French race as that which has been submitted to us. They would have obtained more favorable conditions than those which are imposed upon us. among which is the appointment for life of the legislative councillors, by the Executive branch of the General Legislature. For my part, Mr. SPEAKER, I am not in favor of the appointment for life of men taken from the crowd to be converted into the instruments of oppression, and too often to serve to cast impediments in the way of the most important liberties and rights of the people. The appointment for life of the legislative councillors by a majority which is hostile to our race is as dangerous to-day as it was in the most evil days of our history, and tu accept it is to place our n ost preci.ius liberties at the mercy of the enemies of our race. With such provisions in the Constitution which it is proposed to force upon us, it is impossible that the French element should be protected in the Legislative Council. It is equally impossitle that the aggressive tendencies, of which I gave an historical sketch in the first pare of my remarks, will net produce their eifect in the Federal Executive, when the question of the appointment of those members is being settled. We have been told, ” The French Canadian section will resign if the Federal Executive attempt to practice injustice to the detriment of their fellow countrymen.” Well, Mr. SPEAKER, I would williugly believe that they would resign, and that no successors could be found for them, which is still more improbable, and I should like to know to what such a resignatioa would lead, and what sort of a remedy it would provide for our humiliating position. We shall have forty-eight members in the Federal Parliament agaiust one hundred and forty of English origin ; in other words, we shall be in the proportion of one to four. What could so weak a minority do to obtain justice? Evidently the resignation of the French section would make it still more powerless, and it would have to accept the tyrannical dictates of its opponents. The French members of the present Government themselves give as the ground of the necessity of the proposed changes, the fact that the existing Constitution does not afford us sufficient guarantees. But then, what sort of guarantees shall we have under the Confederation which it is proposed to forceupon us and under which we shall be in a minority twice as great? Let us suppose the very probable contingency of a collision between our Local Legislature and the Federal Government, in consequence of the rejection of a measure passed by the Province of Lower Canada and thrown out by the General Parliament ; in what position shall we be ? Let us remember that the Federal Executive appoints the Legislative Council, presides over the criminal legislation of the country, and appoints the judges who administer it ; in a word, that in the Federal Government are vested all sovereign powers, to the exclusion of the local governments. Well, Mr. SPEAKER, I say without hesitation that in the case of a collision, we shall find ourselves completely at the mercy of the hostile Federal majority, and that it may oppress us, assimilate our laws,; suspend our judges, arm the militia against us, and send us to the scaffold or into exile in any way they may think proper, notwithstanding our protestations and those of the French-Canadian minority in the Federal Parliament. Such has already been found to occur ; the past is there to prove the fact, and everything leads us to believe that the same attempts at fanatical aggression will be renewed in our day, if the scheme of Confederation is adopted. (Hear, hear.) The hon. member for Brome, whose loyalty will certainly not be called in question, himself declared in this House that this scheme would give rise to difficulties and entail deplorable collisions. Supposing, Mr. SPEAKER, that those collisions and difficulties arise, what shall we do ? Will not all power be in the nanus of the Federal Government and of a hostile majority ? Is it not because the people understand it that they reject this measure with threats on their lips and in their eyes; that every day they send us numerous petitions in which they prophesy the most serious dissatisfaction ? How long will the eyes and the ears of the members of this House remain closed, that they may not be cognisant of this protest of their alarmed fellow-countrymen ? The Hon. Atty. Gen. East himself refuses to communicate to us a single one of the details of the scheme of

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Confederation, and he would have us give up all the rights which the existing Constitution confers upon us, by voting in favor of a Local Legislature of which the powers will be naught, and of a General Parliament in which we shall be in the proportion of one to four. Mr. SPEAKER, it is not surprising that the French-Canadian population of Lower Canada is unanimous in rejecting a Confederation which presents to us so gloomy a future— (hear, hear)—and I do not fear to declare that our Ministers are committing an act of very great imprudence in forcing upon the people constitutional changes of so serious a character, and so loudly denounced as an attack on their rights and their privileges. Never, at any period of our history, have there been seen such changes of constitution under such extraordinary circumstances. And exactly at the moment when we are preparing to resist the invading army of a powerful neighbor, we are deprived of the liberties which we enjoy after having secured them by a century of struggles. But it seems to me that new guarantees of security ought rather to be given us, in order to induce us to fight with warlike antagonists ten times more numerous than ourselves, and whose political organization is perhaps less hostile to our race than the proposed Confederation. Have not the present Ministry taught us to look upon the semblance of local government, which they propose to us, as a sufficient protection for all that we hold most dear, and to accept the position of a powerless minority in the General Government, because commercial interests only will be brought in question there ? If this proposition is a just one, the Constitution of the United States, with the recognized sovereignty of Lower Canada, affords much greater security for our institutions, our language and our laws. For the sovereignty of the state implies their preservation in the state, which yields up nothing to ihe General Government except a very restricted number of powers. Yes, Mr. SPEAKER, in proposing a change of Constitution the Ministry have committed a serious fault, aud they have no right to endeavor to prevent the people of this province from examining the question of possible changes in all its bearings. Scarcely six mouths ago the French-Canadians lived happily, relying upon the security given them by the existing Constitution. Now such can hardly be the case, when the proposed changes threaten their existence as a race. Impose these changes upon them, and then let danger come, and England will find out, but too late, that her most loyal subjects are lost to her. Our people will have learned that of two evils they must choose the least, and that on a comparison between Confederation and annexation, the least evil will not, unfortunately, be found to be Confederation. Before marching on to certain slaughter, the soldier will ask himself for what he is going to fight, aud whether the Constitution which he is going to defend is worth the sacrifice of his life’s blood. The day upon which the French-Canadian soldier puts this question to himself, will be the last day of the English power in America. I hope I may be mistaken, Mr. SPEAKER, and I would wish to believe that the views of the Government are sounder than mine, at a time when they propose a measure so full of danger as that which is submitted to us. I would wish to believe, above all, that they have no intention of skilfully leading us into a collision with our neighbors, which would tend to carry us directly into annexation, and would strike a mortal blow at English domination on this continent. I shall conclude, Mr. SPEAKER, by summing up my remarks. The union of the two Canadas has not yet done all its work. There is still room for progress under it, and it must be continued. The Hon. Attorney General for Lower Canada (Hon. Mr. CARTIER) maintains on the contrary that it has no longer any grounds of existence, and that we must have a new political organization. Well, Mr. SPEAKER, I venture to hold an opinion different from that of the hon. member for Montreal East, and I have no hesitation in saying that under the union we can yet double our prosperity and our numbers, if we introduce into the administration of affairs a little less party spirit and a little more patriotism. (Hear, hear.) I say, further, that the demand for representation based ou population has no cause of existence, that it was repudiated by Upper Canada, at first by the Conservative party, and afterwards by the Liberal party under the MACDONALD-SICOTTE Administration. When we have seen the most energetic and most sincere partisans of representatioa based on population abandon that principal basis of their politics, and make of it, in their government, a question agaiust which they engaged to vote, I say that it is very wrong to use it as one of the reasons to compel us to accept the scheme of Confederation. That cry, raised by fan-

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aticism in the west, will naturally be stifled by the more rapid increase of the population of Lower Canada and the annual diminution of immigration. With the assistance of these two causes our population will, in ten years, equal that of Upper Canada. I say, Mr. SPEAKER, that the scheme of Confederation is not expedient. But even if the scheme of Confederation was expedient, I maintain that the object of it is hostile. I gave an historical sketch of the encroaching spirit of the English race on the two continents. I pointed out the incessant antagonism existing between it and the French race. Our past recalled to us the constant struggle which we had to keep up in order to resist the aggression and the exclusiveness of the English element in Canada. It was only through heroic resistance and a happy combination of circumstances that we succeeded in obtaining the political rights which are secured to us by the present Constitution. The scheme of Confederation has no other object than to deprive us of the most precious of those rights, by substituting for them a political organization which is eminently hostile to US. The hostility of the scheme of Confederation being admitted, I maintain that its adoption will entail the most disastrous consequences. To impose upon the French- Canadians this new Constitution, which they do not want, is to tempt their anger and to expose ourselves to deplorable collisions. (Hear, hear.) It must necessarily be submitted to them before it is adopted : if they accept it, then will be the time to send it to England to be sanctioned. But the Government, and especially the Hon. Attorney General East, cannot ignore the petitions which are presented to us against the scheme, and especially so imposing a petition as that from the city of Montreal, which contains 6,000 French-Canadian signatures, and which is the most numerously signed petition which has ever been presented to our legislature by a city. I say, further, that those who vote for the scheme of Confederation take the shortest way to lead us into annexation to the United States. I am not the first to express this opinion ; several hon. members from Upper Canada have expressed it before me within the precincts of this House, and it is because those members from Upper Canada desire annexation to the United States that they vote in favor of the scheme of Confederation. The hon. members from the west, whose words are so loyal, will be the first to pass over to the enemy with arms and baggage, should an invading army ever appear on the frontier. Such, Mr. SPEAKER, is the position as it is. If His Excellency the Governor General thinks he ought to follow the advice of those who look to Washington, let him even do so; but I think it is high time to speak plainly here, and to warn him of the danger. (Hear, hear.) Mr. SPEAKER, I am not an old man with one foot already in the grave, and on the verge of eternity, and I adopt my course in view of the future. Our Ministers, who, in the course of a long career, have exhausted the supply of honor and of dignity in our country, are perhaps tempted to risk the future of their country for titles, honors and larger salaries under Confederation, perhaps for the sake of being governor of one of the Federated Provinces. We know that England nobly and royally rewards those who serve her without scruple. Besides, the prospect of founding a vast empire is well worth the sacrifice of some months of a worn out career, at the risk of not succeeding entirely in so gigantic a project. (Hear, hear.) But for my part, Mr. SPEAKER, I who belong to the coming generation, and who have twenty years of future before me, cannot approve, by my vote, of a scheme of Constitution which presents itself to us in such a gloomy perspective as regards our nationality, and all that we hold most dear as Frenchmen. If I am thus severe in my remarks, Mr. SPEAKER, I hope it will be understood that they proceed from profound conviction ; and it is well known that those who have honey on their lips are not always the most sincere at heart. I know also that sometimes those who state boldly what they think pay very dearly for their boldness and independence, but no dread of this, Mr. SPEAKER, shall ever cause me to shrink from expressing my convictions, when I consider that my doing so may be of any use to my country. (Hear, hear, and prolonged Opposition cheers.) Cries of “Adjourn, adjourn! ” from the Opposition.

HON. MR. CARTIER —No, no! Call in the members.

HON. A. A. DORION said he had moved the adjournment of the debate last evening, to have an opportunity of replying to the honorable member for Montmorency (Hon. Mr. CAUCHON). But as that honorable gentleman was not in his place in the afternoon, he

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had yielded the floor to the honorable member for Richelieu (Mr. PERRAULT). The honorable member for Montmorency, he observed, was still out of the House, and he should like to defer his remarks till the honorable gentleman should be in his seat. (Cries of “Adjourn.” and ” Go on.”)

COL. HAULTAIN then rose to address the House. He said — If the House will permit me, I shall relieve the honorable member for Hochelaga (Hon. Mr. DORION). It is not surprising to me, Mr. SPEAKER, that there should be this hanging back on the part of honorable members with regard to expressing their views on this subject, as so much has been said about it, that it is now, I won’t say thoroughly, but very nearly worn out. And for my own part, in common, I suppose, with all who will have to speak at this stage of the debate, I feel reluctant to trespass on the time of the House. At the same time, I cannot properly call it a trespass, but must rather consider it a duty. On a matter of this very great importance, involving the interests of so large a portion of this continent, I think it behoves most of us to express our opinions with the best ability that we can bring to the subject. (Hear, hear.) We have had this question discussed from so many points of view, and, I presume, by the ablest men who occupy public positions in Canada, that a humble individual like myself must feel great diffidence in saying another word on the subject. But it is no small encouragement to know—at any rate I feel it to be an encouragement in speaking in advocacy of the scheme—that I am in such good company, that the leading men in this province, the leading men in the British Provinces generally, and I may even say the leading men in the British Empire, are all agreed as to the desirableness of what is now proposed, and as to the wisdom which has been displayed in the framing of the scheme now submitted for our adoption. I do not expect to say «any thing new, and the fear of repeating what has already been said makes me reluctant to say anything at all ; and were I to consult my own feelings, I have no doubt I should be silent, and would rise only when you call on us, Mr. SPEAKER, to give our votes either for or against the resolutions in your hand. I think every honorable membur who has spoken in this debate has expressed his sense of the responsibility resting upon him, when addressing the House and the country on a matter of such vast importance to us all. I feel equally with others how great is this responsibility, and have en- deavoured to bring the best powers of my mind to the consideration of the question. The more we consider it, the more we look into the future in connection with our present movement, the larger the importance, I believe, it must assume in our minds. It not only affects the interests of Canada, but of all the British Provinces of this continent. Its probable results will materially affect the future, both of the British Empire and of the neighbouring republio, and, therefore, more or less the future of the world at large. I do not think that I am using languge at all exaggerated. From the best consideration I have been able to give to this subject, I believe there are under-lying the question now before us principles of the greatest importance to the world. I believe there are principles involved in our present action that must very much determine the character of the institutions that will generally prevail. The impression upon my own mind is, that if successful, we shall give greater stability and a more permanent foothold to the principles that obtain in the British Constitution ; but that failing in our present object, we shall see the decadence of these principles on this continent, and the advance of those principles which obtain in the neighbouring republic. (Hear, hear.) The more I consider it, the stronger am I of the opinion, that at the present time the principles of democracy and of monarchism— if I may so express it—are at stake ; and, considering it in this view, I look upon the scheme before us as calling for the most cordial and earnest support of every man who has learned to value the stability, the moderation, and the justice which have characterized the British nation as compared with any other nation that exists on the face of the globe. The great question before us is that of union—a practicable and attainable union — a union of provinces owning allegiance to the same Crown, possessing, generally, similar institutions, similar systems of government, the same language, the same laws, the same dangers, the same enemies. Our institutions are generally similar, although, no doubt, from having been isolated for so great a length of time, and having had no intercourse one with the other to speak of, there is an idiosyncracy attached to each of the provinces as they now exist, and the longer we remain separate the greater the divergence must be, and the more difficult union between us will be of accomplishment. The advocates of this scheme propose the union of all these provinces. It is a trite

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proverb that ” union is strength, and division is weakness.” So universally accepted is this statement, that no man can venture to deny its correctness. And I feel, as an advocate of union, that our position is one which is unassailable, and the arguments must indeed be strong which would convince me that we are not going in the right direction when moving towards union and consolidation. (Hear, hear.) Apart from the intrinsic force and power of union, which would be in itself sufficient to call us in that direction, Canada has special reasons for desiring that the British provinces should draw together more closely than they have yet done. By such a step we may remove one great cause of our own political difficulties. I do not think that this is at all a necessary part of the argument for our uniting together. But it so happens that by our union we hope to remove these difficulties, and that is an additional argument for union, although not at all necessary to induce the adoption of the scheme. I believe that if we had no difficulties whatever in Canada, if we were perfectly satisfied with our political position, union would still be desirable on the broad ground of the advantages we would derive from it. But, in addition to those advantages, and the force and strength which union will give us, it will assist us in surmounting and removing those great difficulties under which we labor ; and it is a most happy circumstance that, while we are carrying out a principle so excellent in itself, we are at the same time enabled to remove difficulties which might prove most disastrous to our prospects. And, in addition to these reasons, we have evidently the wishes of the Mother Country for the success of this scheme. (Hear, hear.) No one can with reason question the reception which the scheme has met with from the press and from men of all shades of political opinion in the Mother Country. It has met with universal approbation there. (Hear, hear.) There has been no jealousy of it that I know of. There has not proceeded from any quarter one word of disapprobation or of doubt as to the prudence and the wisdom which have dictated our advances towards union. The good wishes of Great Britain are thoroughly with us. (Hear, hear.) An additional reason, I may say necessity, for union exists in the hostility of the United States so palpably manifested during the past few months. In fact, sir, looking at all our interests—our interests socially and commercially—our interests of defence—our internal harmony—our very existence as an independent people—all bid us go forward in the direction of union. I shall allude but briefly to the political difficulties of Canada, as this part of the subject has been most ably handled by honorable gentlemen who have preceded me. Our difficulties, I had fancied, were palpable to all, and yet we have heard honorable gentlemen who are opposed to the scheme, almost ignoring their existence, or treating them as though they did not weigh in the scale of the arguments on this question at all. I am sorry my hon. friend from Brome (Mr. DUNKIN) is not here, as I will have to refer to some of his remarks. That honorable gentleman, as well as others, intimated to the House that our difficulties had disappeared ; that since 1862 Upper Canada had been satisfied with her position ; that agitation had been laid aside ; that there was no more mention of any sense of injustice on the part of Upper Canada. This line of remark only shews me how ignorant those honorable gentlemen were of the subject on which they were speaking ; how entirely they had remained in the dark as to the feelings which existed in the minds of the people of Upper Canada ; manifesting a degree of ignorance on one very important feature of our position, that rendered them to a great degree incompetent to deal with this question. From much that I have heard relative to the cause of the dissatisfaction known to prevail in Upper Canada, I think it well not to be altogether silent about it. We must look deeper than the displeasure felt and manifested at the passing of certain measures obnoxious to the majority of that section, or at the unjust principle of an equal distribution of the public revenues between the two sections. It is true that these tended to draw attention to, and make more prominent the real cause of discontent. It lay deep in the chafing of the minds of men whose national characters tic is impatience of intolerance and injustice. It dwelt in the abiding sense of the unfair position that the terms of the union of 1840 now imposed upon them, and obeying their national instincts, they could never cease to insist upon a representative reform. (Hear, hear.) I suppose there are no people on the earth who feel more strongly or who will resist more determinedly the perpetration and continuance of any injustice. It was that sense of injustice, weighing heavily on the minds of the people of Upper Canada, that rendered our position one of difficulty and of danger so long as relief was denied them. I have been surprised, therefore, to hear the statement

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which has been made by some hon. gentlemen in this House, that the feelings of dissatisfaction which existed in Upper Canada have disappeared. The formation of the MACDONALD- SICOTTE Government has been mentioned as a proof that we have become indifferent to the question of representation by population, which had been so repeatedly and so strongly urged, and that the people of Upper Canada were quite willing, for the sake of some small material advantages, to cast aside that for which they had been agitating for so many years. In opposition to this, I must state that there was the strongest disapprobation felt and expressed throughout Upper Canada at the formation of that Government. The only excuse made for it was, that it was simply a provisional government, and that its formation was nothing more than a temporary measure. I would not hesitate or fear to appeal to any constituency in Upper Canada, where the question of representation hy population had been agitated, and ask them to say whether they did not cherish the strongest feelings of disapprobation that that question should have been ignored at the time of the formation of that Government.

MR. M. C. CAMERON —North Ontario elected a member of that Government.

HON. MR. HOLTON—They were all elected.

MR. M. C. CAMERON—But in North Ontario a member of the Government came who had not been the member for that constituency before, and defeated one who was in favor of representation by population.

COL. HAULTAIN—In alluding to this matter, I would wish to guard myself against rousing anything like party questions or party feelings. (Hear, hear.) I desire, in dealing with the important subject now under debate, to remember that the question before us now is not who was right or who was wrong in 1862 or 1863. The question is, are we right in advancing towards union, or are we making a great mistake ; but where it is necessary for me to allude to the course pursued by either party, it is for the purpose of argument alone, and not in any way to raise the question who was right or who to blame. I stated, sir, that there was the strongest disapprobation—I might more correctly say disappointment— felt in Upper Canada that the question of representation by population should have been laid aside by the MACDONALD-SICOTTE Government. I felt as strongly as any man could have done the unfortunate posi- tion in which we were then placed ; but giving it the best consideration I could, and believing that a change of government was desirable under almost any circumstances, I most unwillingly consented. I believed nothing else could have been done at the time. It was the opinion of most, though not of all, with whom I then aoted—we might have been wrong, that is not the question. Believing, therefore, that we could not then secure the success of the measure for which we had been agitating and which we had been seeking, wo thought it necessary to form and acknowledge and support a provisional government, for I do say that the Government then formed was in my estimation, and in the estimation of Upper Canada generally, a provisional government—nothing more ; a Government which was simply tolerated, and which could not possibly exist for any length of time. It was a government formed for a certain purpose, and Upper Canada sanctioned it only because of that purpose, which was regarded at the time as of primary importance. He knows little of the mind of Upper Canada who sees in it any indifference to the question of parliamentary reform. It was a position that neither party has anything to boast of ; the apparent inconsistency of the one resulted from the felt misgovernment of the other. It is no small pleasure to be able cordially and consistently to act with honorable gentlemen whom I strongly opposed before, and I so acted because I thought it my duty under the circumstances so to do.— (Hear, hear.) Well, sir, how long did this provisional government last ? Within one year it was defeated, and before it could shew itself to Upper Canada, there was an entire reconstruction of the Cabinet—and why ? Because the principal measure which Upper Canada had demanded was lost sight of.

HON. MR. BROWN—Hear ! hear !

COL. HAULTAIN—There can be no stronger evidence of this fact, than that it was necessary to bring into the Cabinet men who truly represented the views and wishes of Upper Canada, and men also in Lower Canada who were thought to be more friendly to Upper Canada demands. Had that government, without reconstruction, gone to Upper Canada, where would they have been ? Had they gone to Upper Canada as they were, and without admitting other elements into the Cabinet, they would have met with a very general hostility. The Premier himself was made fully aware of this, and he wisely bowed

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to the wishes of Upper Canada. There cannot, therefore, be a stronger evidence than this of the fact that the question of reform in the representation was not laid aside, neither had it lost one iota of its importance in the minds of the great majority of the western section. The Government that had ventured to lay it aside was virtually swept away, and another formed who made it an open question. This, sir, lies at the very foundation of our difficulties. It has been the source of our difficulties, and no doubt would have continued to be, had no remedy been provided. I have said before on another occasion, and I repeat it, that the minds of men in Upper Canada were filled with foreboding as to the future. They feared that Lower Canada would resist their demands ; they feared that Lower Canada would continue to deny to them what appeared to them to be palpably just and right, and what the end of it all would be they did not know. I confess that I shared this feeling in common with others ; and it was a matter of common conversation that things could not continue as they were ; that it was impossible for Upper Canada, with her superiority in numbers and in wealth, to consent to remain in the united Legislature in the inferior position she then occupied. If the attempt had been persisted in to deny to that section what was so reasonable and just, no man could have foretold the serious difficulties which might have followed. Hon. gentlemen from Lower Canada, who have expressed an opinion that this question had ceased to be considered as of importance in the west, manifest a very great ignorance of the character, the feelings and the intentions of the men they had to deal with. My hon. friend from Brome was one of those who wished to make light of our present difficulties. He said, towards the close of his speech, tfcat it only needed a little patience, that very little was wanted to make everything quite smooth. But, sir, even he was obliged to admit that a slight measure of parliamentary reform was necessary in order to remove the difficulties by which we were surrounded, and he evidently intimated his willingness to concede it. And there have been hints thrown out by certain Liberal members from Lower Canada that it would not be such an impossible thing, if we would give up this scheme of union, for Upper Canada to obtain her right position, and what she has so justly claimed. But if this be their feeling, I ask them why they did not come boldly out before and avow it ? I would ask my hon. friend from Brome—and I regret extremely that he is not in his place—why did he not, in 1862, speak of concessions to Upper Canada, instead of, by vote and by argument, do his best to convince us that we could expect no relief from him and from those acting with him, from the same section. Very different language is now used by Lower Canada members of all shades of opinion, to that we have been accustomed to hear. Those who now admit the justice of the demands of Upper Canada, and yet in time past have resisted them, ought to be the last to oppose this scheme, which settles the difficulty on a basis accepted by all. The honorable member for Brome and the British members from Lower Canada, who resisted the reform asked for, ought to be foremost in supporting the scheme before us ; and I am sorry to find that my hon. friend appears to me to occupy a very inconsistent position. Had he always advocated parliamentary reform, he might with consistency have opposed the proposed union. In some such position, and even in a stronger point of view, do the French Liberal members appear to be. They were the professed allies of the Reform party in Upper Canada, and were, of course, aware that no reform government could stand that did not deal with the representation question. Now, it appears to me, sir, that the Liberal French party have been singularly untrue to their Upper Canada allies

HON. MR. HOLTON (ironically)—Hear : hear !

COL. HAULTAIN—I repeat, sir, that the Liberal French members have pursued a course that if continued in, could only have terminated as it has done. I speak of what has come under my own observation since 1862. A new Parliament had been convened. The question of representative reform had attained great prominence. The Reform party had spoken distinctly on that question. Had their Lower Canada allies contemplated a continuance of the alliance, we might suppose that they would have forborne raising unnecessary difficulties. But, sir, what was the course pursued ? It will be remembered that an amendment to the address was moved, asserting that the principle of equal representation was essential to the union. This was a gratuitous though most significant expression of the divergence that was inevitable. This was made more palpa-

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ble still, when, at the formation of the MACDONALD-SICOTTE Government, the Reform party were obliged to pay, as a price ior their alliance, the surrender of the principle most prominent in their political creed. An alliance based upon such terms could not possibly last. And what must we think when we hear hon, gentlemen intimating that this principle might now be conceded ? Had the same principles been then enunciated, had a bold, straightforward course been adopted by the Liberal members of Lower Canada, they might now be occupying the position of settling our very serious difficulties. I have alluded, sir, to the wishes of the Mother Country relative to the movement upon which we have entered, and I assert that the feeling there is one of universal approbation. Still, so much has been said relative to the opinions existing in the Mother Couutry as to the connection with her colonial dependencies, and especially with those in British America, that I think it right to remark on this branch of the subject rather more fully than I should otherwise have done, for I feel the great importance of it. I know of nothing that would so much tend to discourage the people of this country as that an impression should go abroad that the Mother Country was intending to cast us adrift—to sever the connection. I have no doubt myself, sir, that did such an opinion realiy exist in the Mother Country, and were it to be carried into effect at the present time, or within any short period of time, the only alternative—I fear, the only alternative—would be our annexation to the United States. (Hear, bear.) Therefore, I feel it to be ot great importance that no doubt should exist in the minds of the people of this country relative to the feelings entertained towards us at home. My hon. friend the member for Brome dwelt at considerable length on the subject. He expressed, and I am quite sure he entertains the strongest desire for the perpetuation of this connection ; yet it did seem to me that he dwelt with peculiar satisfaction upon every word he could extract from speeches and pamphlets, which appeared to him to point to a desire to sever that connection, and I cannot but remember that he was frequently cheered with ” Hear, hears ” corresponding with the sentiments he expressed. The remarks made by the hon. member from Brome were, to my mind, most extraordinary. The deductions he drew from the speeches of certain noble- men and gentlemen in the Imperial Parliament, were so directly opposite to what appeared to me the design and tendency of those speeches, that I cannot account for it in any other way, than by presuming that my hon. friend was not in his usual health, and that his mind did not possess that degree of clearness which he generally brings to bear on every subject he investigates. (Hear, hear.) It seemed to me that he looked at everything relating to this question through a distorted medium. I listened with the greatest pleasure to the dissection the hon. gentleman made of these resolutions, and to the microscopic analysis to which he subjected the smallest part of their provisions. It shewed the great acuteness of his observation, as well as the large and extended information of his mind. But I could not help feeling that he was looking at this subject through the discoloured lens of a powerfully microscopic mind. ( Laughter.) I have no doubt whatever that this also was the impression made by his speech on other hon. gentlemen. His talents and his ability I fully recognize, and I have no doubt that every hon. gentleman listened, equally with myself, with pleasure to what I may call the excruciating dissection to which he submitted these important resolutions. (Hear, hear, and laughter.) But I must at the same time say that the result of all his analysis, and the summing up of all his observations, only proved to me that the ground on which the advocates of this scheme stand is well nigh immovable and unassailable, and convinced me of the smallness of the objections which have yet been urged against it. Of course my hon. friend from Brome, considering the temperament of his mind, dwelt at length and with much force upon the article which lately appeared in the Edinburgh Review. I must acknowledge that in that article there are passages of extreme offensiveness, such as I regret to see in any British publication, and which were uncalled for and imprudent. If I thought that the article reflected the views of either of the parties now dividing the political world in Great Britain, I should indeed say that our connection with the Mother Country was precarious, and that it behoved us to ask with pertinacity what really was the intention of the statesme» and the people at home with regard to us. Bui, sir, we have happily the most conclusive evidence that could be afforded, tha

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t article does not represent the views of either of the great parties in the British Parliament. It may be the mind of a few isolated individuals ; it may represent what is called the Manchester School ; and I am not surprised at all that they should utter sentiments of that character. I believe that the Manchester School, being in a measure republican in their political tendencies, would not be sorry to see us joining the great republic to the south, and that it would not be a matter for much sorrow to them to see us forsaking our allegiance to the British Crown, and joining our fortunes with those of our neighbors. It behoves us to see if there are not some grounds of complaint—if there is not some reason why the Blanchester School should wish to get rid of us. It has been well observed that the remarks made upon us by our enemies are generally more valuable than those emanating from our friends. We cannot very well afford to despise the opinions of our enemies, and we would do well to consider, if we desire to perpetuate the connection with the Mother Country whether we cannot consistently with our interest and honor conciliate every party in Great Britain. Believing as I do that our independence and prosperity depend upon preserving the connection with the Mother Country, I would be willing to remove every just cause of complaint which may be found to exist, I believe, further, that uo man should take part in the government of these provinces who is not alive to the importance of this question. And what is the ground of complaint made by those who hold loosely the connection of the colonies with the Crown ? The complaint is that they are taxed with our defenoe, while we tax the industry of the Mother Country, and go directly in opposition to the policy adopted by that country; and surely there is some force and truth in this complaint. There is no doubt that, as we are growing in wealth and numbers, these men feel it as an oppression that they should continue to be taxed as heavily in order to provide means for our defence, and especially as, in times past, we have done so little ourselves in that direction. As from year to year, or decade to decade, we grow in numbers and wealth, we ought to consider, if we value the connection, in what manner we can relieve the Mother Country of the expenses entailed upon her for our defence.

I also hold that, in so far as our financial position admits of it, we should seek to adapt and assimilate our financial policy to that of Great Britain. If we would continue an integral part of that country, we ought not to have high tariffs intervening as so many barriers to that commercial intercourse which should exist between the two countries, for these must be provocative of soreness and dissatisfaction. I am, however, well aware that there are circumstances which, at the present time, do not admit of such a commercial policy with the Mother Country. I merely say we ought constantly to keep the matter in view, and that those who desire to maintain the connection should consider it their duty to decrease the tariff as much as it can be done with justioe to our own position, and thus remove the great cause of complaint on the part of the people at home. (Hear, hear.) I have alluded, sir, to the Edinburgh Review and to the extreme offensiveness of some of its passages referring to the colonies. But at the same time, there are sentiments enunciated in the very same article, which seem to me to contradict the drift of the article itself. As we have heard so much of this article, and as it has been made the ground on which to base the supposition that there is a growing desire in England to bring to an end her connection with the colonies, I beg to call the attention of hon. gentlemen to this suggestive paragraph, as I find it in the same article.

The people of England have no desire to snap asunder abruptly the slender links which still unite them with their transatlantic fellow-subjects, or to shorten by a single hour the duration of thsir common citizenship. On the contrary, by strengthening the ties which still remain, they would convert into a dignified alliance an undignified, because unreal, subserviency.

This is a remarkable passage to find in such an article, because, as I said before, the whole dritt of the article seems to imply a desire on the part of the writer to see the connection severed ; and yet, while expressing this sentiment, he says there is no desire to shorten by a single hour the duration of our common citizenship ! Why, this article whieh has been made so much of, which has been dwelt upon so forcibly, and which has been sent forth to the country as indicative of the future policy of England I say this very article has strong language

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manifesting a desire for the maintenance of the connection.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—What does the concluding part of the article say?

COL. HAULTAIN — That a stronger alliance is desired.

HON. J . S MACDONALD—I mean the concluding part of the article altogether.

COL HAULTAIN- – I do not mean to say that there is nothing in the latter part which contradicts the former. But the article points to a position the writer would desire to see us occupy.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—A position of independence.

COL. HAULTAIN—Of alliance, not independence.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—No ; the latter part of the article expresses the satisfaction felt by the writer at the prospect of our becoming independent.

COL HAULTAIN—I have not the Review by me, and it may be as my honorable friend says. But the general drift of the article is as I have stated it to be. I do not mean to say that there are not apparently contradictory sentiments therein expressed—sentiments which are absolutely and altogether contradictory. To resume my argument, it seems to me that if we evinced a desire to remove the existing causes of complaint, even the Manchester School, even such men as GOLDWIN SMITH, would not be unwilling to see the connection between these provinces and the Mother Country continue. My honorable friend the member for Brome, not only alluded to this article in the Edinburgh Review, but he thought there were speeches uttered by certain noblemen and gentlemen in their places in the British Parliament, from which, looking at them through his discolored lens, ho could extract sentiments of a similar character. The hon gentleman would admit nothing whatever in favor of this scheme, and seemed determined that Engl, nd, whether she liked it or not, should cut the connection. He said the Mother Country eulogised the scheme, but— that Lord GRANVILLE approved, but—that Lord DERBY spoke in favor of the connection, but —All the virtue to his mind was in the ” buts.” Nothing would satisfy him, and nDthing would satisfy England whatever was done, and the sooner she got rid of us as a tad bargain, the better she would be pleased. (Laughter.) But what was really the tone of the speeches from which the hon. gentleman quoted ? Lord HOUGHTON in seconding the motion for the Address in the House of Lords, on the 7th of February, said, ” He hoped and believed that these colonies would still recognize the value of the British connection, and that their amalgamation would render them more safe, without in any way weakening their fealty. (Cheers ) ” What language, I ask, could more clearly express the feelings of the person speaking than this, and, as the seconder of the Address, the desire also of the party connected with him, that ” our fealty to the British Crown should in no manner be weakeped.” And yet my honorable friend from Brome thought, with that discolored view he took of it, that he detected some uncertainty—some “but . ” (Laughter ) Lord DERBY was even more strong and emphatic in his language.

If I saw in this Confederation a desire to separate from this country, I should consider that a matter of so much more doubtful policy; but I ses it with satisfaction—perhaps, however, it is too soon to discuss resolutions which have not yet been finally adopted—but I hope I see, in the terms of this proposed Confederation, an earnest desire to retain the blessings of the connection with this country—an earnest feeling of loyalty, and a determined and deliberate preference for a monai chical form of government over republican institutions, and a desire to maintain, as long as it can be maintained peaceably—and no human being can wish to see it maintained longer—the amicable connection which at present exists between this country and the colonies. (Cheers.)

I notice that on both occasions when Lord DERBY and Lord HOUGHTON expressed these sentiments of attachment to the colonies, cheers were given in the House of Lords ; and yet the hon. member for Brome, laboring under some extraordinary mental hallucination—( laughter)—thought he could detect evidences of a desire to abandon us to our fate—a willingness on the part of the two great parties represented in the House of Lords by Earl GRANVILLE and Earl DERBY, that this connection should cease ! When we consider the position Lord DERBY occupies ; when we consider that he spoke from his seat in Parliament—and we all know the significance attached to the utterances of even the men of least note, when they speak from their places in the Legislature, how their words will be noted down and become a matter of record to be referred to five or ten years hence perhaps, as I dare say has more than once been found to be the case with regard to honorable gentlemen

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occupying seats on the floor of this House— when Lord DERBY, I say, the leader of the greatest political party in Great Britain— and I do not hesitate to assert that it stands to-day the most numerous party—gives utterance in the strongest terms to his desire to see perpetuated the connection with the Mother Country, I hope we see in that an evidence, that so long as we discharge the duties properly devolving upon us, England will never fail us in our hour of need. (Cheers.) Lord GRANVILLE said:

It was gratifying to see the good feeling which existed between this country and the North American colonies, which, while they strove to carry out their own wishes, desired to continue the connection with England.

Why, sir, if my hon. friend from Brome (Mr. DUNKIN) was right, Earl GRANVILLE, so far from saying that he desired to see this connection perpetuated, should have expressed his regret that we were desiring to maintain this connection. Notwithstanding the strength of the language I have quoted, my hon. friend from Brome was determined to see in it some desire in the minds of these noble lords that the connection should cease—some desire on the part of the people of England that they should no longer hold, as appendages of the British Crown, these valuable Provinces of British America. He said even, with reference to the language of Lord DERBY, that his lordship ” hoped” and ” trusted” that so and so would be the case—and that the very fact of Lord DERBY’S expressing a hope that we were not going to sever the connection, was in his mind tantamount to saying that a separation was inevitable. (Laughter.) What would happen, sir, if my hon. friend were to carry out these extraordinary views in the common intercourse of life ? It struck me, while he was speaking, that in his state of mind, there might be danger in the interchange of the casual civilities of social intercourse. He is unfortunately laboring under a severe cold. Suppose I were to meet him to-morrow morning, and in the exercise of that friendly regard that I cordially feel for my hon. friend, I were to express a hope that his malady was decreasing. If he were to interpret my ” hope” in the same strange manner in which he has taken the ” hope” of Lord DERBY and others, he would very likely tell me that he was not so near his dissolution as I imagined, and that he had no intention yet of ordering his grave to be dug. For it must be evident, that acting under the mental delusion that has characterized his remarks on this subject, he would interpret my ” hope” that he was better, to a persuasion on my part that ho had but a precarious tenure of his life. (Hear, hear, and laughter.) And to illustrate farther how incapable his mind had become of dealing impartially and correctly with the important subject before us, I would call the attention of the House to the fact that when Lord DERBY expressed ” a hope,” he was not speaking at all of the feeling in England, but he was speaking of the feeling in this country. He said he hoped we should continue the connection. But when he spoke of the feeling in the old country, he did not even use the word ” hope,” but spoke positively and with assurance, saying : ” I am sure ” that the aid of Great Britain will never fail them when they require it. (Hear, hear.) We have had his remarks quoted to us before, but I make no apology at all for extending the discussion upon it, for I feel strongly how important it is that this country should understand what the feeling in England is with regard to us. We have also had quoted to us the words used in Her Majesty’s Speech, at the time that Columbia was formed into a British province. I will read it again.

Her Majesty hopes that this new colony on the Pacific may be but one step in the career of steady progress by which Her Majesty’s dominions in North America may ultimately be peopled in an unbroken chain from the Atlantic to the Pacific, by a loyal and industrious population of subjects of the British Crown.

(Hear, hear.) These utterances from high official quarters, which are generally very reticent, are remarkable for their force, and for the unmistakable language in which they are couched But, if there was any doubt as to the feeling which existed among the leading men of the political parties of the Empire, ought not that doubt to be removed by the visit of His Royal Highness the PRINCE OF WALES to this country? Was that a mere sham, a make-believe, on the part of England and the English Government, that Her Majesty desired to retain, and Her Government and the people of England desired to retain, the allegiance and the homage of Her people in the west ? I do not believe it for a single instant. I have had recalled to my mind the language used by the PRINCE OP WALES, which I remember strucl me very forcibly

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at the time. It occurred in his address to the Canadian regiment in the year 1858, or the beginning of 1859. After its arrival in England, colors were presented to that regiment by H.R. Highness. It was his first public act, after he had been appointed to a commission in the British army. I will read the words which fell from the lips of His Royal Highness on that occasion, and which made a most gratifying impression on my mind, having spent, as a British officer, previous to that time, many years of my life in these provinces. His Royal Highness, in presenting the colors to the regiment, used these words

The ceremonial on which we are now engaged possesses a peculiar significance and solemnity, because in confiding to you for the first time this emblem of military fidelity and valor, I not only recognize emphatically your enrollment into our national force, but celebrate an act which proclaims and strengthens the unity of the various parts of this vast empire under the sway of our common Sovereign.

While on this subject, I may refer to one or two of the answers which His Royal Highness made to the various addresses presented to him in passing through this country. One of the most gratifying to my own mind, and to the mind of every man who desires to see our connection with the Mother Country perpetuated, is his answer to the Address from the Legislative Council, in which he said—” Most heartily do I respond to your desire that the ties which bind together the Sovereign and the Canadian people may be strong and enduring.” (Hear, hear.) But it is not necessary for me to quote further from the answers made by His Royal Highness. The whole aspect of his visit to this country—-the utterances of the leaders of the two great parties in the British Empire—the well-known wishes of our Sovereign and of the Heir-Apparent to the Throne—all these intimate, so far as acts and language can intimate anything ,that there is still an unanimous desire on the part of the British people for the continuance of the connection of these provinces with the British Empire. And I believe it rests with us—altogether rests with us—whether that connection shall be perpetuated. (Hear, hear.) I have no doubt that this prevailing desire for the perpetuation of the connection is one main ground of the satisfaction with which the people of England view our movement towards union. They are well aware —not looking at it from the view of our sectional jealousies and party conflicts, but looking at it from a broader point of view that our union must tend to the consolidation of our power and our strength, and to the development of our resources. I see no absolute necessity why, as we grow in strength, we should think, for many long years to come, of severing the connection; but as we increase in wealth and in numbers, we ought gradually, in the time of peace, to relieve the Mother Country of the expense to which we now put her for our defence. (Hear, hear.) Another reason why we should earnestly desire a union of the British provinces, in order to develope our nationality, in order that we should become better acquainted, in order that new channels of commerce should be opened up, is because of the hostility of the United States, evidently manifested to this country during the past few months. What has been the policy of the United States towards Canada during that time ? We have seen adopted the passport system— a remnant of despotism which even the despotic governments of the old world have abolished. We have seen that democratic people embarrassing and restricting the intercourse between us; they have given notice of the termination of the convention limiting the lake naval force ; they have, I believe, given notice of the abrogation of the Reciprocity treaty ; we have seen the committee of ways and means reporting a bill for putting the frontier defences in order, and recommending the expenditure of upwards of a million of dollars on those defences. They have given notice, or propose to give notice, of the abrogation of the Extradition treaty. They have proposed the construction of a ship canal around the Niagara Palls for gunboats and vessels of war. This is the policy of the United States towards Canada. (Hear, hear.) And it makes us consider what steps they will take next. It must make every man consider the position of this country, should she be cut off from a communication with the ocean through the United States by the bonding system being suddenly terminated. It makes us feel the humiliating position we occupy, that our very national existence at the present time is in a great measure dependent—most humiliatingly dependent— upon a foreign and an unfriendly power. (Hear, hear.) The people of the United States have recently manifested no good-will towards us, and the steps that have been taken to exhibit their ill-will are perhaps only a foretaste of what we may expect before long. But whether they take extreme measures or not at the present time, does our

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present position offer any guarantee for independence, or for the continuance of our connection with England ? Rather, do not the condition of this continent and the earnest advice of British statesmen call aloud upon us to be prepared, unless we intend to form part and parcel of the great republic ? I can readily understand how men with annexation tendencies, and who are inclined towards republican institutions, would rejoice at our present position. I can understand how men who wish to see the whole continent converted into one great republic, are pleased at difficulties being created between the Empire and the provinces. But those who entertain different views see plainly that some steps must be taken, that we must go to work earnestly to build up a nationality independent of the United States, though not in hostility to it, to counteract the tendency so evident on every hand to drive us into their arms. We know very well what must be the result of the stops which they are now taking—unless we ourselves take measures in another direction—unless we find another outlet to the ocean— unless we find some other channels for our trade and commerce, they know that we must inevitably fall into their arms. That is another reason why I wish to see no delay in the union and in the amalgamation of the British provinces, in order that we may at once consolidate ourselves into one people, and at once endeavor to abolish those barriers which now exist between us, and develope the feeling that we have common interests, and that we are dependent the one upon the other, which can never be the case so long as division walls exist. It seems really astonishing to my mind that any man who really desires to see built up on this continent a nationality independent of the United States, should offer any opposition to the proposal now before us. (Hear, hear.) So much has been said with regard to our financial and commercial position and prospects, that I think it is quite unnecessary for me to say anything further on the subject. I am quite sure that I could not place the matter before you as well as it has been submitted by those who have preceded me. But it is natural that each speaker should dwell upon that which most impresses his own mind. I am persuaded that in every point of view—in view of our dependence upon, and precarious relations with the United States , in view of a desired union with the British provinces ; in view of our connection with the Empire—we should be culpably lacking in our duty, did we any longer delay to seek and to create new channels for our trade and commerce. It is well known that at the present time our productions are actually passing through the hands of the New York merchants before they reach the Maritime Provinces. These merchants are deriving all the benefits of that trade, which, with all our disadvantages, does exist to a considerable extent, and is evidently capable of an enormous extension. It is only necessary to lefer to the position and characteristics of the different provinces, to see at once how exactly they supply the wants and deficiencies of each other. Suffice it to say that we are agricultural and manufacturing, whilst they are, and must remain, principally a maritime population, requiring for consumption that with which we can supply them. I know it is said that these channels of commercial intercourse may be opened up without union. But we need to feel ourselves to be one people, with identical interests, dependent upon each other ; and what can do this as well as a political union, bringing us together into one legislature and under one government ? Perhaps it is not too much to say that our commercial interests would be furthered more in ten years under a political union, than it would be in thirty years without it. (Hear, hear.) In connection with this subject, I am naturally reminded of the Intercolonial Railway. Now, sir, it appears to me, although the Intercolonial Railway has been dragged into this question— although the expense of that undertaking has been dwelt upon by the opponents of this scheme as if it were part of the scheme and of this scheme alone—I be’ieve that whatever the event, whether there be a Confederation of the provinces or not, the Intercolonial Railway is an indispensable necessity. The expense of that railway is, therefore, a question altogether apart from this scheme, and cannot be allowed to enter into the arguments pro or con. I do not look upon the Intercolonial Railway, at the present time, in the light of a profitable commercial undertaking, neither, to any great extent, as a valuable military undertaking. (Opposition cries of “Hear,hear.”) There is not the least doubt that when we are not actually engaged in hostilities, it would be of the greatest advantage in furnishing us with an outlet at all seasons of the year. Before actual hostilities, as in the Trent affair, we need it to secure our independence of the United States in bringing rapidly troops and munitions of war into the provinces. When actually at war, we are aware that railways are easily destroyed, and

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rendered of little use, unless we have the means of protecting them. But as a great social and political engine, it seems to mo absolutely necessary, if ever we are to have a union ; and if a union does not come to-day, but is looked forward to ten years hence, I still hold that we ought at the present time, and without unnecessary delay, to commence its construction. Union, sir, is desirable, because undoubtedly it will add to our means of defence. It is true we shall not have any territory added to us which will increase our strength ; neither shall we add to the number of battalions in the provinces generally. But it does not, I apprehend, require a military man, or a man with military experience or military education, to be aware that there is no combination which so much needs one head and one guiding mind as the management of military organizations, and the guidance of military operations. What, I ask, would be our position in the event of war, should there be no union ? We have at present five distinct provinces, with as many independent governments. The people are but little known the one to the other, and consequently have but the slightest possible interest in each other. In the event of war, circumstances might frequently occur where concerted action on the part of two or more of the provinces might be required. Immediate cooperation might be essential to the success of the proposed project. Should we not have the most serious difficulties thrown in the way of the undertaking, simply from the fact that so many independent governments must be consulted, each jealous of its own rights, and concerned only about its own safety. (Hear, hear.) Such a state of things demands a change, were there no other argument in favor of it. If we are to remain independent of the United States, we must unite, in the most effective manner possible, our available means of defence. We must become acquainted with one another, and do all we can to call into existence a feeling of oneness, and of interest not only in one section or province, but in British America generally. Canadians should cease to think that they are interested alone in the defence of Canada, and Nova Scotians must learn to look beyond the limits of Nova Scotia. If we are to offer anything like a united resistance, we must have a common interest in the whole country. And how can we so surely effect this, how effect it at all, without union ? But let us carry out the scheme that is proposed for our adoption, and in course of time we shall all learn to feel interested in the integrity of every part of the Confederation. If we are united we shall find the people of the Maritime Provinces admirably suited for the work required to be done on the lakes—the key to the defence of Upper Canada. If, therefore, we can be united as one people, if we are brought under one head and one mind, we shall have Nova Scotians assisting in our defence, and very likely we shall assist in the defence of Nova Scotia. (Hear, hear.) I cannot too strongly impress on the minds of those who hear me the strong convictions of my own mind with reference to the importance of immediate and thorough union. Our own interests demand it, the interests of the Empire require it, that we may be able to hold our own against the strong and energetic power to the south of us. For these important objects we must learn to throw aside all our sectional disputes, and to place ourselves in the hands of men who would have to guide us when the time of difficulty may arrive. No one more earnestly desires the continuance of the blessings of peace ; but should the reverse come, we must all learn to obey orders with zeal and promptitude, to stand in readiness for service in any part of British America where our presence may be required. This can never be done so long as Nova Scotia is building up a nationality for herself, and New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island are each remaining in a state of isolation, and Upper and Lower Canada are far removed in sentiment and feeling from either. So long as this is the case, we are diffusing our strength and are weakening ourselves. From no point of view can union be more strongly urged as a necessity than in the case of our defence. The defence of Canada, although we have such an extended frontier, is not so difficult as might at first sight appear. There a few prominent points which must be defended, and which we must make up our minds to hold. It is true we have an extensive frontier, but the frontier of the United States is not the less so. It is true also that we have many towns on the frontier, but they are not to be compared to the wealth and importance of those of the United States, and therefore we are not placed at so great a disadvantage in that respect. There are certain points which are the key or the gates to Canada, and which, if properly defended, we may reasonably hope to hold the country, without fear of any number that may be brought against us, and it is of the first importance that the people of Canada should

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awake to the necessity of having these posts defended. If we are to remain independent, if we really desire a nationality apart from that of the United States, it is necessary that we should think of these things, and look them fully in the face—to consider it well, and to see the absolute necessity of coming to some arrangement with the Imperial Government as to the proportion we are mutually to bear. If we are really in earnest in our professed desire to maintain our independence, I believe we shall be willing to tax ourselves and submit to the necessary sacrifices. The very fact that there is an uncertainty existing in the minds of many whether Canada will consent to be taxed for her deience, is one of the strongest grounds, to my mind, why we should lose no time in completing the union of the British American Provinces. I feel that so long as Canada is separated from the rest of British America, so long will she be without any feeling of nationality. She cannot exist here alone. We need to feel that there is a nationality on this continent to which we are attached ; and I know of nothing more likely to extend our ideas and views, so as to embrace the whole of British America, than the present project. We are likely to view a country such as the Confederation would include, as something worth struggling for and defending. All other countries of the world are satisfied to tax themselves for their defence, and we find countries not so numerous in population, and with revenues and commerce inferior to ourselves, maintaining comparatively large standing armies. And yet when we talk of our defences—when we speak of the taxation which will be necessary in order to erect and defend these works and to instruct the militia, we hear doubts expressed, uncertainties floating about, whether Canada will really consent to bear her share of it. It shows to me that there is among some a want of a deep-seated feeling of nationality, and that that necessary sentiment has yet to be called out and developed. Where this does exist the people do not hesitate to make any sacrifice necessary for the maintenance of their independence. Other countries have manifested their attachment to their nationality and their flag by the sacrifice of almost everything they possessed. Sometimes, however, it is urged that when the time arrives Canada will show to the world that she is willing to spend her last drop of blood in defence of the soil. This is a very proper sentiment, and sounds exceedingly well, but I cannot help thinking that if those who give expression to it wish to shew that it can stand the test of trial, they would now urge the expenditure necessary to give effect to it. They would then be doing some real practical good, and not be so liable to be regarded as mere sentimentalists. The question is an eminently practical one, and the sentiment that has no practical issue may be regarded as spurious and useless. We may be sure of this, that if we are not willing to spend the money that is necessary for our defence, when the time comes there will be a great unwillingness to spend the blood. (Hear, hear.) We ought to consider that it is not sufficient that we should be willing to spend our lives, for these alone cannot defend us. If we make no preparation, what will the destruction of life avail us ? It is unreasonable and foolish to say that we will leave everything undone—the training of our men, and the strengthening of our positions—until the very time when our only chance must depend upon our having trained men and fortified positions ready to our hand. It would be as reasonable for a man to say, “I will learn to swim when I am drowning.” Every reasonable man exposed to drowning would certainly take every means to learn to swim beforehand, so that when exposed to the danger he would be able to extricate himself. It seems to me quite as reasonable for us to say that when the time comes we will spend our lives in defence of the country, and neglect all precautionary measures beforehand. I have no sympathy with such a sentiment, and very little confidence in it. I should like rather to see a little practical sense manifested in a question of such vital importance. I have read with attention the report of Col. JERVOIS, who was sent out by the Imperial Government, and, I presume, most other hon. members of this House have also seen it. That officer points out certain places which must be defended, and he closes his report with this remark : ” That unless these works are constructed, it is worse than useless to continue any British force in Canada.”

MR. PERRAULT—Hear ! hear !

COL. H AULTAIN—The hon. gentleman says ” Hear ! hear !” Of course, sir, I cannot pronounce absolutely what may bo passing in his mind, but I have noticed this— the hon. gentleman will know whether it justly applies to himself or no—that when the expenses of our defence were mentioned by my hon. friend the member from North

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Ontario (Mr. M. C. CAMERON), in a manner deprecating the expenditure, there was a very significant ” Hear ! hear !” intimating a hearty concurrence in such sentiments. But, sir, when my hon. friend in his usual forcible manner, expressed his willingness, when the time arrived, to spend the last drop of his blood in the defence of this land, we heard no more of the responding and concurring ” Hear ! hear !” I alluded to. (Laughter.) My hon. friend, if I understood him rightly, deprecated the idea that any expense should be entailed upon us for defensive works. But, sir, he spoke like a true Briton, and I am quite sure that he was in earnest, and did not utter a mere barren sentiment, when he said that he would spend his last drop of blood in the defence of his country. And I am sure he would do so. But I would put it to my hon. friend if it is more reasonable that he should spend this blood, or spend a few pounds ? Who can tell the thousands, ay, the hundreds of thousands of human lives that may be spared by the judicious and timely expenditure now of a fewhundreds of thousands of pounds ? I wish to impress upon my hon. friend what is the clear conviction of my own mind, that in every point of view it is economy—economy of treasure, and economy of useful lives, to spend some money now to place our country in a state of defence. I think a great change has taken place within the last few years in reference to this subject. The ventilation of the subject has drawn men’s minds towards it, and we are beginning to feel that here we are a people considerable in numbers and considerable in wealth, and it is incumbent upon us to do more than we have been doing in times past. I would call attention to a very important work which can scarcely be overestimated. I allude to the Ottawa canal. I regret that the state of our finances will not permit us to think of its construction at the present time, but I refer to it that we may think of it ; that the representatives of the people may think of it; that the statesmen of the country may think of it. In order to secure the future defence of the country, and especially the western section of it, and to maintain its independence, the Ottawa canal must be built. The Ottawa canal would be worth 50,000 men to us. With that canal, and the aid of the Mother Country, which we are assured will never be wanting when we require it, we will be able to maintain and hold our own on the lakes, and thus make our own territory secure, and threaten our opponents at many important points. At the present time we are in a sad condition as regards our canal communication, looked at from a delensible point of view. Our St. Lawrence canals are almost entirely useless. I am glad to see that the American Government have given notice of their intention to terminate the convention for not keeping armed vessels on the lakes. I am glad to see that this is to be put an end to, for it was decidedly prejudicial to our interests, and I have no doubt we shall have gunboats on our lakes before the end of the present year. Had it continued otherwise, we might have been very much at the mercy of the United States. There is no question that, should they determine upon going to war with us before the opening of navigation, we might not be able to get a British gun-boat on our waters by the St. Lawrence canals, as they are so easily accessible to our opponents, and, without much difficulty, could be rendered useless for navigation. As regards the Rideau canal, how are we to get gun-boats through it ? There is a certain class of gun-boats that might pass through it.

MR. H. MACKENZIE was understood to express doubt on this point.

COL. HAULTAIN—Yes; the looks of the Rideau canal are, I believe, 130 feet long, and would admit a certain class of gunboats. But, as my hon. friend seems to remark, the Rideau canal would, nevertheless, be useless, because the only way by which we can reach it is through the Grenville canal, and the locks ot the Grenville canal are only 70 feet long. Therefore, we should be entirely at the mercy of the United States, became, unless we held Lake Ontario, the Upper Province would be inevitably gene. Well, sir, it appears to me that all our interests— commercial, political and defensive— and the peculiar circumstances in which we are placed, urgently call for the union of the British Provinces. The reasons are of that force and the interests of that magnitude, that it is surprising to me that any hon. gentleman, who really desires that these provinces should be independent of the United States, should hesitate for a single moment about adopting the scheme, not that it is perfect, but because it is the only one within our reach. (Hear, hear.)

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I have now to make a few remarks on the character of Her Majesty’s loyal Opposition. The composition of that Opposition strikes me as somewhat remarkable. It is certainly heterogeneous. The great difference between the Opposition and the Government seems to me to be this, that while the Government are anxious to build up, to consolidate, to strengthen, the only object of the Opposition, the only object which keeps them together, appears to be to pull down, to weaken, to divide. (Hear, hear.) Many of the remarks which which have fallen from the various members of the Opposition, they might have made with equal force against each other as against the Government. To use a military phrase, they seem to have been firing at one another, but as it is only a war of words and arguments, they may still fire away, although logically hors de combat. One says it is necessary we should have a change. Another says he desires no change, but wishes us to remain as we are. A third is against Confederation, because he thinks the Federal principle is one which in all time past has been proved to be weak and powerless Another member of the Opposition bases his hopes of the world’s future on the principles of Federalism. Another says he will have nothing but a legislative union ; while, I believe, there are not a few of those with whom he acts who would threaten fire and sword if a legislative union were attempted to be carried. We have surely here an extraordinary display of anything but unanimity. As I said before, they present the spectacle of a most heterogeneous company, with power only to destroy.

MR. T. C. WA.LLBRIDGE—What sort of a spectacle do the Government present in that respect?

COL. HAULTAIN—The members ot the Government have a common object They have come together, not to assail on a another with their opposite principles and views and opinions, but they have come together to combine —they have come together, like reasonable men, for the accomplishment of a great common object—and they have considered how best they can meet one another’s views by mutual concession, which is the law that binds society together, without which society would be at an end. They have united in this way and in this spirit to strengthen the position of these provinces, and the position of the Empire to which they belong. But I do not hear one word of this, with regard to the hon. members forming the Opposition. I do not hear that they have met together, and are prepared to propose to the country some scheme that will be better than the one that is now offered for our adoption. I do not hear a word of anything of the kind, and this I do most seriously complain of. I maintain that the importance of this matter is such, that it is their duty not to avail themselves of what is ordinarily called the latitude of parliamentary opposition.— The circumstances of this country are too grave for us to trifle with such a question. If we present to the House and to the country something to meet the difficulties of our position, then I say that honorable gentlemen who oppose that scheme are wanting in their duty to their country, and are wanting in the appreciation they ought to have of those difficulties, if they do not on their part present something to us, and ask us to accept from them what they suppose better than is offered to them by us. I cannot but express my regret at the course they have pursued. (Hear.) I will now allude, sir, to an opposition to this scheme, which has been very decidedly expressed by a certain section of the Protestant minority of Lower Canada. I am aware, from personal intercourse with many gentlemen belonging to that section of the community, that they do feel a very strong aversion to this scheme, because, as tjbey say, it will place them at the mercy of the French-Canadians. On this point I desire to assure my honorable friends from Lower Canada, that whilst I consider that our present circumstancps require us all to speak openly and honestly one to the other, it is and hall be my earnest desire to speak with all kindliness of feeling towards them. I feel compelled to say that there is no part of this scheme that I feel more doubt about, than the effect it will have upon the education and political interests of the Protestants of Lower Canada. It has been said that there is and always has been a spirit of toleration and generosity on the part of the French-Canadnns towards their Protestant fellow-countrymen. I have heard it said that they have on every occasion furthered to the utmost of their ability, and in the fairest and most just manner, the educational interests of the Protestant minority. Bur on the other hand, gentlemen who have paid a great deal of attention to the subject, have

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also said that, in time past, although there has not been an open hostility to the education of the Protestant minority, there has been a very decided under-hand obstructiveness. This is stated by gentlemen who have taken a particular interest in the matter, and who, I am confident, would not make such a statement if they did not think it to be the case. And I must say, for my own part, that I do think the Protestant minority have some grounds for this fear. And this is my reason : the religious faith of the majority in Lower Canada is, as we know, Roman Catholic, and they receive from the head of the Romish Church their inspiration ; they are guided by the principles that are laid down, and that are from time to time publicly promulgated by the head of that Church. Now, I do not think that my Roman Catholic fellow-countrymen can be surprised—and I would ask their attention to what I am saying, I desire to speak honestly, but, of course, courteously— I do not think they can be surprised at these suspicions and fears of their Protestant brethren. And why ? Because they must themselves be aware what are the principles of the Roman Catholic hierarchy.

HON. MR. ALLEYN—What are they?

COL. HAULTAIN—They are not tolerant. (Murmurs of disapprobation from various parts of the House.)

HON. MR. ALLEYN—Are Presbyterians more tolerant ? The hon. gentleman has stated that the principles of the Roman Catholic hierarchy are not tobrant. Will he explain whether he means that they are not tolerant with regard to civil liberty, or with regard to religious liberty. We wish to understand precisely what the honorable gentleman means.

COL. HAULTAIN—And that is precisely my object. I believe that civil and religious liberty are so bound up that you cannot separate them.

HON. MR. ALLEYN—You believo they are intolerant on both points?

MR. ROBITAILLE— It is not well to discuss such matters here.

COL. HAULTAIN—I think I have only to refer to the letter recently issued from Rome, to find a complete and absolute answer to the question which the hon. member for Quebec has put to me. I see in that letter, which is invested with all the gravity and authority that necessarily surround a message from the head of the Roman Catholic Church, I see, amongst other things, that it is there stated as an error to be condemned, ” that emigrants to Catholic countries should have freedom of worship.” (Hear, hear.) I do not think there can be any one more anxious than myself to avoid anything like religious discussion in this House, or to avoid rousing anything like religious animosity. But when we are discussing a scheme of the greatest importance, involving the interests of various sections of the community, I do think it behoves every man to speak honestly. (Hear, hear.) I have said that the Protestant minority in Lower Canada fear lest they should not have full justice done to them. They know the great power of the Romish hierarchy in Lower Canada. They know how much everything is shaped according to the wishes of that body. They know that that hierarchy receives its inspiration from Rome, and within the last few weeks we find what is the character of that inspiration. (Renewed murmurs of disapprobation.) Now I ask my Roman Catholic friends to consider this candidly. When there comes from the Pope, the head of the Roman Catholic Church, a letter clothed with all the authority that we know the French Canadians attribute to that source, and when we have it declared here that it is an error to say that in some countries called Catholic, emigrants should enjoy the free exercise of their own worship—(Hear ! hear !)—I hear some of my honorable friends say ” Hear, hear,” in rather a jeering tone. But I ask you to think honestly about it. Suppose it were possible for the Protestants of Canada to speak in a manner similar to that in which the head of the Romish Church has spoken, and that we were to declare it to be a principle that should guide us, that we ought not give to those who differed from us the freedom of religious worship, would not the Roman Catholics in Upper Canada have good reason to be alarmed ? Now, I ask you to do me the justice, my hon. friends, to think of it in a just light, and not in the light of an attack upon your religion. I ask you to think of it fairly, especially at such a time as this, when the Protestants of Lower Canada are called to put themselves into the power of the Roman Catholic hierarchy; for I believe it is simply tantamount to that. I ask you to think what must be their feelings when they read, as emanating from the head and ruler of the Romish hierarchy, such a

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sentiment as that contained in the passage I have quoted.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—Will the hon. gentleman allow me to say a word ? The Protestant minority of Lower Canada have always lived in harmony, not only with the Catholics, but with the Catholic clergy of Lower Canada. And I may say also, on behalf of the Protestants of Lower Canada— the majority of them at all events—that they are so convinced that there is true liberality in the hierarchy, in the Catholic clergy of Lower Cansda, as well as in the great majority of the Roman Catholics of Lower Canada, that they have no such fears as the hon. gentleman entertains. (Hear, hear.)

COL. HAULTAIN—Of course, it must be perfectly obvious, that in a matter of this kind, what emanates from my hon. friend the Hon. Attorney General East will have very little weight, in comparison with what emanates from the head of the Roman Catholic Church. Now, I do not accuse my French-Canadian fellow-subjects of anything like intolerance. But what I say is this, that there is ground for suspicion on the part of the Protestants of Lower Canada, knowing what is the position in which they will be placed, with regard to the Roman Catholic hierarchy, when they find emanating from the head, the very inspiration and fount of that hierarchy, the intolerant sentiments I have alluded to. Why do I mention this? Is it with the view of raising any difficulty about the scheme now before us? Quite the reverse. I speak in time—I speak to assure my coreligionists in Lower Canada—to elicit the declaration of tolerant and generous sentiments on the part of Roman Catholic members ; I speak in earnest warning now, that there may be no necessity for it hereafter. 1 need scarcely declare what are my own sentiments—those of every British Protestant ; we grant cheerfully to our Roman Catholic fellow-countrymen that which we also demand, the freest liberty of conscience, the freest exercise of every political right. (Hear, hear.)

HON. J . S. MAC DONALD—The Hon. Attorney General East rose and spoke for the Protestants of Lower Canada. My hon. friend from Peterborough (Col. HAULTAIN) also speaks for them. How shall we decide between the two?

HON. MR. MCGEE—The hon. gentleman from Cornwall is like the blank leaf between the Old and New Testaments, belonging neither to the one nor to the other. (Laughter.)

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—I really think this is a very important matter. The hon. member for Peterborough speaks for the Protestants of Lower Canada, and the Hon. Attorney General East also says he speaks the feelings of the same class. What shall we say between them?

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—I can say this. I have seen, as the hon. me Tiber is. aware, a considerable amount of political lifer and during all that time I have always stood by the cause, when it was attacked, of the Catholic hierarchy of Lower Canada ; but at the same time I have always stood up on behalf of the rights of the Protestant minority, and it has been my lot always to have the confidence of that body.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—Not as a body.

HON. MR. ALLEYN–I propose that this part of the discussion be postponed till Sunday. (Laughter.)

HON. J.’ S. MACDONALD—And sing the doxology before we begin.

COL. HAULTAIN—I think, sir, this is a matter too serious to be made the occasion of unmeaning jokes. I speak what I know when I say there is a feeling of distrust on the part of a great many of the Protestants of Lower Canada. And I speak what I know, when I say that what I have quoted as emanating from the head of the Raman Catholic Church, has tended to increase that distrust. It must be evident, that if we are in the future to progress amicably and well,, it is better we should speak honestly before we enter into this compact, and that we should all strive to guard against any system being carried out, or any course pursued, that would tend to create difficulties in the future. What do my hon. friends from Lower Canada say with regard to what I have quoted ? One hon. gentleman rises with a jeer about deferring this discussion till Sunday. (Hear, hear.) I should like to know what the hon. gentleman thinks of the passage I have read Does he agree with it?

HON. MB. ALLEYN—Upon my word, I have not read the whole letter.

COL. HAULTIN—Does he agree with the portion I have read?

HON. MR. ALLEYN—I am in favor of liberty of conscience to the fullest extent.

COL. HAULTAIN—I think, in justice to themselves, hon. gentlemen of the Roman

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Catholic faith should make themselves acquainted with what has emanated from Home. I feel there is ground for the remarks I have made, and that I would have been failing in my duty to the Protestants of Lower Canada, had I not made them—had I not stated on their behalf the grounds of their fears for the future. I hope hon. gentlemen will make themselves acquainted with what I have alluded to. I do not know whether the long list of errors was read out in the Roman Catholic churches, but I do know that the Encyclical letter which accompanied it was communioated to those who attend church. I do not know whether my hon. friend is in the habit of going to church.


HON. J . S. MACDONALD—I would like to know how my hon. friend from Peterborough will satisfy those for whom he speaks, if he votes for this Confederation scheme.

COL. HAULTAIN—I have sufficient confidence that my honorable friend the Attorney General East would oppose anything like an oppression of the Protestant population of Lower Canada. I am quite satisfied he will faithfully carry out the assuianees he has given from his seat in Parliament, with reference to the amendments to the Education Act of Lower Canada.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—And I may say that my fulfilment of those pledges will be easily performed, because it has never entered the minds of the Catholic clergy in Lower Canada, or of the majority of the Catholics of Lower Canada, to oppress their fellow-subjects the Protestants. (Hear, hear.)

MR. J . DUFRESNE—What happened before the union should be proof of that.

COL. HAULTAIN—Well, after all that has been said to me, I ask honorable gentlemen of the Roman Catholic persuasion to look at what the head of their Church has written and published to the world, and then to say cither the one thing or the other— either that they have no confidence in what the head of their Church says, or that they have confidence in it, and will act accordingly.

HON. MR. McGEE—I hope the honorable gentleman will be found willing to extend to the Roman Catholic minority of Upper Canada the same privileges which we are ready to extend to the Protestant minority of Lower Canada.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—The honorable member for Peterborough admits that the intentions of the Hon. Attorney General East are sincere, and says he relies on them. But, on the other hand, he reads to this House an edict which supersedes any promises which the Hon. Attorney General can make. That is the difficulty in which the honorable gentleman is placed.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—I recommend the honorable member for Cornwall to read the Encyclical letter.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—I have read every word of it.

MR. BELLEROSE—Then you didn’t understand it.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—All I wished to say was, that I think the honorable member for Peterborough has put the case very fairly.

COL. HAULTAIN—Whether I put it fairly or not, or whether honorable gentlemen approve of what I have said or not, matters net in the least to me. I have simply discharged what I conceived a duty to my fellow-religionists in Lower Canada. I bring to the knowledge of honorable gentlemen of the Roman Catholic persuasion what many of them seem to have been ignorant of. And it is all nonsense to endeavor to ignore the fact that I have brought before them. We know that in some Roman Catholic countries absolute intolerance prevails. In Spain, for instance, not a Protestant church is allowed to be erected throughout the whole length and breadth of that country. It is of no use, therefore, for honorable gentlemen to jeer at what I say ; and when an edict of intolerance is again promulgated and sent out to the world, emanating from the very head of the Romish Church, is it surprising, when the Protestants of Lower Canada are in a small minority, and know that they will be at the mercy of the hierarchy entertaining those views, that they should feel some reluctance to be left in that position. I know this very well, that the generality of Roman Catholics in this country would avow, as they have done, their opposition to the sentiment I have quoted. I call upon them practically to disavow it, and I have confidence that they will do so. Whether they like the dilemma in which they are placed, or not, is another matter. (Hear, hear.) Composed, as our society is, of those different elements, when we have to discuss matters similar to that before us, when we have to adopt a scheme involving the interests of minorities and sections, it is right that we should do so frankly and honestly one to the other, and face to face. I have spoken with every desire to avoid being

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offensive, uncourteous and unkind, and I have done it, I trust, in a manner befitting the occasion and my own character.

MR. DENIS—Will the honorable member allow me to put to him a question ? Since the honorable member has referred to this letter from the head of the Church, does he entertain the opinion that any honorable member has a right to come here and criticise in a similar way the mode of procedure of Protestant clergymen ? If so, how are we to get along at all ? The honorable member may have his own opinions in regard to this letter, but he ought not to state them on the floor of the House, for if he does so any other honorable member has the right to come here and critise the conduct of respectable clergymen of the Free Church, of the Episcopal Church, or of any other Protestant Church, and make such comments as he thinks fit. This ought not to be. Then, the honorable member said the letter ought to be looked upon with suspicion. Well, all I can say is, that if we go into a chapter on suspicions, every man ought to be suspicious. We might bring suspicions to bear upon everything, however respectable it may be, and in this way it would be impossible with frankness to deal with anything. My hon. friend uses the word ” hierarchy.” Well, a word even does damage sometimes. My honorable friend may have his opinion upon these things, and that opinion ought to be respected, because I believe it to be an honest opinion ; but if he has a right to speak of ” Romish” and all that sort of thing in connection with our Church, we will have a right to speak in a disrespectful manner of ministers of the Free Church, of the High Church, of the Low Church, and of all the other kinds of churches, and bad feeling will be created to no purpose.

COL. HAULTAIN—Mr. SPEAKER, whenever any one who has the right or authority to speak for Protestants enunciates such a doctrine as that which has emanated from the Pope of Rome, I am quite willing it should be thrown in my teeth on the floor of this House. I will tell my honorable friend who has just addressed me, what he ought to have been aware of, that there is no analogy whatever— no similarity whatever—between the Pope of the Church of Rome and any minister of any other body of Christians. I would dismiss this subject, sir, by simply stating that I have used terms ordinarily employed, and have been anxious to do so in no offensive manner. Some of the reasons given for the opposition which has been offered to the scheme now before the House are, that it is not perfect, and that it embraces principles which would endanger the working of the projected Constitution. Now, of course, sir, the scheme in one sense is not perfect.

HON. MR. HOLTON—Hear, hear.

COL. HAULTAIN —Any Constitution drawn up to meet the circumstances under which the five, I may say the six, provinces were situated must necessarily present apparent inconsistencies. Concessions and mutual compromise must inevitably be consented to if we are to have union at all. It does not manifest any extraordinary degree of acuteness in order to be able to discover the possible difficulties that may arise from it. Honorable gentlemen who have spoken against it have magnified the dangers of collision, and especially has the honorable member for Brome done so. I am of opinion, sir, that if the same rigid and hostile analysis were made of any form of government, or of any constitution, monarchical or republican, originated for uniting separate and distinct peoples together, it would not be difficult to foresee dangers of collision as likely to flow therefrom. Were the British Constitution itself subjected to the same kind of dissection, flaws and compromises might be detected, and possible dangers be foretold. In the Constitution proposed for our adoption, as with all others, the successful working of it must mainly depend upon the characters and principles of the men who have to work it. The honorable member for Brome certainly attempted to make the worst of these resolutions, and endeavored to point out, in almost every feature, defects which he thought might endanger the interests of the people. He dwelt particularly upon the apparent facilities for the development of what is called in this country “log-rolling.” He said we might find the Maritime Provinces working with each other, and with Lower Canada against Upper Canada, and vice versa. Well, it must be obvious, sir, that the honorable gentleman’s objections in this respect applied with as much force to a Legislative union as to a Federal union, and yet my honorable friend is himself in favor of a legislative union.

HON. MR. HOLTON—I must set my hon. friend right. My honorable friend from Brome—who is now absent—said he was opposed to any other union than that at present existing batween the provinces ; and his whole argument went to show that he was opposed to any other tie than that now existing.

HON. MR. McGEE—If the honorable

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gentleman will permit me, I may say that I followed the honorable member for Brome very closely, and that according to my understanding he expressed himself in favor of Federation, but without a union such as that now proposed. His argument was that we should federate with the Imperial Government, and that there should be a Council in London.

HON. MR. HOLTON— That was another point.

HON. MR. MCGEE—No , it was this point : His proposal was—and he is the only member on the other side who has ventured to put forth a counter-proposition to that now before the House—that we should have a Council similar to that for the East Indies. I intend to reply to this proposition when the proper time comes. But my honorable friend from Peterborough is quite right in what he has stated.

COL. HAULTAIN—I am of opinion that the honorable member for Brome, if he did not desire it at the present time, at any rate expressed himself in favor of union at some future time.

HON. MR. HOLTON—A legislative union, if a union at all. But he really did not want any other than that now existing.

COL. HAULTAIN—That is precisely what I said, and I maintain that the very same arguments which I have alluded to as used against a Federal union, might likewise be urged against a Legislative union—that there would be the same amount of ” logrolling ” in the latter as in the former.

HON. MR. BROWN—And a great deal more.

COL. HAULTAIN—Certainly as much. I think my honorable friend from North Ontario (Mr. M. C. CAMERON) used the same argument, and yet I believe he is in favor of a legislative union.


COL. HAULTAIN—But my honorable friend must see that this argument against the Federal union might be urged with equal cogency against any union at all.

MR. M. C. CAMERON—I may, perhaps, be allowed to say that my position is just this, that a legislative union would be preferable, because the people would enter into it with the design of working for the harmony and advantage of the people ; whereas, if a Federal union were entered into, the local interests of each province would predominate over the interests of the whole.

COL. HAULTAIN—I think in this point of view that argument is rather in favor of the Federal principle, which does remove some of the causes of the difficulty, in so far as local mntters are removed from the jurisdiction of the General Government, and are left to that of the local governments. But looking at it in every point of view ; considering the greater expense, the danger of collision between the governments, and the comparative division of sovereignty under the Federal system, I am decidedly in favor of the closer and more simple form of government secured by a legislative union. (Hear, hear.) But I would remark to those who oppose the former because of their professed desire to see the adoption of the latter, that in attacking the Federal scheme in the manner alluded to, they are only putting arguments into the mouths of those who are opposed to any union at all. They should also take into consideration, that it is admitted on all sides that a legislative union is unattainable, and therefore, practically, we need not now discuss their comparative merits. It appears to me but a useless waste of time to advocate a certain system of union with others, and to make such advocacy the ground for opposing a practicable union, when those with whom we are to unite, and who are free to make their own choice, pronounce against it. (Hear.) We have to consult the wishes of six independent provinces ; and if five of them oppose a legislative union, what sense or justice is there in making our preference for it an argument against the only union that all will consent to, unless indeed it is urged that no union is better than a Federal one. In again referring to the remarks of the honorable member for Brome, I feel bound to say that I listened with great pleasure to the miscroscopic analysis to which he subjected the proposed scheme. He was, however, only satisfied with picturing all the possible dangers to which we might be exposed in the working of it. He dwelt with a certain kind of satisfaction on the succession of knaves and fools to whom might be committed our future destiny under it; the possibility that its very adoption would call into existence a race of public men devoid of all moral worth and ordinary intelligence. But, sir, I wish to take a practical, common sense view of this question, and I think the country will be inclined to do the same. Were a similar dissection made of the provisions or institutions regulating human society in any of its diversified combinations, dangers and difficulties might be magnified, and all patriotism, virtue and justice consigned to the grave of the past ; this would apply

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equally to all associations, whether of a commercial, political or national character. Apply it to our own position at this moment. We meet here to conduct the affairs of the country ; the forms and rules laid down for our guidance are the result of the wisdom and experience of centuries, and yet half a dozen unprincipled men, if so determined, might obstruct all business and prevent the working of our system of government. The only practical conclusion I can draw from such an analysis would be to abolish all government and abandon all association. My honorable friend went too far ; he strengthened the position of those it was his avowed object to assail. It was obvious to my own mind that every day experience, under approximately similar circumstances, swept away the array of dangers and disasters he conjured up, and happily gave us hope that men might arise equal to the occasion that in the future might arise. Our own political difficulties may be pointed to as the opposite to this experience. The essential difference lies in this. Pelt injustice creates our present difficulties, whereas, with all the supposed defects of the scheme before us, palpable injustice to any section cannot be charged against it; and in our dilemma have we not had the men equal to the occasion ? If we have men at the head of our affairs, desirous of acting justly and uprightly, there is nothing that I have heard from the honorable member for Brome, the chief opponent of the measure, to create apprehension for the future. It certainly is incumbent upon the Opposition, if they are dissatisfied with this scheme, considering all the circumstances of our position, to lay before the House and country some proposition in lieu of it.

HON. Mr. HOLTON —What do you say to the maintenance of the status quo?

COL. HAULTAIN—I need hardly remind my honorable friend, who is now one of the leaders of the Opposition, of his own admissions that it is neither just nor possible to remain in statu quo. He has before said that the union, as at present constituted between Upper and Lower Canada, could not continue. And he is quite right. We cannot remain as we are. So said also my honorable friend the member for Hochclaga (Hon. A. A. DORION), the present leader of the Opposition. He has expressly stated that some change was necessary. So far we are agreed. À new political combination has been accordingly devised, and the advocates of it say to the Opposition that if they do not like the scheme, then they are bound on their own admission, as patriotic men, to submit something else. Then only will they have a sufficient excuse for rejecting what is proposed as a solution of our difficulties. (Hear, hear.) The only honorable gentleman who has offered anything in substitution for Federal union is the honorable member for Brome. I confess, sir, that it was with surprise and something akin to disappointment, that I heard the conclusion, the summing up, of my honorable friend’s very able speech. No one can deny to him acuteness of intellect and great analytic powers of mind, and it was without doubt an intellectual repast to which he for some hours treated us. But, sir, what a waste of mental energy, how fruitless his intellectual toil ! What has his country profited by his exertions ? Has he proposed somethingworthy the elaborate dissection we had listened to? Did he address himself to the difficulties in which his country is placed, and propound a Constitution harmonious and faultless? What did he, sir, propose for drawing together these isolated fragments of the British Empire, consolidating them into one, and thereby adding to their future strength and prosperity ? To meet all those urgent wants and diversified interests, he proposes to appoint ” a Colonial Council in London, something like the Indian Council, to which our Ministers from the various colonies might be sent to consult with Her Majesty on affairs concerning those provinces.” (Hear, hear.) And what is this Indian Council that my honorable friend would prefer to the broad union we propose in order to bring those provinces together, which have been too long separated? What is the position of India,and what the object and composition of the Council of India ? That vast country is a conquered appanage of the British Crown. It is governed by a Governor in Council, who acts under the orders of the Secretary of State, the president of the Indian Council in London. The revenue and expenditure of the Indian Empire are subjected to the control of the Secretary in Council, and no grant of such revenue can be made without the concurrence of a majority of the Council. Such, sir, is the Council that my honorable friand proposed for our consideration, and in the adoption of which ” we would be taking the best means of developing our relations in a proper connection with the Mother Country.” He further says that ” in the present

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scheme there was no step of the kind contemplated.” And who, sir, in his sober senses would venture to propose such a step ? It is difficult to conceive that my honorable friend was serious when recommending it for our adoption. A more crude and ill-digested scheme (using his own words) could scarcely have emanated from his mind. What had become of all the aeuteness and microscopic power he brought to bear upon the resolutions of the Quebec Conference ? ” A Colonial Council in London, something like the Indian Council !” Does he mean that wo ought to have a Council in London which is to direct us as to our proceedings ; which is to send out governors general to this province from time to time to dictate the course of our legislation, and instruct us in regard to the expenditure of our money ?—because the Indian Council, under the presidency of a Secretary of State, has control of the whole expenditure of the means of the East India Company, and the Governor General of India acts under their direct supervision and command. I mention this to shew what position the opponents of the resolutions now before us are in, what they are reduced to in order to provide something as a substitute for what is proposed for their acceptance.

HON. MR. HOLTON—Surely my honorable friend does not wish to misrepresent the honorable member for Brome—to say that he purposed to substitute for our present governmental machinery a council similar to the lndiaa Council. My honorable friend surely does not want to impute to the honorable member for Brome, in his absence, such an idea as that.

COL. HAULTAIN.—I find it difficult to impute anything at all. (Laughter.) I have given his own words and their legitimate meaning. I could not understand what was passing in my honorable friend’s mind, which certainly appears to have been in a most extraordinary state. (Renewed laughter.) From beginning to end my honorable friend seemed to be labouring under some hallucination. (Laugher.) And I cannot help thinking that my honorable friend from Chateauguay (Hon. Mr. HOLTON) is also labouring under the same hallucination. (Laugher.)

HON. MR. HOLTON—-I confess I cannot see the point of the joke.

COL. HAULTAIN—In making these remarks I do not seriously wish to impute to the honorable member for Brome a desire that we should put ourselves into the hands of a Secretary of State and a council at home.I do not suppose that his mind had quite deserted him. But applying something of the same kind of analysis to the remarks of that honorable member, which he applied to the scheme now before the House, it would bo quite legitimate and fair to conclude that such was his meaning. I do not think my honorable friend from Brome or the Opposition have any reason to pride themselves on the scheme he has suggested for our guidance. And it is most extraordinary that a man of his acuteness of mind, and of his extended information, should so far forget himself as seriously to propose for our acceptance, in his place in Parliament, after a labored, lengthened and able analysis of these resolutions, this animalcule which he announced as the result of his protracted incubation of eight hours’ duration. (Laughter.) I am sorry my honorable friend is not here to listen to what I have thought proper to reply. I need not say that I have made these remarks in the most friendly spirit, befitting the friendliness and respect that I cordially entertain towards him. When, Mr. SPEAKER, I think of the smallness of the objections and of the greatness of the subjects involved, I cannot help seeing that it is much to the interest of the British Empire, as certainly it is altogether to our interest, that the scheme now before us should go forward to fruition. I should have liked, had time permitted, to have said a few words as to the remarkable concurrence of circumstances which has taken place in connection with the present movement, and to the no less remarkable unanimity which on the whole prevailed at the Conference. At the time of the assembling of that body, we heard from all quarters of the extreme difficulty—the almost impossibility of getting so many men of widely different opinions, and representing so many diverse interests, to come to a mutual understanding. It could only have been accomplished by the unanimous desire that seemed to prevail to accomplish the object that brought them together. And now that we have secured a scheme, to which the leading men of all the provinces have assented, are we to throw it on one side, and adopt some such miserable thing in its stead as that proposed by my honorable friend the member for Brome? We have yet to learn what other members of the Opposition may be able to produce ; but I hope, for their own credit’s sake, they will submit something more suited to the gravity of our position. As between the two schemes yet suggested, I can have no difficulty in making, my selection.

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Much has been said, and I believe felt also, about the uncertainty of our future. We are forcibly reminded that the future is not in our own hands ; neither by any prudence or wisdom of our own, can we determine it. We are from day to day debating upon our present position, devising new arrangements for the future, and discussing the probabilities of their success or failure. It proclaims our own impotence and our absolute dependence upon a higher Power. I feel deeply, sir—and I make no apology for expressing it—that we ought to look above for Divine guidance ; and I regret that our religious differences should so operate as to prevent our performing together a public act of invoking God’s blessing on our proceedings, without which all our deliberations will fail of success. (Cheers.)

HON. MR. ALLEYN moved that the debate be adjourned.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER moved in amendment, that the debate be adjourned, and be resumed immediately after routine business on Monday.

After discussion, the amendment was carried on a division.

The House then adjourned.

MONDAY, March 6, 1865.

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD— Before the debate on the resolutions in your hands, Mr. SPEAKER, is continued, I wish to say a few words. The Government is well aware that the House must naturally feel anxious and desirous of information—and that no doubt questions will be asked—as to the course which the Government will pursue in consequence of the news that has been received from the Province o£ New Brunswick, with reference to the result of the elections in that province. (Hear, hear.) The Government are quite prepared to state their policy on the question before the House, in view of that information. Although we have no official information as to the result of those elections, and would not be justified, constitutionally, in making up our minds as to that result, until the Legislature of New Brunswick has declared itself either for or against the Confederation scheme; yet we know, as a matter of fact—and we cannot shut our eyes to the fact—thaG the Premier and several of his colleagues in the Government of New Brunswick have been defeated, and that so far there has been a declaration against the policy of Federation. Of course, in a general election, it is not to be supposed that the question of Confederation is the only one discussed at the polls. Being a general election, there was the usual fight between the ins and the outs, the Ministerialists and the Opposition ; and, of course, a lot of other influences were at work, such as questions between the Intercolonial Railway on the one hand, and lines of railway to connect with the United States on the other. Still, we should not be treating the House with candor if we did not state that we must consider the result of those elections as a check upon the Confederation project. The Canadian Government however, I may say at once, do not consider that the result of these elections should in any way alter their policy or their course upon this question. (Hear, hear.) They wish it to be most decidedly understood, that instead of thinking it a reason for altering their course, they regard it as an additional reason for prompt and vigorous action. (Hear, hear.) We do not consider that in these events to which I have alluded, there is any cause whatever for the abandonment of the project, or for its postponement. In fact, the only reason why we should consider them to be a matter of grave import is, that they form the first check that the project has received since the question was submitted to the people of these provinces, at the time of the formation of the present Government of Canada. If we only look back to June last, and then regard the present condition of the question, we cannot but feel surprise at the advance which has been made. In June last we would have been satisfied if we could have contemplated that so soon as this the question would even have been favorably entertained by the governments of the différent provinces. But, within the short period which has since elapsed, a conference has been held, and the measure framed by that conference has received the sanction of the governments of all the provinces, and each of the governments of the five colonies is pledged to submit, not only the question of Confederation, but the scheme as prepared by the Conference, to the legislature of each of those provinces. And we have gained more than this. Not only has every government of every colony been pledged to the scheme, and pledged also to use all its legitimate influence as a Government to

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obtain the endorsation of the project by their respective legislatures, but we have also obtained the sanction and approval of the Government of the Mother Country. (Hear, hear.) That approval has been conveyed to us by a formal dispatch from the Colonial Office, and in addition, we have had, subsequently, the approval of the British Government as expressed in Her Majesty’s own words in the Speech from the Throne in opening the Parliament of Great Britain. And not only this, but we know that it has met, or will meet, with the unmistakable approbation and sanction of the Parliament, the press and the people of England. (Hear, hear.) Therefore, instead of being at all surprised that the whole scheme should not have been begun, carried on, and ended without one check, we should be well satisfied that we have only received one such check from the commencement. The obligations under which the Canadian Government entered at the time that the Conference was concluded, and those resolutions finally agreed to, still remain in fall force, and we feel that force. We feel it our duty to call upon the Legislature of Canada, and to use all the legitimate influence of the Government to obtain from the Legislature of Canada a favorable opinion upon the resolutions that havebeen submitted for its consideration (Hear, hear.) And, sir, in view of the intelligence that has reached us from New Brunswick, we think it of more importance than ever that the scheme should be carried out as a whole—that it should be dealt with as a treaty, to be endorsed without one single amendment or alteration, (dear , hear.) As every hon. member of the House who is desirous of carrying Confederation must see, it is now more especially necessary that that course should be taken, so that no other province shall have the opportunity of saying, ” Why, even the Province of Canada itself, through its Legislature, does not approve of the scheme as settled by the Conference.” We must give no excuse to any one of the colonies to say, ” It is open to us to deal with the question as we like ; for even the Province of Canada, which pressed the subject upon us of the Lower Provinces, did not express its approval of the scheme, but propounded a new one of its own, which it is open to us either to accept or reject.” (Hear, hear.) Sir, not only do we feel that the obligation and expediency of pressjng this measure upon the attention of the Legislature remain as before, but we feel it all the more necessary now to call for prompt and immediate action. The Government will, therefore, at once state, that it is our design to press, by all proper and parliamentary modes of procedure within our power, for an early decision of the House —yes or no—whether they approve of this scheme or do not. (Hear, hear.) One great reason, among others, calling for promptness, is to provide as much as possible against the reaction which will take place in England from the disappointment that will pervade the minds of the people of England, if they get the impression that the project of the union of the provinces is abandoned. (Hear, hear.) I believe that if one thing more than another has raised British America, or the Piovince of Canada, its chief component part, in the estimation of the people and Government of England, it is that by this scheme there was offeied to the Mother Country a means by which these colonies should cease to be a source of embarrassment, and become, in fact, a source of strength. This feeling pervades the public mind of England. Every writer and speaker of note in the United Kingdom, who has treated of the subject, says a new era of colonial existence has been inaugurated, and that if these colonies, feeble while disunited, were a source of weakness, they will, by forming this friendly alliance, become a strong support to England. The disappointment of the corresponding reaction would be great in the Mother Country, if they got the idea that the project was to be given up; and we appeal to honorable gentlemen not to fall away from the position we have obtained by the mere submission of the scheme to the Government and the people of England, and not to allow Canada and the whole of British America to lose all its vantage ground by showing any signs of weakness, any signs of receding on this question. (Hear, hear.) Another reason why this question must be dealt with promptly and an early decision obtained, is, that it is more or less intimately connected with the question of defence, and that is a question of the most imminent necessity. (Hear, hear.) No one can exaggerate the necessity which exists for the Legislature of this country considering at once the defences that are called for in the present position of affairs on this continent. I need not say

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that this subject has engaged our anxious attention as a Government. The Provincial Government has been in continued correspondence with the Home Goveinment as to the best means ot organizing an efficient defence against every hostile pressure, from whatever source it may come. And, as this House knows, the resolutions themselves speak of the defence question as one that must immediately engage the attention oí the Confederation. We had hoped that the Confederation scheme would have assumed such an aspect that the question could have been adjudged of as a whole, and that one organized system of defence could have been ar ranged between the Federal Government and the Imperial Government at an early day. But we cannot disguise, nor can we close our eyes to the fact that the course of events in New Brunswick will prevent an early united action among the provinces ou the subject of defence; and, therefore, that question comes up as between Canada and England, and we feel that it caunotbe postponed. (Hear, hear.) I n fact the subject has already been postponed quite too long. (Hear, hear.) It is time, high time, that it was taken up and dealt with in a vigorous manner. (Hear, hear.) These are two of the reasons which, the Government feel, press for a prompt decision of the House upon the resolutions before it. (Hear, hear.) Then there is a third reason, which is found in the state of the commercial relations existing between Canada and the United States. The threatened repeal of the Reciprocity treaty, the hazard of the United States doing away with the system of bonding goods in transitu, and the unsatisfactory position generally of our commercial relations with the neighboring country—all this calls for immediate action. And the fact of the union of these provinces being postponed, and of the construction, therefore, of the Intercolonial Railway being put off indefinitely, renders this all the more imperative. It is, therefore, the intention of the Government — and they seek the support of this House and of the country to the policy which I now announce—first, to bring this debate to an end with all convenient speed, with a view to having a declaration of the House upon the question of Confederation. The Government, to this end, will press for a vote by every means which they can properly use. Then, secondly, as soon as that is obtaiued, it is the intention of the Government to ask the Legislature for a vote of credit, and prorogue Parliament at the earliest possible date. (Hear, hear.) It is their intention to provide that all the unfinished business of the present session shall be so arranged, that it can be proceeded with next session, from the point where it is dropped at the close of this session. Upon the prorogation of Par- liament, the Government will send a mission to England at once, tor the purpose of discussing aud ar ranging these important points to which I have alluded—the question of Confederation, under its present aspect—the question of defence—and all matters bear ing upon our commercial relations with the neighboring country ; with instructions to press their work forward with the least possible delay, with the view of enabling the Government to submit the result of the mission— which we hope will be satisfactory—to this House at an early summer session. (Loud cheers.)

HON. J.S. MACDONALD said—The manner and spirit in which the Government have made the announcement of their decision is so far satisfactory. They have, however, adopted a new policy and announced a change of tactics, and one which this House is to be called upon to enforce. They have departed widely from the policy that they decided upon not long since. I beg leave to call the attention of the House to the words used by the Hon. Premier of the Government himself, at the opening of the session. He says:

They had assumed the charge of affairs with an understanding that they would have a right to appeal to the country ; and while they were consulting about it, they received an intimation from the real chief of the Opposition, through one of their own friends, to the effect that he was desirous of making overtures to them, with the view of seeking to accommodate the difficulties. The hon. gentleman and some of his friends then came into contact with the leaders of the Government, and it was agreed between them to try to devise a scheme which would put an end to the misunderstandings, and at the same time secure for Canada and the other provinces a position which would ensure their future safety, and procure for them the respect and confidence of other nations. They arranged a large scheme and a smaller one.

And now, Mr. SPEAKER , I wish to call the attention of the House to this point. ” If the larger failed, then they were to fall back upon the minor, which provided for a Feder – ation of the two sections of the province. “

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The larger scheme, Mr. SPEAKER, is evidently a failure. (Hear, hear.) And I will tell you why I think it a failure This scheme was to be agreed to by all the provinces, and the different Governments were to bring it down for the consideration of their several Houses of Parliament. The leaders of the Opposition in New Brunswick, as well as the Government of that province agreed to a treaty, as it is called, and went back to submit that treaty to their Legislature for approval. But being defeated in New Brunswick, it is not possible for the arrangement to be carried out What reason has the Government for believing that those who have been just elected in New Brunswick as opponents of the scheme will allow it to be brought down ior the consideration of their Legislature ? How can it be expected that a free people will agree to a scheme, from the terms of which they entirely dissent ? It seems to be the idea of honorable gentlemen opposite, that if this Legislature adheres to the scheme, it will be forced upon the unwilling people of New Brunswick— that some process will be found by which the Government of that province will be induced to submit it to their Legislature. They seen, to imagine that the rejection of the TILLEY Government, and, consequently, of their Confederation scheme, by the people, is a matter that can be traced only to the annexation proclivities of a large section of the people of New Brunswick. If that is so, we ought immediately to appoint a day of general thanksgiving, in this appropriate time of Lent, for the blessing of being relieved from any danger of union with such a people. (Hear, hear, and laughter.) It would be one of the greatest misfortunes that could happen our province to be connected wiih those annexationists.

HON. MR. HOLTON—But it is not true that the annexation feeling was the cause of the defeat.

HON. J . S. MAGDONALD—I do not say it is so, but I am referringto what members of the Government have said about this defeat being caused by the disloyal and annexation proclivities of the people of New Brunswick.


HON J . S. MACDONALD–Well, I find their organ of this morning attributing it to that cause. And what did the Minister of Agricultue (Hon. Mr. MCGEE) say on Friday night, on the reception of the news ? He said there were many in that portion of the province who were influenced by a desire for connection with the United States, and that there were capitalists from Boston and from Maine whese interests lay in having New Brunswick more closely coupled with the destiny of the United States. If these are the feelings that induced the gentlemen who have been elected to repudiate the proceedings of the Convention, then, I say again, they are a people with whose views we of Canada should have no sympathy. If the gentlemen on the Treasury benches suppose that by passing these resolutions they will compel the gentlemen, who have been returned to that Parliament on the express condition that they shall oppose the treaty or Convention scheme, to turn round and support it, then what shall we say of such men ? What shall we say of men who, after having obtained the suffrages of the people as opponents of the scheme, shall turn round immediately after they have got into office, and in effect perjure themselves? (Hear, hear.) We have, unfortunately, enough of that class of legislators in Canada, without linking our destinies with like persons from New Brunswick. If that is the character of the people to whom we are to be united, then all I can say is, that they are not a desirable class to have added to Canada. If it is contemplated that they are going to compel those gentlemen to vote approval of the scheme, who have been elected specially to oppose it, it would be very interesting to know by what process it is to be done Are they to be bribed into acquiescence, or forced into submission ? If the latter, then we must presume that they are not of the race of British freemen who, elsewhere, would resent with indignation— ay, rebel—before yielding up their independence; and in that view, they are again unworthy of association with us. There is no doubt that the gentlemen who have been elected in New Brunswick have deliberately considered their position, and whether it is attempted to bribe them or coerce them, they will manfully resent it. I do not believe it is desirable to have a Confederation adopted by either course. What are we to gain by compelling such a community to come in with us ? Will they not, for all time to come, cast upon us the reflection that they became part and parcel of the Confederacy without their consent ? Is it desirable to have to do with neighboring

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colonists, who have been either forced or bribed to accept what is repugnant to them ? Will they not always be a source of discord by endeavoring to make the scheme work badly ? (Hear, hear.) But, Mr. SPEAKER, we have before us an instance of the danger of men undertaking to make treaties without authority. This is the kind of penalty which they pay,and I think we have an instalment of the punishment that is justly due to them, and which they will receive. Sir, we find that in New Brunswick. Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, a union took place between the Government and the Opposition for the purpose of arranging a plan by which those provinces should be joined together. They had the authority of their respective governments and legislatures before entering into that Conference. They met together by deliberate pre-arrangement, with full consent, unlike the manner in which the gentlemen opposite precipitated themselves into a union fever, growing out of a political contingency. When the delegates went to Charlottetown, from their respective provinces, to treat of matters of great importance to the people of those provinces, and considered it to be a desirable object to obtain the union of the Maritime Provinces, they were interrupted in their deliberations by the members of the Canadian Government — Greater inducements were then offered them, and they were filled with higher hopes and expectations of the good things to be derived from the Confederation of all the provinces. Lieutenant-governorships, chief-justiceships, and life-memberships of the Legislative Council were all held out in the prospective by the Canadian Ministers. By these means they inveigled these men from the object for which they met, and undermined the purpose they were assembled to promote. The Canadian Ministers said :— “Never mind your union of these provinces. Come away from Charlottetown with us, and we will show you plans by which your ambition may be better gratified, although you may thereby betray the trust of the people who sent you here They may not be satisfied, but never mind them—they can be managed in some way afterwards. We will show you the way.” This, in effect, was the language used towards the delegates. They took the bait offered them, and the next thing we heard of was the adjournment of the Convention to Halifax, where the delegates enjoyed the “feast of reason and the flow of soul” for a week. They then sped off to St. John, where convivialities were renewed, and finally they all agreed to come to Quebec, and we all recollect the subsequent feastings in Montreal, Ottawa, Kingston, Toronto and Hamilton. I will not allude to the meeting that took place here, because it is well known what the result of the Conference was ; but I will speak of the sequel to these proceedings —the events that subsequently happened in the Lower Provinces. Hon. Mr. TILLEY knew he could have submitted the scheme of the Quebec Conference to the people of New Brunswick—that he could have summoned the Parliament of that province and ascertained what its wishes were—as early as the Canadian Government could. But he did nothing of the kind. He knew he had violated the trust reposed in him, and that he had given reason for a withdrawal of the people’s confidence ; but he thought that by bringing on an election in the country, he could gain his own ends by the unsparing use of all the influence a government can employ on such occasions, and by employing all the arts of cajolery for the purpose of deceiving the peopk and winning them over to his own selfish purposes. Well, what is the result ? Hon. Mr. TILLEY and his followers are routed horse and foot by the honest people of the province, scouted by those whose interests he had betrayed and whose behests he had neglected ; and I think his fate ought to be a warning to those who adopted this scheme without authority, and who ask the House to ratify it en bloc, without having sought or seeking to obtain the sanction of the people. (Hear, hear.) I come now, sir, to a matter personal perhaps more to myself than to any one else. I would ask the House who was it that assailed the Government of Canada more by his speeches and letters than this same Hon. Mr. TILLEY ? Who was it that charged the Government of this country with a breach of faith towards the Lower Provinces in reference to the construction of the Intercolonial Railway ; and whose statement was it that was reechoed on the floor of this House over and over again, that Canada had lowered its character and dignity by failing to go on with that undertaking? Was it not the Hon. Mr. TILLEY who made these false accusations, and were they not, on his authority, repeated here by an honorable gentleman now in the Government, at the head of the Bureau of Agriculture (Hon. Mr. MCGEE) ? Recollecting these things, sir, I have a pleasure—a mischievous pleasure—(hear, hear, and laugh-

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ter)—I have a mischievous pleasure, I say, in knowing that the Hon. Mr. TILLEY has been defeated. (Ironical cheers.) I repeat that I have experienced to-day a considerable degree of happiness in announcing that the man who, at the head of the Government of New Brunwick, betrayed the trust of the people, who failed to carry out their wishes in respect to the union of the Maritime Provinces, who exceeded the authority with which he was entrusted, who betrayed the interests of his province and abandoned everything that he was sent to Charlottetown to obtain—the man who went throughout the length and breadth of his province crying out against the good faith of the then Canadian Government—I say I have happiness in announcing that he has been disposed of by the people. (Hear, hear.) Hon. Mr. TILLEY came to Quebec in 1863, with Hon. Mr. TUPPER, and although he made the charge of bad faith against the Canadian Government, he knew as well as Hon. Mr. TUPPER that the agreement of 1862 respecting the Intercolonial Railway was to be abandoned, except so far as the survey of the line was concerned.

HON. MR. MCGEE—Hear, hear.

HON. J. S. MACDONALD—The honorable gentleman cries ” Hear, hear,” but can he say that, while a member of the Government, he did not write a letter to a gentleman in this province, in which he said that the scheme of 1862 was abandoned by the Canadian Government.

HON. MR. MCGEE—The honorable gentleman has made that charge once before publicly, and I denied it publicly. If he can get any such letter of mine, he is fully authorized by me to make it public. Hon. Mr. TILLEY, so far from believing the scheme abandoned, went back to New Brunswick with a very different impression ; and I ask the honorable gentleman whether he did not say to him while here : — ” I declare to God, TILLEY, if I thought by resigning my office we could get the Intercolonial Railway, I would do it.” The honorable gentleman is out of office now, and perhaps he will say whether he made this declaration or not. (Hear, hear.)

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—I do not deny that. I was then, and always have been, in favor of the Intercolonial Railway, and am desirous that it should be built. I think that an outlet to the ocean on British soil, at all seasons of the year, is a very desirable thing to be obtained, and upon that point I have never changed my opinion. But I do say that Hon. Mr. TUPPER and Hon. Mr. TILLEY understood that it was not to be proceeded with at that time, and a memorandum was drawn up by Dr. TUPPER at the time (I am now speaking in the presence of my late colleagues, who are aware of all the facts), embodying the decision at which the Government arrived, but which was not signed, because Hon. Mr. TILLEY asked that Mr. FLEMING might be considered as engaged to proceed with the survey, and wished to reserve it for the formal ratification of his colleagues when he went back to New Brunswick. When he did go back, his colleagues dissented from the views he had formed, and, in order to get himself out of the awkward position in which he was placed, he took the ground that the abandonment of the project was owing to the bad faith of the Canadian Government. Now I say it is a matter of great satisfaction to me that the honorable gentleman who circulated this charge, and gave ground for honorable gentlemen now on the Treasury benches to attack the Government of which I was a member, and accuse it of bad faith to the sister provinces, has for these bold and audacious statements met his just deserts. Ha has been scouted and rejected by his own people. He has lost their confidence, and with that loss of confidence this great scheme of Confederation has come to woeful grief. I say punishment has overtaken him. It was a long time coming, but it has come at last with terrible effect. (Hear, hear.) The Hon. Attorney General West says that the Government will ask for a vote of credit, but he has not told us how long this vote will extend. He does not tell what they will do if the Confederation scheme fails, as it is pretty sure to fail. He does not say that it is going to carry, nor does he say that it will be suc- ceeded by any other. Where, I would like to know, is the smaller scheme–the pet scheme of the member for South Oxford–of a Feder ation of Canada first, to be followed, it need be, by a Federation of all the pro- vinces? What the honorable gentleman to do with this scheme? Is it to be brought down to the House, or, the larger one having failed, is it to be kept in hand for use at some future time? Have we not a right to know what this scheme is and what the Government proposes to do in regard to it? (Hear, hear.) Are the people of the c try to be left in a feverish state of excitement, because the Government has no definite policy, until the mission spoken of goes to England, in the hope that the people of the Lower Provinces will in the meantime repent the

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action they have taken ? Why, sir, not only have the minds of the people of Canada been unhinged by the proceedings of the past year, not only have they been made dissatified with the institutions under which they have lived and prospered for a number of years, but political parties have also been demoralized. (Hear, hear.) Yes, the Reform party has become so disorganized by this Confederation scheme, that there is scarcely a vestige of its greatness left—hardly a vestige of that great party that demanded reform for a number of years, but which unfortunately, in 1864 as in 1854, went over to the other side when its leaders could no longer endure to remain in the cold shades of opposition. (Hear, hear.) Is it too much to ask honorable gentlemen on the Treasury benches to tell us something of the scheme for federating these two provinces— to give us an inkling of what is to be done, now that the other scheme has failed, and of the liabilities to be assumed by the respective sections of Canada ? Are we to be kept in ignorance on these subjects ? Are the affairs of the country to continue in the unsettled state in which they now are ? Is all legislation to remain at a stand-still until the more and more doubtful prospect of Confederation is realized ? (Hear, hear.) What amount of money is required by the Government to meet the danger that is said to have suddenly threatened us ? Are the people not to know what preparations are to be made and what sums are to be expended in our defence ? I am not opposed to any proper measures being taken to defend the country, but at the same time prudence dictates that we should know what they are to cost before we blindly vote for them, if Confederation is not to take place, what is the use of going on with measures of defence that depended upon Confederation being carried ? Why not come down now with a scheme that will apply to Canada alone, and let us know precisely what burdens the people will have to bear for their defence, what additional taxation will be required, and all other information connected with the subject ? (Hear, hear.) I do say that it is anything but satisfactory to be told that we are to postpone the promised scheme for our defence at this time, to adjourn over till summer, and in the meantime to send commissioners home to treat with the Imperial Government. If the danger is so imminent as it is said to be, why this long delay ? (Hear, hear.) Sir, I never was myself an advocate of any change in our Constitution ; I believed it was capable of being well worked to the satisfaction of the people, if we were free from demagogues and designing persons who sought to create strife between the sections. (Hear, hear.) I am not disposed to extend my remarks further at present. All I can say is, that the Honorable Attorney General West has done the House justice if he has given us all the information in his possession with regard to the present aspect of the Confederation question ; and yet it appears to me somewhat absurd to proceed with the debate, when even the Government itself admits the measure to be a failure. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. DORION—I think the announcement made by the Hon. Attorney General West must have taken the House a little by surprise. (Hear, hear.) The policy agreed on by the Government in June, 1864, was certainly not the one carried out at the opening of this session, and still less that which has just been announced. The policy, as we find it in a memorandum then communicated to the House, was that a measure for the Confederation of the two Canadas, with provisions for the admission of the other provinces, should be brought before the House this session. I will give the terms of the memorandum, in order that there may be no doubt about it. When explanations were given in June last, by the present Government, two memoranda were communicated to the House. One was a memorandum that had been communicated to the Hon. the President of the Council, and marked ” Confidential.” It was in these words :—

The Government are prepared to state, that immediately after the prorogation, they will address themselves, in the most earnest manner, to the negotiation for a Confederation of all the British North American Provinces.

That, failing a successful issue to such negotitions, they are prepared to pledge themselves to legislation during the next session of Parliament for the purpose of remedying the existing difficulties, by introducing the Federal principle for Canada alone, coupled with such provisions as will permit the Maritime Provinces and the North- Western Territory to be hereafter incorporated into the Canadian system.

That, for the purpose of carrying on the negotiations and settling the details of the promised legislation, a Royal Commission shall be issued, composed of three members of the Government and three members of the Opposition, of whom Mr. BROWN shall be one, and the Government pledge themselves to give all the influence of the Administration to secure to the said Commission the means of advancing the great object in view.

This was the first memorandum that was

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communicated to the Honorable President of the Council. It was a proposition on behalf of the members of the then Government to the Honorable President of the Council, to the effect that the Government would be prepared, immediately after that session, to take measures for obtaining a Confederation of all the provinces, and, failing in that scheme, to bring into the House at the next session— that is the present session—a scheme for the Confederation of the two Canadas, with a provision that the Maritime Provinces might come into the union when they saw fit. But this proposition was not accepted, and another memorandum was submitted to the Honorable President of the Council in the following terms :—

The Government are prepared to pledge themselves to biing in a measure next session for the purpose of removing existing difficulties, by introducing the Federal principle into Canada, coupled with such provisions as will permit the Maritime Provinces and the North-West Territory to be incorporated into the same system of government.

This, then, is what the Government pledged itself to do. The first memorandum to open negotiations for a Confederation with the Lower Provinces was rejected by the Honorable President of the Council, and he agreed to go into the Government on this pledge, that it would be prepared to bring in a measure, this session, for the purpose of removing existing difficulties, by introducing the Federal principle into the Government of Canada, coupled with such provisions as would enable the Lower Provinces to come in at any subsequent time. This is the measure that was promised by the Government ; this is the measure that honorable gentlemen on the other side, at the end of last session, said they would be prepared to introduce to the Legislature this session. But instead of that the whole scheme has been altered. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. GALT—Read the balance of the statement.

HON. MR. DORION—There is nothing in the remainder of it to qualify the pledge then made by the Government. (Hear, hear.) It is a distinct and positive pledge given by hon. gentlemen in their places on the Treasury benches, that at this session of Parliament they would bring in a measure for the Confederation of the two Canadas, leaving it to the other provinces to come in if they pleased. (Hear, hear.) Certainly there is this addition at the end of the memorandum :—

And the Government will seek, by sending representatives to the Lower Provinces and to England, to seeure the assent of those interests which are beyond the control of our own legislation, to such a measure as will enable all British North America to be united under a General Legislature based upon the Federal system.

We find, from these explanations, that a measure for the Confederation of the whole of the provinces did not suit the Hon. President of the Council and the Liberal party in Upper Canada, that it was rejected by him and his party as not the proper remedy for our difficulties, and that another measure was accepted by him, applying the principle of Federation to the two Canadas ; and in order to secure to that measure the acquiescence of those interests which were beyond the control of the Government of this country, delegates were to be sent to confer with the Lower Provinces with the view of bringing them into this union. Well, sir, I must say th it if the honorable gentlemen opposite had not been untrue to their pledge — if they had brought to this House the measure they then promised — we in this country would, at all events, have been saved the humiliation of seeing the Government going on its knees and begging the little island of Prince Edward to come into this union, and then going to Nova Scotia and New Brunswick and supplicating them to relieve us of our difficulties ; and saved the humiliation of seeing these supplications and the bribes in every direction with which they were accompanied, in the shape of subsidies to New Brunswick and Newfoundland, and of the Intercolonial Railway, rejected by those to whom they were offered. Canada would, at all events, have held a dignified position, and not suffered the humiliation of seeing all the offers of our Government indignantly rejected by the people of the Lower Provinces. The Hon. Attorney General West says that the scheme of Confederation has obtained the consent of the governments of all the provinces ; but where are those governments now ? Where is the Government of New Brunswick ? Where is the Government of Prince Edward Island ? (Hear, hear.) As for the Government of Nova Scotia, it pledged itself to bring the scheme before the Legislature ; but it is well known that it dare not press it, and still less appeal to the people upon it. The members of that Government were wiser than the Government of New Brunswick, and would not appeal to the people. And here I must say that I

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compliment the Government upon the wisdom it shows in not appealing to the people of Canada. Honorable gentlemen have shown far more sight in this matter than the Government of New Brunswick, in refusing to let the people have an opportunity of pronouncing upon this scheme, for the petitions coming down daily against it show conclusively that the people, of Lower Canada at all events, are almost unanimously against it, and that an appeal to them would meet, as regards the members of the Lower Ca- nada Administration, with the same fate which befel the members of the New Brunswick Government. (Hear.) I do not wish, sir, to prolong this debate more than necessary, out I must say that I am surprised to hear the Hon. Attorney General West say that the defences of the country require such immediate attention that the matter cannot be delayed for a moment. If I mistake not, the Government have had in their hands a report from Col. JERVOIS upon the defences, since the 12th of October last, and yet since that time not a single thing has been done towards defenece. We are now told with startling emphasis that the country is about to be invaded, or is in most imminent danger ; and all at once, now that the great scheme of Confederation is defeated, we learn that not aa hour’s delay can be allowed, and that we cannot even wait to vote the supplies, so urgent is the necessity of sending a mission to England about this matter. Between Friday last and this morning the Government has discovered that this imminent danger threatens us, and so anxious is it about it that we cannot even stop to vote the ordinary supplies, but must pass at once a vote of credit, (Hear, hear.) And, sir, while I am on the subject ot the defences, I must say it is most astonishing that although we have repeatedly asked for information on the subject, in connection with this great scheme, we can not get it. (Hear, hear.) At the earliest moment alter the commencement of the session, the honorable member for Drummond and Arthabaska (Mr. J . B. E. DORION) made a motion for any despatches, reports, or communications, or for extracts theieof, which might be in the possesion of the Government on the question of the defences of the country, and the Hon. Attorney General West rose and replied that to give this information would endanger the safety of the province. The Ministry of Canada therefore refused us that which we now find in the report which comes from England.

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD—Not the report.

HON. MR. DORION—I f not the report, at all events the substance of it. There they do not find that it will endanger the safety of the country by giving the House of Commons such information as will enable Parliament to take the necessary steps to provide for the defences of any part of the British Empire. I moved another Address at a later period, asking for such information on the subject of our defences as the Government might deem it proper to give ; and although that Address was voted a full fortnight ago, I have been unable to obtain an answer to it up to the present time. Nor can we get information in regard to the finances—in fact every kind of information which is necessary to enable us to form proper and correct judgments is refused. But, sir, I must say that at the present moment I am unaware of any reason which could be urged for our being called upon to act with such precipitate haste as to grant a vote of credit to hon. gentlemen. (Hear, hear.) The session has been called at the usual time—rather earlier than the usual time for holding our meetings of Parliament— and I say it is a most extraordinary thing that we should be asked by the honorable gentlemen on the other side to give them a vote of credit. (Hear, hear.) Why, sir, is the whole business of the country to be thrown into a condition of derangement in order to allow the honorable gentlemen to get themselves out of a difficulty—not to get the country, but themselves, out of the difficulty which they have acknowledged to have overtaken them ? (Hear, hear.) Are all the affairs of the province to be thrown over, for such a reason, until next session, which may not be held for six months or nine months, or until the honorable gentlemen choose to call us again together ? Because ” an early summer session ” may be the month of August or the month of September, or it may mean even a later period than that. Do they expect a vote of credit of six millions of dollars to enable them to construct these defences which are spoken of by Col. JERVOIS ?

HON. MR. GALT—No, no.

HON. MR. DORION—Then, if we do not pass a vote for that purpose, what is to become of the country in the meantime ? (Hear, hear.) We are told that there is urgent necessity for expending money on our defences, and that the danger is imminent. Well, sir, I apprehend if there is imminent danger, we ought to be kept sitting here until provision

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is made to meet that danger, or at all events, affairs ought to be placed in such a position that, at any moment, we can be called together to provide for the danger. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. GALT—We want to avert it.

HON. MR. HOLTON—What is the danger?

HON. MR. DORION—It puzzles the honorable gentlemen to reply. I think that they themselves never discovered there was any cause for alarm until Friday last, when there was imminent danger of the defeat of their scheme, and imminent danger also of the loss of their position. (Laughter.) This, sir, is the real danger the hon. gentlemen want to avert, and they proceed to do so by asking us, in lieu of granting the ordinary supplies, to pass a vote of credit. We will then be sent away, with the prospect before their friends and supporters of another session this summer, when the additional sessional allowance will of course be welcome to all. (Hear, hear, sad laughter.) I simply rose, sir, to protest against the continuance of this scheme by the honorable gentlemen opposite. I think they are bound to proceed in some other way, seeing that this scheme cannot be carrie 1, as it certainly cannot. It has been rejected not only by New Brunswick, but by Prince Edward Island, one of whose delegates to Quebec, Mr. WHELAN, has been holding meetings, and all that he has been able to accomplish is the passing of resolutions of confidence in himself, and the assertion that no such scheme should be given effect to without being first submitted to the people. That is the most favorable expression of opinion that can be obtained in Prince Edward Island. It is well known, too, that the Legislature of Nova Scotia is against the scheme by a large majority. And now we find that New Brunswick has pronounced against it also. Will hon. gentlemen go to England and press on the scheme under such circumstances ? Will they argue that because we are 2,500,000 and they only 900,- 000, we ought to swallow them up by pressing them into Confederation against their wishes ? (Hear, hear.) I do not suppose honorable gentlemen on the other side purpose attempting to coerce, by means of their influence with the Imperial Government, the Lower Provinces to come into this Confederation. Therefore it is that I say that this scheme is killed. (Hear, hear, and derisive Opposition cheers.) I repeat that it is killed. I claim that it is the duty of hon. gentlemen opposite, and particularly is it the duty of the Hon. President of the Council, to insist upon their colleagues keeping to the pledges they have made. It is the duty of the Liberal members generally to insist on these pledges being redeemed, without which they would have refused to sanction the taking of office by the three Liberal members of the Government, and in accordance with which alone they could justify that step before their constituents. It was only the knowledge that, failing the success of this measure, they would carry out a scheme which was within the power of the Government to carry, that the Liberal party of Upper Canada approved of their three friends making part of the Government. The Administration could not give a pledge that they would carry the Confederation of all the provinces, but they could pledge, and did pledge themselves to bring in, in the event of the failure of that scheme, a measure for the federation of Upper and Lower Canada. And, sir, not only was this promise made at that time, but we have since seen, this session, the head of the Government, Hon. Sir E. P. TACHÉ, renewing the pledge then given in these words:—” They arranged a large scheme and a smaller one. If the larger failed, then they would fall back upon the minor, which provided for a federation of the two sections of the province.” And it was expressly stated that during this session, if the present scheme failed, they should bring in a measure to federate the two provinces. (Hear, hear.) That was the promise given to the Honorable President of the Council, and, if it is not redeemed, I fear his position will be a most unenviable one in the country. (Hear, hear.)

MR. T. C. WALLBRIDGE—There is another point, Mr. SPEAKER, upon which I desire to see an understanding come to before we proceed further with this discussion. Honorable gentlemen opposite have attempted by their professions to manufacture a little cheap pocket loyalty, and to that end I find the most atrocious sentiments expressed in this morning’s editorial of their organ, the Quebec Chronicle. I will read the paragraph.

HON. MR. GALT—You need not; we have all read it.

MR. WALLBBIDGE—It will bear reading again for the information of the House. It is as follows :—

A telegram from New Brunswick on Saturday night says TILLEY and WATTERS are defeated— majority 250. These gentlemen were the Confederate candidates for the city of St. John. Knowing the influences at work, we are not greatly surprised at the resalt ; but our conviction in the

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alternative of confederation or annexation ia more than ever confirmed when wo see how completely American influence can control elections of the provinces.

These sentiments are calculated to introduce into political discussion in this country a dangerous element, a mischievous cry. I would like to ask the Hon. Attorney General West , who has to some extent endorsed this sent iment , whether I was right in unders tanding him to say that it was the influence exer ted by American railway men on the elections which led to the defeat of the Confederation candidates ?


MR. WALLBRIDGE — I understood the Hon. At torney General West to state that the American railway influence had had some effect upon the St. John’s elections.

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD—I will repeat to thehonorable gentleman what I did say. It was this : that I had no doubt the questioo. of Confederation was one of the subjects which influenced the people of St. John. But I did not pretend that that was the only one. There were other local questions which, I have no doubt , had their due weight of influence. There was, for instance, the usual struggle between the ins and the outs, and I presume there was the influence to be contended against of those who were in favor of the railways to the American frontier—the Coast Line or Western Extension Railway—as opposed to the Intercolonial Railway interest.

MR. WALLBRIDGE—I wish to nail this forgery to the counter before it goes further, and to that end I desire to be permit ted to read a few extracts from one of the leading papers in the Lower Provinces ( the Nova Scotian), and which are as follow :—

But not quite so fast, good fri nds. This is not the first we have heard of this “military” railway. Last summer, a committee of Congress, composed mostly of shrewd New Englanders, came from Washington to examine and report as to the expediency of constructing a “military ” road to the frontier of New Brunswick. They were not allowed, however, to stop at the frontier, for when they arrived there they found an invitation inviting them to go on to St. John. They went, and St. John was in a perfect furore of interesting excitement. A public meeting was called ; we are not sure whether Mr. TILLEY was present or not—we think he was accidentally absent from some inevitable cause, but sent a message with his compliments and sympathies. The mayor occupied the chair ; the viands were excellent ; the champagne flowed “à la Ottawa ;” the speeches were eloquent; and although St. John had but recently been all in a blaze with sympathy with the poor suffering Southerners, somehow it happened—under what genial influences we cannot say—that they managed to create a most agreeable impression, not only upon the stomachs, but upon the loyal hearts, of the committee of Congress.

But this was not all. The provincial railway was placed at their disposal free of expense, and they were chaperoned over it by leading men, to Shediac and back to St. John. Mr. TILLEY, we think, was on this trip ; and after all was over, they went back with a wondering appreciation ot the ” good lord, good devil” versatility of our New Brunswick friends.

Again the same paper remarks :—

The New Brunswickers understand this, and with Mr. TILLEY at their head, co-operating with the shrewdest men of New England, are bidding in a spirit of commercial enterprise for the great stream of passenger traffic across the Atlantic, which they (the Americans) desire to turn into our good city (Halifax). Apart from all its other advantages, they propose, it appears, to purchase our railroads, and thus release, for our disposal in other railways, the capital employed in its construction.

In another article, the same author ity places this story about the American inter – ference in the St. John elections in a stronger light. I will read it for the benefit of the credulous :—

Strange to say, we find Mr. TILLEY, not only investing the public funds of New Brunswick in the construction of a military road from Portland to St. John (of course only the Yankee end of the line is military), but the delegates themselves have actually made special arrangements with that gentleman to enable him, in event of the present scheme of Confederation being consummated, to con struct the New Brunswick portion of this proposed railway. Now, we would like the delegates to explain this little matter to the satisfaction of the old ladies whom they have been frightening with horrible stories of Yankee devastations, smouldering homesteads, and blazing churches.

In the face of these ext racts is it not idle to say that Hon. Mr . TILLEY was defeated by American railway influences ? The presumption would be the contrary. Looking to their interest those shrewd New Englander s spoken of would have suppor ted the candidate who is willing to invest the funds of New Bruns – wick in a railway connecting with their line. Hon. Mr . TILLEY , the leader of the New BRunswiCk Government , was defeated, not through American influence, but because of the unpopularity of the Federation scheme,

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as presented to the people of his province ; and it is wrong to introduce this new cry into our politics. Canada has been cursed with party cries, and it is time for us to clear the political arena of such false issues and dangerous contests. To introduce this new element of discord can only gain for its promoters a temporary relief, whilst the damage it will inflict upon the best interests of the country are positive. Our critical relations, at this moment, with the American people are mainly traceable to cries of this kind. By rendering the people suspicious of such influence, the promoters of the cry are hastening the accomplishment of what they pretend to oppose. Once render the people of this country dissatisfied with the working of their system of government, and there will be danger of their continuing what will then seem inevitable. If there be any who desire annexation, they could not better forward their views than by raising the false cry of American interference in our political contests. Once destroy public confidence in our institutions, andit is impossible to predict what extremes may not be resorted to. If the Ministry have information of the kind alleged, of an interference by foreigners in the political contest now going on in New Brunswick, they are bound to lay it before the House. Such an interference could not be tolerated, and the country should know the truth of the albgation at the earliest possible moment. If the vote of credit asked for is for military purposes, for fortifications, the Government will find their hands strengthened by the support of every hon. member of this House. It is not necessary to cry loyalty to obtain the vote, no more than it is necessary to cry annexation to secure the passage of an act to unite the provinces. I have been surprised at the alternative that has so often been put by hon members, —Federation, or Annexation. Yes, and by hon. members who, in 1858, helped to laugh out of the House the resolutions of the present Hon. Finance Minister, on the ground that if they were carried and confederation follow, there would be a movement in the direction of annexation. (Hear, hear.) I ask where is the consistency of the two positions—in 1858 federation was a move towards annexation, in 1865 it is the only measure that will prevent annexation ? The language of Her Majesty and of some “noble lords” has been referred to as a reason why this scheme should be accepted without enquiry. But it should be remembered that this is not the first time that language has been put in an Address from the Throne, to palliate the sacrifice of the true interests of Canada. We are as capable of judging here, on the floor of this House, what is for the true interests of the country, as any of the noble lords of the realm. If their speeches contain the sum of wisdom in regard to our affairs, pray how is it that our frontier has been in times past so extensively sacrificed ? Every one who has given any attention to the subject will see that under the Ashburton treaty our frontier was shamefully surrendered to the Americans, and that it received the sanction of noble lords at home ; and now we have to build our railway over the rocks of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, to the seaboard. (Hear, hear.) This question of Federation is a question which concerns our country, which concerns our allegiance, which concerns our connection with the Home Government and the future of this country ; and when our interests are at stake, we are the proper parties to judge of what is best. (Hear, hear.) Therefore, to raise a false cry to enable hon. gentlemen on the opposite side to carry out their measure without amendment and without consulting the people of this province, is unjust in practice and wrong in principle It is a dangerous experiment. Had hon. members been aware of the whole circumstances of the New Brunswick elections, they would perhaps have reflected before placing Hon. Mr. TILLBY in a false position.

HON. MR. McGEE—It is all a mistake.

MR. WALLBRIDGE—The extracts read are confirmatory of this view. I know something of the railways of New Brunswick, and I am aware that a scheme was favored by the people of St. John to extend their railways to the American frontier, as Canada has done in several instances. It was their interest to connect with the Portland road, just as it was the interest of Canada to connect the Grand Trunk with the road from Montreal to Portland. And with Hon. Mr. TILLEY as the advocate of such extension, is it reasonable to infer that the American railway men opposed his election ? The scheme before us is fraught with a job of greater proportions than the New Brunswick people ever thought of. The lurking influences of the Grand Trunk Railway, or of the wellknown contractors, who are uppermost whenever this union is spoken of, are at work. (Ministerial laughter.) Ministers may laugh, but it is patent to all that the rail-

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way, by the longest route it will be possible to find, is the pivot on which the scheme revolves. If it be the desire to get to the seaboard, and not to give certain contracting firms a job, why is not the shortest, cheapest and best route, from every point of view, selected ? Why climb over the mountains of the centre of New Brunswick, or along the scacoast, when a road can be constructed by a better but shorter route, for much less money, by the valley of the St. John? I contend that the route this road is to run should be made known to this House. It is a question involving the expenditure of millions, and if the cheaper route be built, the saving to Canada will also be many millions of dollars. I know that certain honorable gentlemen are prepared to vote on this question phlegmatically. (Laughter.)

MR. H. MACKENZIE—What is it to vote phlegmatically ?

MR. WALLBRIDGE—An hon. gentleman asks me what a phlegmatic vote is ? I would inform him it is to vote on this question, which so deeply concerns our future interests, without inquiry. It will cause some honorable gentlemen to give the lie to their whole political lives. It is to vote away, without enquiry, our rights to the North-West territory. It is to seal up that country hermetically for all time to come. That is what I call giving a phlegmatic vote. (Hear, hear.) We find that the representatives at the Conference irom Nova Scotia and New Brunswick made it a point of the proposed Constitution to construct the Intercolonial Railway, also took good care to make the opening of the North-West contingent upon the state of the finances, and the Confederation will commence life with a debt of $150,000,000. It is evident, therefore, that the North-West is hermetically sealed, as far as Canada is concerned. What shall we gain by this particular scheme of Confederation ? We have been running with railway speed into bankruptcy, and this scheme is one which will add immensely to our debt, and especially to our debt on account of unproductive and useless railways, and of which we do not even know the route, although, now that the elections in New Brunswick are over, it cannot affect the position in that province to give the information we are seeking. (Hear, hear.) I am in favor of a union of the British North American Provinces. But the union that is desirable is a union in fact, not an organized system of discord, with a number of petty legislatures that will only serve to create strife and prevent our moving forward in the career of civilization and improvement. The scheme of the hon. gentlemen, to some extent, will give us the advantages of a legislative union, but it is incumbered with objectionable details—details which, in their importance, amount to principles, and to secure their rejection or amendment I shall employ what energy I can bring to bear. The scheme has been submitted to the people in New Brunswick, and it has there been admitted, as well as in Nova Scotia, that it was subject to amendment. Why should – Canada not have the same right accorded? Why should we take the scheme in its en- tirety, when its authors cannot justify certain provisions which specially relate to this country ? It is treating Canada with contempt, and hon. gentlemen will be held responsible. I have very great confidence in several of the hon. gentlemen opposite. I have very great confidence in the Hon. President of the Council and the two other hon. gentlemen whom he took into the Ministry with him. But, when the Hon the President of the Council consented to go into the Administration without getting a fair representation in it, of the party with which he was acting, both in Upper and in Lower Canada, he miscarried. (Laughter.) That may account for some of the objectionable features of this measure. It may account for Canada consenting, and for the Hon. President of the Council giving his consent, that the voting at the Conference should be by provinces, instead of by numbers. They took very good care to arrange that we should pay according to population. (Hear, hear.) But they voted by provinces, and in that way hampered the scheme with many objectionable details. And I think, therefore, it is now competent for this House to criticise those details, and to take such steps as will ensure their exclusion from tho Imperial Act. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. HOLTON—Before these explanations are over—and I have no desire to prolong them further than is necessary—I would like to ask the Hon. Minister of Finance as to the course to be pursued with referenc to the Lower Canada School Law, which was promised tobe introduced this session. We are now told a prorogation is to take place, and I would like to know whether the pledge given by the honorable gentleman at Sherbrooke, on behalf of himself and his col-

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leagues, and renewed several times in the House since the session commenced, is intended to be carried out, or whether it is to be modified—because it must be obvious that tliat matter has an important bearing on the question of Confederation, with which it has been connected by honorable gentlemen opposite.

HON. MR. GALT—I think the statement made this afternoon by the Hon. Attorney General West is perfectly explicit The Government intend to ask for a vote on the resolutions now in the hands of the Speaker. With regard to the School question, the Government are under the same pledge as they have always been : it will be legislated upon by this House.

HON. MR. HOLTON—This session?

HON. MR. GALT—It will not be legislated upon this session, because, as the Hon. Attorney General West has stated, it is the intention of the Government to prorogue the House at the earliest date. But all the conditions connected with the resolutions will be legislated upon as a matter of course.

HON. MR. HOLTON—I understand, then, that the pledge to bring down that question this session is withdrawn—the policy of the Government on that point having been modified by the result of the elections in New Brunswick.

HON. MR. GALT—There is no change in the policy of the Government on the subject of Confederation, or any of the other measures connected with it.

HON. MR. HOLTON—But the honorable gentleman must permit me to recall the nature of the pledge given by himself and his colleagues at Sherbrooke and in this House—that there would be a bill brought down by the Government during this session of Parliament, for the amendment of the Lower Canada School laws. This was repeated by the Honorable Solicitor General East, on behalf of the Government, in the course of certain interpellations made on this subject in the absence of my hon. friend the Finance Minister. And the conclusion of the whole matter now is, that the hon. gentleman states emphatically that this is not to be done. The people of New Brunswick, therefore, among the other mischiefs they have wrought by the free exercise of their franchise in the rejection of the Government which undertook, without legislative or other authority, to enter into arrangements for revolutionizing the country— among other mischiefs they have wrought has been this, that the Minister of Finanoe and his colleagues conceive themselves to be relieved thereby of the obligations they undertook to the country and to the House—

HON. MR. GALT—No ! no !

HON. MR. HOLTON—The obligations they undertook to the country and to the House to bring in an amendment to the Lower Canada School laws during this session of Parliament. The hon. gentleman knows full well—none better than he—the point of these remarks. It may not be appreciated by die House generally, especially by the members from Upper Canada, but the hon. gentleman knows well the importance of it, and that the English Protestants of Lower Canada desire to know what is to be done in this matter of education, before the final voice of the people of this country is pronounced on the question of Confederation. The assurances given by the hon. gentleman led them to believe—and in point of lactthey do generally believe—that that measure is to be brought down before the final vote of this House is taken on the question of Confederation. That is the point of the whole matter. And the honorable gentleman now tells us, through his leader, that the Confederation resolutions are to be put through this session immediately, and that commissioners are going to England to press legislation founded on those resolutions, while on the other hand he himself, the great Protestant champion of Lower Canada, who claims the confidence of Lower Canada Protestants in an especial manner, now tells them that this promised legislation is not to be had until next session of Parliament, when it will be too late perhaps to petition this House, or even to send popular petitions to the Imperial Parliament agaiust this measure. Therefore it is, I repeat, that among the many curious results of the free exercise of their franchise by the people of New Brunswick, we have this, that the Protestant champion of Lower Canada is not going to do that which he undertook to do on behalf of his followcountrymen and co-religionists—that whieh he promised this session, but now postpones till another session, when all the circumstances may be changed. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. GALT.—I think the interest evinced by the hon. member for Chateauguay iu this matter is somewhat remarkable. I feel grateful indeed to him for the kind solicitude he expresses on my behalf, that I should cause no disappointment to the class which to a certain extent looks to me. Still

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I think he is guilty of rather a paltry quibble in the statement he has just made. The position of the Government was most distinctly stated by the Attorney General West, and no misunderstanding can exist with regard to it. It is admitted frankly that the events in New Brunswick call for some special action by this Government, and the action which they propose to take was stated in the most distinct terms by the Government. As regards the education question, statements have been made already as to the nature of the amendments which are to be proposed to the existing School law. The Government will unquestionably take care that that law shall be amended in the sense of those statements before the Confederation scheme finally becomes law in Canada. I think no further statement is necessary. I can add nothing to the assurances which have already been given on that subject. (Hear, hear.)

HON. J . H. CAMERON—There is one point on which I should like an explanation from the Hon. Attorney General West. He says there will be a vote of credit asked from the House, until the next meeting of the Legislature. That, I suppose, will not be until July or August, but the appropriation for the servicesof the volunteer force on thefrontier expires in May. Will that vote of credit include the amount necessary to continue the volunteers on their present service, if the Government find that they require it to be continued up to a subsequent period, say the first of August? I should like an answer to this question, if the Government have made up their minds on this part of the subject. I may remark, also, that one cannot help feeling it to be a matter of regret that the public business of the country could not go on. Of course, if the Government determine that the question of Confederation shall be pressed to a speedy decision by the House, and the Hon. Atty. Gen. West and other members of the Government proceed immediately thereafter to the other side of the Atlantic, it will be necessary that the House should rise, without getting through the ordinary business ol the country. At the same time, a few weeks more would enable the House to get through all that business, and when we met again in July or August, we would be able to devote our whole time to the measures which the Government may submit to us, as the result of the mission to England. If this debate is to be pressed as rapidly as the Hon. Attorney General indicates, I have no doubt we would be able to dispose of it, and also to get rid of the whole of the public and private business on the Orders, so as to allow the prorogation to take place before the first of April. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. GALT—I will answer the question put by my honorable friend to the Hon. Attorney General West. The intention of the Government is to ask such a vote of credit from this House, as in their opinion the necessities of the country will demand, until the period when Parliament may again be called together. With reference to that, I would remind the House that the ordinary supplies have been voted up to the 30th June, and this will have to be borne in mind in considering the sum the House will be asked to vote. The Government will unquestionably have in view the continuance of the protection of the frontier. (Hear, hear.) As the Hon. Attorney General lias stated the intention of the Governmeut is to meet Parliament again, so soon as they are in a position to state to them frankly the views of the Imperial Government; and that of course, to a certain extent, depends on the time during which they may be delayed in London in getting a final answer. But the intention of the Government is to lose no time in meeting Parliament again. (Hear, hear.)

HON. J . S MACDONALD—I have a word or two to say. The Government have changed their policy so quickly, that we can now place no reliance on the statements of Ministers of the Crown. I have not the slightest doubt that hon. gentlemen on the Treasury benches at this moment contemplate— and I ask the attention of the House to what I am saying, because it is a bold statement I am to make—I say it is my deliberate opinion, that if we pass these resolutions, the gentlemen on the Treasury benches will go home and find a justification in England for manufacturing a bill of perhaps an entirely different character, that will cover all points, and that they will come back and force that on the people of this country at all hazards, having embodied in it whatever regulations they please as to schools, and whether there shall be one House or two Houses in the Local Parliament, and all other such matters. I am satisfied that that is their plan. They know well they cannot go to an unwilling people

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with this scheme—they dare not submit it to the country—and they propose, therefore, to steal a march on the people, and will come back with a bill manufactured in London, as was done in 1840, and press it on the people of Canada. We know how it was in 1852 or 1853, when an act came over to us, making an alteration in our Constitution, with respect to the increase of representation in Parliament, of which no one to this day has been able to trace the origin. What was done on that occasion may be done again. They will be met in England by gentlemen from New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, and they will manufacture there a Constitution for the people of Canada— which the people of Canada will be compelled to take, or else expose themselves to be called traitors and rebels. They will come out with the authority of the Government, and invoke the name of the Queen, and will attempt to impose the Constitution thus manufactured on all the colonies, stigmatising as traitors all who oppose them. This is not the first time that that game has been played. Honorable gentlemen, failing to obtain the assent of an unwilling people here, will take that course—especially when, as is well known, the people and Government of England are only too anxious to throw upon us a large burden for the defence of this country. Influenced by the attentions and blandishments they will receive in England, Ministers will sacrifice our interests, and, as the price of it, will perhaps come back with high-sounding titles. (Laughter.)

HON. MR. HOLTON—That has been done already.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD— And what has been done before may be done again. They will go to England as if armed, as they suppose, with a carte blanche from the peopleot this country, because ot the adoption of the scheme by this House to obtain a Constitution, such as is shadowed forth in these resolutions—imperfectly as they themselves admit—for Upper and Lower Canada and the provinces generally. The English Parliament will say, “We have here the best intellects of the provinces, the leaders of both parties, the men who have played their part before the country for the last eight or tea years, with the confidence of their respective parties.” But, if they were to read at the same time what these leading men have in that period said of one another, they might well question whether the men who had branded each other with infamy and disgrace, were the men Lest fitted to unite in framing a bill to secure the peace and quietness of this country—a measure, in the language of the hon. member for South Oxford (Hon. Mr. BROWN), forever to settle the difficulties between Upper and Lower Canada. (Hear, hear.) I protest vehemently against these attacks on our rights. I protest against our being asked thus blindly to vote away our rights and liberties. However clever these gentlemen may be, we know to our cost what our cleverest financiers have done and will do again when they get out of the reach of public opinion, for the moment. When the country got tired of them, they entered into this Coalition to strengthen themselves. These are the men who will give us a new Constitution made in England. I do not pretend to be a prophet; but I ask you, Mr. SPEAKER, to remember, that I have declared now what is my deliberate conviction as to the game that will be played by hon. gentlemen on the Treasury benches. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. BROWN—It does astonish me that an hon. gentleman in the position which the hon. member for Cornwall has occupied for so many years, should deliberately rise and make such statements as we have heard from him, after the grave announcement made from the Treasury benches with the assent of the Governor General of this province. The hon. gentleman has been told that the Government intend, if the House sanction this measure, to carry it home with the honest intention of giving effect to it, and of having arrangements made with reference to the other grave matters which have to be considered there.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—What are they ?

HON. MR. BROWN—The question of defence, and the question of the commercial relations between these provinces and tho United States. He has been told that it is the intention that members of the Government should go to England ; that on their return, at the earliest possible moment, Parliament shall be called together and have submitted to it the result of the negotiations. And after all this, the honorable gentleman has the rashness—I shall not use a harsher word—to get up here and impute to the whole members of the Government, and to the head of the Government, who has

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sanctioned the making of this announcement to the House—

HON. MR. DORION—I rise to a point of order. I ask if it is in order to bring before the House the authority and name of the Governor General.

MR. SPEAKER—The name of the Sovereign cannot be introduced in this way, but I do not know that the rule extends further.

HON. MR. BROWN—I am quite in order. I apprehend it is quite impossible that we could have made to the House the statement with regard to the prorogation, and the intention of sending members of the Government to Englaud, in the way we propose, unless we had the direct sanction of His Excellency.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD-You advised him of course.

HON. MR. BROWN—Of course. With the duty we owed to His Excellency, it was impossible we could make such a statement, without first obtaining His Excellency’s sanction. The hon. gentleman knows it well, and when he ventured to get up and make the rash charge that the whole thing is a trick, to get some scheme entirely different from this carried through the Imperial Parliament, he assumes a liberty that is entirely unworthy of a member of this House. (Hear, hear.) And I can tell the honorable gentleman and my honorable friend from Hochelaga, who are so anxious about the position which has been taken on this side by myself and by my hon. friends the Postmaster General and the Provincial Secretary—I can tell them that we are quite alive to the position in which we are placed, and that we have no tear with regard to the course we have taken, are now taking, and shall continue to take, till this measure is brought to a satisfactory conclusion, but we will be able to justity ourselves in the eyes of those who placed us here. (Cheers.)

HON. MR. HOLTON—The statement just made by the Hon. President of the Council is one, I conceive, of very great importance, as it puts a meaning on the declaration made by the Hon. Attorney General West, which some of us, at all events —myself among the rest—did not catch when the hon. gentleman made his statement. We are to understand now, by the declaration of the Hon. President of the Council, that the Government do not intend to have anything concluded in this matter of Confederation till the next meeting of the House.

HON. MR. BROWN—I did not say anything of the sort.

HON. MR. HOLTON— Then what was the point of attack on the hon. member for Cornwall ? That hon. member indicated his fear and his belief that a Constitution would be framed in England, at the instance and, perhaps, under the supervision of certain of the hon. gentlemen on the Treasury benches, which would prove to be utterly distasteful and unpalatable to the people of this country. And the Hon President of the Council gets up and repels that with the greatest possible indignation. It appears to me that, if there is any point in his indignation, it must be here—that some further action is to be sought from this House before any effect is given to the question of Confederation. I take it, that is the fair inference from the statement now made by the Hon. President of the Council. I ask whether that is the inference to be deduced—whether that is what the hon. gentleman meant ? (A pause.) The honorable gentleman declines to answer.

HON. MR. BROWN—Go on, and finish your speech.

HON. MR. HOLTON—I would like an answer now.

HON. MR. GALT—No, no. Finish your speech.

HON. MR. HOLTON—The honorable gentleman knows well that this is not part of the regular debate. I did not rise to make a speech. The Hon. Attorney General West did not rise to make a speech. No one has done so. The Hon. Attorney General, on behalf of the Government, made a statement. That statement has led to some observations, and some enquiries, that the House might understand its full purport. The regular debate is to be resumed by my honorable friend from Quebec (Hon. Mr. ALLEYN), who, having moved its adjournment, is entitled to the floor, and I should be sorry to keep it from him, by making a speech. But I want those points to be clearly understood, for it is in the interest of all parties that they should be. Though I do not go quite so far as my honorable friend from Cornwall in his observations—


HON. MR. HOLTON—Though I do not go so far as he has done, yet Ithought there might be some danger, but I look upon the statement made by the Hon. President of the

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Council, and the indignation with which he i repelled the charge of my honorable friend from Cornwall, as calculated to reassure the House. And I merely rose for the purpose of asking honorable gentlemen whether we are really to understand from the supplementary statement made on behalf of the Government by the Hon. President of the Council, that the further consideration of this House is to be invited to all these measures—to the new Constitution for the country, as well as the arrangements that may be come to with respect to our defences, and with respect to our commercial relations.

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD—If I supposed for a moment that the honorable member for Chateauguay really required an answer, he should get it. I have no doubt the Hon. President of the Council would gladly give an answer, if he really thought he had any information to give to the honorable gentleman. But no one understands better than the honorable member for Chateauguay the way in which the case was put. The honorable member for Cornwall (Hon. J. S. MACDONALD) rose, and in rather an unparliamentary way — after a statement had been formally made to inform the House and the country what was the policy of the Government— upon his honor declared his belief that the Government were not sincere in the explanations they had made, and that their design was to get a bill passed by the Imperial Parliament, contrary to the feelings of this country and of the Lower Provinces, and to force that upon the people. That was the declaration of the honorable gentleman. I do not know if he was sincere in making it. He seemed to be sincere, and pledged his honor and his conscience to it. (Laughter.) But his doing so only convinces me, that, if he had been in office himself, that is the course he would have adopted ; no such suggestion would have risen to any man’s mind, unless he had thought it a feasible one. (Hear, hear.) For our part we do not consider such a course to be in accordance with our position in this House, or in accordance with our principles as men of honor; and the Hon. President of the Council rose to repel the dishonoring insinuation with that just indignation which was felt by every man who heard it, and to declare that the belief of the honorable gentleman was utterly untrue, unfounded, and unwarranted. But I shall repeat the anouncement in a way that it may be understood by the hon. member for Cornwall —in language that will be plain to the meanest capacity— (laughter) — so that no man can mistake it. Our intention is to get the sanction of this House to the Address I have moved, and this having been done, the two branches of the Legislature will have given their votes in favor of the Confederation scheme, and there is the end to that, so far as Canada is concerned. We will then go over to England with that in our hands, and will say to the Imperial Government :— ” Canada has agreed to this, New Brunswick has not agreed to it, and we wish to take counsel with the Imperial Government as to our position. This is the unmistakable voice of the people of Canada through their representatives, and we, as representing the Government of Canada, which has three-fourths of the whole population of the provinces, come to consult with the authorities of the Mother Country what is best for the interests of these provinces.” (Hear, hear.) We shall also discuss the question of defence, and, I have no doubt, we shall be met in a most large-hearted and liberal spirit by the English Gov- ernment, and that England will now, in justice to Canada, pledge herself to her utmost resources in men and money for our defence. (Hear, hear.) Then there is a third question— that of the Reciprocity treaty ; and we will also take counsel with the British Government as to the best means of treating that subject. And the honorable gentleman knows —at least he ought to know, for I cannot answer for the limits of his understanding—that we can only discuss that through Imperial avenues, that we can have no direct communication in such matters with the American Government. Having taken counsel with the Imperial Government on those three points, we shall call the House together at the earliest period, I hope long before the current half-year terminates, that is, before the 30th June. We will submit the result of our mission, and it will then be before the House for discussion. Though another session, it will be in effect a continuation of this session, and when we have debated and disposed of the most pressing subjects, we will then take up what remains of the Confederation scheme— such as the constitution of the local governments and the school question, with regard to which, as the Hon. Minister of Finance has stated, we shall propose to carry out to the letter the pledges we gave at the Conference, and which we ask the House to endorse, and hope it will. (Hear, hear.) We will also submit the result of our negotiations on the question of defence, and on all those matters

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connected with the relations between Great Britain and the United States, so far as British America is concerned, and on which we are authorized to take action by the Imperial authorities. We cannot know at what stage the negotiations between the Imperial Government and the United States Government may have arrived when the House meets again ; but the result of the mission of those members of the Canadian Government who go home, will be submitted to the House. We shall lay before the House all that the British Government resolve upon, after hearing what we have to say as to the question of Confederation in its general aspect, and in its relation to the position it may have assumed in the other provinces. We shall then lay before the House the scheme of the local governments for the two Canadas. We shall lay before them the action necessary to be taken with reference to the School question, the matter of defence and the Reciprocity treaty. The honorable member for Cornwall gets up, and, because he finds the Government are resolved to take a firm and proper course in this matter, he chooses to throw improper and insulting remarks across the floor. But the House has learned what value is to he attached to the honorable gentleman’s statements, when a little while ago it heard him—an honorable gentleman who professes to be such a patriot —stating, with reference to this scheme, in favor of which a large majority of the people of Canada had declared, that he had a ” mischievous satisfaction ” in seeing it checked. It was in the same spirit of causeless, senseless mischief that he got up to prophecy all sorts of improper conduct on the part of the Government. (Hear, hear.)

HON. J. S. MACDONALD —Whatever views may be entertained by the Honorable Attorney General West of my capacity, I suppose I have got along in my own way as he has got along in his way. But Ithink the House may thank me for having obtained at last—notwithstanding the castigation the honorable gentleman has dealt out to me, and which I hope I shall be able to survive, as I have borne up heretofore under similar avalanches of hard words about my want of judgment, want of capacity, and so forth—I think the House may thank me for having obtained at last from the Honorable Attorney General the explicit statement he has made, that the scheme is to come back again for the consideration of this House.

HON. MR. DORION — The Honorable Attorney General West did not say that.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—He said—if not the scheme itself—that all the arrangements connected with it, as to the local governments, the proportions we are to assume of the defence of the country, and the School question—which the Honorable Finance Minister told us, but for this untoward affair in New Brunswick, would have been submitted before this session closed—that all these things will be brought back and be submitted next session, before the Confederation scheme is finally concluded. This was not so explicitly stated in the honorable gentleman’s first speech. I have been accused of being so unpatriotic as to take a mischievous pleasure in any check upon the scheme. What I said was, that I had mischievous pleasure in seeing that the honorable gentleman who had charged the Canadian Government with bad faith had been defeated and ousted from his place. And I say that, if this scheme were likely to prove for the advantage of the people of this province, no one would rejoice more than I in seeing it carried. But I have always felt, and do now feel, that the Constitution of this country can be well worked out. I have never given a vote for Federation. I have never given a vote for a legislative union.

AN HON. MEMBER—Or for annexation.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—No ; I did not sign the annexation manifesto. (Hear, hear, and laughter.) I have not assented or given countenance to any scheme for changing our present Constitution, and it is not right for the honorable gentleman, because I do not choose to assent to this scheme without knowing all the details, to taunt me with being unpatriotic. (Hear, hear.) The honorable gentleman would have the House to understand that I was ignorant of the fact that this Government could not deal directly with the American Government with regard to the Reciprocity treaty. And yet in the face of this charge, he must have known that the only record which an Address of this House brought down the other day was a Minute of Council addressed to the Secretary of State by myself and colleagues, on the subject of reciprocity.

HON. MR. HOLTON—And what have honorable gentlemen opposite done since?

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—They have done nothing since,of course. We were attacked by the Hon. President of the Council because we did nothing with regard to the Reciprocity treaty.

HON. MR. BROWN—The honorable gen-

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tleman is entirely mistaken. He is thinking of the time when I privately urged upon him, as Prime Minister, the necessity of taking steps, and prompt steps, for ascertaining what was the mind of the Washington Government, and whether or not a new treaty could be negotiated. He explained to me the obstacle that stood in his way ; and, though I considered the difficulties in his way ought to have been overcome, yet the circumstances were such that I never blamed him.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—We did all we could in the way of making representations to the Imperial Government. And what have honorable gentlemen opposite done since ?

HON. MR. BROWN—We have been acting in the same direction ever since, and I think it would have been well for the interests of this country if we had not been fettered as we have been.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—Well, I say that this explanation of the Honorable Attorney General is more explicit and much more, elaborate than the explanation we had from him in the first instance. In commenting upon that first explanation, I hope I did not make use of unparliamentary language. But I am entitled surely to draw deductions from the announcements made to us from the Treasury benches, and I am not bound to mince matters if I feel alarmed at the consequences which may result from the giving of this dreadful blow to the Constitution we have so long lived under. It is surely not unseemly that I should feel keenly on this subject, and that, before the Constitution to which I am sincerely attached is swept away, I should express that indignation which I may have expressed somewhat warmly this afternoon. (Hear, hear.) Much stronger language has been expressed on the floor of this House, when the motives of the honorable gentlemen on the Treasury benches have been questioned by honorable gentlemen whose intellect perhaps as far transcends mine as day outshines night. (Laughter.) But I think the country and the House will yet thank me for stating, even in the earnest manner I did, my alarm in connection with this matter. At all events, I have a sincere belief in the truth of what I stated. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. DORION—The explanations given to-day by the Honorable Attorney General West are fuller than those at first given ; yet I am afraid that there is still some misunderstanding. The Honorable Attorney General West stated that the scheme for the constitution of the local governments would be submitted to the House next session. Is it the intention of the Government, or the delegation when in England, to press the scheme upon the Imperial Government without the concurrence of the Lower Provinces ? If the Lower Provinces do not come in, will the Government press the adoption of the scheme so as to apply it to the two provinces of Canada ? For, if I understood the Honorable Attorney General West, he said that next session they will bring in the constitutions of the local legislatures. Now, if they are not to press the scheme at all, there would be no necessity for local legislatures. (Hear, hear.)

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD—I desire simply to state, as I have said before, that after these resolutions are carried, those who go to confer with the Imperial Government will doubtless adopt such steps as they think are best suited to us. (Hear, hear, and laughter.)

MR. RANKIN—I feel obliged to the honorable member for Cornwall if he elicited the explanations just given, though I cannot approve of what he said otherwise. To me the intelligence is most acceptable. (Hear, hear.) I learn that it is the intention of the Government to go on without regard to the action of the Lower Provinces, and to preso this measure through without being influenced by the action of New Brunswick. I hold that it is common sense for us to remember that we are considering the interests of the people at large, and this scheme, if acceptable to the people of Canada, is acceptable to four-fifths of the people of British North America.— (Hear, hear.) It must be evident to the meanest capacity—to make use of the words of the Honorable Attorney General West a few minutes ago—that one of two destinies awaits us : either we must extend and strengthen British influence and British power on this continent, or these provinces must, one by one, be absorbed by the neighboring republic. (Hear, hear.) That has been my opinion for years, and it is my opinion still. However, Mr. SPEAKER, I simply rose for the purpose of soliciting more distinct information upon one point on which I have heard nothing said, although the explanations may have been given before I came into the House. I wish to know what is the intention of the Government with reference to the volunteers now on the frontier,—whether they have provided the means to maintain this force, if required, beyond the 1st of May next?

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AN HON. MEMBER—That question has already been answered.

MR. RANKIN—I only hope the Government will ask the House for means to keep up whatever force may be thought necessary, not only till June, but till October if requisite. (Hear, hear.)

MR. GIBBS—I think that the policy of the Government, as announced to-day by the Hon. Attorney General West, is bold, manly, and straightforward, and such as will entitle them to the confidence of this House and of the country. (Hear, hear.) It shows that they, at least, are in earnest ou this great question of Confederation which they have introduced, and whatever may have been the opinion of the Opposition as to the motive which induced them to lay this measure before the House at the opening of the session, I think it must be utterly dispelled by the announcement just made to the House. (Hear, hear.) If the scheme was worth anything when the Government, in the opening Speech this session, declared its intention of asking the consideration of the House for it, the same scheme must be worth as much now, and I trust that none of the difficulties which may for a moment interpose, will prevent the Administration from carrying it through. (Hear, hear.) It has been said that the measure which they should have brought down was the smaller one, whilst they have introduced the larger. Now, sir, I hold that the greater always includes the less ; and that the Government, instead of being blamed for the course they have taken, are entitled to the thanks of this House for bringing down the more important one at the outset. (Hear, hear.) It is not often that questions of the importance of that now before the House are carried without considerable opposition. I need only refer, as an example, to that of the Clergy Reserves, during the discussion of which there were fights, fierce and numerous, lasting for many years, until the measure was carried at last. And now, as wc arc about to obtain what Upper Canada has sought for years—representation by population— we find, unfortunately, difficulties interposing; but I hope that notwithstanding these, the Government will not falter, but will carry out the wish of the majority of the members of this House and of the people of the country, and consummate the scheme of uniting the British North American Provinces. (Hear, hear.) I am very happy to find that the Government have taken into consideration the negotiations on reciprocal trade with the United States. That is a most important question, and I should have been glad, for that alone, if the Confederation scheme had been carried out successfully, because it would have been much easier to discuss the matter through the British Govment by means of representatives from the General Confederacy, than by representatives from the various disunited provinces. Now I say, Mr. SPEAKER, that the course the Government have pursued must inspire confidence in them on the part of their supporters, and I believe that the country will approve of it too. (Hear, hear.) I hope they will relax no effort to see the scheme carried to completion. (Hear, hear.)

DR. PARKER—If I understand correctly the statement just made by the Government, they propose to send a delegation to England for the purpose of discussing the three questions of the Beciprocity treaty, the defences, and the scheme of Confederation now before the House. The Hon. Attorney General says that the question of the defences is very pressing, and that immediate action should also be taken with, regard to the Reciprocity treaty. If these subjects are so pressing, they should be dealt with at once, irrespective of whether this scheme is carried or not. (Hear, hear.) A period of constitutional changes is most unfavorable for the proper consideration of these questions ; and if the necessity is as urgent as represented, they should be taken up and considered at once, even in advance of Confederation. Earl RUSSELL, then Lord JOHN RUSSELL, was severely ridiculed by the British press because he introduced a Reform bill during the Crimean war. I deprecate most strongly the attempt made to coerce constitutional changes upon this House and the country under the pressure of danger and coming war. (Hear, hear.) He is no friend of Canada who is constantly creating alarm and raising the cuckoo cry of loyalty. (Hear, hear.) This Government was formed for the express purpose of discovering a remedy for our constitutional difficulties, and I hold them to that engagement. This scheme is to unite the whole of the British North American Colonies ; and if the treaty is adopted by the Imperial Government, if an Imperial Act is passed on the basis of these resolutions, and the Maritime Provinces persist in their present refusal to come in, in what position are we then placed? Is this plan of Federation to be applied to the two Canadas? Sir, this is

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not the constitutional remedy we desired and sought ? And I ask the House if it is prepared to accept this union for ourselves ? (Hear, hear.) I thiuk that the Government should have confined themselves simply to the constitutional question, and should cot have tacked on to it our commercial and defensive relations, for the purpose of obtrining a little prestige. They have not put the question before Parliament fairly, or as it has been placed before the legislatures of any of the other provinces. I think the House should look at the question in this way — is an Imperial Act to be passed, establishing a Confederation of the two Canadas on the basis of these resolutions ? I am not prepared to accept that as the constitutional remedy. I do not want it in that form. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. McGEE—The hon. gentleman who has just gat down says that we have put this question before the House as it has not been put in any of the other provinces. Now, my information, which perhaps is as correct as his, leads me to believe that the same course has been pursued here as has been or will be adopted in three of the other provinces—Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, and Nova Scotia. The last information received shows that there is, as I am informed, a fair chance of the resolutions being adopted in Newfoundland In Nova Scotia the resolutions were brought down by the Provincial Secretary, and it was then stated that the adoption of the resolutions would be moved, on a future day. So Dr. TUPPER, the Provincial Secretary, stated.

DR. PARKER—Head His Excellency’s Speech.

HON. MR. MCGEE—Well, it was a very proper one. But the hon. gentleman will see that out of the four provinces he is wrong in regard to three of them. Then, my hon. friend the member for North Hastings (Mr. T. C. WALLBRIDGE) repudiated the idea that American influence had anything to do with the result of the elections iu New Brunswick. Now, I may say to my hon. iriend that one of the successful candidates is the agent of the American line of steamers —the International line—which does all the carrying trade to New Brunswick ; and there is not, I am told, a pound ol the stock of that company held in New Brunswick. (Hear, hear.) Does any one suppose that the influence of that company was not used for his election ? Both steamboat and railway, and mining and fishery influences were brought to bear ; and I think it will not be saying too much—and I have no hesitation in saying, for my part—that in that portion of the country, as well as in others, that the fight was between parties pro-Yankee and pro-British. It was a fair stand-up fight of Yankee interests on the one side and British interests on the other ; and those who arc here ungenerously and unwisely rejoicing over the defeat of Hon. Mr. TILLEY, are in reality rejoicing in the triumph of Yankee interests. I state this from the knowledge I have obtained from ten different visits to that country, and I am quite sure, if my hon. friend had been there all the times that I have been, and had the same opportunities for observation, that he would understand that there are influences there quite apart from the real merits of Coniederation. (Hear, hear.) Among other cries, Hon. Mr. TILLEY was assailed because it was said that Hon. Mr. MACDONALD had stated the Intercolonial Railway could not be made—as of course a railway could not be made—a part of the Constitution. That is a sample of the cries against lion. Mr. TILLEY. In fact, it was a contest between prejudice and patriotism; between ignorance and intelligence ; between Yankee influence and the broad principles ol British North American policy. (Hear, hear.) Those who rejoice over that state of things may congratulate themselves if they choose, but it is for us to stand by the true public opinion of the country ; it is for us to show an example of firmness and good faith in carrying out this scheme ; it is for us to show the rest of the Empire that we are determined to adhere to our original resolution, and that we are not a people who do not know our own minds for three weeks, and make proposals one day or one week to breathe them down the next. (Hear, hear.) I am sure if my honorable friend from North Hastings only knew that country as well as I do, that he would come to the same conclusions.

After the recess,

HON. MR. ALLEYN said—Mr. SPEAKER, those whose fortune it has been to sit since 1851 in the reformed Legislature of Canada, have had to deal with and settle matters of the highest importance to the province. Questions which in other and older lands have loo ened the bonds of society, have caused bloodshed and almost led to anarchy, such as our Seigniorial Tenure and Clergy

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Reserve Acts, have been finally and peaceably disposed of, not possibly without injustice to a few, but certainly to the satisfaction cf the community at large. Yet all those things, though of the greatest importance to us in Canada, sink into insignificance in comparison with that now before this House. While they related to our own affairs only, and were designed to promote the peaceful working of our own province, the question which we have now to pronounce upon concerns and relates to a Constitution for all the provinces of British North America, and for a country which may eventually comprise half a continent, and extend in one unbroken chain from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean. (Cheers.) But although the consideration of this great question has consumed a good deal of the time of this House, and though it is one of such great importance, and so wide in its extent that it does not excite those strong personal and party feelings in the minds of honorable members which much less important questions, of a more local nature, generally excite, still, sir, I think there is no one who looks at the future of this country for which we are called upon to act, who can avoid coming to the conclusion that the question is one deserving of so much deliberate consideration at our hands, that no amount of time can be considered wasted in debating and deciding upon it. Yet Mr. SPEAKER, this is no new question. It has been brought up several times in Parliament, and before the people, and has occupied the attention of our ablest men, more or less, for the past forty or fifty years. It has been presented, theoretically, to the minds of the public of every province in British North America, in articles and pamphlets that have been written upon it ; but now for the first time, by an extraordinary combination of events such as may never occur again, it presents itself to those empowered to deal with it practically and to give it life and vitality. (Hear, hear.) We have a great responsibility resting upon us with reference to the decision we shall come to on this important question. When I say that there has been an extraordinary combination of events, I think not the least extraordinary was the coming together of the leading men from all parts of the provinces, entertaining widely differen’ and hostile views, yet determining to keep those views in abeyance while they devised a scheme for the benefit of our common country. When before has the spectacle been witnessed of the leaders of adverse political camps surrendering that advantage which a resistance to any great change must always give in party politics, and meeting together to settle upon a common ground of action ? This we saw last summer in the meeting of the delegates from all the provinces. Many of these gentlemen must have known that they risked their political positions, and we now know it in a practical way. But far better for a public man to be defeated in a great cause than to succeed in a bad one. (Hear, hear.) We cannot look upon the action of those men without conceding to them, first of all, a great amount of credit for the honorable and patriotic spirit which they evinced. Whatever views we may hold of their judgment, it must be conceded on all hands that their conduct deserves a high meed of praise. (Hear, hear.) But when we see this question taken up in all the provinces, and receiving so much attention in England, and even in other portions of Europe, in so short a period of time, I think we must feel that there must be some great overruling cause at woik to induce so vast an amount of attention to be given to the subject. I have examined the questi n carefully in this aspect, and I venture to express an opinion respecting the cause, by reference to the history of nations. I recollect in a speech from Lord MACAULAY, in addressing the University of Aberdeen I think it was, speaking of the events of 1848, the remark occurs that since the invasion of the Huns civilization never ran suoh risks as in that year. (Hear, hear.) Its dangers passed away, but the results remain. The wave which threatened to submerge, obeying a natural law, retired beyond low-water mark, and has left exposed more than one coast. Small nations seem not to be considered, the faith of treaties is laughed at, and in this boasted age of civilization the doctrine that might is right prevails as strongly as in the seventeenth century. (Hear, hear.) The Danes, a brave and virtuous people, have been exposed to a hopeless war with Austria and Prussia, chiefs of the Teutonic race, while England and France remonstrated, by words and proto cols, but acted not. The iron heel of Russia has crushed out the last sparks of freedom in Poland— long-suffering Poland, for whom so much sentiment has been expended, and free En-

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gland and generous France stood silent lookers on. (Hear, hear.) From the Caucasus we have had the exodus of a nation from the land they defended for centuries, in bitter pilgrimage, losing thousands and tens of thousands on the way, to seek in the wilds of Asia for subsistence and freedom. On this continent the great nation which adjoins us has resorted to the bitter arbitrament of the sword, and an internecine and deplorable combat is being waged on a scale unknown since the Russian campaign and the great Napoleonic wars. These things, according to the stern rules of statecraft, may be right, and nations possibly cannot break the hard law of non-intervention ; but when we see such events passing around us, must we not come to the conclusion that power must of necessity increase and encroach, or that it is as unreasonable now as it ever has been, and that pure justice and abstract right, without armed battalions to support them, will neither preserve integrity of territory nor secure protection of person. Again, in the discoveriesin the arts and sciences, we can perceive how much the power of great states have become increased as compared with the smaller ones. The telegraph has annihilated time, railroads and stealers have devoured space. War can only be waged by nations possessing vast resources in money, warlike engines and materials. One iron-clad man-of-war, with her complement of Armstrong guns, would cost the year’s revenue of a province. (Hear, hear.) And if we look around us we see this principle of territorial aggrandizement, this gathering together of the disjecta membra of nations ; this girding up of the loins of empires for coming events is steadily carried out. The principle of centralization is rapidly going on, is pressing together the great nations, and rendering it necessary for smaller nations and provinces to unite, and centralize for their common defence. (Hear, hear.) The subject is not one of theory, but of fact. Look at Italy, such a short time ago a weak and scattered congeries of states, now united into one powerful government. VICTOR EMMANUEL is King of some twenty-five millions of people ; France has Nice and Savoy and possibly a portion of Central America ; Prussia and Austria have robbed Denmark ; Russia has absorbed the Caucasus and is advancing into Central Asia ; Mexico is springing into a powerful empire ; the United States are, in men and the materials of war, showing a power which the world has seldom seen excelled. Such things passing round us, it would ill become us not seriously to consider our position, and, if possible, profit by the occasion. (Cheers) What I have already said applies to all the provinces and to all small powers ; but we in Canada have had peculiar difficulties of our own. Usually great questions strengthen governments. Aaron’s rod swallows up the rods of the magicians; but, though we have settled great questions, our governments have fallen likehouses of cards. Coalition and party governments alike have met the same fate, and it had become seriously to be considered as to whether responsible government was not a failure in Canada. Before the cry for an increased representation for Upper Canada, several of our best public men were driven from political life ; and it must have become clear to those who watched events that there must soon have been a readjustment of the representation based partly, at least, on numbers, or a dissolution of the union. I think, sir, that those who have read and profited by the events of the past, and have considered what is likely to occur in the future, must be satisfied that a repeal of the union between Upper and I ower Canada would be a very great misfortune. And as to representation according to population, the appeals to prejudices and passions, and possibly well grounded fears which must result from granting that to Upper Canada, would be must disastrous. (Hear, hear.) We should have had, in Lower Canada, a very large amount of discontent and even disaffection ; and, therefore, I consider it a great advantage to Canada that the adoption of Confederation will meet these difficulties without causing the discontent and disaffection which either of the above measures would inevitably arouse. (Hear.) But, sir, I may be asked, will these provinces, if united, become a great power ? Sir, I shall frankly answer that 1 think not at present, nor will I venture to predict what the future has in store for us ; but I think thereby we obtain a greater chance of obviating the evils to which I have referred, and we in Canada shall also overcome our peculiar difficulties — and this I say, that united, we shall possess advantages which separate, though portions of the same empire, we cannot realize. (Cheers.) We shall be one to deliberate, to decide and to act. We shall have but one tariff; trade will be unshackled, our intercommunication will be unbroken, the Lower Provinces will give us a seaboard, while the manufacturing capa-

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cities of Lower Canada and the agricultural wealth of Upper Canada will be theirs. A worthy field will be opened for the ambition of our young men, and our politicians will have a future before them, and may fairly aspire to the standing and rewards of statemen. (Cheers.) I therefore think it cannot but be a very great advantage to all the provinces to be united together, and I think that we in Canada especially have peculiar reasons for desiring Confederation. If united, with the assistance of Great Britain, and true to ourselves, not calling on Jupiter without putting our shoulders to the wheel, we need fear no foe, and if the day should come when it shall be necessary for us to stand among the nations of the earth, we shall do so under far more favorable circumstances than should we remain till then separate provinces. (Hear, hear.) I forbear to criticize the details of the scheme ; in the nature of things one portion or another must be displeasing to each of us ; but I am ready to accept the lesser evil for the geater good. I know, too, when worked out the united Parliament will alter and amend ai the evils become serious. Holding these opinions, it is needless for me to say that I shall vote for the Address and the resolutions unchanged. On Friday night I heard an hon. member (Col. HAULTAIN) declare that the Protestant minority of Lower Canada entertained apprehensions with regard to their religious liberty, and thai hon. member expressed giave doubts as to the toleration of Catholics in matters of religion. While I give the hon. gentleman full credit for his sincerity and the temperate manner in which he expressed himself, 1 think it would have been far better had that portion of his speech been omitted. I t would certainly have had much greater weight with the country without that portion than with it. I do not believe the Protestants of Lower Canada fear persecution, and there are those in this House, their natural representatives, yielding to none here in talent and knowledge, well able to speak for them. But, sir, had the hon. gentleman read history as carefully as he seems to have studied polemics and theology, he would not have fallen into the error into which he has. He would have found that all sects of Christians have had reason to blush for the persecutions of their fellow-men, and that the best course we can pursue is to allow the veil to fall oyer the errors of the past.

(Hear, hear.) But, sir, he would have learned this, also, that those who laid the foundations of the British Constitution were Roman Catholics ; that the barons who wrung the magna charta from King JOHN were Catholics. (Hear, hear.) It was a Catholic Parliament, the Diet of Hungary, that alone granted full, free, unrestricted and unqualified emancipation to Protestants, and Catholic Bavaria has followed the example. In America, the Catholic State of Maryland first adopted, without limit, religious toleration. Had the hon. member visited Rome he might have seen a Protestant Church, and have attended service every Sunday in the year under the eyes of the Pope.

MR. T. C. WALLBRIDGE—There is no Protestant Church in Rome. I have been there, and speak from personal knowledge.

HON. MR. ALLEYN — It is not in a central place, but it is in Rome as properly understood.

MR. T. C. WALLBRIDGE—It is not in the city proper. It is outside the gates, in a garret.

HON. MR. ALLEYN—Not in a garret, though the church is not attractive, but there is full tolerance in respect to the service. But this is only a little incident growing out of the remarks of the hou. member for Peterborough, In making the observations I have, I trust he will not think I have intended to say any thing that might prove personally disagreeable to him or to any hon. member, because the manner in which he stated his propositions to the House was all that could be expected or desired from an hon. gentleman of his position, and I should be very sorry to say anything that would be considered offensive. My hon. friend asked me if I ever went to church. In reply I would say that I only go when I can be sure the preacher is a properly admitted clergyman. Had the hon. gentleman travelled in Prance, he might have found the Protestant clergyman received from the state an allowance of one-fifth more than his Catholic brother, on the ground that he may have a family to support. In Lower Canada a Catholic Legislature gave equal rights to Jews a generation before enlightened England emancipated Catholics. (Hear, hear.) And, sir, the history of the Jews cave a terrible warning to all who persecute for belief’s sake. They, GOD’S own people, set

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that bad exemple. For belief they crucified, and during a thousand years for belief they were oppressed and wronged as no nation ever suffered. Sir, it has not been by persecution that while all other denominations of Christians scarcely number 120,000,000, the members of the Roman Catholic Church are at least 150,000,000. Had her’s been a rule of intolerance and persecution, by an inevitable law they would long ere this have caused the destruction of that which used them, and MACAULAY would not have been obliged to write with regret, as he admits, that the Church of Rome,—

As she saw the commencement of all the governments and of all the ecclesiastical establishments that now exist in the world, there is no assurance that she is not destined to see the end of them all. She was great and respected before the Saxon had set foot in Britain, before the Frank had passed the Rhine, when Grecian eloquence still flourished in Antioch, when idols were still worshipped in the temples of Mecca. And she may still exist in undiminished vigour when some traveller from New Zealand shall in the midst of a vast solitude take his stand on a broken arch of London Bridge and sketch the ruins of St. Paul.

In reading this extract and bringing it to bear in this connection, I hope my hon. friend will not think I intended to shock his feelings by alluding to an early fall of London Bridge, or a speedy decay of the cathedral of St. Paul. (Laughter.) I quote this passage alike for its novelty as knowing it will be particularly agreeable to my hon. friend the member for Peterborough. I can assure my hon. friend the feeling pervading the Catholics of Lower Canada is a disposition to give the utmost tolerance to all religious sects. For my part, Mr. SPEAKER, persecution for religious belief I know to be a crime against humanity, and I therefore believe it to be a sin against the Creator. I have to say, however, once more, in conclusion, that I shall vote for the resolution now before the House. (Cheers.)

MR. HOPE MACKENZIE said—As there seems to be a lull in the debate, Mr. SPEAKER, I will embrace the opportunity of briefly stating what I have to say in reference to this scheme. And to begin, I congratulate the Government upon the stand they have taken on this matter. There was a degree of anxiety, a feeling of uncertainty amongst the friends and supporters of the Administration, as to the mode of dealing with this question after the reception of unfavorable news from the Lower Provinces. For my own part I have not shared in that feeling, but continued to have confidence that the Government would pursue the only proper course, and ask the House to pronounce upon the scheme on its merits. If the result of the first elections held in New Brunswick is a true indication of the state of feeling in that province, then it is plain that defeat awaits the present proposition for union in that quarter ; but as yet no province has pronounced upon it, either for it or against it ; and the intelligence received that the union party have met with uplooked for reverses at the New Brunswick elections, however dampening to the prospects of early success, is no sufficient reason why we, the originators of the scheme, should set the bad example of summarily giving it up. We have a plain duty to discharge in regard to the proposition laid before Parliament by the Government, and that is, either to accept or reject it as a whole. (Hear, hear.) Sir, I will not occupy the time of the House so long as I probably would have done, had I spoken at an earlier stage of the debate, and that for two reasons, because the ground has been all gone over by those who have spoken already, and because I think the Government have good ground for urging upon the House the propriety of bringing the debate to a close as soon as possible. I can easily understand that it is a matter of paramount importance to have the views of the Canadian Parliament laid before the Imperial Government at the earliest possible moment. I cannot, however, feel it to be consistent with a proper discharge of my duty to give a silent vote. Having spent some time amongst my constituents prior to the opening of this session, and had conversations with the people in reference to this scheme, at my meetings with them I gave expression to certain objections which I felt in my own mind to certain details of the scheme, if I did not express those objections on the floor of the House. (Hear, hear.) But, Mr. SPEAKER, while I discussed freely and candidly what appeared to me the objectionable features of the scheme, I stated most distinctly to my constituents that in the event of no alteration being agreed toby the governments of the several provinces, the scheme as a whole, just as it stood, ought to be accepted ; and that in the event of the alternative being offered to Parliament of accepting or rejecting the scheme as it stood, I should feel it my

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duty to vote for it. (Hear, hear.) And I may say here in regard to the question of an appeal to the people upon this subject, that I at any rate can vote freely against any proposition of that kind. I stated to the people of North Oxford that in my opinion an appeal to the people upon this scheme was entirely uncalled for, and they agreed with me. I may, perhaps, take the liberty of saying to those honorable members who clamour for a dissolution, merely for the sake of ascertaining the mind of the people upon the measure, and who do not take to the untenable ground of denying the right of this Parliament to legislate on the subject, that if they did not consult their constituents with a view to obtaining an expression of public opinion, they ought to have done so. They had the scheme before them in all its details for months, and I think they ought to be in a position, when they came here, to know whether their constituents were in favor of the scheme or against it. In the meetings which were held in my county, I met with only two individuals who were prepared to go the length of denouncing the scheme in toto, although many would prefer to see it, in some respects, different from what it is. So well disposed did the people show themselves to be towards the union scheme, that in the town of Woodstock, where a very large and influential meeting was held, the editor of a newspaper that had been, up to that night, urging the necessity for a dissolution of Parliament before the adoption of the scheme, was the first to rise to move a resolution approving of the scheme in all its features, and neither in his speech nor in his resolution did he even hint at an appeal to the people ; and that meeting voted for the scheme without a single dissentient voice. (Hear, hear.)

MR. RYMAL — The circular had been sent to that editor, perhaps. (Laughter.)

MR. H. MACKENZIE—Well, if so, I am not aware that it has done him any good or produced any change in his political course. I am quite satisfied, Mr. SPEAKER, that the people are perfectly willing that this Parliament should deal with this Confederation scheme, I will now, sir, state briefly what I think of the general features or underlying principles of the scheme. The honorable member for Brome the other night entertained the House by a very elaborate examination of the scheme, and, among other things, he proposed to show that the proposed Constitution was an entire departure from the British model, and had in it so large an infusion of the republican system of the Unitid States as to render it obnoxious to Britons; but, in opposition to his own premises, he succeeded in proving to a demonstration, if he proved anythiog, that in scarcely a single particular is it modelled after the pattern of the republic. He even denounced this scheme because it is so very different from and, in his opinion, inferior to the United States Constitution. Well, sir, I accept of it because of its British and monarchical features,—I accept of it because of its monarchical character. (Hear, hear.) I look upon it as a scheme more national than federal in its character—as looking more to a national union of the people than a union of sections, and it is chiefly because of this feature of it that it commends itself to my judgment. (Hear, hear.) The honorable member for Lotbinière dissented from this view the other night, and argued that unless the supreme power was placed in the hands of the separate provinces, it could not be acceptable to Lower Canada, as otherwise their institutions would be endangered; and yet oddly enough, he elaborated an argument to prove the fleeting and unstable character of federations established upon the only principle that he seems disposed to accept for this country. In the course of his remarks on this head, he said :—

The Hon. Minister of Agriculture said of Federalism, that it was on account of the weakness of the central power confederations had failed : aud it was argued in our case, that there would not be so much weakness in the central power. This was precisely why the French-Canadians— his fellow-countrymen—looked with suspicion on the proposition to establish a Confederation with a central power—a power so strong that the local parliaments would possess, so to speak, no power at all. (Hear, hear.) All the confederations he had referred to had at least this excuse, they were sovereign states, and, when menaced by other powers, leagued themselves together for the common interest.

Now, sir, while the honorable member will have nothing to do with it, because of the supreme central power that is provided in the scheme, I take it just because of that controlling central power. I stand as an advocate of national unity, and I would not accede to the principle of state sovereignty in this Confederation, the provinces delegating certain powers to the General Government and reserving the residuum of power to themselves. (Hear, hear.) We

[Page 675]

need not go to the history of the South American republics, as the member for Lotbinière did, to find an illustration of the working of the principle of Confederation as applicable to our case. Being not only republican in their character, but based upon the principle of divided sovereignty, and inhabited by a people who had no aptitude for working democratic institutions, they can bear no comparison with this proposed Constitution. But if the hon. gentleman desired to travel to South America to find something approaching a parallel to this scheme of union, he could find it in the constitutional monarchy of Brazil, where the wide-spreading provinces of the empire have their local parliaments for their local affairs, and a central parliament and executive over all—elected and chosen pretty much as our Central Parliament and Executive will be, and exercising similar powers ; and he would find that while the republics founded upon the doctrine of state sovereignty were in a state of perpetual turmoil, and whose daily bread was, according to the hon. member, anarchy and revolution, the Empire of Brazil was flourishing and shewed signs of suability that predicated its luture greatness. (Hear, hear.) But to come nearer home, sir, we have abundant evidence of the dangerous character of the doctrine of state supremacy in a confederation. I would remind the House of the early ruin that threatened the United States under their first Constitution, which was an embodiment of this vicious principle, and how clearly the great men of the first year of the republic foresaw the ruin it threatened to bring upon them. WASHINGTON, perceiving the rapid decline of the Confederation, was incessant in his correspondence with the leading patriots of the day to obtain their opinions upon a new Constitution, and MADISON replies as follows :

Conceiving that an individual independence of the states is totally irreconcilable with their aggregate sovereignty, and that a consolidation of the whole into one simple republic would be as inexpedient as it is unattainable, I have sought for some middle ground which may at once support a due supremacy of the national authority, and not exclude the local authorities wherein they can be subordinately useful.

Mr. JAY’S convictions in favor of central supreme authority are equally strong. He says :—

What powers should be granted to the Government so constituted, is a question which deserves much thought. I think the inore the better, the states retaining only so muoh as may be necessary for domestic purposes.

HAMILTON, likewise, speaking of Federation such as men had hitherto been familiar with, and such as then existed in America, and equally anxious with his co-patriots to save his country from the anarchy and ruin that he saw approaching as the inevitable result of a partitioned sovereignty, thus addressed the head of the republic :—

All Federal governments are weak and distracted. In order to avoid the evils incident to that form, the Government of the American Union must be a national representative system. But no such system can be successful in the actual situation of this country, unless it is endorsed with all the principles and means of influence and power which are the proper supports of government. It must, therefore, be made completely sovereign, and state power, as a separate legislative power, must be annihilated.

I read these extracts to show how rapidly the Central Government of the United States was falling into contempt because of its subordination to the separate states, and to show that the leading minds of America, while the republic was yet in its infancy, felt that the doctrine of state supremacy was one calculated to foster anarchy, and that was sure to bring the early destruction of the fabric they had reared, and also to show how earnestly they labored to remove the evil and transfer the sovereignty to the Central Government, as their only hope of maintaining permanent peace and order, and of imparting stability to their system. I think, sir, it becomes us in framing a Constitution for these provinces to profit, not only by the early but by the later experience of our neighbors—to enquire how far they succeeded in eradicating the evil from their new Constitution, and to what extent their present troubles are chargeable to what is left in their system of the dangerous principle referred to. Let us profit by the wisdom of the framers of the American Constitution, and by the experiences of that country under it—not to copy their work, but to help us when framing a Constitution for ourselves to steer clear of evils that they have felt. Believing that the Quebec Conference has done so and have presented to us the framework of a Constitution, the leading features of which are in unison with the constitutional principles of the British monarchy, and consistent with that allegiance

[Page 676]

which we all owe and cheerfully yield to the Throne of Britain, I cheerfully endorse the scheme. (Hear, hear.) I will now, Mr. SPEAKER, look at the scheme in its sectional aspect; and, in my judgment, it is in this respect a fair one. The apportionment of the debt and other financial arrangements is a theme upon which many remarks and explanations have been made in this, as well as in the other branch of the Legislature; and charges are made of having bribed the Lower Provinces into the scheme, and that the Canadian Delegates in the Conference sacrificed the interests of Canada in their eagerness to consummate a scheme that had its origin in their political necessities. One hon. gentleman complains that population is not the proper basis upon which to distribute the burden of the public debt, and that by adopting it Canada has been saddled with many millions more than her share. ” Revenue,” it is contended, ” is the true test of ability to pay, therefore revenue is the basis upon which the apportionment should be made.” Were the taxation alike in all the provinces, there would, at least, be the appearance of justice in the argument ; but with revenue raised uoder the operation of different tariffs, in the several provinces, I think population is a juster basis than revenue. Taking, however, the revenues as we find them under existing tariffs, and adjusting the debt by that standard, we find that it will differ but little from the apportionment that has been agreed upon ; and were the tariffs of the Maritime Provinces somewhat higher than they are now, I apprehend, sir, that the consuming ability of these provinces would demonstrate not only their ability to pay according to this test, but also that Canada is in no way imposed upon in regard to the amount of debt with which these provinces are to be permitted to enter the union. I believe that every one of the five provinces has had its interests well consulted in this scheme, and that it is so well balanced throughout in reference to those interests, that there is very little to complain of. (Hear, hear.) But speaking from an Upper Canadian point of view— which I deem it my duty to do, as one of the representatives of that section—I will glance at one or two of the objections urged by the honorable member for North Ontario, very briefly. That honorable gentleman accuses Upper Canadians of disregarding and forgetting their former professions on the representation question, and broadly asserts that the Honorable President of the Council, as the leader in the agitation for representation by population, has agreed to a measure that is a mere delusion, that in point of fact puts Upper Canada in a worse position than she now occupies. He says that instead of occupying a position of equality in the legislature, as now, she will be found in the new union with a majority of thirty arrayed against her. The honorable gentleman builds his argument upon false and erroneous premises, when he says that Upper Canada does not get by this scheme what its people have long sought, representation according to its population; and when he points out that all the other provinces, unitedly, will outvote her in the General Legislature by thirty votes, I submit, sir, that his argument is exceedingly unfair, and is founded on the assumption that Upper Canada asked for an increase of representation for the purpose of obtaining supremacy in the Government. Now, I deny that most emphatically on behalf, not only of myself, but of every man from Upper Canada who demanded a change in the representation. We did not advocate that change for the purpose of gaining the supremacy, but simply and solely as a measure of justice to the people of Upper Canada, and to place them on an equal footing, man for man, with the people oi Lower Canada. We had certain grievances and wrongs which we complained of, and which the granting of representation would not of itself redress ; we complained that a larger proportion of the public revenues, to which we contributed seventy per cent., was spent in Lower Canada than in Upper Canada ; we complained also of legislative acts passed by majorities from Lower Canada and which concerned Upper Canada chiefly ; we did not ask representation by population because we believed it, of itself, would sweep away all this injustice, but because it would, give us this advantage, that we would in this House have our due proportion of the representation, every man in Upper Canada having an equal, and no more than equal, voice in the Legislature with every man in Lower Canada. This was all we asked ; we never demanded more than what was just ; we asked but fair play—British fair play—an equal representation, man for man, and we would be willing to take our chance in the political struggle tor the redress of the evils we complained of. We never sought or wished for supremacy, but only our just and fair influence according to our numbers and the public burdens we bore, and having obtained

[Page 677]

this we were willing to take our chance whether that influence, employed in a legitimate and constitutional way, succeeded in removing our grievances or not. (Hear, hear.) To say now that we do not obtain what we have contended for—to say that we do not got representation by population because the Lower Provinces, including Lower Canada, will have thirty more votes in the General Legislature, is simply doing Upper Canada an injustice and a wrong ; and the history of the British parliamentary system and our own experience in Canada, warrant the conclusion that in the General Legislature we shall not have, as alleged by honorable gentlemen opposed to the scheme, parties divided against one another because of the provinces which they represent. Under our present Constitution we are not divided sectionally, but as political parties, for we find gentlemen from both sections taking sides according to their political predilections, irrespective of sectional considerations; and so it will be under the proposed Confederation. We have conservatives and radicals, and always will have them. Do we not find men of both races in the province voting on both sides politically ? It is true the demand for constitutional changes has to some extent, but only to some extent, divided us as the representatives of sections in this House ; but on all other questions such as commerce, banking, customs tariifs, excise, and other questions—we find gentlemen voting according to their political views, and not as representing sections. So it will be under the Confederation. People will be divided into parties by their political opinions and leanings, and not by sectional considerations. (Hear, hear.) in claiming, then, that under it there will, on all questions, be a majority against Upper Canada, is to assume that Upper Canada will be at war with all the other provinces, and that they will be continually at war with it. Well, what right has any man to assume that this will be the case —that Upper Canada will be the Ishmael of the Confederation ? I think he has none whatever. (Hear, hear.) The addition of seventeen members to Upper Canada in the outset, with the proposed arrangement for re-adjustment every ten years according to the increase or decrease of population in each of the provinces, is substantial justice to all, and is all that Upper Canada ever asked for or expected. But, Mr. SPEAKER, the honorable member for North Ontario not only accuses the Upper Canadians who support this scheme of an abandonment of their principles on this point, and of offering to the people of Upper Canada the very opposite of what they asked for, but charges that we have sacrificed our cash as well as our principles. An honorable member of the other House has taken similar ground, and charges in effect that the Lower Provinces have been bribed into this scheme at the expense of Upper Canada, and that as regards Lower Canada, we undertake to pay her in perpetuity a subsidy of $167,000 a year ; and the honorable gentleman asks if ever Lower Canada asked for anything like that under our present system ? He tells us, too, that for each of the seventeen additional members we get in the Federal Government, we pay at the rate of $16,000 each. As regards the Lower Provinces, I submit that it cannot be shewn that their union with us will be to our detriment in money matters. They will contribute as large an amount per head to the general revenue as we do in Upper Canada, and if any financial effect will be felt by Upper Canada in consequence of the union of these provinces with us, I think it must be in the direction of lessening her burdens ; such, at all events, is the conclusion I have arrived at, andsuch, I think, is the conclusion any man will arrive at who will take the trouble to inform himself of the position of these provinces as regards the financial questions between Upper and Lower Canada. I do not know where the honorable member gets his figures, nor can I very well understand them, but in regard to the subsidy of $167,000 a year that he speaks of, what are the facts of the case ? Let it be borne in mind, sir, that as Upper Canadians we claimed that we were paying an enormous price for the present union with Lower Canada, and that we urged this as one reason why we were entitled to the concession of representation by population as an act of justice, that we might have our due share of influence in controlling the expenditure of the revenues of the country to which we contributed so largely. We complained, and it was advanced in this Assembly over and over again, as one of the reasons for demanding representation by population, that our money was given away to sections which contributed little or nothing to the general revenue ; that while we paid seventy per cent, of the revenue and Lower Canada only thirty per cent., an equal proportion of the expenditure was enjoyed by Lower Canada ; and that under this system Upper Canada was paying not only for its own local improvements

[Page 678]

and sustaining not only the cost of carrying on its own local affairs, but contributing largely as well to the local wants of Lower Canada. (Hear, hear.) Now, it was in reference to these local matters that the evil was chiefly felt and that complaints were louder than with reference to general expenditure, for they were tangible grievances, things that were easily understood, and that presented themselves as an injustice every year in the estimates presented to this House. There was a sum of two millions, or more voted every year for the support of local interests and to promote local works or improvements, including such items as the support of education, hospitals and charities, and the opening up of colonization roads ; and of this sum one-half was applied to local purposes in Lower Canada. Now, our argument was, that of this money taken out of the public chest, Upper Canada contributed seventy per cent., and Lower Canada the remainder. If this was true—and I think it was incontrovertibly so—then it was perfectly clear that we in Upper Canada had to pay not only the appropriations made for local purposes in that section, but also nearly one-half of the appropriations for local purposes in Lower Canada. Let me remark here that I do not think any man will complain that we in Upper Canada are paying this large portion of the public revenue. Under our system of indirect taxation, or indeed under any system, it must be that the richest part of the community shall bear the largest share of the public burdens, and they have a right to do so. I do not complain that the people of Upper Canada pay a larger amount of the revenue of the country than those of Lower Canada, because if they choose to consume the imported articles upon which duties are levied, they do so because they are able to pay for them. They are not required to consume them, but if they do, and aie made to pay indirectly to the public exchequer, they have no right to complain that the people of Lower Canada, more frugal and economical, consume less dutiable goods and therefore contribute less to the revenue. We in Upper Canada do not complain of this, but we give it as a reason why we should have our just share of influence in the legislature and government of the country. We do not argue that because we contribute more we ought to have a larger representation than Lower Canada ; but we say that if we really do pay more to the public exchequer, it is an additional reason—our population being greater—that we should have an equal voice with Lower Canada, in proportion to our numbers, in controlling the expenditure of the country. (Hear, hear.) Well, this being the case that Upper Canada contributes the largest share of the revenue, it is perfectly clear to my mind—and I think it will be to that of any man who examines the subject intelligently—that Upper Canada pays to Lower Canada, under our present system, a considerable sum of money, amounting to half a million of dollars yearly, for the support of its local interests and institutions; and if the honorable member for North Ontario will balance the proportion that Upper Canada pays of the eighty cents per head proposed to be paid to Lower Canada with the amount now paid to it by Upper Canada, he will find that a large saving will be effected by the plan now proposed for our acceptance. (Hear, hear.) We have thus, I think, gained by this scheme, not only representation by population, saving us from the imputation of having sacrificed this principle in order to obtain Confederation, but we have also, by the same measure, gained a substantial redress of the grievances to remove which representation by population was demanded. (Hear, hear.) Not only has a saving of money been effected, but also a removal from this Legislature of those subjects upon which angry, intemperate, and painful discussions have taken place in times past. For these reasons, I think it is a most desirable thing that the scheme should be carried out. (Hear, hear.) It is marvellous how inconsistent some honorable gentlemen show themselves to be in their desire to oppose this measure. The honorable member for Lotbinière, speaking of it from a sectional point of view, has also, I think, exposed himself to this charge. He charges the Honorable Attorney General East with inconsistency, if not something worse, in occupying the position he now does as affecting the interests of Lower Canada, forgetful of his own relative position. He said :—

If the member for South Oxford had earned his popularity by attacking the institutions of Lower Canada through the agitation for representation by population, it might be said of the Hon. Attorney General East that he had risen to popularity by defending or by affecting to defend those institutious. (Hear, hear.) He had so well succeeded in obtaining the good graces of the people of this section of the province, and in securing their confidence, that it was extremely difficult for any of those who were politically opposed to him to attempt to speak in the interests of their fellow-countrymen. (Hear, hear.)

The hon. member for South Oxford (Hon.

[Page 679]

Mr. BROWN) is here represented as having earned his popularity by attacking th£ institutions of Lower Canada, and the honorable member for Montreal East (Hon. Mr. CARTIER) as having earned his by defending these same institutions, and the insinuation is that he has now abandoned the defence of these institutions and handed them over to the tender mercies of the Honorable President of the Council. Let me ask the honorable member for Lotbinière, if being in company with the honorable member for South Oxford be evidence of hostility to the institutions of Lower Canada, how he explains his own position, and that of his party, when they cast in their lot with the honorable member for South Oxford, while earning his popularity by, as he says, attacking the institutions of Lower Canada, and abandoned the Honorable Attorney General East when doing battle in defence of those institutions ? (Hear, hear.) I think the question is one not easily answered. The honorable gentleman must either have been politically dishonest before, or politically dishonest now, and he can take either horn of the dilemma he pleases.

MR. JOLY—I never supported the Honorable Attorney General East, and if I have been forced upon the same side as the honororable member for South Oxford, it was because we were united together in opposition to that honorable gentleman. That was the only bond of union that connected us together. On the question of representation by population we were always divided. What I meant in the observation I made, that has been alluded to by the honorable member, is this, that the Honorable President of the Council had gained the position he occupies now by attacking Lower Canada, and the Honorable Attorney General East his, by assuming to defend it ; and when at length they found that the game would no longer answer, when the Honorable President of the Council saw himself excluded forever from a seat in the Ministry if ha continued to play it, they banded together, and we now see the result. (Hear, hear, and laughter.)

MR. H. MACKENZIE—At all events, Mr. SPEAKER, the hon. member makes it clear that he has changed sides. For when the Hon Attorney General East was defending the institutions of Lower Canada, he opposed him, and now he opposes him because he says he has adopted the contrary policy.

MR. JOLY—I opposed him for other reasons—not for that reason.

MR. H. MACKENZIE—At all events the hon. member has contributed his mite to the influence the hon. member for South Oxford had in this House, by attacking, as he declares, the institutions of Lower Canada. I have already said that all parties are not satisfied with this scheme; and while on this point, I wish to allude for a moment to the constitution of the Legislative Council. It is the only reference I shall make on this branch of the subject. When addressing my constituents, I took exception to this portion of the resolutions. I did so, not because I cared very much whether we had in this country a Legislative Council nominated by the Crown or elected by the people, but, the nominative system having been superseded by the elective, I preferred to have it as it was. It was in these terms that I spoke to the people. After having addressed one or two meetings, I haw the despatch of the Colonial Secretary, and I noticed that this matter of the constitution of the Council was pointed out as one which required revision ; and I took it for granted that communications would be opened between the several Colonial Governments such as would possibly lead to a change. Doubtless there are sufficient reasons why this has not been done. But, although I would have liked it to have been so, and although it would have concurred more closely with the views of Upper Canada, I do not think it of sufficient importance to warrant me in rejecting the scheme on that account. (Hear, hear.) If it involves the rejection of the whole scheme, I do not feel myself warranted in pressing tor an amendment on the point. (Hear.) In framing a constitution of this kind, everybody must be aware that an agreement could never have been arrived at except on the principle ot compromise and concession. It is perfectly useless—it is worse than useless —to suppose that any of the several sections of a wide-spread territory could come together with a view to the formation of a union among themselves, unless each one of these sections was prepared to sacrifice and give up something. What right, I would ask, had we to expect that all the other colonies would agree to the views of Upper Canada, or to the views of Canada as a whole ? What right had we to expect that the Province of Nova Scotia would agree with us- in our views with reference to every particular matter ? What right had we in Upper Canada to expect that in framing this scheme we would be able to expunge the separate school clauses from the School Act ? If that could

[Page 680]

be done, it would no doubt be agreeable to the people of Upper Canada, because we think that in our Common School system there should be no element of sectarianism. As a people, we are desirous of having our School law without any provision for separate schools. It is perhaps a bold statement to make, but I believe the people of Upper Canada as a whole, Roman Catholics as well as Protestants, would be content with our school system without a particle of sectarianism ip it. We could scarcely expect that if we were to succeed in framing a basis of union under a new Constitution, we could get the sectarian clauses of the School Act removed, if they were insisted upon as sine qua non by the Roman Catholics in Lower Canada in conjunctien with the adherents of the same faith in Upper Canada. But notwithstanding this, although it is a sensitive point in Upper Canada, and particularly among my own constituents, I venture to say that the people of the west generally, in their willingness at all times to listen to reason, will be quite content to accept the scheme as a whole, as it has been presented to us. (Hear, hear.) I hope that no attempt will be made to increase the privileges of the advocates of separate schools, but that the question will be left where we now find it. (Oear, hear.) It is worth while, perhaps, to read a single passage, written by a distinguished man, in reference to this principle of concession. I have already instanced the views of o framers of the American Constitution when they set to work to do away with the first Federation scheme and to adopt a new Constitution. When they had framed the new Constitution, we find WASHINGTON accompanying the document with a letter, in which this passage occurs :—

It is obviously impracticable in the Federal Government of these states to secure all rights of independent sovereignty to each, and yet provide for the interest and safety of all. individuals entering into society must give up a share of liberty to pieserve the rest. The magnitude of the sacrifice must depend as well on situation and circumstances as on the object to be attained. It is at all times difficult to draw with precision the line between those rights which must be surrendered and those which may be reserved.

Doubtless, sir, the members of the Quebec Conference encountered the same difficulties as the framers of the American Constitution did. They must have found it difficult to draw the line exactly where it should be drawn. I presume it could not be done, and that each one felt it incumbent upon him to make certain concessions, and that all they could hope to do was to have some broad margin, some neutral ground, on which to draw the line, so as to be able to say they did the best they could to unite the sectional interests of the provinces and to further something like a nationality for the country. (Hear, hear.) I do not desire to trespass upon the House ; I have purposely passed over much that I intended to have said, had the Government desired to encour; ge discussion at greater length; and I pass on rapidly to a conclusion. (Cries of ” Go on !”) I think the union desirable, not only as a benefit to ourselves, but as a means for consolidating the British Empire on this continent, and to save us from a degrading dependency on the United States, especially as we have the means within ourselves of making them to a certain exteut dependent upon us. Look at the map of this country, look at the position we occupy geographically ; see the outlet we possess to the ocean ; look at the magnificent St. Lawrence, with the vast grain growing country beyond it. Is it not in our power to draw the trade of the Great West through this its natural outlet to the oSean ? Is it not possible to so improve this channel as to bring the produce of the great Western States to market through our territory ? Is it not possible, by means of a little judicious outlay, to make the people of the United States dependent on us, instead of us being dependent on them? (Hear, hear.) There is much that could be said on this subject, and the means that might be resorted to for securing to us these benefits of trade and commerce. It is not so much to the enlargement of the Welland and St. Lawrence canals, although that is ncccscary, as to the construction of a ship canal to Lake Huron through the Ottawa country, that in my opinion we must look for the ultimate commercial greatness of this country, as furnishing the shortest and safest route for the conveyance of the contents of the great granarie- of the west to foreign markets. The proposed Ottawa canal may not run through a country as fertile as the valley of the St. Lawrence; it is of a different geological formation ; nevertheless, I believe it to be a country of great riches, whose resources are as yet undeveloped. I think that

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a ship canal from Georgian Bay id that direction would not only furnish a satisfactory outlet for the produce of the west, but would lead to a splendid market for the lumber trade, and find employment for a class of vessels to which we cannot at present give profitable occupation ; and, besides, it would open a channel for such vessels and implements of war as may be necessary for the defence of the country, (Hear, hear.) I would conclude by saying that I think union desirable, not only because of its present advantages, but on account of our future prospects. Looking at the future, I do not think it desirable that one government should exercise sway over the whole of the North American continent. (Hear, hear.) Nor do I think it desirable that such a government should be a republican government. (Hear, hear.) Taking this view of the ease ; looking back to the history of the past; reflecting upon the evils which have followed hasty constitution-making, and the troubles that have occurred in consequence of b/undering at the outset, it becomes us to consider whether the scheme which has now been laid before us has in it the elements of stability. I think it has, so far as human foresight can determine. (Hear, hear.) Geographically this country covers a vast extent of territory. We can lean our backs on the snows of the north, and from that quarter no enemy 3an attack us ; and if we have no great breadth from north to south, we have a large expanse westwards. Although, too, we are in a northern clime, although our latitude is higher thin that of our southern neighbor, yet this is no obstacle to the growth of population or to the increase of prosperity. (Hear, hear.) Teeming millions will in future inhabit this land, and we are called upon now to lay deep and broad the foundations of a great empire. Let us shew that we value the free institutions of Britain transplanted to this soil ; institutions founded upon principles of freedom and universal toleration ; institutions that have made the parent land great, and that mark it out as the one bright spot in the old world to which the eyes of the nations turn when their liberties are imperilled, and as the city of refuge to which crowned heads, as well as the victims of their misrule, can alike flee for safety in the hour of their misfortune. (Hear, hear.) I have no hesitation, MR. SPEAKER, in endorsing the scheme before us. I do so because I believe its leading principles are in harmony with the principles upon which the British constitutional system is founded, and because I think it is a fair arrangement between all the provinces; and, as an Upper Canadian, I accept it because I think it concedes to us the status we are entitled to occupy. I accept it, further, because of the prospect it holds out to us of building up a great nationality here, and of handing down to our children institutions which our fathers have bought with their blood. (Loud cheers.)

MR M. C. CAMERON—I wish to shew the honorable member for North Oxford the figures upon which I have based my calculation. I find that under the scheme—

The Federal aid to Lower Canada is $ 888,531
do do Upper Canada 1,117,590

Of the aid to Lower Canada—

The Maritime Provinces contribute, say 1-5th $ 177,706
Upper Canada contributes 2/3ds of the balance, or 473,884
Lower Canada contributes 1/3rd do 236,941

Of the aid to Upper Canada—

The Maritime Provinces contribute, say 1-5th $ 223,514
Lower Canada, 1/3rd of balance 298,025
Upper Canada, 2/3rds. do. 596,051
Contribution by U.C. to L.C $473,884
do by L.C. to U.C 298,025
Expenses of General Government $8,553,379
Contribution by Mar. Pro. according to Mr. GALT. $1,929,272
Contribution by L. C., at 1/3rd of balance 2,208,035
Contribution by U. C., at 2/3rds of balance 4,416,072
U. C. in excess of Mar. Prov $2,486,800
U. C. in excess of L. C 2,208,035
U. C. in excess of both $ 278,765

This sum divided by 17, the additional representatives to Upper Canada, makes the cost of each $16,397 annually.

[Page 682]

HON. MR. DORION—Mr. SPEAKER, the intelligence received from New Brunswick since the last sitting has caused the question of Confederation, now under discussion, to lose mush of its interest. Every one is now convinced that it is a question which no longer has any real existence, and which may safely be shelved for some time to come at all events. I deem it, however, to be my duty to make a few observations in reply to the hon. member for Montmorency, and to allude in passing to the speech of the Hon. Solicitor General East (Honorable Mr. LANGEVIN) . The honorable member lor Montmorency began his speech by saying that the members of this House ought to raise their views above all paltry considerations of a personal or party character, and discuss the question of Confederation upon its own merits, that thereby its advantages or disadvantages might be made apparent. And yet the honorable member has devoted at least one-third of his speech to calling to mind and discussing what I may or may not have said iu past times. I have already said, and I repeat it, that I defy any member of this House to cite a single passage from any one of my speeches, or one single line of anything I may have ever written, to prove that I have ever been in favor of a Confederation of the British North American Provinces. In order to produce a semblance of proof, and with tne view of making me contradict myself, it has been necessary to torture my words, to falsify my speeches, to make false translations of them; and even then with all the skill that has been used, the attempt has been unsuccessful. The speech which has been quoted with the greatest complacency, to show that I was in favor of the Confederation of all the provinces, is that which I delivered on the 3rd May, 1860. This speech, which occupied nearly two hours in its delivery, was reported in about twenty-five lines of the Morning Chronicle, and only occupied a column in the Mirror of Parliament. These two reports are completely at variance one with the other, and neither of them is exact; but they are sufficient, nevertheless, to establish the contrary of what it has been tried to prove. When it was desired to shew that I was in favor of representation based upon population, a part of the report in the Mirror has been cited, and when it is sought to establish that I was in favor of Confederation, the report of the Chronicle is triumphantly brought forward. But the portion of the Mirror report, which is cited in relation to representation, is so absurd that it suffices to read it to be convinced that I could never have made use of the expressions which it contains. For instance, on the occasion of a discussion which has but an incidental relation to representation based on population, but which relates to a Confederation of the two provinces, I am made to say that I have always been opposed to representation by population, but that if Upper Canada desired to have it, that I was ready to concede it. This is nearly the contrary of what I said on that occasion, for I invariably make my speeches coincide with my votes ; and as I have invariably voted against every proposition tending to the concession of representation based upon population, so I have never declared that I was in favor of that measure, but on the contrary, I have always declared that Lower Canada could never consent to such a proposition, because it offered no guarantee for her institutions. (Hear, hear.) But now that the question of Confederation is under discussion, the Mirror report is set aside and that of the Chronicle is quoted. This report made me say, in substance, that I looked upon the Federal union of Upper and Lower Canada as the nucleus of the great Confederation of the British North American Provinces, that every one foresaw must sDoner or later be effected. The expression used in the report is ” to which all looked forward.” The hon. member for Montmorency, who has brought this report to light, although he could not be ignorant that an eutirely different one was contained in the Mirror of Parliament, has given tlie text of it by substituting the word ” he ” for the word ” all,” and has translated it so as to make me say, in speaking of the Confederation of all the provinces, ” que je l’appelais de tous mes voeux,” and in translating this last expression into English, in the pamphlet written by him in 1865, he makes me say, “which (Confederation) I strongly desire to see.” It is enough to read the report in the Mirror, imperfect though it be, to shew that I never said anything of the kind. This is what I said in speaking of Confederation :—

He urged that the principle of the double majority could only be applied by giving to each section of the province the control of its local affairs, and that when populations differed so

[Page 683]

much as did those of Upper and Lower Canada, it was the only way to govern them in a satisfactory manner. He hoped, however, that a time might come when it would be desirable to effect a Confederation with the Lower Provinces, but the time had not yet arrived for a measure of th¡3 kind. * * * * * * But those who were in favor of a Federal union of all the provinces ought to bear in mind that a Federal union between Upper and Lower Canada was the best means of establishing a nucleus around which the great Confederation might be formed wheu the proper time arrived.

If in this citation the word ” believed” were substituted for the word ” hoped,” my idea would be correctly given, in very nearly the language I made use of in May, 1860. As is quite clear, there is a great difference between what I said and the report given by the Chronicle, which the hon. member for Montmorency has been obliged to disguise in citing it, and which he has translated in the most absurd manner, and all to make it appear that I had expressed myself in a manner favorable to Confederation, and thereby shew that I have contradicted myself. That I may have declared that at some future period, when the population of the different provinces should have so increased as to render the settlements contiguous, when the means of communication should have been improved, and when, by commercial intercourse, our interests should have become identical, and the different populations should constitute, so to speak, one united people, it might be of advantage to have a Confederation of all the provinces, this I am quite willing to admit; but there is a great difference between this anticipation and the expression of a desire for a Confederation to which I have always been opposed, because I did not consider it advisable under present circumstances. I find no change in the circumstances of the country to lead me now to desire what 1 expressed my disapproval of in 1860. I again assert that I no more pronounced myself in favor of Confederation then than I have since ; only speaking of a proposition for establishing a Confederation of the two Canadas, and after several members had spoken in favor of a Confederation of all the provinces, I made use of the very natural argument, ” That for those who desired the great Confederation, there could be no objection to the proposition then tinder consideration, because that Confederation would be the nucleus around which the other provinces might gather when the proper time arrived.” The hon. member for Montmorency has spoken of the contradictious which he has imagined to exist between the opinions which I expressed in 1856, 1858 and 1860, and those which I entertain at the present time on the subject of the Confederation of the provinces. But these contradictious do not really exist. I have never expressed an opinion in favor of a Confederation of all the provinces, but of the two Canadas only, and that Confederation to which I would have agreed as a remedy for the difficulties created by the question of the representation, had no resemblance whatever to that which is now proposed to us. By that plan Lower Canada would have had complete control of all her local affairs ; under the present scheme her control is surrounded by so many restrictions, that in fact it is the central government which has the control, not on y of what relates to all the provinces, but also of what may relate to one of the provinces only. (Hear, hear.) Before speaking of contradictions, the hon. member for Montmorency ought to bear in mind that he is more vulnerable on this head than any one else. He ought to remember his two pamphlets—one published in 1858, and the other in 1865 ; one going to prove the absurdity of a Confederation of all the British North American Provinces, and the other pointing out the advantages we should derive from, such a Confederation. In the first of these pamphlets the hon. member, after having proposed 27 questions with a view to examine under all its different aspects the question of a Federal union of the two Canadas and that of a Federal or Legislative union of all the provinces, rejects alike both these projects, because he only saw in them the annihilation of Lower Canada. The hon. member was so thoroughly convinced of that, that of all the propositions he gave the preference to a legislative union, because it would come to an end all the sooner. He found it more logical, looking at the immediate results of the union. ” In fact, if we must have a union of some kind of all the provinces, and if Lower Canada is destined to lose the little influence which she yet exercises on legislation under the existing union, it would be better to attain our object by a machinery more simple, less complicated and less costly.” And a little further on he adds, ” As far as we are concerned, we are opposed to it. We want no union under any form, as it is certain to attain the same

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end, no matter under what form it may be imposed upon us. ” That is the conclusion at which the hon. member arrived in 1858, after a careful examination of the whole question. I n 1865, matters are completely changed, and the hon. member has discovered that the only possible safety for Lower Canada is to be found in that very Confederation of all the provinces which he rejected with all his might in 1858. This is the conclusion at which he arrived in his latest pamphlet. ” After having carefully considered the various schemes of union with their various conditions of existence we, have proved that Confederation was, in our present circumstances, the system best calculated for our protection and for securing our prosperity in the future.” The hon. member for Montmorency explains this complete change in his views since 1858, as follows :—

Until lately we admit we were more in favor of a Confederation of the two Canadas than of the grander scheme, becaure then we had no national aspirations, and we believed that we should find in it more protection for the interests of Lower Canada. We acted as though we had to deal with present or probable enemies, and like a good tactician we desired to have as fenenemies arrayed against us as possible ; but since our constant communications during the sittings of the Convention with the eminent statesmen of the Atlantic Provinces, many of these apprehensions, and indeed the motives of opposition, have been dispelled from our mind.

So that the mere contact which the hon. member enjoyed with the political men of the Maritime Provinces, dur ing the fifteen days they were here, has been sufficient to dispel all his apprehensions for the fate of the institutions of Lower Canada in the Confederation of all the provinces. It is the confidence with which these gentlemen have inspired him, and not the guarantees offered by the plan of Confederation, which have changed his opinions of 1858. I find in the Journal de Québec, a newspaper edited by the honorable member for Montmorency, a few very amusing passages upon the question of the confidence which ought to be reposed in political friends. These articles also date from 1858. The honorable member was then in opposition. It is true that he did not look at the honorable member for South Oxford and myself in such an unfavorable light as he has since done. At that time he was laying the whip pretty severely upon the shoulders of his present friends. But the doctrines he then held appear to be still applicable. On the 26th of August, 1858, the honorable member wrote an article under the heading ” Les Amis les Ennemis,” in which he said :—

The friends, the ministerial supporters from Upper Canada, have endeavored, during the present session, to impose upon us representation based upon population, and the abolition of separate schools. A minister, Mr. SMITH, even voted for representation based on population ! The enemies—the members of the Opposition — have left the initiative of these odious matters to be taken by our friends the ministerialists ; and moreover, to prove that though they were enemies, they would treat us better than our friends the ministerialists, they were willing to pay the seigniors all the casual rights due by the censitaires (£500,000). After that we do not ask too much when we ask that our enemies may have justice

And a little further on he adds :—

Mr. CARTIER galvanises a corpse, which starts up in its hideousness only to fall back never to rise again. The lamp in going out-casts some few pale and feeble rays, and soon we shall have the darkness of night. The days of the very worst government which has ever weighed down the destinies of Canada are numbered. There are not many of them, and all the ie-constructions that are possible will not add one to their number.

On the 28th August, in an article on representation based on population, the hon. member for Montmorency expressed himself as follows :—

* * * * * * * * *

But friends may do anything they like ; whatever they do is well done ! Mr. FERGUSON, a ministerialist, will demand the abolition of separate schools; he is a friend ; one must have confidence in him and kiss the Orange hand which strikes the blow. Mr. MALCOLM CAMERON will ask for representation by population ; he is another friend, and Mr. BROWN is the criminal, Mr. BROWN is the enemy. The Administration, for the first time in our parliamentary annals, makes the question of the representation an open question. The Ministry is composed of ten of our most ardent and loyal friends ; will they deceive and betray us ? Mr. SMITH, the first among ihem, voten in the face of astonished Lower Canada for representation by population. He is an Orangeman, one of our kindest friends, and of course in his extreme friendship it is his duty so to vote. The members from Lower Canada ought to accept all this, and they have accepted it with gratitude ! But for a rouge– an enemy—to seek even the tenth part of all this, is odious, it is immoral, it is to sap the foundation of the country, it is to deserve the shame and death of Calvary. And would you believe it ?—all this indignation is expended for the benefit of a power which has soiled, blemish-

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ect and corrupted everything in the order of morality and political integrity.

The hon. member for Montmorency then proceeded to speak of his present friends, and of the excuses offered by the Ministerial suppor ters for blindly voting for and approving whatever their friends desired them to vote for. Did an Otangeman demand anything at which their Catholic consciences might take alarm, their consciences were soon quieted by the fact that “it was a friend,” and the Orangeman obtained at once what he sought ; and the hon. member for Montmorency declared that all this had been done by a power which had soiled and corrupted everything in the order of morality and political integrity. Now, he heartily approves of all that he then held to be abominable and atrocious, so iong as it was proposed by his friends. Then he was opposed to Confederation of any kind, because it was a certain means of obliterating the influence of Lower Canada, and he preferred a legislative union to a Confederation. But now his friends propose a Confederation of all the provinces, and he heartily approves of it . I quote again from what he said on the 28th August , 1858 :—

During this session Confederation was found to be so unpopular, that Mr. GALT did not dare to ask a vote on his informal resolutions. But hardly had he obtained power and his views were triumphant, and Canada is to bow her head to a new order of things which an instant before had been considered replete with danger and ruin. The policy of the Government as regards Confederation is not more defined or tangible than that of Mr. GAIT on the same subject, and yet the men who, two days before, furiously demanded that Messrs. BROWN and DORION should give explicit explanations, accept it with confidence and with closed eyes, doubtless because it came from their friends and friend GALT. Friendship has the power of transforming principles and things, good into evil and evil into good, immorality into morality, injustice into justice, and consciences into inert machines, bending to the movement given to it by the firm hand of friends.

I quote from the paper of the hon. member for Montmorency.—I do not say this myself:—

More than this, the Ministry take upon themselves to make a Constitution for the people, and to change the condition of Canada without consulting them, without taking the trouble even of telling them what they are going to do for them. Not less than four members of the Government, they say, are going to negotiate our destinies either in Downing-street or in Lombard- street, but most probably in the latter. If Confederation suits the ideas of the Grand Trunk, depend upon it we shall have it, even though the whole of Canada should reject it. The Journal asks what will become of the French element in the Confederation. Eh! grand Dieu, you may see its fate already in the fact that out of four Ministers sent to negotiate the transformation, not a single one is French, the happy individuals being Messrs. GALT, ROSS, MACDONALD AND ROSE.

At that time the enemies, that is to say the present friends of the hon. member , were desirous of changing the Constitution without consulting the people and he considered that an atrocity ; but now they propose to effect a revolution in our political institutions without giving the people an opportunity of pronouncing on their scheme, and the hon. member for Montmorency warmly approves. It seems, when the other day I asserted that this scheme of Confederation was planned by the Grand Trunk Company, that I did but express the opinion of the hon. member for Montmorency. It was he who first made this assertion, and not I. “If the Grand Trunk,” said he, “wants Confederation, we are sure to have it.” In those days his friends the enemies desired to sell the country ; now he seeks to save it by exactly the same means that they took to ruin it. Now he no longer seeks to ascertain whether the plan of Confederation is good or bad; he only looks to see that it comes from his friends,and that is sufficient to secure for it his hearty approval. This scheme being proposed by the friends and suppor ters of good principles, it cannot contain anything that may endanger the institutions of Lower Canada. (Hear, hear, and laughter.) But formerly it was quite a different matter, when the same scheme was proposed by enemies, the present friends of the honorable member for Montmorency. What constitutes the excellence of this scheme in the eyes of the honorable member, is that it is not submitted by rouges or annexationists, but by the representatives of good principies, the guardians of the interests of Lower Canada. (Hear , hear, and laughter.) Besides, the delegates from the Lower Provinces, whom he had looked upon as enemies to Lower Canada, inspired him with such confidence during the dinners and balls of the Conference, as to have removed any apprehensions under which the honorable member might before have labored. He told us so himself. For my part I do not believe that the communication which the honorable member enjoyed with the delegates from the Lower

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Provinces during their sojourn here had the effect of changing his opinion on this question. He looked to see from what side the proposition came, and seeing that it came from the side on which his friends sat, he was at once convinced that it contained nothing that could endanger the institutions of Lower Canada. It is evident that he votes for it with certainty. In 1858 he reproached those members who, like the honorable member for Montcalm (Mr. Jos. DUFRESNE), look quietly to see from which side measures come before pronouncing upon them, with only thinking and acting according to word of command given by the present Ministers. Has not he also been obliged to write a pamphlet of 150 pages in 1865 to refute the one of forty pages which he then wrote ? Then he held to be absurd all that was connected, either nearly or remotely, with Confederation ; now he holds everything to be right and perfect ; he is quite satisfied, and gets the promise of all his members to vote for the scheme before us without amendment. He throws his hat in the air and exclaims—” Let us vote for Confederation and for our friends.” (Hear, hear, and laughter.) That honorable member may be able to discover contradictions in my conduct. He sees a mote in his neighbor’s eyes andseeth not the beam in his own. But let us continue our examination of that pamphlet of 1858. It contains most precious information. At page 15 I find the following passage :—

The best possible condition under which Con federation could exist, would be that in which the two chambers would be elected and would both have population as the basis of their number, for no other system excepting that of having but one chamber only with the number of its members based on population, would give us absolutely one vote in three in the Federal Legisture.

So in 1858 he found that the best we could hope for, under Confederation, was that we might have two elective chambers, with a number of members proportioned to the population in each province, which would have given us one vote in three. It was the elective system, with representation based on population in each chamber. In view of the Confederation of all the provinces, that plan was decidedly better than the one now proposed to us, in which Lower Canada is only to have 65 out of 194 in the Lower House, and 2-1 out of 76 in the Legislative Council, less than the proportion which we should have had under the elective system, without taking into account, that as the legislative councillors are to be appointed by the General Government, Lower Canada will exercise but little influence as regards the appointment of her councillors. But let us see what the honorable member for Montmorency now thinks of the elective system. After having, in 1856, himself brought in the bill to render the Legislative Council elective, and having thus done more than anyone else to effect the change which then took place in the constitution of that body, and after having, in 1858, declared in writing that ” the best possible terms that could be obtained in Confederation would be the making of the two chambers elective,” in 1865 he says, at page 65 of his second pamphlet :—

It was in obedience to the general sentiment, and not by conviction, that he who now writes gave up, m 1865, an opinion which he had always held, and himself drafted the present constitution of the Legislative Council, and it is with genuine satisfaction, and a conviction strengthened by experience, that we greet the revival of the principle of Crown nomination to the Legislative Coancil under conditions superior to those of former times.

It would seem, then, that in 1856 the honorable member altered the Constitution, not as the result of conviction, and because he considered it was defective, but in obedience to the general sentiment ; that is to say, that being a Minister, he did not wish to displease his friends, who demanded that this change should be made, and that, rather than sacrifice his portfolio as a Minister, he preferred to sacrifice his principles and convictions. (Hear, hear, and laughter.) Now, the honorable member has no other sacrifice to make than that of his personal dignity ; this is but a trifling one ; and he returns to his old opinions, so as not to displease his present friends. He clung to power in 1856 ; to-day he pays homage to it; that is the whole difference. When the wind blew in the direction of reform, the honorable member was a Reformer, not from conviction but from interest ; and when it blows in the direction of absolutism, the honorable member becomes by instincta Conservative and a Tory. So he who, in 1856, obtained the passing of an act to render the Council elective ; who, in 1858, again pronounced himself in favor of the elective principle as applied to the Council, tells us in 1865 that he greets with genuine satisfaction the revival of the principle of Crown nomination of the Legislative Councillors. (Hear, hear.) Ministers went on their knees to the Lower

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Provinces beseeching them to come to an understanding as regarded a change of the Constitution, and with respect to a scheme of Confederation. Explanations were the result, which have only been given on a few important points ; the delegates of the Lower Provinces, after having obtained the most favorable financial stipulations for those whom they represented, have still further imposed their views and have modified the scheme of Confederation in a manner at variance with the views of our Ministers ; and yet, after the Maritime Provinces have repudiated the action of their delegates, the Government still obstinately persists in obtaining the adoption of the scheme without any amendment whatsoever. If that resolution passes, we shall ask England to change our Constitution, and to give us one which will not be in accordance with the views of our ministers, and still less with those of the people of this province. But let us see what the honorable member for Montmorency said in 1858 on this subject. I cite from page 12:—

To ask England to change the Constitution is to give her an opportunity of changing it to suit her own views or those of our enemies. Nay, more, to ask that we should take the first step is to claim it for all the provinces, it is to call upon them too to say upon what conditions they will accept the Federal union.

But in the conflict of all these voices one only will never be heard from the Imperial Throne, because it would be in the French language. It is no prejudice, it is but the history of our fifty years of trial and sorrow.

Have circumstances so greatly changed since 1858 ? What has occurred since that period to give the honorable member for Montmorency more confidence now in the justice of England, or in the efficacy of our petitions than he then had ? Is not the history of our fifty years of sufferings vivid in the memories of all V When we asked the Imperial Government to change the constitution of the Legislative Council, did they not unnecessarily, and without our having sought it, repeal the clause which rendered necessary a two-thirds vote to change the basis of the representation ? That safeguard of the interests of Lower Canada was taken away from us without our knowing, and at the present moment we do not know at whose instance that clause of the Union Act was expunged. Have we not similar reason to fear that they may impose on Lower Canada a new Constitution, with conditions which will encroach upon the rights solemnly guaranteed to us by treaty ? And this is the more probable from the fact that, this scheme having been rejected by the Lower Provinces, England will not be desirous of enforcing it upon them, and that if it is adopted by the Imperial Parliament, it can only be so adopted with such modifications as will make it applicable to Canada alone, leaving to the Lower Provinces the right of accepting it hereafter; and Heaven alone knows what these modifications will be, and how they may affect our institutions. (Hear, hear.) If the Imperial Parliament thinks proper to take up this Constitution without the acceptance of it by the Maritime Provinces, it will come back to us, as did the answer to the Address in relation to the Legislative Council, entirely different from the Address we are about to vote.

HON. MR. EVANTUREL—I thought I understood, when explanations were given to-day by the Hon. Atty. Gen. West, that the Government intended to lay before Her Majesty the Address to be passed by this House, then to ask the advice of the Imperial Government as to what they had better do under the circumstances, and theu return and report to the House.

HON. MR. DORION—I enquired, in lau guage as explicit as it was possible to usu. of the Hon. Atty. Gen. West, whether the Government would submit a new Constitution for ratification by the Legislature, and he only replied that the Government would sub- mit the whole matter to the Imperial Government, that is to say, the Address to be passed by this House, and an explanation of the present state of matters in view of the defeat of the scheme of Confederation in the Lower Provinces. He refused to say that the Government would come back to the House with the measure.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—The honorable member for Hochelaga would like to make the House believe that it is the intention of the Government to cause a measure to be passed by the Imperial Government against the wishes of this House ; but no such conclusion can be drawn from the explanations given by my honorable friend the Hon. Atty. Gen. West. He stated that a deputation would go to England, and that they would submit to the Imperial Government the addresses of the two Houses, containing the plan of Confederation adopted by the delegates ot all the provinces, and that they would urge upon the Imperial Government to bring down a measure that should apply to all the prov- inces.


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not saying, however, that the new Constitution will be submitted to the House on the return of the deputation. (Hear, hear.)

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER–Nor is it saying, either, that it is without the consent of the House.

HON. MR. DORION—What I wish to say is, that it is perfectly clear that the House will not be called upon to pronounce upon the new Constitution which is to be given to us, no mat ter what changes may be introduced into the resolutions on which we are now called upon to vote. (Hear, hear.) The Hon. Atty. Gen. East cannot say that the Government will submit to the House the result of the advice which they may receive from the Imperial Government. (Hear, hear.) All that we can understand from the Government is, that they will press the adoption cf the measure by this House, and that, if they can pass it, they will ask the Imperial Government to give us a Constitution based on these resolutions, and that this Constitution will be imposed on the country without either the House or the people being called upon to ratify it, even although it be altogether different from the resolutions now submitted to us. (Hear, hear.) As in 1856 we saw the clause of the Union Act, which required the concurrence of two-thirds of the members of the House to authorize a change in the basis of the representation, repealed without any application on our par t for its repeal, so we shall perhaps see in this new Constitution which is to be given to us, that the principle of Confederation will have been sacrificed in order that a legislative union, pure and simple, may be imposed upon us. (Hear, hear.) And this is the more probable now, that it is well known that the Maritime Provinces have repudiated the plan of Confederation in its present shape.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—We shall make a small Confederation by dividing Canada into four parts. (Laughter . ) That is what the honorable member for Hochelaga promised the honorable member for South Oxford when he formed his Government. There should be little men, little provinces, and a little Confederation. (Laughter.)

A VOICE—Now-a-days the Government has only great projects.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—Yes; we propose great measures, and what is more, we carry them.

HON. MR. DORION—Yet the Honorable Attorney General has undertaken to grant a little Confederation, and to divide us into little provinces if the grander scheme does not pass, and he has a very fair chance to come back to little matters. (Hear, hear.) The honorable member for Montmorency, after having expressed his opinion with respect to the constitution which ought to be provided for the Legislative Council, in order to the protection of our interests, said in that pamphlet of 1858, on the subject of Confederation :—

The object of Confederation is external protection ; it can defend itself from enemies from without, but it could not defend itself against itself. It was not with a view to social improvement, not to attain a more perfect and complete internal political organization, that the American colonies and the small states of Germany, who wished to remain independent, had recourse to Confederation ; it was for mutual protection against enemies from without, and for that only. Now we have England to protect us, the political Confederation of the provinces is therefore absurd. But if it be at once absurd and fatal, why should we persist in demanding it ?

These are the opinions of the honorable member for Montmorency :—

Were we to have a Confederation of the provinces, they would soon range themselves into two distinct camps ; and if we are to judge of the past by the present, it is needless to say to what dangers Lower Canada would be exposed. [And a little further on, he adds] : When once we have admitted a principle, not only we have to admit the consequences, bat even to suffer them to our ruin. The consequences of Confederation would be the ruin of Lower Canada.

The honorable member for Montmorency was convinced that the Confederation of the provinces could not be effected without having recourse to direct taxation, which loomed up constantly before his eyes—(hear, hear ) :—

Direct taxation for the maintenance and to carry out the objects of the local legislatures, are a necessity of the Federal system ; and if Lower Canada was to refuse to tax herself to pay the expenses of its Government and Leg slature, it would be forced into doing it ; bearing in mind the refusal in days past of its House of Assembly to vote the supplies, they would treat 1er as they did in 1840.

Thus the great Confederation, so fatal and absurd, would be the ruin of Lower Canada. Now for a little description of our new friends in the Maritime Provinces :—

What advantage can Canada hope to obtain in the consolidation of the revenues of all the provinces? * * * * Whilst the united revenues of the four Atlantic provinces hardly reach the sum of four hundred

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thousand pounds, and whilst not one of these provinces has much in the future with the exception of New Brunswick, Newfoundland with its cold climate, its barren soil, like that of the north shore of our Lower St. Lawrence, will never be more than a fishing station, to which, besides, we have access in common with all the other nations of the world. Nova Scotia is another fishing station, to which also we have access in common with everyone else. It has no soil fit for cultivation. Its revenue remains stationary, or diminishes like the population of its capital, Halifax (although situated at the extremity of one of the most magnificent harbors in the world), which, in 1840, had 25,000 inhabitants in its woolen houses, and which now affords shelter to fifteen thousand human beings only. * * * * * * * * *

They are poor, and seek an alliance with the rich. They have good reason ; were we in their place, we would do the same.

That is his account of the new allies he now proposes to give us. (Hear, hear, and laughter.) And now passing to the question of religion, this is what we find :—

In the existing union the Protestants are slightly the most numerous, at least according to the census of 1850. The proposed union would increase the Protestant strength, for the very great majority of the populations of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick is Protestant, and Newfoundland, in which Catholicism prevails, is too poor, both at present and in prospective, with its barren soil, to give any strength, or even hope, to Catholicism. Protestantism would thus be more powerful in a union of all the provinces than it is now in the existing union of the Canadas.

I think I need say no more. I think that the reasons adduced by the honorable member for Montmorency from the French-Canadian point of view, against the union of the provinces in 1858, exist at the present day, and that they have greater force now than they had then ; and this is the more evident when we see all the members from Upper Canada declare that Confederation is not what they want, but that they would prefer a legislative union. This fact ought to add to our alarm, and convince us of the danger to which we should be exposed by this union. The honorable member for Montmorency now encourages his friends to proceed to England and obtain its adoption by the Imperial Government, and its imposition on the Maritime Provinces as well as upon Canada. It is an appeal to Great Britain to pass a measure upon the application of the Canadian Government, and to impose it upon the Lower Provinces, after making such modifications to it as would satisfy them. The honorable member for Montmorency, animadverting upon a letter which I wrote last autumn to my con stituents, in which I asserted that no precedent existed for a Federal union between mere colonies, has cited, in refutation of my statement, the case of New Zealand. New Zealand is composed of three islands, divided into eleven provinces, each of which possesses a sort of municipal council which is called a government, just as the municipalities are called provinces. Each province has a head or executive officer, elected by the people, and charged with the carrying out of. the laws. The municipal councils have the power of legislating, but their powers are restricted within very narrow limits. They cannot interfere even with the laws relating to wills and successions, whilst, on the other hand, the Central Government has the right to legislate on all matters affecting the colony. The political system of New Zealand is exactly like our county and parish municipal system. Our county municipalities represent the central power, and our parish municipalities represent the local governments. Had the hon. member for Montmorency examined the Constitution of Belgium, he would have seen that there, there are provinces which each have a Governor and a Local Parliament, and these parliaments have much greater powers than the local councils in New Zealand, and are much more important ; yet no one has ever ventured to assert that Belgium was a Confederation, although it was divided into provinces. Neither is the French Empire a Confederation, although its departments are governed by Préfets. (Hear, hear.) The hon. member for Montmorency has told us that our interests would be perfectly protected by the proposed Constitution. I find that the powers assigned to the General Parliament enable it to legislate on all subjects whatsoever. It is an error to imagine that these powers are defined and limited by the 29th clause of the resolutions. Were it desirous of legislating on subjects placed under the jurisdiction of the local legislatures, there is not a word in these resolutions which can be construed to prevent it, and if the local legislatures complain, Parliament may turn away and refuse to hear their complaints, because all the sovereignty is vested in the General Government, and there is no authority to define its functions and attributes and those of the local governments.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—What do you understand by sovereign power—please explain ?

HON. MR. DORION—I will tell you in a

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moment. I say that the Federal Parliament will exercise sovereign power, inasmuch as it can always trespass upon the rights of the local governments without there being any authority to prevent it. “What authority have you constituted which can come forward and say to the Federal Parliament—” You shall not do such and such a thing, you shall not legislate upon such and such a subject, because these matters are reserved to the local governments.” There will be no such authority, and consequently it will have sovereign power, and cm do all that it pleases, and may encroach upon all the rights and attributes of the local governments whenever it may think proper. We shall be—I speak as a Lower Canadian—we shall be at its mercy, because it may exercise its right of veto on all the legislation of the local parliaments, and there again we shall have no remedy. In ease of difference between the Federal power and the local governments, what authority will intervene for its settlement ?

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—It will be the Imperial Government.

HON. MR. DORION—In effect there will be no other authority than that of the Imperial Government, and we know too well the value assigned to the complaints of Lower Canadians by the Imperial Government.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—The delegates understood the matter better than that. Neither the Imperial Government nor the General Government will interfere, but the courts of justice will decide all questions in relation to which there may be differences between the two powers.

A VOICE—The Commissioners’ courts. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. DORION—Undoubtedly. One magistrate will decide that a law passed by the Federal Legislature is not law, whilst another will decide that it is law, and thus the difference, instead of being between the legislatures, will be between the several courts of justice.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—Should the General Legislature pass a law beyond the limits of its functions, it will be null and void pleno jure.

HON. MR. DORION—Yes, I understand that, and it is doubtless to decide questions of this kind that it is proposed to establish Federal courts.

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—No, no ! They will be established solely to apply and adjudicate upon the Federal laws.

HON. MR. DORION—In Great Britain, Parliament is all-powerful, every one admits it—and I would like to know whether it is proposed to give to the Federal Parliament the omnipotence enjoyed by the Imperial Parliament. Without that, the system proposed to be established is no longer a political monarchical system, but rather a vast municipality. If all the courts of justice are to have the right of deciding as to the legality of the laws, the Federal Parliament will not be able to make them without a justice of the peace or commissioner of small causes setting them aside, under the pretext that they are not within the jurisdiction of the central power, as is uow done in the case of a procls-verhal of road work. That is not the monarchical system ; it is the republican system. In England, as it is here at the present moment, the Legislature is all-powerful, and I believe that that was the principle which it was sought to adopt. If the differences between the Federal and the Local Parliaments are not to be submitted to the decision of a Supreme Federal Court, I do not see who can possibly decide them. (Hear, hear.) We are told that the Federal Court of Appeals will not be charged with the decision of matters in dispute between the legislatures, but they will only have to give final judgments in cases decided by the local inferior courts. Well, for my part I cannot approve of the creation of this court. The great inconveniences of it to us Lower Canadians may easily be seen. Thus, when a cause shall have been argued and decided in all our courts, we shall still have to go before a Federal Court of Appeal composed of judges of all the provinces, and in which we shall probably have only one judge, who may be selected out of the English population. And this is the protection afforded to us. I repeat that I see no protection whatever for our interests, as Lower Canadians, in the constitution of the political and judicial powers, for the Federal Parliament can encroach upon our rights without any authority having the power to interfere, and then we shall have a Federal Court of Appeal in which we shall only be represented by one judge against six or seven of other origins. (Hear, hear.) There is another and very important question to be considered, and that is as to what is meant by paragraph 30 of the 29th resolution, in relation to marriage and divorce. I see, not without apprehension, that it is left to the General Parliament to legislate on all matters relating to marriage and divorce. The question of marriage is intimately connected with a large portion of our

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code and civil rights, for upon marriage depends the settlement of family interests and successions, and the civil condition of the population. If the right of legislating on all matters connected with marriage is left to the Federal Parliament, it will have the right to declare that a marriage contracted elsewhere will be valid in the Confedacy, provided it has been contracted in accordance with the laws of the country in which it took place, as stated by the Honorable Solicitor General East, for it is a principle of international law perfectly understood in every country of the civilized world, and which it would be impossible to alter, and it was of no use whatever to insert it in the Constitution. I say, then, that not only will the Federal Government have this power, but they will also be able to change the civil conditions of marriage which now constitute a part of our code. But if it is sought to remove from the local legislatures the right of legislating respecting the conditions under which a marriage may be contracted, the age at which marriage is to be allowed, the degree of relationship whivh shall be an impediment to marriage, the consent of the relations, and the requisite dispensations which are now íequived to be obtained from the ecclesiastical authorities, then I can understand why this article has Leen inserted in the resolutions, and that the right to do all this is to be vested in the Federal Parliament. If it is desired that a minor should be allowed to marry, as he can in countries in which the laws of England prevail, without the consent of his relations, I can conceive the reason for placing the right to legislate respecting marriage in the hands of the Federal power ; but if that was not the object in view, I see no reason why the right to legislate on this subject has not been left to the local governments. (Hear, hear.) I should see with considerable apprehension and alarm this power given to the General Parliament, because it will be composed of men who have ideas entirely at variance with ours in relation to marriage. As regar is the question of divorce, we have had every kind of explanation as to the moaning of the resolution of the Conference. The Honorable Solicitor General of Lower Canada(Hon. Mr. LANGEVIN), who last year made so great a fuss because a divorce suit came before the House, and who even moved the rejection of the bill at its first reading, has been brought to terms on the subject, and has discov red that it would be a good thing to have an authority for the settlement of this matter. Last year he said that it was impossible for a Catholic to sanction even the first reading of a divorce bill, and he made us a long speech on the subject, but he has found out his mistake, and he is unwilling that the local legislature should legislate on divorce, but he vests this right in the Federal Parliament, and authorizes it to do so. He cannot himself legislate, but he allows another to do so for him. Well, I do not think that this is any improvement on the existing state of things, and I think that divorce is more likely to be prevented by leaving the subject among the functions of the local legislatures, at all events as far as Lower Canada is concerned, than by leaving it to the Federal Parliament. But I go further, and I say that the leaving of this question to the Federal Legislature is to in- troduce divorce a ong the Catholics. It is certain that at present no Catholic could obtain a divorce either in the present House or from the Local Legislature of Lower Cam- ada under Confederation. But suppose that the Federal Parliament were to enact that there shall be divorce courts in each section of the province, the Catholics will have the same access to them as the Protestants. And who is to prevent the Federal Legislature from establishing a tribunal of this kind in Lower Canada, if they are established else- where? In that case–if tribunals of this kind are established–will not the Honorable Solicitor General if he votes for this resolution have voted for the establishment of divorce courts over the whole country, to which Catholics and Protestants can have recourse for obtaining a divorce? That is the only conclusion it is possible to arrive at, and the legitimate consequence of the votes of those Catholics who will vote to vest this power in the Federal Parliament. (Hear, hear.) It is evident that a Catholic who thinks that he cannot vote for a Divorce bill ought not to vote indirectly for the establish- ment of Divorce courts, any more than to vote directly for it. The Honorable Solicitor General East told us the other day that he had recently obtained the annulment of a mar- riage, because the parties, being relations, had married without dispensation.

HON. SOL. GEN. LANGEVIN–I never pretended that that was a divorce. I said that if the c se of annulment of marriage to which I referred had arisen in Upper Canada, the Ecclesiastical courts might have declared the marriage null as far as the ca on law was concerned, but not as regarded the civil laws, for the law of Upper Canada does not recog-

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nize the impediments to marriage provided by the Canon law, and that the husband and wife would have been obliged to apply to Parliament to obtain their separation. And I stated that this separation couldn’t be looked upon as a divorce from a Catholic point of view, although the Act of Parliament might be called a Divorce bill.

MR. GEOFFRION—Would Parliament grant a divorce on the ground of relationship ?

HON. SOL GEN. LANGEVIN—I can cite other cases, as, for instance, that of a Catholic married to an infidel who had not been baptized, without being aware at the time of the marriage that this impediment existed. If he discovers the fact afterwards, he is not married as far as the Canon law is concerned. If the wife is not willing to consent to the obtaining of the necessary dispensations to render her marriage valid, she may, in Lower Canada, apply to the Ecclesiastical court to have it annulled, but in Upper Canada she would also have to apply to Parliament.

MR. GEOFFRION—Could a divorce be obtained from Parliament on the ground of relationship ?

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER—I t would be proved before Parliament that the marriage contracted under these circumstances is null as regards the Canon law and the law of Lower Canada. There are ecclesiastical authorities in Upper Canada just as there are in Lower Canada, but as the Civil law there is not the same as it is here, the couple whose marriage would be void under the Canon law but not under the Civil law—for in the eyes of the law the marriage would be valid and binding, and neither husband nor wife could remarry without having obtained a divorce— the couple, I say, would have the right of applying to Parliament, who might legally declare that marriage null which had been so declared by the ecclesiastical authorities. But the nullity of the marriage must first be proved to the satisfaction of the ecclesiastical authorities and under the Canon law, and then Parliament might annul it on that evidence, for it would be omnipotent.

HON. MR. DORION—Then the Federal Parliament will be omnipotent ?

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER —Yes, in that respect.

HON. MR. DORION—But even supposing that the Federal Parliament would interfere in such a case, which is a matter of doubt, the Local Government would also have had the right to interfere if the power so to do had been given to it. Moreover, this would not be a case of divorce ; it would simply be the declaration that no marriage had ever taken place, which is quite a different matter. In Lower Canada the Canon law forms part of our Civil law, but in Upper Canada it is not so, and the law there does not recognize the right of the ecclesiastical authorities to declare a marriage null. (Hear, hear.) I think, then, that the explanation of the Hon. Solicitor General is not of more value than that which he gave us on the subject of marriage, for it does not in the least prove that the Federal Parliament have not the power to establish Divorce courts in all the provinces, and the resolution does not admit of the construction that the Federal Parliament will only have the right of declaring void marriages declared to be so by the Catholic ecclesiastical authorities. (Hear, hear.) I perceive that the subject of immigration is left to the General Government, concurrently with the local governments. I think that danger lies in the provision that the General Government is to appoint all our judges. I t is said, as the Honorable Attorney General East stated the other day, that there will be French-Canadians in the Executive of the Federal Government, but their number will be limited, and if the Executive is composed of fifteen members for instance, there will only be one or two French-Canadians at the most. Well, suppose the French-Canadian Ministers recommend the appointment of a person as judge, and that all their colleagues oppose it, the former will have the right to protest, but the majority will carry the clay, and all that the minority can do will be to retire from the Government. But in that case they will be replaced, and things will go on as before. That is all. The same argument applies to the appointment of legislative councillors ; and when I call to mind all the injustices committed by the Legislative Council of Lower Canada, which was nominated by the Crown, and in a spirit hostile to the great mass of the population, I cannot conceive that French-Canadians can be found who are willing to return to that system. Will they not remember that it was that system which closed our common schools, by refusing to vote the supplies granted by the Legislative Assembly, and thereby delayed, for years and years, the progress of education in Lower Canada. The honorable member for Montmorency says that wc must have a conservative chamber, and that our Legislative Council, under Confederation, will be less conservative than the Belgian Senate, be-

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cause the elective qualification of the Belgian senators is higher than that of our legislative councillors. The Belgian Senate is elected for eight years, and is renewed by one-fourth at a time.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—Every four years, by one-half.

HON. MR. DORION—Yes ; the honorable member is right. The term for which each senator is elected is eight years, and the elections take place for one-half of them every four years, and another change in the composition of the Senate can also take place, because it may be dissolved like the Lower House. Now, under these circumstances, there can be no clashing of any duration between the two Belgian Chambers, and the Senate cannot obstruct, for an indefinite period, the action of the Lower House. If a difference should arise between the two bodies, the Government can remedy it by new elections, by which senators would be returned favorable to the views of the people. Thus the Senate is not conservative, from the sole fact of the electoral qualification of the senators beingvery high. What I consider excessive and of a too conservative character in the constitution of the Legislative Council of the Confederation, is that no power exists which can change its composition in the case of a collision between it and the House of Commons. The councillors will be appointed for life, and their number is fixed. By what means shall we be able to prevent the Legislative Council from stopping the progress of business if a difference should arise with the Lower House ? The honorable member for Montmorency says that the obstacle will be broken down ; but if no other remedy than that is provided, I say that the principle is faulty. I t does not do, when we frame a Constitution, to open the door to obstacles which can only be surmounted by breaking them down. (Hear, hear.) In England, where the House of Lords is very conservative, the Crown has power to name new peers, and it is precisely the possession of that power of creating new peers which has prevented the breaking down of the obstacle— which prevented a revolution in 1832. The honorable member for Montmorency himself admits that at that period England was on the eve of a revolution, and that it would have happened if the House had any longer refused to sanction the measures of reform passed by the House of Commons and demanded by the people ; and that revolution was only avoided because the King, having declared that he would create new peers, a certain number of the lords, to escape this danger, absented themselves and permitted the passing of the Parliamentary Reform Bill. (Hear, hear.) There are two or three other matters which are left to the joint jurisdiction of the Federal and Local Legislatures, such as agriculture, emigration, and the fisheries ; but the laws of the Federal Parliament will always prevail in these matters over those of the local parliaments ; thus, for instance, a Local Legislature may pass a law in relation to agriculture, but it may be overridden the next day by a law of the Federal Legislature. (Hear, hear.) I shall not touch upon the question of the finances, but I must say that the figures given by the Hon. Solicitor General East do not agree with those in the Public Accounts. I do not know where he obtained them, but for my part I have been unable to find them. When I enquired whether Lower Canada was to pay the Municipal Loan Fund debt, he did not think proper to answer. When I asked the Hon. Minister of Finance whether Lower Canada would be charged with the debt contracted for the redemption of the Seigniorial dues, with the Common School Fund, the Municipal Loan Fund, and the indemnity payable to the townships, amounting in the whole to §4,500,000, he replied that he would bring down a pro- position at some future period for the settlement of these questions, but he has not thought proper to give any explanations. Well, I have stated that besides the debt of $67,000,000 due by the province, there are more than $3,000,000 due to Upper Canada as compensation for the Seigniorial indemnity, and that in fixing at $62.500,000 the debt to be assumed by the Federal Government, there will remain about $9,000,000 to divide between Upper and Lower Canada. With the amount of the Municipal Loan Fund debt and of the other items which I have mentioned, Lower Canada will find herself charged with a local debt of $4,500,000. (Hear, hear.) When we entered the union we had a debt of $500,000; we have expended since the union, on public works in Lower Canada, about $13,000,000, and we go out of the union with a debt of $27,500,000 as our proportion of the Federal debt, besides our own special debt of $4,500,000, whilst Upper Canada will go out of it without any local debt on giving up the indemnity to which she is entitled under the Seigniorial Act of 1859. Well, I assert that it is an unjust

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treaty, and that it is also unfair that the Ministry should refuse us all explanations on this point, before we are called upon to give our votes on the resolutions. (Hear.) The Hon. Solicitor General East told us the other day that in the plan of Confederation which I had proposed for the two Canadas, I intended to leave the administration and ownership of the Crown lands to the General Government, and he said that under Confederation the Crown lands would belong to the local governments, and this, in his opinion, was a great improvement on the plan which I proposed. Well, it must be observed that a very large amount is due on sales of Crown lands ; there is about $1,000,000 due in Lower Canada, and $5,000,000 or $6,000,000 in Upper Canada. If these lands had remained in the union there would have been about one million from Lower Canada, and five or six millions from Upper Canada towards the payment of the general debt. We should have benefited to that amount by the extinction of so much of the public debt ; instead of that, under the plan of the Government, Upper Canada is to have the benefit of the five or six millions due on the lands sold in Upper Canada, whilst Lower Canada will only have one million of dollars at the outside. If it were only the public lands, there would be no injustice in leaving them to the local governments, but the difference in the amounts due on the lands sold gives a considerable advantage to Upper Canada. There is another very serious objection to the Constitution of the Legislative Council. The honorable member for Montmorency said that the Legislative Council would serve as a protection and safeguard to the interests of the French-Canadians, because in it we would have an equality of members with the other provinces. A curious equality that will be ! That of which the honorable member for Montmorency spoke when he pronounced himself in favor of two elective chambers, because in that case we should have one member in three, was infinitely preferable. In the Lower House we shall not have one member in three, nor shall we in the Upper House either, for wo shall only have twenty-four councillors out of seventy- six. Thus we shall have equality neither in the Lower House nor in the Council. (Hear, hear.) But then the General Government will nominate the councillors, and we shall be in a great minority in the Executive Council. Another objection is that the nomination of the legislative councillors on the recommendation of the Executive Council of the General Government, and this offers no guarantee for the institutions of Lower Canada, because the predominating influence in that Council will not be that of the majority of Lower Canada. To offer an effectual guarantee, it would be necessary that they should be elected by the people, or, at all events, only appointed on the recommendation of the local governments. These resolutions, we are told, are only as it were the headings to the chapters of the new Constitution, and the new Constitution may be anything else than what is now under consideration. It will come back to us in the form of an Imperial Act, to which we shall have nolentes volentes to submit. (Hear, hear.) Supposing even that the scheme should not be modified, I could not approve it. I cannot with a joyful heart give up the imprescriptible rights of the people who have sent me here to represent them. I cannot consent to a change which is neither more nor less than a revolution, a political revolution it is true, but which does not the less, on that account, affect the rights and interests of a million of inhabitants, the descendants of the first settlers in America, of those who have given their names to the vast regions which they discovered, and whose careers have been rendered famous by so many heroic traits. (Hear, hear.) I am opposed to this Confederation in which the militia, the appointment of the judges, the administration of justice and our most important civil rights, will be under the control of a General Government the majority of which will be hostile to Lower Canada, of a General Government invested with the most ample powers, whilst the powers of the local governments will be restricted, first, by the limitation of the powers delegated to it, by the veto reserved to the central authority, and further, by the concurrent jurisdiction of the general authority or government. Petitions, with more than 20,000 signatures attached to them, have already been presented to this House against the scheme of Confederation. Numerous public meetings have been held in nineteen counties in Lower Canada, and one in the city of Montreal. Everywhere this scheme has been protested against, and an appeal to the people demanded; and yet, in defiance of the expressed opinions of our constituents, we are about to give them a Constitution, the effect of which will be to snatch from them the little influence which they still enjoy under the existing union. Wo are about, on their behalf, to surrender all the rights and

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privileges which are dearest to them, and that without consulting them. It would be madness— it would be more, it would be a crime. On these grounds I shall oppose this scheme with all the power at my command, and insist that under any circumstances it shall be submitted to the people before its final adoption. (Cheers.)

HON. MR. CAUCHON-Mr. SPEAKER, I received intelligence this evening that the Hon. member for Hochelaga was about to reply to my speech of the 2nd of March, and that is why I came here. Otherwise, as I have not yet quite recovered, I should have remained at home; but I frankly acknowledge that if I had foreseen that I should have had to listen to such a speech as that which we have just heard, I should not have put myself out of the way for so little. Any one hearing him speak must have said : ” Either he is not a very powerful reasoner, or this hon. member has but a poor idea of the intelligence of this House and but little respect for his colleagues.” But for my two pamphlets and for the speech of the Hon. Solicitor General, which he read and com mented upon as he knows how to do, ho would very speedily have found himself aground ; but by deriving assistance in the way I have mentioned, he contrived to find the means of speaking for three hours. (Hear, hear.) Is it necessary for me to repeat that I have never denied the opinions which I held in former days ? Nor will I deny them to-night. I acknowledge freely that my opinions on certain matters have changed. Of what advantage, then, can it be to him to spend his time in repeating what I admit myself ? If I proved to him that he had changed several times himself, I did not do so to lay blame upon him, but to reproach him with denying his past career, in order that he might be more at his ease in that which he is at present following. (Hear, hoar.) But, for that matter, what does it signify to the country that he or I held one opinion yesterday and that we hold another to-day ? What the country requires to know is whether the scheme of Confederation which is submitted to us by the Government is good or bad. (Hear, hear.) The man who declares that he has never changed his opinion on any subject whatever is, to my thinking, a simpleton. The public requirements change with circumstances, and necessarily bring with them other ideas. (Hear, hear.) We do not eat when we are no longer hungry, nor drink when our thirst is satisfied Did the hon. member, for instance, put in practice, when in power, the doctrine which he enunciated respecting the double majority, when he was seated on the Opposition benches ? When the House was engaged in debating a resolution, the object of which was to affirm the principle of the double majority, the present Hon. President of the Council having got up to say that he would never have governed Upper Canada by means of a Lower Canada majority, the hon. member for Hochelaga rose in his turn to declare that he also would never consent to govern in opposition to the will of Lower Canada, And yet, in 1858, did he not enter a Cabinet which was refused by nearly all. the members from Lower Canada ?

HON. MR. DORION—I said that at the time of the formation of the BROWN-DORION Ministry. I told the Hon. President of the Council (Hon. Mr. BROWN) that I would not undertake to carry through the Legislature the four great measures which were then in question, without the consent of the majority of the representatives from Lower Canada.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—Ah, yes ! An excellent rearon can always be found for retaining power when we have it, in spite of our own declarations. In 1862, did lie not form part of a Government situated in the same position ? And from 1863 to 1864 did he not govern Lower Canada with a rod of iron, supported only by a weak Lower Canadian minority ?

HON. MR. DORION—The only measure passed in 1863, that relating to Separate Schools in Upper Canada, was carried by a majority in both provinces.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—That is not so, as the Upper Canadian majority voted against that bill, which owed its safety to Lower Canadians only. But it is the principle which is in question here, and the hon. member cannot divert the attention of the House from that fact. If the double majority was good in one case, it must be so in all cases, in legislation as in administration, but more especially in administration, which cannot and ought not to be based on anything except public opinion. Now, the hon member for Hochelaga certainly governed his country despite the majority of its representatives. (Hear, hear.) He has spoken to us of the petitions presented to this House against the scheme of Confeder-

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ation, but what do those petitions amount to ? The way in which they were covered with signatures is well known. (Hear, hear.) I shall here cite an anecdote relating to the parliamentary history of Upper Canada, at a period shortly before the Union. A member was talking a great deal about petitions in a debate upon a bill. “Petitions!” said his opponent, ” I will undertake within a fortnight to present a petition to this House praying that you may be hanged, and which shall be covered with good and valid signatures !” The challenge was aecepted, and at the end of three weeks the petition arrived, praying for the hanging of the man who had so much faith in the virtue of petitions ! How had it been obtained ? By posting at a tavern situated at four cross-roads a skilful and knowing agent, who incessantly said to the frequenters of the tavern—” Do you like good roads?” “Yes .” ” Well, then, sign this petition.” All signed, without reading it. (Hear, hear, and laughter.) Exactly in this manner were obtained most of the signatures against Confederation. At Montreal, agents went from tavern to tavern and induced all who were there to sigu, or signed for those who resided in the vicinity without even consulting them. (Hear, hear.) Have we not also seen petitions coming from counties in which the Opposition were not even able to find candidates ? They nay easily obtain signatures of this description, and by this means ; but that does not constitute an expression of the opinion of Lower Canada, and those petitions will not carry elections. The hon. member ought to know something about it, he who was in power at the time of the last general election. (Hear, hear.) He endeavored to explain away his contradictions by saying that he had never been in favor ot the Confederation of all the provinces. I did not state that he was in favor of this Confederation of all the provinces; I only said that he was willing, as a member of the BROWN-DORION Government, in 1858, to have representation based on population, with checks, guarantees and assurances; that then, in 1859, he proposed as an alternative to that measure, in his Montreal manifesto, Confederation of the two Canadas; and then, in 1860-’61 he was ready to accept any possible change, even Confederation of all British North America. (Hear, hear.) To prove that he was in favor of Confederation of all the provinces, I quoted one of his speeches, in which he said, on the 6th July, 1858 :—

The repeal of the union, a Federal union, representation based on population, or some other great change, must of necessity take place, and for my part I am disposed to examine the question of representation based on population, with the view of ascertaining whether it might not be conceded with guarantees for the protection of the religion, the language and the laws of the Lower Canadians. I am likewise prepared to take into consideration the scheme for a Confederation of the provinces, &c, &c.

Then another, of the 3rd May, 1860, of which I gave two versions—the first from the Mirror of Parliament, and the second from the Morning Chronicle, to which I was referred as being more authentic and more orthodox by the organ of the hon. member for Hochelaga:—

I hope, however, that the day will come in which it will be desirable for Canada to federate with the Lower Provinces, &c. * * * Those in favor of a Federal union of the provinces must see that this proposed Federation of Upper and Lower Canada is the best means to fora a nucleus around which the great Confederation of all the provinces could be formed in the course of time.—Mirror of Parliament.

I look upon the Federal union of Upper and Lower Canada as the nucleus of the great Confederation of the Provinces of North America to which all look forward. I believe that time will bring about the union of all the provinces.— Morning Chronicle.

Could anything be more explicit ?

HON. MR. DORION—-The word ” he ” is not in the report.

HON. MR. CAUCHON—No; and I corrected that error the other night ; but I maintained with reason that the words ” to which all look forw ard ” meant that all persons directed their attention towards Confederation. Now, if all persons expect Confcdeiation; if ail persons direct their attention towards it as towards the promised land, the hon. member for Hochelaga must be included to a small extent in this term ” all persons.” (Hear, hear.) Did he not, moreover, declare that the Confederation of the two Canadas, which he proposed, was to be but the nucleus of the great Confederation, the necessary nucleus for the Confederation of all the American Provinces, which we are considering at present?

HON. MR. DORION—I did not say the necessary nucleus.

HON. MR. CAUCHON-The hon. member always seeks loop-holes by which to escape from his speeches and to evade the consequences of his past opinions ; but as I

[Page 697]

did not interrupt him, I hope that he will not interrupt me either. Did he not say the other day :—

Of course I do not say that I shall be opposed to their Confederation for all time to come. Population may extend over the wilderness that now lies between the Maritime Provinces and ourselves, and commercial intercourse may increase sufficiently to render Confederation desirable.

Is not this admitting everything ? Is it not saying that there is nothing between us but a question of time and of expediency ? Why then should he make the opinions of us, the majority, such a crime, when he himself arrives, at the end of a four hours’ speech, at the conclusion that Confederation will be good or necessary at a time which is more or less near? In his manifesto against the scheme of Confederation he adheres so far to his previous opinions as to consider the scheme which is submitted to us as merely premature. There again, then, it was only a question of time, and in declaring himself to-day opposed to Confederation, ho therefore changes his opinion as to the very basis of the question. I do not cast it up to him as a reproach ; for, as I said but a minute ago, he who maintains that he has never changed, conveys but a poor opinion of his judgment and of his aptitude for public affaiis. Events, in changing, absolutely compel men to change also. (Hear.) A general was once boasting to the great TURENNE that he had never committed an error of strategy. ” He who boasts that he has never been mistaken,” returned TURENNE, “proves thereby that he knows nothing of the art of war.” These words, which are full of wisdom, may be applied to the hon. member for Hochelaga, who, by his persistence in maintaining that he has never contradicted himself nor been mistaken, proves that he is no statesman. (Hear, hear.; But, I say it again, it would have been better for him to lay aside personal questions. (Hear, hear.) On the 6th July, 1858, he said:—

Before long it will become impossible to resist the demand of Upper Canada. If representation based on population is not granted to her now, she will infallibly obtain it hereafter, but then without any guarantee for the protection of the French-Canadians.

But to-day he changes his opinion. Then he was willing to grant representation by population, or Confederation based on the same principle. It had to be conceded in order that we might not be carried away by the tempest. But to-day, according to his shewing, the storm no longer impends ; the whole sky is calm and serene ; public opinion in Upper Canada no longer threatens to break asunder the frail bands of the union, and changes are useless. Ah ! and yet we have had as many as three ministerial crises in one year. (Hear, hear.) He mistakes then ; the difficulties have but increased, and it is better to-day to provide against the storm, than to be carried away by it at a later period. The greatest wisdom directs its efforts, not to cure the disease, but to prevent it ; this truth is as applicable to politics as it is to medicine. (Hear, hear.) The hon. member for Hochelaga talked to us of conflicts between the Federal Parliament and the local Houses, and of the sovereign power of the Central Government over the legislatures of the provinces. But what, then, is this sovereign power over the attributes of the provincial legislatures ? If it exists it must be in the Constitution. If it is not to be found there, it is because it does not exist. He says that the Federal Legislature will always predominate ; and why ? Who then will decide between the one and the others?—the judicial tribunals being sworn to respect the laws and the Constitution in their entirety, and charged by the very nature of their functions to declare whether such a law of the Federal Parliament or of the local legislatures does or does not affect the Constitution. (Hear, hear.) There will be no absolute sovereign power, each legislature having its distinct and independent attributes, not proceeding from one or the other by delegation, either from above or from below. The Federal Parliament will have legislative sovereign power in all questions, submitted to its control in the Constitution. So also the local legislatures will be sovereign in all matters which are specifically assigned to them. How is the question of a conflict now settled in the United States, when it arises between the legislation of Congress and that of individual states ? I do not speak of the present time when nearly the whole of the territory of that great country is under military rule, and overrun in every direction by an army of 500,000 soldiers. I allude to what occurs in their normal condition. (Hear.) The sovereign power is vested in the Federal Government with respect to all Federal matters, and in the states with respect to all matters connected with their special attributes. By

[Page 698]

reading STOREY, or rather the Constitution, the hon. member will ascertain that the states are not paramount with respect to questions of war and peace, the tariff, trade, treaties and all relations with foreign countries. Their authority is void so far as relates to those questions, and the sovereign power is vested exclusively in ths Federal Government. If any conflict arises between the Federal Legislature and that of the states, it is decided by the judicial tribunals. I am not aware that any difficulty of this nature has ever arisen, and so far as relates to the legislative attributes of the states, that Federal legislation has ever predomioated over local legislation. (Hear, hear.) Why then should the case be otherwise so far as we are concerned ? Is it because we are differently constituted, and because our nature is subservient to other laws ? These are wretched arguments, and he has even been reduced to splitting hairs since ho has attended the school of the member for Brome, whose place he almost fills since he has been ill. (Laughter.) The honorable member for Hochelaga considered my first pamphlet much better written than my last, doubtless for the same reason that he considered my speeches of 1858 greatly superior to that which I delivered here the other day. He thinks now as I thought in 1858 ; he has therefore receded by six years. Alluding to my speech of the 2nd March, he appears to impute it to me as a crime, that I yielded to the influence of my relations with the delegates from the Maritime Provinces, and that under the action of that influence, I changed my opinions respecting Confederation. I admit the fact of that influence legitimately exercised. We lose nothing by coming in contact with intelligent men. The members ot this House, who last autumn visited those provinces, returned amazed at what they had seen. They were convinced that those provinces were possessed of great resources. Contact with the most eminent men of those countries could be productive of no evil, and the hon. member would have gained by it. Perhaps if he had experienced that contact, he would not to-day have recourse to the means which he is employing to cast discredit on the scheme of Confederation, and to cause it tobe rejected. (Hear, hear.) Among those men there are some who are endowed with magnificent abilities, and at whose side I should be happy and proud to sit in a deliberative assembly. (Hear, hear.) Yes, we were gainers by coming in contact with them, and I venture to believe that, on their parts, they were divested of many prejudices which they may possibly have entertained against us, just as we had some such against them. The hon. member quoted certain articles from the Journal de Québec of 1856 and 1858 to prove that I said that then the Government was the worst I had ever seen. Perhaps I was right at the time, but I could not say the same thingsince it has been my lot to look upon the hon. member’s Government ! (Hear, and laughter.) If there was ever a tyrannical and dishonest Government, it was certainly that cf 1863, and accordingly it succumbed before the attacks ot all honest men. Except for some accident, such as that which occurred in 1862, who ventures to hope to see the hon. member return to power ? (Hear, hear.) He told us that it was not expedient to change the Constitution without first having recourse to an appeal to the people. But the first question to be decided is the constitutional question, and the question of expediency and convenience comes after. He talks to us without ceasing of consulting the electors. His doing so maybe easily understood ; on the elections rest his only hopes. Always deceived in every election, he hopes, but hopes in vain, that the next will give him the victory. He oughttoknow,however,that our Constitution is constructed upon the model of the British Constitution, and that members do not and cannot receive an imperative order from their electors Each representative, although elected by one particular county, represents the whole country, and his legislative responsibility extends to the whole of it. If, therefore, I am convinced that any legislative measure presented by the Government or by a member of this Hoase, is of a nature to save Lower Canada, I must vote for that measure, even though my constituents are opposed to it. My electors might punish me afterwards, but they could not impose upon me duties which I consider to be entirely beyond their jurisdiction, and to relate to the very Constitution of the country. (Hear, hear.) If there are any members who consider that the scheme of Confederation is a bad one and opposed to the interests of Lower Canada, even if the majority of our people think otherwise, it is their duty to oppose it on precisely the same principle. They may also, if they choose, demand an appeal to the peoplo. But would they be justified in so doing, and ought this House

[Page 699]

to demand it simply in order to compensate for that absence of opposition which gives incessant trouble to the hon. member for Hochelaga ? (Hear, hear.) The honorable member for Hochelaga spoke of public meetings held in certain counties in the district of Montreal; but those meetings are far from possessing the importance which he assigns to them. We all know how they can be got up everywhere, and what they amount to. However the case may be there, there have been none such in the district of Quebec, and even in the district of Three Hivers, against Confederation, and it cannot be said that the members who represent those districts, and who vote for this measure, are acting in opposition to the wishes of their constituents. Such meetings are only found to occur in the district of Montreal, where the party of the honorable member is most strongly represented; but an opinion may be formed as to those meetings from what is going on at Quebec at this moment. While the whole body of citizens are calling for the suspension of the present municipal council, some individuals interested in keeping it in authority are calling public meetings in the nooks and corners of the suburbs. (Hear, hear.) The honorable member made tremendous efforts to prove that the interests of our religion, our nationality and our institutions would be in a position of much greater safety in his hands than they would be in those of the majority. For my part, I am willing to leave to public opinion the care of deciding that question ; and as he declares himself to hold that opinion in great respect, I must suppose that he will agree with me on this point. (Hear, hear.) I would not assert that the honorable member is himself personally hostile to the religion and the institutions of Lower Canada; but I may say that all the tendencies of the party which he represents are adverse to those same institutions. (Hear, hear.) There is sufficient proof of this in the writings and the acts of that party. As to my opinion respecting Confederation, I may repeat here what I have already said on a former occasion, and that is, that no one knew what that opinion was, how I should write, and on what side I should write, when I began my work. I kept silence that I might not be annoyed either by friends or by opponents, and in order that I might be able to judge of the question in the fulness of my liberty. (Hear.) Mention has been made of the dangers of Confederation. I know that every question has its dangers, and it is probable that this one presents some such in the same way as all others do ; but the greatest danger that we could incur would be the bringing on of a conflict between the Catholics and Protestants, by appeals like those which certain members on the left have made to the religious passions of our population. (Hear, hear.) In what position should we find ourselves, we Catholics, if we provoked such a conflict ? Thj 258,000 Catholics of Upper Canada are represented in this House by but two members, those for Cornwall and Glengarry (Hon. J. S. and Mr. D. A. MACDONALD), whilst the Protestants of Lower Canada are represented by fifteen or sixteen members ; and in case of a conflict between the Catholics and the Protestants, what would become of us ? (Hear, hear.) From the justice, the wisdom and the liberality of our acts alone have we hitherto found our strength and our protection to proceed, and from them shall we again find them to proceed under Confederation. (Hear.) The honorable member for Hochelaga quoted a garbled portion of my first pamphlet, to give it a meaning which it does not convey ; he then accuses me of having changed my opinion as to the Constitution of the Legislative Council. But I can tell him that I have never changed my opinion on that question ; I have never been in favor of the elective principle being applied to the Legislative Council; and if in 1858 I prepared and introduced the law which changed the constitution of that body, it was only that I might gratify the universal opinion which desired an elective Legislative Council. But, the honorable member for Hochelaga will reply, did you not write in 1858 :—

The best possible condition under which Confederation could exist would be that in which the two chambers would be elective, and would both have population as the basis of their number ; for no other system, excepting that of having but one chamber only, with the number of its members based on population, would give us absolutely one vote in three in the Federal Legislature.

Was the question then whether the elective principle was preferable to that of appointment ? No ; we were discussing a question of much greater importance, that of ascertaining in what condition of constitutional existence we should find the greatest protec-

[Page 700]

tion, and having to select from two alternatives, numbers or the State, I preferred numbers, because it would have conferred upon us a larger share of representation and of influence. The words which follow, and which I will give, clearly prove my thought at that time :—

The Constitution of the United States, on which, perhaps, ours would be modeled, would not give to us Lower Canadians the same protection and the same guarantee of safety, as by it we should in reality enjoy a little protection only in the House of Representatives, in which we should be one to three.

Thus the protection would have been vested in the Legislative Council itself, if it had been created on the principle of the State and not of numbers. To shew that my mind was then filled with but one idea—that of obtaining the greatest share of influence in the Federal Legislature for Lower Canada, by any constitutional system whatever, I also wrote in the same pamphlet :—

Under the Federal principle, small and great provinces will carry equal weight in the single (general) legislature ; the little island of Prince Edward as much as the twelve hundred and fifty thousand souls of Lower Canada.

Having no information to go upon, I then thought that the American system would be adopted, which gives in the Federal Senate to the little states of Rhode Island, Jersey, Maine, Vermont and Connecticut the same representation as it gives to the large states of New York, Pennsylvania and Ohio. But the scheme that we have before us proves that I was mistaken, as Prince Edward’s Island, instead of having as many representatives in the Legislative Council as we shall have, will only have one-sixth of the number. For the purpose of representation in the Legislative Council, the three Atlantic Provinces are grouped together, and are to be represented together by but twenty-four votes, just the same as Lower Canada. (Hear, hear.) As the question was as to the establishment of equilibrium between the provinces, if the scheme of the Quebec Conference gives me the same result as an elective Legislative Council, what contradiction is there in my returning to the nominative principle, which I always preferred to the elective principle ? The conditions of equilibrium being the same, I give the preference to the principle which confers on legislation the best guarantee of wisdom and mature judgment. (Hear, hear.) But supposing— what is not the case—that I had contradicted myself, in what way could my contradictions have affected the merits of the question under discussion ? If it can be proved that my opinions of to-day are not based on reasonable grounds, let it be proved. If it cannot be proved, do not let anyone imagine that he has answered me by saying : ” You thought differently six years ago.” Because I reasoned in 1858 on hypotheses which are controverted by facts to-day, must I then, in order to appear consistent, adhere to those suppositions which substantive truths so completely contradict ? (Hear, hear.) The hon. member for Hochelaga told us that the Constitution of the Belgian Senate is less conservative than that of the Legislative Council which we propose to establish under the Confederation, because the members of the Belgian Senate are in part changed every four years. To this I reply, that the conservative principle may be found elsewhere than in the manner of selecting the councillors or the senators, and that in Belgium it is found in the excessively high standard of qualification which is required of candidates for the Senate; so much so that only men of large fortune, who are everywhere few in number, can aspire to enter it. In Belgium the Constitution requires that there shall be one man qualified in every sis thousand souls of population, and that man must pay one thousand florins of direct taxes. Will it be said that the Belgian Senate, so constituted, is not more conservative than our Legislative Council will be—the Belgian Senate, in which none can sit but very rich men and large landed proprietors ? (Hear, hear.) I am answered that one-half this Senate is renewed every four years, and that the Crown may dissolve it at pleasure. But can the Crown prevent men of large fortune and large landed proprietors from entering it? It is proved that it is with difficulty that there can be found in the House of Lords any seions of the great families who flourished there under CHARLES II.; but that House is constantly recruited from among the territorial nobility and from among men who render great political or military services to the state. By renewing it thus with the same elements, does the Crown take away its conservative character ? (Hear, hear.) The hon. member stands in perpetual dread of conflicts and disagreements. Supposing that the House of Lords had persisted in its opposition to

[Page 701]

the Reform Bill in 1832, what would have happened if WILLIAM IV. had refused to overwhelm it by numerous nominations to the peerage ? Does any one believe that it would have persisted to the last ? No ; after having long resisted, it would have bent before the storm which threatened to sweep it away. (Hear, hear.) In 1832 the struggle was between the great proprietors and the middle classes, who wished to make their way ; for the English people, properly termed the populace, have no political privileges; they are of no account in the Constitution, they hold no political position, and have no energy for the struggle, which, moreover, would not be productive of any benefit to them. It resembles in no respect the populations of the great towns in France, which make and unmake governments by insurrections or revolutions. In England it is the middle classes who make revolutions or who threaten to make them. Growing richer daily, they advance slowly but surely towards the securing of political privileges and immunities. The Radical school of Manchester at bottom wishes for nothing more, although it asserts that it is desirous of obtaining privileges for the people. If the great nobility, in 1832, offered such determined opposition to the Reform Bill, it was because they feared that it would annihilate their influence and place them at the mercy of the will of the masses. But we have no caste here, and fortune, like political honors, is the property of every man who labors to attain it. Here every one, if he chooses, can almost without an effort become a proprietor and possess the right of having a deliberative voice in the discussion of national questions of the highest importance. To be a legislative councillor it will be sufficient to possess real estate of the value of four thousand dollars. The legislative councillors will form part of the people, will live with the people and by their opinions, and will know and appreciate their wants ; the only difference that there will be between them and the members of the House of Commons will be, that being appointed for life, they will not be as directly brought under external influence; that they will have more freedom of action and of thought, and that they will be able to judge with greater calmness of the legislation which will be submitted to them. For what reason then would they provoke contests which would neither be conducive to their interests nor in accordance with their feelings ; they will not, like the House of Lords, have privileges to save from destruction. In the Constitution they will have but one part to play, that of maturing legislation in the interests of the people. The hon. member for Hochelaga said in his last manifesto, and repeated here, that if we applied to England to amend our Constitution, we should expose ourselves to having alterations, for which we do not ask, made by some mischievous hand. The thing is possible I admit. It is possible, as it is also possible for the Imperial Parliament to change our Constitution without even waiting for us to take the initiative, as it did in 1840, but if there is any harm now in asking Great Britain for the Confederation of all the provinces, because she may subject us to something which is not contained in the scheme, why did the member for Hochelaga wish for constitutional changes in 1858 ? Did he hope to change the Constitutional Act of 1840 without the concurrence of the Imperial Parliament ? And will he be good enough to tell us by what supernatural proceeding he hoped to succeed in doing so ? If there is danger in 1865, there must also have been danger in 1858. Why then should he, to day, impute to others as a crime that which he wished to do himself then ? Has he forgotten all that ? Does he wish to deny it ? Differing slightly from the Bourbons, he has learned nothing and has forgotten everything. (Hear, and laughter.) To frighten us, he also spoke of direct taxation, to which we should have to bubmit, if we had Confederation. Now, in his constitutional scheme of 1858, with which we are all acquainted, he gave to the Federal Government the customs revenue. We should, therefore, have had to have recourse to direct taxation to meet the expenditure of the local governments. The plan of Constitution which is submitted to us treats us better than that, for it gives us enough, and more than we require, to ensure the easy working of the local organizations.

HON. MR. HOLTON-Hear ! hear!

HON. ATTY. GEN. CARTIER —Yes , hear ! hear! just so!

HON. ME . CAUCHON—The hon. member for Chateauguay, who cries ” Hear, hear,” ought to be satisfied if he thinks himself in the right ; for when he was Minister of Finance he told us that in order to fill up the deficit left by his predecessors, he must necessarily have recourse to direct taxation. (Hear, hear.) The hon. member for Hochelaga has long wept over the mis-

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fortunes of his country. He has long lamented, like JEREMIAH, over the thought of the disasters which were overwhelming it. And at last, in 1858, enlightened by the intelligence of his luminous friend the member for Chateauguay, he thought he had discovered in direct taxation the remedy for the evils which were bringing it to its grave. (Hear, hear.) But to-day he rejects a scheme which may save the country without its being necessary to have recourse to this extreme and objectionable remedy. (Hear, hear.) If the scheme becomes law, not only shall we have a sufficient revenue to meet our local expenditure, but we shall also have a surplus with which, if we practise wise economy, to pay off by degrees the residue of the debt which will remain to us. The hon. member for Hochelaga tells us that Lower Canada will be burthened with a local debt of more than $4,500,000 ; but we have clear and palpable proof that the debt of Canada, deducting the part of the Sinking Fund which has been paid, amounts to only $67,500,000. Now our share of the Federal debt is established at $62,500,000. There will consequently remain less than $5,000,000 to be divided between the two Canadas, and all the arguments of the hon. member will not change so incontestable a fact as this. (Hear, hear.) We do not get these figures from the Hon. Minister of Finance. They are given to us by a man who is perfectly independent of all Ministers and of all parties—a man whom I myself formerly reproached with being too much so; I allude to Mr. LANGTON, the Auditor of Accounts. (Hear, hear.) We do not yet know, it is true, how this debt of four millions and some hundred thousand dollars will be divided between the two Canadas, but we do know, without any possibility of doubt, that the local revenues will belong to the local governments, and that they will amply suffice for all their requirements. (Hear, hear.) The honorable member for Hochelaga complains that Upper Canada retains her public lands and what is owing to Government on those lands, and he maintains that Lower Canada ought to have her share of what those lands produce. But did those lands beleng to us before the union, and have we not our own public lands, together with the revenue accruing from them ? Have we not more lands to settle than Upper Canada? Since the discovery of our gold and copper mines the amount produced by the sale of our public lands has increased fivefold, whilst Upper Canada has hardly any land left to sell. Let our mines be opened, and we shall find that we have no reason to envy Upper Canada. (Hear, hear.) Everything is well adjusted ; for if we have a less considerable revenue than Upper Canada, our population is also less numerous Upper Canada possesses a more considerable revenue, but one which must diminish with the decrease of the quantity of land to be sold, whilst we have a revenue which is gradually increasing. (Hear, hear.) The hon. member would no doubt hand over the public lands to the Confederation so as to be in accordance with his plan of 1859, as set forth in the Montreal manifesto ; but I am certain that Lower Canada does not share his opinion. He talked to us also of marriage and divorce. He said : ” Now, you will not vote directly for divoice, but you vote to establish divorce courts.” Well ! no one condemns divorce more than I do myself, and I am convinced that the hon. member for Hochelaga would accept it sooner than I would. But if no mention was made of divorcs in the Constitution, if it was not assigned to the Federal Parliament, it would of necessity belong to the local parliaments as it belongs to our Legislature now, although there is not one word respecting it in the Unioa Act. For my part, I would rather see that power removed to a distance from us, since it must exist somewhere in spite of us. (Hear, henr.) These reasonings on the question of marriage are extraordinary to a degree, coming from a man holding a position at the bar. They are so extraordinary, and so inconsistent with all logic and all law, that I shall not take the trouble of controverting them. The explanations of the Government hive satisfied me on that point. The legislative power of the Federal Parliament in relation to marriage will only be that which is conferred by the Constitution, notwithstanding the singular assertions of the honorable member. (Hear, hear, and cheers.)

On motion of Dr. PARKER, the debate was then adjourned.

TUESDAY, 7th March, 1865.

The Order of the Day being read for resuming the adjourned debate on Confederation,—

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HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD said— Before the debate is resumed, I wish to say a few words. I would call the attention of the House to the telegram received to-day—which is rather confused in its terms—with reference to a debate in the House of Lords on the subject of the defences of Canada. According to this telegram. “Earl DE GREY, Secretary of State for War, admitted the importance of the question, but regretted that any doubt should be expressed of the conciliatory intentions of the Americans. The Government would ask a vote of £50,000 for the Quebec defences, while the Canadians would undertake the defences of Montreal and westward.” The amount, according to another statement, is £30,000. The figures are apparently a mistake for £300,000. My object in rising was to state that so far as we could gather from this confused summary of the debate, the Imperial Government were about to ask a a certain amount for the defences of Quebec, while the Canadians would undertake the defence of Montreal and the country westward. I may state it is quite true that the Imperial Government made a proposition some time ago to the effect that they were willing and prepared to recommend to Parliament a vote for the defence of Quebee, as is here stated, provided this province undertook the defence of Montreal and points westward. Negotiations have been going on on this question between the Imperial Government and the Canadian Government ever since, and I think that there is every reason to believe that these negotiations will result most favorably, and that arrangements will be made in a manner such as to secure the defence of Canada, both east and west—in a manner such as to ensure the fullest protection to the country, and as at the same time will not press unduly on the energies of the people. (Hear.) Sir, those negotiations are still proceeding —they have not yet concluded—and it must bo obvious to every honorable member who 1MS read this short synopsis of the debate in the Imperial Parliament, that it is of the greatest possible importance that Canada should not be unrepresented in England at the present time. (Cheers.) It must be evident to all that some of the leading members of the Administration should be in England at this juncture, for the purpose of attending to Canadian interests, and of concluding these negotiations without any loss of time whatever. (Hear, hear.) It is desirable, as I stated yesterday, that the two questions of Federation and Defence should be discussed at the same moment, and that the opportunity should be taken of exactly .ascertaining the position of British North America with respect to her degree of reliance on the Imperial Government in a political sense, as well as with regard to the question of defence. Therefore, there should not be any loss of time whatever, and with that view the Government would ask this House—as the discussion has already gone on to a considerable length, and a great many honorable gentlemen have speken on the subject—that it will offer no undue delay in coming to a conclusion in this matter. Of course the Government would not attempt to shut down the floodgates against all discussion ; but they would merely ask and invite the House to consider the importance of as early a vote as the house can properly allow to bo taken upon this quesiion. It is for the House to determine whether the Federation scheme which has been proposed by the Government and laid before the House is one which, with all its faults, should be adopted, or whether we shall be thrown upon an uncertain future. In order that the House may at once come to an understanding in the matter, I shall, as I stated yesterday, take every possible step known to parliamentary usage to get a vote as soon as it can conveniently be got, and I have therefore now to move the previous question. (Ironical Opposition cheers and counter cheering.) I move, sir, that the main question be now put. (More cheering.) Honorable gentlemen opposite know very well that my making this motion does not in any way stop the debute. (Hear, hear.) The House will be gratified to hear, and will still have an opportunity of hearing, from the honorable member from Chateauguay (Hon. Mr. HOLTON), who cries “Hear, hear,” an expression of opinion whether this scheme is so objectionable that the House would be wise in rejecting it, with nothing now offered as a substitute, and no future to look to. It will afford us all great pleasure to hear the honorable gentleman say whether we should adopt this scheme. There is an independent motion on the paper of my honorable friend from Peel (Hon. J . H. CAMERON). My motion does not interfere with that. But if the House should consider that this scheme ought to be adopted, my honorable friend will then have an opportunity of proposing his motion. (Hear, hear.)

THE SPEAKER—If honorable gentlemen desire it, I will read the rule of the House as to the previous question. The 35th rule of the House is as follows :—” The previous

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question, until it is decided, shall preclude all amendments to the main question”—(ironical Opposition cheers)—” and shall be in the following word,-—’ That this question be now put.’ If the previous question be resolved in the affirmative, the original question is put forthwith, without amendment or debate.” (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. CARTIER—Mr. SPEAKER, I second the motion. (Derisive Opposition cheers. )

TUE SPEAKER—The motion is that this question be now put.

HON. MR. HOLTON—I shall not on this occasion, sir, make any remarks as to the mode of proceeding adopted by the Honorable Attorney General West, further than this, that a friend, an honorable member of this House, intimated to me yesterday that this course was likely to be pursued by the Government in order to crowd this measure through the House. I scouted the idea. I thought it was impossible that a government, numbering in its ranks public men who have played a prominent part in the parliamentary history of this country for some years, could resort to so base a trick—(cheers and counter cheers)—after having introduced this measure in the manner they have done—after having introduced it in a most unparliamentary and unconstitutional manner—and seeing that amendments would be made to several of the propositions contained in the resolutions adopted by the Conference which assembled in Quebec, they shut off all opportunity to amend the measure by moving the previous question. (Hear, hear.) Why was it not stated by the Honorable Attorney General West himself that we would be able to get at the sense of the House upon every one of the propositions, by moving amendments? (Hear, hear.) In full confidence that that pledge would be kept, when my honorable friend who sits near me told me he had reason to believe that this very course was in contemplation, I repeat I scouted the idea. (Hear, hear.) I shall not offer any further observations on this point at the present moment, beyond remarking that if the object be to curtail debate, as the honorable gentleman says it is—if his real motive be in truth to arrive at an early vote upon this question—his own statement shows how utterly futile his motion is to accomplish that end. It was not at all necessary that the honorable gentleman should have told us that we may discuss the previous question. We are now, by a compact which I presume will not be violated—although I do not know what attempt will be made next—we are practically in Committee of the Whole, with liberty to speak as often as we please on this question. Therefore, the object stated by the honorable gentleman cannot be attained, but another object can be and will be attained—they will take their followers, whom they have already led on to do things of which they will bitterly repent when they come face to face with their constituents, and drag them still further through the mire—(cheers and counter cheers)—by depriving them of the opportunity of putting on record their views, even in the inconvenient form of amendments, upon the various propositions which are proposed to be embodied in this Address to the Crown. (Hear, hear.) Sir, the honorable gentleman says that the information received by telegraph in reference to the defences renders it necessary that an early decision should be come to in the matter of Federation. But what has been the course of the honorable gentlemen opposite, throughout this debate, when the subject of the defences has been referred to ? When we have said—” Put us in possession of the necessary information to consider the subject of the defences, which must be discussed in connection with the scheme of Confederation,” what has been the reply ? Why, that there was no natural or necessary connection between the two subjects. (Hear, hear.) Thus, when the honorable gentlemen were asked to bring down the information in regard to the defences, they have maintained that there is no connection between the two questions ; but when they have a purpose to serve by so doing, they reverse their position and say, ” By all means rush this thing through with all possible speed, in order that the country may be placed in a position of defence.” I think, sir, we are entitled at this stage of the debate, and under these circumstances, to demand that all the information in possession of the Government in regard to the defences, should be laid before the House. I believe there is no better recognized parliamentary rule than this, that when a Minister of the Crown rises in his place in Parliament and refers to despatches on matters of public importance, these despatches must be laid before the House. It is founded on the same rule which prevails in our courts, which requires that any paper referred to in evidence or argument, in order to be of use, must be in the possession of the court. I should like to ask the Hon. Attorney General West the question—and I pause for

[Page 705]

an answer—whether it is the intention of the Government, before pressing this resolution to a vote, to place the House in possession of the information for which I am now seeking ?

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD —It certainly is not, and for reasons of the best kind.

HON. MR. HOLTON—Th e honorable gentleman says it certainly is not. And yet he asks us to give a vote, in view of information which he withholds, not merely on the question of the defences, but of Confederation as well. If the honorable gentleman had used the arguments for withholding information which he has put forth, if the proposition were simply a money vote to place the country in a state of defence, there might be some reason in it, but he is using them to induce us to vote for a political scheme embracing all sorts of things other than the question of defence. The position the hon. gentleman now assumes is unconstitutional; but being unconstitutional, it is in perfect keeping with the whole course of this Administration since its formad in in June last, when it initiated its existence by pledging the Crown, in a written document, not to exercise the prerogative of dissolution until another sesstou of this Parliament should have been held. (Hear, hear.) I say that their course in this instance is in keeping with every step they have taken since their formation. Well, sir, I have put one question to the Hon. Attorney General West, and I propose now, with the leave of my hon. friend the member for North Wellington, who is entitled to the floor, to.put another question He may answer it or not, as he thinks proper ; but the country will draw its own inference from his reply. Yesterday, he stated that in consequence of the result of the New Brunswick elections, it had become tolerably apparent that this scheme had received its first check. In other words, he admitted plainly that the result of the Nevt Brunswick elections was adverse to the scheme. I may add, that he knows very well a majority of the present Parliament of Nova Scotia is adverse to it.

HON. MR. BROWN—No! no!

HON. MR. HOLTON—I say, yes; and in the Island of Prince Edward, there is no probability whatever of the scheme being accepted. Well, notwithstanding this, he says that he shall press this measure to a vote. A question was put yesterday, which was answered; but there is some misapprehension as to the purport of the answer, and I think it will be admitted to be a question in regard to which there should not be any misapprehension whatever.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—You could not understand it.

HON. MR. HOLTON—Well, I admit the obtuseness of my understanding. The question I desire to ask the leader of the Government is this—Is it the intention of the Government to press for Imperial legislation, uuder the Address which they are now inviting the House to adopt, affecting the Lower Provinces, or any of them, without the concurrence of those provinces? That is the question I desire to ask the hon. gentleman.

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD—It is not the intention uf the Canadian Government to press the Imperial Government to pass any act whatever.

HON. MR. HOLTON—Then clearly the hon. gentleman was misunderstood yesterday. He then stated that it was of the highest possible importance this measure should pass without delay, in order that the Ministry might go home and consult with the Imperial Gcvernment in respect to the bill to be introduced to give effect to this Address.

HON. MR. BROWN—And that is correct.

MR. RANKIN—The Goveinment do not intend to ” press” for Imperial legislation.

HON. MR. HOLTON—I do not want to quibble about mere words. What I want to know is—whether, in pursuance of this Address, hon. gentlemen intend to ask, or have any reason to expect that the Imperial Government—(Hon. Mr. BROWN—” Oh ! oh ! “)—or have any reason to expect that the Imperial Government will legislate without the concurrence of the Lower Provinces ? Whether, in point of fact, if the concurrence of the Lower Provinces be withheld from the scheme of the Conference, he has reason to believe th it legislation can be had thereon? I desire to know, first, whether he intends to ask for such legislation; and, second,whether he thinks it can be had?

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD—I think the House, and even the hon. gentleman himself, must see the unreasonableness of the question he asks, which is, whether I have any expectation that the British Government will euact some compulsory law against the will of the Lower Pro-

[Page 706]

vinces on the question of Federation. All that I can say is, that I have no better means of forming an opinion on the subject than the hon. gentleman himself. What I stated yesterday I repeat to-day, that the Canadian Government, knowing that the opinion of the people of New Brunswick has been expressed against Federation, would embrace the earliest opportunity of discussing with the Imperial Government the position of British North America, especially with reference to the present state of affairs in Canada, containing a population of four-fifths oí the people of British North America, in favor of Federation, as against New Brunswick, with a population of two hundred odd thousand against it. In discussing the question with Her Majesty’s Imperial advisers, we shall probably enter into the consideration of the whole matter ; but what the nature of these discussions may be, or what they will lead to or will not lead to, I cannot possibly say. They may lead to conclusions, but what those conclusions may be no mortal man can tell. We cannot say to what conclusions the Imperial Government may come. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. HOLTON—I am obliged to the honorable gentleman for his courteous answer. I think it is, on the whole, a satisfactory answer, because the answer plainly implies this, that without the concurrence of the Lower Provinces this measure cannot go on. That is the plain implication. We know well that we shall not have the concurrence of the Lower Provinces, and therefore it is absurd to ask this House to vote a measure which the honorable gentlemen themselves, as they have risen one after another in the course of this debate, have declared to be an imperfect meusure—a measure of compromise—not such a measure as they, in many respects, desired and advocated, but a measure which they had concurred in for the purpose of inducing the Lower Provinces to become parties to it. Why, I ask, should this House be called upon to vote for the objectionable features of a scheme, when there is no longer any reason for such a vote—when it is admitted that the Lower Provinces, for whose sake these objectionable features were introduced, will not consent and cannot be coerced into it? (Hear, hear.) The Hon. President of the Council told the people of Toronto, at ti e banquet recently held there, that ho was entirely opposed to the new constitution of the Legislative Council, and that he opposed it in the Conference. We know also that that feature of the scheme is very objectionable to the whole of what might once have been called the Liberal party, but the Hon. President of the Council has destroyed that party, and it is not, perhaps, right to speak of it as the Liberal party any longer— they are only now to be known as those who once ranged themselves together, in Upper and Lower Canada, under the Liberal banner. The Hon. President of the Council stated, that as representing in the Conference the Liberal party of Upper Canada—the Liberal party of Lower Canada having no representation in the Conference at all—as representing the Liberal party of Upper Canada, the party from that section which is in a large majority in this House, the honorable gentleman stated that he was opposed to this feature of the scheme—a feature which is known to be as unpalatable to a large majority of this House as it is to the hon. gentleman himself. I merely mention this to illustrate my argument. Why should hon. gentlemen, who were disposed to accept this scheme as a whole, notwithstanding these objectionable features—who were disposed to accept it, on the grounds set forth by their leaders, as a measure of compromise -—why, I ask, shuuld they now be called upon to vote in opposition to their convictions, merely to gratify the amour-propre of the hon. gentlemen on the Treasury benches, whose desire it is to carry through the House an Address which, by their own admission made to this House, must be of non-effect ? (Hear, hear.)

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD—But that it will be the Constitution of this country, I am satisfied.

HON. MR. HOLTON—The hon. gentleman boasts that it will be the Constitution of this country ?

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD — What I meant was, of all British North America.

HON. MR. HOLTON—The hon. gentleman said ” of this country.” The hon. gentleman, therefore, admits that if he fails in procuring the concurrence of the Lower Provinces to the measure—that if they cannot be brought into the scheme for reconstructing their Governments—they are going to ask the Imperial Government to found a Constitution for the two Canadas upon these resolutions.


[Page 707]

hon. gentleman has drawn erroneous inferences from what I stated. When I said I had no doubt that the resolutions now before the House would be the Constitution of this country, I meant to say I had no more doubt than that I stand here that it would be adopted not only by Canada, but by the other provinces.

HON. MR. HOLTON—Ah ! The hon. gentleman has ” no doubt.”

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD—YOU are trying to twist my words; but go on.

HON. MR. HOLTON—I have not had the same training as the honorable gentleman in the way of word twisting. I take his words in their plain and literal sense. He says he has no doubt that these resolutions will form the Constitution of this country. Then, sir, why do not honorable gentlemen keep faith ? Why does not the Hon. President of the Council, in an especial manner, keep faith with his party, by giving us the scheme which he pledged himself, in the event of such a contingency as this, should be brought down during this session of Parliament ? The honorable gentleman does not find it convenient to answer. I confess I did not expect an answer ; but nevertheless I thought it desirable to put the question to him. I, equally with other members of the House, can draw my inferences from his silence. He knows very well it is a violation of the programme under which he entered the Government ; and well he knows that it is a departure from the avowal jvhich constituted, I will not say his justification, but his sole excuse for occupying the seat which he now fills. The question is now asked whether it is intended by the Government to go to England and ask the Imperial Parliament to establish a Constitution for this country, the principles of which have never been considered, because we are considering now the scheme of Federation for the whole country ?

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD—I stated that the first thing to be done by the Government, in the summer session, would be to submit a measure for fully carrying out the programme First, carry Confederation, and when we met again we would bring in a scheme for the local governments of Upper and Lower Canada.

HON. MR. HOLTON—Yes, local governments. I am obliged to the honorable gentleman for reminding me of the local governments ; but I was speaking of the General Government cf Canada. (Hear’ hear.) I think it follows irresistibly from the admission of the hon. gentleman to-day, that it is their intention to seek a general Constitution for Canada under these resolutions, without ever having submitted that question to the House. Well, sir, there is another reason perhaps for the course taken by hon. gentlemen yesterday and pursued to-day. It has always been a theory of my own—perhaps it has not yet been demonstrated by facts—


HON. MR. HOLTON—I say it has always been a theory of my own, and facts are rapidly demonstrating the truth of that theory, that this Government was formed in consequence of the emergencies of certain gentlemen who were in office, and desired to retain office, and of certain other gentlemen who were out of office and who desired to come in. I believe that the whole constitutional difficulties, or alleged constitutional difficulties, of this country arose from the personal or rather the political emergencies into which certain hon. gentlemen found themselves, from causes to which I shall not now advert. (Hear, hear.) Well, sir, feeling that this scheme has failed—feeling that the pretext upon which they have held office for six or nine months is about to fail them, they devise other means, as a sort of lure to the country, whereby office may be kept for a further period. I admit the dexterity with which the thing is done—a dexterity for which the Hon. Attorney General West has long been famous in this country. His theory is : ” Take care of to-day—when to-morrow comes we will see what can be done”—and by adhering to this maxim he has managed to lengthen out the term of his political existence. That, I believe, will be acknowledged to be the theory upon which the hon. gentleman acts.

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD—And a very sensible theory it is. (Laughter.)

HON. MR. HOLTON—A sensible theory no doubt it is. I am glad to hear that the hon. gentleman does not deny the fact; but while admitting that he has achieved a considerable measure of success in this way, whether, after all that success, he has earned the highest kind of reward of a public life— whether there is anybody who speaks or thinks of the hon. gentleman as a statesman, may perhaps be doubted. It is admitted

[Page 708]

hat he is an adroit manager—his management being based on the theory of doing to-day what must be done to-day, and of leaving till to-morrow whatever can be deferred. I doubt, however, after all, whether, when the hon. gentleman comes to review his career, he will be satisfied that that sort of policy brings with it the highest rewards of public life.

HON. ATTY. GEN. MACDONALD—I shall be quite satisfied to allow the hon. member for Chateauguay to be my biographer (Laughter.)

HON. MR. HOLTON—But while that has been his theory and his practice, and a certain degree of success has attended it, I would like to ask the Hon. President of the Council whether he has heretofore acted upon that theory, and whether he can quite afford to act upon it now ? Most of us remember— those of us who have been for a few years in public life in this countiy, must lemcmber a very striking speech delivered by the hon. member for South Oxford (Honorable Mr. BROWN), in Toronto, in the session of 1856 or 1857—ha has delivered many striking speeches in his time, but this was cne of the most striking—in which he dtscribed the path of the Hon. Attorney General West as being studded all along by the grave stones of his slaughtered colleagues. (Hear, hear.) Well, there are not wanting those who think they descry in the not very remote distance, a yawning grave waiting fur the noblest victim of them all. (Laughter ) And I very much fear, that unless the hon. gentleman has the courage to assert his own original strength—and he has great strength— and to discard the blandishments and the sweets of office, and to plant himself where he stood formerly, in the affections and confidence of the people of this country, as the foremost defender of the rights of the people, as the foremost champion of the privileges of a free Parliament—unless he hastens t ) do that, I very much fear that he too may fall a victim—as I have said, the noblest victim of them all—to the arts, if not the arms, of the fell destroyer. (Laughter.) I desire, as I am on my feet—and am not at all certain that I shall, under the new phase of things, trouble the House with any lengthened observations—I desire to say a few words on the merits of this question of defence. Of course I hold, as I presume every man in this country holds, that the people that will not defend themselves are unworthy of free institutions. I hold that we must defend ourselves against all aggressors, in the best way we can. I think the policy we have been pursuing for some years past, of enrolling our people and training them to the use of arms and in military exercise, and in the instructing of officers who might lead them, should necessity require— I think all that is sound policy. I would even go somewhat further in that direction than we have gone heretofore But if honorable gentlemen propose tha; we shou’d establish a standing army—that we should equip a navy—that we should go into a costly system of permnnent fortifications, they are proposing what is beyond the strength of the country—they are proposing what will speedily bring financial ruin on the country—and by bringing financial ruin on the country, and by creating thereby dissatisfaction among the people, they will prepare the way to that very event which they profess so strongly to deprecate. I believe, if it has not that effect, it will certainly result in depopulating our country. Already the work of depopulation is going on.

HON. MR. BROWN—Oh ! oh !

HON. MR. HOLTON—Throughout the whole of the western counties of Canada, at the present moment, there is a greater amount of financial distress and of malaise than I have known for twenty-five years. I challenge the honorable gentlemen around me to contradict the statement. And I say we are not in a position to stand very great additional burdens on our resources. (Hear, hear.) Then what is the condition of our finances 1 The honorable gentleman who presides over our finances did not venture the other day to dispute the statement I made, that every branch of the revenue was falling off, and that we had an inevitable deficit for this current year staring us in the face. Is it not so ?

HON. MR. GALT—The hon. gentleman may repeat his own statement, but he must not put it in my month.

HON. MR. HOLTON—The hon. gentleman did not venture to deny it, and I thought the gravity of the statement was such that he would have denied it, if he could.

HON. MR. GALT—Make your statement on your own responsibility, not mine

HON. MR. HOLTON—Then, I say, on my own responsibility, that every branch of the revenue has been falling off since the

[Page 709]

beginning of this year, except the comparatively small amount from bill stamps.

HON. MR. GALT—Do you say every branch of the revenue, with the exception you mention ?


HON. MR. GALT—Then you will be shewn that it is not so, when you sit down. (Hear, hear.)

HON. MR. HOLTON—Of course I shall be glad to hear it. That is the sort of information we want before we give hon. gentlemen a vote of credit, and allow them to go to England to do as they please for the next six months. It may be that the revenue has been brought up within the last few weeks from accidental causes. A rumor got abroad that the Hon. Finance Minister intended to make a change in the duties, and in two or three of our large cities a rush was made to the bonding warehouses, in order to save the additional amount that would be exacted by the change in duties. This, no doubt, increased the receipts for the time being, and it is jus t possible that from that cause the reveuue may have regained something of what it had lost dur ing the earlier weeks of the present year. Then, too, the state of our securities in England–which was so much improved, according to the statement of the Hon. Presi lent of the Council, by the action of the Quebec Conference—is now anything indeed but satisfactory. I believe that with the exception of the point they touched at one time in October, or early in November, and which they touched then for a very brief space—they are lower now and have been lower for a longer time than they have been at any period before since the union I think, therefore, we are not in a position to impose heavy and unmeasured burdens upon our people, for the purpose of establishing a standing army, or for the pur – pose of constructing permanent fortifications. (Hear, hear.) But I have said more than I intended when I rose, and shall no longer deprive my hon. friend from North Wellington (Dr. PARKER) of the floor.

HON. MR. BROWN—I shall detain the House but a very few minutes in replying to the hon. gentleman who has just taken his seat. As regards his statement that the revenue has fallen off to the extent of which he speaks, in every branch, it. is entirely erroneous. It will be shewn when the proper time comes, when the House is asked to grant supplies, that the revenue is very far from being in the hopeless position which the hon. gentleman has stated. And I ap- prehend his assertion with regard to the condition of the province is as greatly exag- gerated as his other statement. It is very true that many portions of our country un- fortunately labor at this moment under considerable depression; but no intelligent person, who considers the circumstances, will think that this is at all extraordinary. We are alongside a country engaged in a fearful war. Our commercial relations with that country, with which we usually have im- mense transactions, are very greatly dis- turbed. Then we have had short crops for several years, and our banks are all very properly under close-reefed topsails. These and other causes have contributed to produce the stagnation that now exists, and a general disposition to curtail business operations. (Hear, hear.) But with all this–notwith- standing the scarcity of money, and a good deal of embarrassment and suffering from its scarcity–I venture to affirm that the great branches of our national industry were never on a sounder basis; that business men have not for years owed less debt than at this moment; and when a better state of things sets in, the evils of which the hon. gentleman speaks will not be found to have been very deep-seated. (Hear, hear.) The hon. gen- tleman is exceedingly anxious that I should fulfil the promises I made to the country at the time I entered this Administration. The hon. gentleman, I think, would show a little more discretion if he allowed me to judge for myself of the best way in which I should fulfil those promises. When, in the short space of six months, the Government have come down with a matured scheme, in- volving such important changes, and placed it before Parliament in the candid way in which they have submitted it, I think the country has no good cause to complain, either of time having been lost in the fulfilment of my promises, or in the manner of fulfilling them (Hear, hear.) And I think it ill-becomes the hon. gentleman–when he has heard it declared that, notwithstanding what has occurred in New Brunswick, we still adhere to the basis on which the Government was formed–that all we ask is time to ascertain how our scheme can best be carried into effect–and that in the brief period of a very few weeks we will be prepapred to meet Par- liament again, and declare the result of our enquiries–I do say it ill becomes an honorable gentleman, professing to be in favor of constitutional changes, to get up

[Page 710]

here and endeavor to create an unfounded prejudice against those who are thus shewing in every way their determination to discharge fully and promptly their duty to the country. The honorable gentleman says I have broken up the Liberal party. He says there was a Liberal party in Upper Canada and a Liberal party in Lower Canada, who were acting cordially together, aid that I have destroyed the harmony which existed between them. I shall not enter icto that discussion now. The time will come when it can be fully gone into without danger to public interests, and I promise the honorable gentleman. to give him his answer. But I have this to state in the meantime to the honorable gentleman, that I think it is not for him at least to throw such taunts across the table, when he recollects that in a speech he made in this House only last session, on the announcement of this Coalition, he stated that he could make no complaint as to the course I had taken ; that under the circumstances I could only act as I had done. (Hear, hear.) If he can find any act of mine in contradiction of the com se I took then, he has a right to blame me. But so long as I am carrying out in good faith the pledges I gave to the country, to my supporters, and to this House, it is not from that honorable gentleman at all events that any charge agaiust me should come. (Hear, hear.) The honorable gentleman says that the proposal for a union of all the colonies has failed. I totally deny it. (Hear, hear.) I am not prepared to admit—I do not believe—that the representatives of New Brunswick, when the subject is fairly diseussed in Parliament, and the proposition has been presented in all its lights, will reject it. When they do so, it will be time enough for the honorable gentleman to assert that the scheme has failed. Strange indeed would it have been had so large a scheme suffered no check in its progress—but stranger still would it be were the promoters of the measure to abandon it from such a check as this. (Cheers.) The honorable member for Chateauguay is mistaken also when he asserts that the majority of the members of the Nova Scotia Legislature are against this measure of Confederation.

HON. MR. HOLTON—I believe so.

HON. MR. BROWN—Having heard that the honorable member for Hochelaga had made such a statement to this House—

HON. MR. DORION—On the best authority.

MR. A. MACKENZIE—Give us your authority.

HON. MR. BROWN—I think it better not to ask for the honorable gentleman’s authority, or to use any names in such a matter as this. But I wish to say that the momont I heard that the statement had been made, I telegraphed to a friend in the Nova Scotia Legislature, and received an answer entirely contradicting the statement which had been made.

HON. MR. HOLTON—Why then don’t they go on with the question ?

HON. MR. BROWN—I apprehend it is for them to decide when they shall go on— what is the right moment for them to go on— and not for the honorable member for Chateauguay, who is entirely opposed to this measure.

HON. MR. DORION—There is strong presumptive evidence in favor of my authority against yours.

HON. MR. BROWN—That I must leave to the House to judge. The honorable member for Chateauguay says the motion made by the Hon. Attorney General West does not meet the point at which it is aimed, namely, to bring this debate to a speedy conclusion. He says it may cut off amendments, but that it will not stop debate. But that is an entire mistake. It is the only mode by which the debate can speedily be brought to an end.

HON. MR. DORION—Honorable gentlemen opposite want to stop the debate, besides stopping the amendments. That is the object.

HON. MR. BROWN—If the honorable member for Hochelaga had waited till he had heard me out, he would have found I had no such meaning. With regard to the main proposition, honorable gentlemen may speak as long as they like. So long as the House does not come to the conclusion that the time has arrived for getting a vote upon that, they can talk.

HON. J . S. MACDONALD—Thank you!

HON. MR. BROWN—Of course, no one can prevent them. And, so far as I am concerned, I can assure the honorable member for Cornwall that I have no desire to prevent him or any one else from being heard to the fullest extent they desire. But, since the beginning of this debate, we have constantly seen incidental questions raised and the same members getting up night after night to make long speeches upon them and kill time, to a degree never witnessed before, I venture to assert, in this or in any other legislative body. And it is evident that if this motion were not put, we should have these debates continued on a variety of amendments, and

[Page 711]

that this discussion would be kept up to an extent which would utterly frustrate the prompt accomplishment of those great purposes for which this Government was formed. (Hear, hear)

HON. MR. EVANTUREL—AS one of the friends of the present Administration, I must say that I am surprised by the conduct of the Government and the extreme position in which they choose to place themselves. For my part, I am in favour of the principle of Confederation, and one of those who maintain that by means of that principle the rights and liberties of each of the contracting parties may be preserved ; but, on the other hand, I am of opinion, and I do not disguise it from myself, that it may be so applied as to endanger and even destroy, or nearly so, the rights and privileges of a state which is a party to this Confederation. Everything, therefore, depends on the conditions of the contract. As a friend of the Administration I can understand, as well as any one, that any Confederation and particularly such a one as this which is now laid before us, can only be brought about by means of a compromise ; and, on this account, Mr. SPEAKER—and it is probably needless to proclaim it here—I am ready and disposed to go to as great a length as it is possible for any man to go. I am also one of those who, when we are called upon to unite, under the Eegis of a strong government, the different provinces of British North America, and when I see that the general interest calls for such a union, will give my cordial support to all who seek to establish such a government. I shall always be prepared to meet them halfway ; but when the question assumes a different shape, as it now does, and when, in consequence of the events announced to this House yesterday, the Constitution proposed to us seems to concern none but the provinces of Upper and Lower Canada, I say, Mr. SPEAKER, that the compromise between the different provinces no longer existing, we are no longer called upon to be so generous. I say that if we admit that New Brunswick, by its recent repudiation, and Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island are no longer parties to the contracts agreed on between the provinces, and we have now to ask of England to modify the Constitution only in relation to the two Canadas, I say that the conditions are no longer the same as they concern us— (hear, hear)—and that I am on that account much less disposed to allow the Government to proceed to present in England, as the basis of our future Constitution, the resolutions which we have been compelled to accept in very unfavorable circumstances. I do not hesitate in saying that the position assumed by the Government is a very dangerous one for themselves, and for those who would gladly assist them to pass a good scheme of Confederation. If I understand aright, the intention of the Government, in moving the previous question, is to place their friends in the awkward position of not being able to move any modification of the plan. In our altered position we are going, therefore, to say to England that we were obliged to submit to such and such concessions in order to come to an understanding ; that the other provinces have backed out of the bargain, notwithstanding these onerous concessions and the compromise which we were obliged to make, and which have not been accepted by the other parties ; and that, in the face of all this, we come to pray that our Constitution may be altered so as to accord with those very same onerous conditions which we had accepted at the Quebec Conference. Why tie us down so strictly now ? Why should we not avail ourselves of the retrogression of the provinces to make alterations in the scheme which will be less onerous for us ? I think it my duty to declare that the Government, in acting as they have done, place their friends in a very awkward position. For my part, Mr. SPEAKER, I am strongly in favor of Confederation, and am ready to support the Government in their efforts to release the chariot of the state from the posit