House of Commons, 16 March 1870, Canadian Confederation with Prince Edward Island

[...] ysis of the mover's motion there would be a definition of Customs Union, while there had only been an attack on the policy of the Government, which they were quite able to bear, and he had the consolation to know that his political friend knew what he was doing.
Mr. Mackenzie—Keep the camp in order.
Hon. Sir George-È. Cartier—Yes, keep the camp in order, because they all had confidence in each other and nothing was so conclusive to this as acting from the heart. He had looked for facts in the mover's speech, but had found nothing but abuse. He had no obligation to water drinking, but his hon. friend the member for Shefford had drunk too much water in the course of his speech, he had drowned his ideas in the three tumblers of cold water he had swallowed. (Laughter)
Hon. Mr. Huntington—How do you know there was not any whiskey in it?
Hon. Sir George-È. Cartier said if there was whiskey in it, that it was just what he did the other day; he had sent a boy for some before he spoke. (Renewed laughter.) He asked what had the Government done, he pointed to Nova Scotia. Well, is she not conciliated? The Red River difficulty will be expected next, and it followed. But there was nothing to answer. He had forgotten Newfoundland and other things. He (Sir George), would fill up his speech on that subject, and on Prince Edward Island. In these cases they had no right to coerce, it must be a mutual agreement and this had not yet been accomplished. The member for Shefford had never referred to the Zollverein at all in his speech, nor had the member for Hochelaga; they had merely spoken of free trade and argued that from a protective side.
Hon. Mr. Dorion said he argued that they wanted no protection but a market.
Hon. Sir George-È. Cartier said, well, he pointed to the United States, and they could not expect a Customs Union without collecting an equal tariff with theirs to the exclusion of all foreign goods, and to the shutting up of manufactures by the oppressive excise duties. Protection meant the levying of taxes on the agriculturists and land owners for the benefit of a few. They argued for a policy in respect to discriminating duties which had never been admitted by Colonial or British legislation since the inauguration of the present policy. In 1846 intimation was received from the Colonial office to the effect that we should not impose any more discriminating tariffs. But the mover thought free trade and reciprocal trade were synonymous. Yet in Manchester and Birming- [...]


Canada. House of Commons Debates, 1870. Edited by P.B. Waite. Ottawa: Queen's Printer, 1979. Original scans accessible at:



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