House of Commons, 13 April 1896, Canadian Confederation with Alberta and Saskatchewan

6111 [COMMONS] 6112


Monday, 13th April, 1896.

The SPEAKER took the Chair at Three o'clock.


Mr. DALY moved for leave to introduce Bill (No. 94) to amend the Acts respecting the Representation of the North-west Territories in the Parliament of Canada.
Mr. LAURIER. Explain, please.
Mr. DALY. As hon. gentlemen are aware, at present the Territories are represented in this House by four members, from Saskatchewan, East Assriniboia, Western Assiniboia and Alberta. We propose under this Bill, to divide Alberta into two constituencies giving an additional representative to Alberta, and in consequence an addtional representative to the North-west Territories. Clause 44 of the original Act was struck out some two years ago, and I have received a petition from the Assembly of the Territories asking that the clause should be restored. I am restoring clause 44 by this Bill, but providing that the oath is not to be taken by the elector presenting himself at the poll in the manner set forth in the original Act. He must subscribe to and take the oath in the form prescribed in the schedule. I am informed that clause 44 was struck out of the original Bill in the Senate, because a great deal of perjury had taken place in Eastern Assiniboia, and I have endeavoured under this Bill to prevent anything of that kind, by providing that those who apply to the deputy returning officer to have their names put on the list, shall subscribe to the oath and swear to it before the deputy returning officer. It is believed that there will be less danger of perjury if the person has to sign the affidavit. I have changed the oath of the enumerator, making it similar to the oath of the revising officer under the Franchise Act. The oath provided for in the Bill is as follows :—
I, enumerator for the polling district No. (or as the case may be), of the Electoral District of swear (or solemnly affirm) that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties assigned to me, without favour or partiality ; that I will place no name on the list of voters for the said polling district and will strike no name off the said list, unless I shall be satisfied that the said name should by law be placed on or struck off the said list ; and that I will in all respects conform to the law to the best of my judgment and ability. So help me God.
These are the only provisions of the Bill.
Mr. DAVIN. This Bill, as I understand, meets the point that was intended to be met in the Bill which I placed upon the paper, and I think also the Bill that my hon. friend (Mr. Martin) placed there. There is in addition to that, an additional member provided for in the North-west Territories. The chief thing which the peeple up there are interested in is met by the first part of the Bill.
Mr. MARTIN. Do I understand the Minister of the Interior to say that Alberta is simply divided into two, and that he does not alter Eastern or Western Assiniboia ?
Mr. DALY. It is simply a division of Alberta by the line which is the southern boundary of Saskatchewan being extended 2westerly to the western boundary of Alberta. This line runs south of Innisfail. It is nearly as equal a division of the population of Alberta as it is possible to make. The boundaries of Eastern and Western Assiniboia remain as before.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell). Is there any provision for another Senator ?
Mr. DALY. That is provided for in a Bill that is being introduced in the Senate by the Premier.
Mr. DALY. The deputy returning officer on polling day.
Mr. McCARTHY. Provision ought to be made for the deputy returning officer having these forms ?
Mr. DALY. Yes.
Mr. MARTIN. That system might cause delay on polling day.
Mr. DALY. I do not think there will be any trouble about that.
Motion agreed to, and Bill read the first time.


Canada. House of Commons Debates, 1875-1949. Provided by the Library of Parliament.



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