House of Commons, 6 May 1870, Canadian Confederation with Manitoba



Friday, May 6, 1870

The Speaker took the chair at 3:30.


Mr. Brousseau called the attention of the House to the map of the North-West Territory, published in connection with the report of the Senate on that Territory, which he considered was incorrect, and explained his proposal to prepare a map of the whole Dominion, under the direction of the Printing Committee.


Mr. Mackenzie asked if the Civil Service Commission was still in existence, and if the Commissioners had sent down any other report than the two published during the last Session of Parliament?
Hon. Sir George-É. Cartier said that the reports were complete with regard to the Department at Ottawa; but with regard to outside offices, the Post Office, Customs, etc., there was something yet to be done.
Hon. Mr. Tilley said, with the exception of some branches of Inland Revenue and Fisheries, the outside service had been attended to.
Mr. Mackenzie asked the Government if they thought that was consistent with a promise that no action should be taken on the reports of that Commission until they were submitted to the House. They had been told that they were complete, but now, accidentally, they learned that a third report had been made which involved expenditure; and not only had it been acted upon but had been kept secret. He thought that course was altogether consistent with the course of the Government during the whole session.
Hon. Mr. Tilley said he did not know of any such pledge having been given.
Hon. Mr. Holton asked if the recommendations of the Board with respect to outside service were still in an inchoate condition?
Hon. Mr. Tilley understood his hon. friend's question was whether the vote that was passed was calculated to cover that.
Hon. Mr. Holton—Yes.
[...] blamed for bringing down that imperfect information, and neglecting wholly to act upon the request of the House some weeks ago to bring down the entire correspondence.
Hon. Sir George-É. Cartier—We have it.
Hon. Mr. Holton—Then why this pretence of bringing down this information to the utter neglect of the motion?
Hon. Sir George-É. Cartier said Government were anxious to place the message at once before the House, and did not wish to wait for the preparation of the other correspondence before doing so.
The subject then dropped.


In reply to Mr. Mackenzie,
Hon. Sir George-É. Cartier said the reason why the Government had not gone on with the Manitoba Bill was the sudden illness of the Minister of Justice, who had been seized, he regretted to say, with spasms as he was preparing to come down to the House. If he (Sir George-É. Cartier) had taken the floor to make that regretful announcement, he would have been obliged to ask the House to postpone taking up the Bill until his colleague should be in his seat. They were desirous that the measure, which was one in which the Minister of Justice took great interest, should be held over, for Sir John A. Macdonald would like to be in his seat while the measure was going through the most difficult ordeal through which a Bill could pass in Parliament. There was no likelihood that the hon. member could attend in his place that evening, but if hon. gentlemen opposite insisted on taking up the measure at 7:30 the Government were ready.
Mr. Mackenzie could only express his regret at the illness of the Premier, and say that so far as he was personally concerned, he would not insist on taking up the measure during the absence of the Minister of Justice.
Hon. Sir George-É. Cartier expressed his thanks on behalf of the members of the Government and their friends for the sympathy and assistance of his hon. friend opposite.
The House rose for recess.
After recess,
1410 COMMONS DEBATES May 6, 1870
"An Act respecting the Naturalization of certain Aliens."
"An Act respecting the Marking of timber." (This Bill was read a third time.)
"An Act to amend the Insolvency Act of 1869."
Mr. Keeler said he had agreed to strike out the 1st and 4th clauses after consideration with the Minister of Justice.
"An Act respecting Official Assignees appointed under the Insolvency Act of 1864", from the Senate.
"An Act to amend the Law relating to the inspection of Raw Hides and Leather." (This Bill was read a third time and passed.)
"An Act to amend Section 142 of the Insolvency Act of 1869."


In reply to Mr. Mackenzie,
Hon. Sir George-É. Cartier said that owing to the illness of his worthy colleague, the Minister of Justice, the Manitoba Bill had not been taken up to-day, but he hoped the Premier would be well enough to-morrow (this day) to take his seat in the House. If not, the Bill would be taken up to-morrow.
Hon. Mr. Holton—Has the hon. gentleman no authentic information as to the real condition of the Premier? We would like to know, as there is a good deal of anxiety felt as to his condition.
Hon. Sir George-É. Cartier—He is not well enough to be taken from his office to his house, but is lying there asleep.
The House adjourned at 11:30 p.m.


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



Selection of input documents and completion of metadata: Gordon Lyall.

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