House of Commons, 21 March 1870, Canadian Confederation with Prince Edward Island

580 COMMONS DEBATES March 21, 1870
[Hon. Mr. Howe]- I, for one, as most of you all know, had no part in framing this Confederation measure; it was not for a time acceptable to me, but having come here and having accepted it, I feel that my hon. friends from Shefford and Sherbrooke would act more wisely if, instead of making the great interests of this Confederacy a party question, they were to endeavour to combine upon some policy that would have for its object the success of this experiment, in the only way it seems to be practicable, (cheers). Now, sir, something has been said of Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland. I would say to the hon. gentlemen opposite, if they want Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland to enter the Confederacy, is it likely they will come in when they see that in questions of this magnitude we cannot sink our party feelings, and cannot consider it as a question touching our commercial relations with other nations. If my hon. friend therefore would be content to look at this question merely as one touching our commercial relations, in order to secure the success of this great experiment of Confederation, I think it would be much more wise than the course they have taken. Now, Mr. Speaker, I feel I have treated the subject at greater length than I intended, and have thrown out observations which occurred to me during the course of this debate, and I can only say that as the matter has been made a party question by the hon. members for Sherbrooke and Shefford, they can hardly expect that we can allow it to give him a party triumph, (hear, hear). My hon. friend does not suppose we are quite so soft as to allow him to choose the ground upon which to fight a party fight, and therefore the result will prove that the hon. member for Shefford will have no other choice but to accept the consequences of the course he has taken.


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



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