June 16, 1926

CON

Arthur Meighen (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MEIGHEN:

They have.

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
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LIB

Ernest Lapointe (Secretary of State of Canada; Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

If it is a question of public policy-and my right hon. friend himself said it was; it is the only ground for his petition-dhall he claim that the public policy will disappear when this petition is submitted to the Privileges and Elections committee? Shall he claim that if a witness before that committee refuse to answer when asked for whom he voted this parliament would have the right to force him to answer? No, Sir, parliament would never have that right, because not only the statute but public policy-the ground on which my right hon. friend as well as myself base our argument -will exist there as it exists before the courts. And let me tell my right hon. friend that, after all, what was done when the inquiry on controverted elections was transferred from parliament to the courts was simply to change the judges; the rules were the same, the procedure was the same, and. as I said before, the deposits which must accompany the petition were the same. The tribunal is changed because it has been found not only in this country but in England and elsewhere that the judges of the high courts of the land are better qualified and better fitted for deciding election matters than parliament, where we have some partisanship in our dealings.

Now, Sir, so far as this petition is concerned I desire to read what Mr. Speaker Blanchet said when he gave a ruling on February 15, 1881, in the Bagot election case, because the same question, as to whether the petition might be received, was then raised before him. I am quoting from page 325 of Speakers' Decisions of the House of Commons of Canada, and I ask every member to listen to these words:

If the petition should be received it would then be competent for any imemiber ito move that it be referred to a committee; and if such a -motion were agreed to, 14011-291

the various allegations in the petition would constitute the order of reference by which the committee would be governed in its proceedings. In this way a door would be opened to the indiscriminate reception of petitions attacking generally the return of members, though not governed by any of those formalities necessary even in those times when the House possessed full jurisdiction over controverted elections. To grant the prayer of the petition would be to violate the general principle which lies at the basis of all the legislation adopted by the English parliament since 1868 and of the Canadian parliament since 1873, that the court alone should adjudicate on matters of controverted elections. When 'the law has been proved to be inadequate to provide a sufficient remedy in any case, then parliament has always come forward, as the various statutes in amendment of the act of 1874 prove, and passed the legislation necessary in the premises.

The principle which guides parliament in such cases can be understood by reference to a statute passed in 1876. When no petition charging the existence of corrupt practices has been presented under the act for the trial of controverted elections, then twenty-five or more electors of a district can sign and present a petition in which they state that corrupt practices have prevailed-

That is what was done this session in the Athabasca election.

-or that they have reason to believe that such practices have extensively prevailed at an election; but that petition must be accompanied by a solemn declaration under the statute in that behalf, signed by the said electors stating that their allegations are true to the best of their knowledge and belief. They must also deposit with the accountant of the House of Commons a sum of one thousand dollars. That petition must be presented within sixty days after the publication in the Canada Gazette of the return of the election if the House is sitting, or df parliament is not sitting, within fourteen days after the next meeting of 'parliament. Even in this case the House does not take cognizance itself of the allegations set forth in the petition. It may only present an address to the Governor General praying him to cause an inquiry to be made in such matters, and accordingly a commission of inquiry is issued with such powers as determined by statute.

All the reasons alleged by Mr. Speaker

Blanchet in the Bagot case of 1881, I believe, apply to this case. There is no one of themwhich cannot be set forth in this case as wellas in the Bagot case, and I claim that for this House to receive this petition would be to go back to the days when partisanship andpolitical spirit were the principles animating these decisions by the committees of parliament on petitions concerning elections. We

are all human; I do not dlaim that I am any better than anyone else. I am a partisan; I believe that the Liberal party has always worked for the benefit of Canada, and I am not ashamed to say so. I am a party man; I do not think many members of this House are not party men, and when this thing is over and the issue is not before them every one in his own mind and conscience will agree with

Peace River Election

me that it was wise and proper to have these matters investigated and decided by judges, instead of being made questions of politics before committees of this House.

May I be permitted now to read just a few worlds from Bourinot and from May. Bou-rinot, in the third edition, at page 221, says:

The Controverted Elections Act provides that all elections shall be subject rto the provisions o>f the act, and shall not be questioned otherwise than in accordance therewith. The courts bave full jurisdiction over petitions complaining of an undue return, of undue election of a member, of no return, of a double return or of any unlawful act by any candidate not returned, by which he is alleged to become disqualified to sit in the House. Since 1894 three petitions calling in question the right of a member to his seat have been presented to parliament, but not allowed to proceed further.

Then he proceeds to enumerate the cases, and at (page 225 continues as follows:

We may come to the following conclusions from the proceedings of the Canadian and British Houses of Commons since the passage of the acts delegating to the courts jurisdiction over the trial of controverted elections: that there is no instance of a contested election having been tried, or an election return disturbed in the Commons House of either country, but that the leading members on both sides of the House-

I wish to call particular attention to this.

-have expressed themselves most emphatically against returning to the old system, and in favour of adhering strictly to the provisions of the new laws; that the provisions of the Controverted Elections Act apply to the questioning of returns by election petitions only, and does not supersede the constitutional jurisdiction of the House in determining questions affecting the seats of its own members, not arising out of controverted elections;- that the House has always the power to inquire into the conduct of its own returning officers, and to punish them if they are adjudged guilty- I

I wish to emphasize the words of Bourinot apearing on page 226:

-that it is always regular to receive a petition setting forth a grievance and praying for remedy, provided it does not question the return of a member within the meaning of the Controverted Elections Act.

This petition against the return of the present sitting member for Peace River cannot be accepted by the House under the authorities just quoted.

Some comments were made the other day owing to the fact that the officer of the House charged with the duty of receiving the petitions, examining them and reporting, had made such a report. On this point may I quote Bourinot at page 343:

la the House of Commons every petition is deposited in the journals office, in charge of an officer, whose duty it is to see that it is properly endorsed and in accordance with the rules of the House-in the ca^p of any irregularity, he will state it to the House, and rule that the petition cannot he received.

At page 584 May, speaking of petitions,

says:

A .petition relating to an election but not questioning the return of the sitting member may properly be received.

If this petition had not questioned the right of the present member to sit in this House it should be received, but as the whole prayer of the petition is that an adjudication should be made by the committees of this House as to who may sit, this petition cannot be received.

Now, Mr. Speaker, may I invite hon. members to read the following authorities as to the powers of parliament with regard to election petitions. Let them read the speech of the late Hon. Edward Blake, whose authority no one will question, at pages 807 and 808 of Hansard of 1875; let them read the speech of the Right Hon. R. L. Borden at page 3702 of Hansard for 1901. I think I have dealt sufficiently with this matter to show that the only authority, under the law as it is to-day, to deal with a petition in which the right of a member of parliament to his seat is questioned is the courts of the land indicated by the Controverted Elections Act. In this case there is no suggestion that the hon. member presently occupying his seat in the House is not a proper person to occupy that seat by way of qualification or otherwise. The only matter in dispute, if there is a matter in dispute, is one connected with the election itself, and under the law and under all the authorities every matter connected with the election must be left to the courts of the land to decide.

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
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CON

Richard Bedford Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. R. B. BENNETT (West Calgary):

I shall endeavour to discuss this matter with the least feeling and the greatest freedom from party passion possible. This is the high court of parliament, and as the high court it has been appealed to by a petitioner who claims that, by reason of the manipulation of ballots, he has been deprived of a seat to which he is entitled because a larger number of electors voted for him than voted for any other candidate. That is his position. This high court of parliament has on its legislative side divested itself of certain of its jurisdiction, and it has committed to the courts certain power and authority which it previously had the right to and did in fact exercise. That is the position at the moment.

The first question is, has this high court of parliament divested itself of the right to inquire into the subject matter of this petition? The answer to that has been so fully given by the right hon. gentleman who leads this party that I do not propose to do more-

Peace River Election

than say this: It is apparent from a perusal

of the authorities, as well as by mere reasoning that would govern a man in arriving at conclusions that this high court of parliament has not divested itself of the right to inquire into the circumstances attending this election. That is clear. Why? First, because there is no jurisdiction in any court of law to award Mr. Collins the seat which has been stolen from him. That is No. 1. Secondly, there is an old rule, as old as 1703, and I make apology for quoting from this precedent which is known to every lawyer and layman, that wherever there is a wrong there is a remedy. That observation was made by Chief Justice Holt in the case of Ashby against White, an action brought for damages by an elector against a sheriff who had not permitted him to vote. That principle laid down in 1703, that where there is a wrong there is a remedy, is a principle that has been applied without interruption in every court under the British flag since that time.

The second ground is the ground to which I propose to direct my attention for a moment. Is there a wrong here? And secondly, is there any remedy provided by law for that wrong?

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

Might I ask, just

for information, whether a higher court will deal with the matter when it is still in the hands of a lower court?

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
CON

Richard Bedford Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT:

I am very glad the hon.

gentleman mentioned that, because I shall show, I think to his satisfaction, before I conclude that the lower court cannot under any circumstances deal with the subject matter of this petition. If it could, it would be there. That is the whole point that I desire to make in the second branch of my observations.

The first question then is, is there a wrong? Has a wrong been done to Collins, the petitioner? I think my hon. friend the Minister of Justice (Mr. Lapointe), with that sense of fairness that usually characterizes him, will admit that a very grave and serious wrong has been done to Mr. Collins. The trial judge found that wrong to be of a most serious character. Since this petition was launched in this House, Robb has carried his appeal to the appellate division of the Supreme Court of Alberta, and that court gave a unanimous judgment sustaining the conviction against Robb, and during the course of the argument a matter arose which will illustrate to this House how serious the wrong is.

Counsel for Robb was arguing that there was nothing to indicate that he had been responsible for the changing or switching of the ballots, that there was nothing to connect him with the change that had been made between the ballots as they were originally marked and the ballots as they were taken out of the ballot box. Whereupon the chief justice said that unless he could offer some excuse or reason why the ballots now produced in the court, which were the ballots counted and that elected Mr. Kennedy, did not match the counterfoils that were now in that court-and they did not-it was clear that somebody had stolen the original ballots. That goes without saying, does it not? If you have a ballot and counterfoil, and the ballot you now have does not match the counterfoil, if it is longer or wider, it is obvious that somebody has manipulated the ballots, and that proof that the ballots in the possession of the court did not match the counterfoils assisted in inducing the appellate division of the Supreme Court of Alberta to confirm the conviction unanimously, and Robb has now been conveyed to the penitentiary.

So that there is a wrong; that is clear. The wrong is this: That one Robb, at Brule Mines poll, took certain blank ballot papers and marked them with X's or crosses for Rae, thereby depriving Collins of the seat to which he was entitled.

Mr. WOODlSWORTH: Does the hon.

member argue that the court had before it evidence which showed that the ballots which should have been cast for Collins were sufficient in number to prove that the seat wa3 stolen from Collins?

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
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CON

Richard Bedford Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT:

I thank my hon. friend,-

for in my next sentence I was about to say that the result of the evidence which was typewritten and placed before the court was to show conclusively to the 4 p.m. court, as it had to a jury, that the result of the ballots which had been stolen by Robb, and upon which X's or crosses had been placed for Rae, was to give the seat to Kennedy, and deprive Collins of it, because had the ballots which were properly marked for Collins, on the evidence that was before the appellate division of the Supreme Court, been counted, he had a majority of upwards of 100 votes over his nearest competitor.

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

Am I not right

in saying that those ballots were all at one poll, that they did not cover the whole constituency?

4586

Peace River Election

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
CON

Richard Bedford Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT:

I thank my hon. friend

again, because it enables me to answer a question which was suggested by an observation of the hon. Minister of Justice. Nothing is clearer than that in law the hon. gentleman who has just spoken holds his seat because on the summation of the ballots east at the election he bad a majority over his opponents. Nothing is clearer than that I am here because on the summation of the ballots it was determined that I had a larger number than my opponent. In this case the ballots were summed up, and Judge Mahaffy, the district court judge, awarded the seat to Mr. Kennedy because he decided that there were 17 more ballots cast for him than for his nearest opponent. But when Robb's conduct was investigated, and there are no outstanding charges against any other person or any other poll, it was decided that by reason of the manipulation of the ballots at that poll, upwards of 100 votes that were cast in one way were counted in another, and Collins was thereby deprived of his seat. For instance, I have in my pocket a watch which I now produce. The watch presumably was honestly acquired. If it is alleged that it was not honestly acquired, proceedings for that purpose would have to be taken. The presumption of law is that with this watch in my pocket I honestly own it. The presumption of law in the return of my hon. friend is that every officeir honestly did his duty, and hence he was legally and properly returned. The presumption of law in the Peace River constituency is that all the proceedings were legally and properly conducted, and if Mr. Kennedy or anybody else says that they were not, they must take proceedings to shift that presumption and show that that which the law presumes, namely that all things were properly done is wrong.

Now proceedings were taken at the instance of tihe Attorney General of Alberta to show that the proceedings at the Brule Mines poll were dishonest, and as a result Mr. Robb is now in penitentiary for five years. There were also charges made against the conduct *of other polls, not by Mr. Kennedy or his supporters, but by Mr. Collins. An accused named Griggs was acquitted. Proceedings were also taken with respeot to another poll and the accused pleaded guilty and he was sentenced to one year's imprisonment because he pleaded guilty. Mark you, that every charge that has been made in reference to the proceedings in Peace River has been investigated, and as a result of the investigations that were made judicially it appears that Mr. Collins' seat was stolen from him, befcaulse up-

wards of 100 ballots marked for him were taken and marked for another man and in this way the seat was stolen. When my hon. friend suggests there may have been irregularities at other points that would have brought about a different result, I am sure, with his trained mind and his experience, he will regard that, not only as not a reason but not an excuse because, until it has been determined by proper proceedings that there was anything crooked in other parts of the constituency, the law says it was done honestly, as in other constituencies where members are returned to parliament. I hope my hon. friend follows that, because it is the basis of the whole matter. It does not lie in the mouth of any man whose seat has been challenged to say, Oh yes, but if you had investigated conditions somewhere else you would have found something wrong." The answer to that is, why did he not set the law in motion and ask the attorney general to investigate the doings at other polls? If the attorney general saw fit to institute proceedings against Robb and others, it is clear and Obvious that in all likelihood he would have taken proceedings against other persons who might be alleged to have committed improper acts in that election. But none such is suggested. No one suggests, except by word of mouth, that such conditions existed elsewhere. The records of the court show that no proceedings have been taken in other places. Therefore it is dear that a great wrong has been done to Collins, the petitioner. One word as to how great that wrong against Collins may be; Chief Justice Holt, about the year 1703, dealing with an action brought by Ashby against the sheriff, White, decided that wherever there is a wrong there is a remedy. At the end of his judgment he said:

It is a great privilege to choose such persons as are .to 'bind a man's life and property by the laws they make.

That great privilege, which was supposed to be accorded the electors of Peace River, to choose a man to represent them in this parliament, to make laws to bind a man's life and property and to pass other laws, has been taken away from the people of the Peace River district by a man who is now in gaol. In other words, the seat has been stolen from Mr. Colllins, and he has been deprived of his remedy.

I am not so much concerned about the personal wrong. That wrong deprived the man who had the right to a seat in this House of that seat, and substituted another

Peace River Election

for him. That was accomplished by the dishonest and criminal act of Robb and other parties. That is a public wrong of such a character that- I do submit this parliament can hardly afford to overlook it. What is the remedy? The Minister of Justice has suggested there is a remedy in the courts of the country. If there is a remedy in the courts of the country then his answer is good and complete. Now is there a remedy in the courts of the country? Will any lawyer in this House on either side say that there is a remedy for the wrong I have referred to, which will give Mr. Collins his seat? I am not going to repeat the arguments which were advanced by my right hon. leader, much better than I could present them, but he made it clear that there is no such remedy The courts of the country may be appealed to for punishment of the criminal who stole the ballots, and they have been successfully appealed to and Robb has been convicted, but is there any remedy for the wrong done to Collins; that is the question-not the wrong done by Robb and the contravention of the criminal laws of the country, but the wrong to Collins in a public sense by depriving him of his seat here. Is there any remedy in the court? It has been suggested that there is a remedy under the Controverted Elections Act, and I have in my hand a copy of the petition filed against Kennedy by Page under the Controverted Elections Act. That petition alleges that Kennedy has been guilty of fraudulent conduct in regard to the election. It also alleges that he has failed to make a proper return of expenses under the act, and charges irregularity at the polls. It does not seek to award the seat to anybody else, but merely seeks to avoid the election; in other words, to bring about the 'holding of a new election in that district. That is not a remedy to Collins. That does not remedy the wrong done in a public way. The wrong that is alleged is that somebody else sits in this parliament and that the seat has been stolen from Collins, not on behalf of Kennedy, but stolen by the deputy returning officer in his effort, not to assist Kennedy, but to assist Rae and to do wrong to Collins. Mr. Kennedy does not enter into the wrong in this matter. The wrong is against Collins in favour of one of his opponents, namely, Rae, to steal the seat for Rae. That is the wrong in that respect. Let us not forget that, when you allege that the remedy in the court is ample, and that we have a right to look to

the court to set it right, what is sought in the court is the other proceeding. The remedy and the relief sought are quite different. The exact language at the close of the petition is as follows:

Wherefore your petitioner prays:

1. That it may be determined that the said respondent was not duly elected or returned and that the said election is void.

2. That it may be declared and found that the 6aid respondent was and is guilty of the said several illegal acts and corrupt practices hereinbefore charged, as having been committed before, during, at and after the said election by himself and by his agents and other persons on his behalf.

3. That in consequence thereof, the said respondent may be adjudged disqualified and incapacitated of being elected to or sitting in the House of Commons aforesaid, or of voting at an election of a member of that House, and of holding any office in the nomination of the crown or of the Governor General in Canada.

And your petitioner will ever pray.

It is therefore apparent that the legal proceedings which have been taken in the courts of the country afford no relief to the petitioner, Collins. If that be so, and if it is true that for every wrong there is a remedy, what is the remedy? That is the only inquiry, and the only remedy is by a parliamentary committee-none other. Need I remind you, Sir, that this House has complete control over its own membership? Need I remind you, Sir, that this House can go so far as to expel any member of the House if it can get a majority of the House to do it? Need I remind you, Sir, that Louis Riel who once occupied a seat in this House was expelled, and the member for Lincoln >at one time was under threat of expulsion.

Need I remind you, Sir, that the mother of parliaments, the parliament of Australia and other parliaments have exercised the power of removing members from the House. That power does not come to them by statute. It is an inherent power which rests in this House to determine who shall and who shall not sit in this chamber, notwithstanding the votes of the electors. That matter should always be kept in mind. This House has exercised this power. When they say that this House has no power, I remind them of the inherent power of the House, the right to determine who shall sit in it, and it would be competent to-day, if a majority of the House so desired, to remove from the membership of the House any gentleman Who sits here. It could only be done if the case were such as to warrant its action. I am simply pointing out that the plenary power is there and the House can exercise that jurisdiction if it so desires; there is no doubt about it.

Peace River Election

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

May I ask the hon. member a question?

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
CON

Richard Bedford Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT:

Yes.

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

Aside from the question of the power of the House why does the hon. gentleman make the statement that it is the only way of having a wrong, or an alleged wrong, righted. Can it not be righted through the courts?

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
CON

Richard Bedford Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT:

That is what I am

coming to. My hon. friend is very kind this afternoon because he is asking questions regarding matters which I might have overlooked if I had not the benefit of his questions. I am very grateful to him for that. It is just because there is no remedy in the courts that this is the only remedy. The criminal law has been set in operation against Robb the wrongdoer; he is in the penitentiary. The criminal law affords no remedy that will give Mr. Collins his seat. There is no civil remedy with respect to that except action through the controverted elections court which will not and cannot give him his seat. That is the point I desire to make.

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

Can the courts void the election?

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
CON

Richard Bedford Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT:

Yes; but voiding of the election does not give the man who received the most votes at the last election his seat. I am sure my hon. friend's sense of fairness will govern. For instance the election of my hon. friend might be voided, but the statute says that within a certain number of days proceedings have to be taken, and if they are not taken within that number of days they may not then be taken.

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

If the court were of opinion that the circumstances were such that a member had lost his seat, taking everything into consideration that came before them, would the court not be free to report that circumstance to parliament?

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
CON

Richard Bedford Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT:

I am sorry to say in answer to the Prime Minister that the jurisdiction of the court extends only to scrutiny and to the voiding of the seat. They can report to parliament only this: The

prayer of the petition is to void the seat. They either void it or do not. If on the other hand there is a demand for a scrutiny they can count the pieces of paper and observe the marks on them. If a wrong count has been made they can correct that by substituting for the then member the member who has the most pieces of paper marked in his favour. For instance in the West Calgary election in 1921, as will be observed from the judgment

of the Supreme Court of Canada, a count of the vote was held. That inquiry went to the Supreme Court here. In that election it was decided that ballots marked with the figure "1" or marked with a red pencil or a blue pencil or an indelible pencil should not be counted for the petitioner in that case. The result was that, although the court so recorded and the judgment of the Supreme Court of Canada was that had the intention of the electors prevailed another hon. gentleman would have been in the seat of the one who occupied it for the four years in question, they were powerless to afford a remedy. A report to parliament by judges cannot under any circumstance give the seat to Mr. Collins.

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

I know a report to parliament cannot give the seat, but the judge has the right to report to parliament any circumstance which he thinks they ought to be made aware of.

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
CON

Richard Bedford Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT:

Unfortunately-and I am sure the Prime Minister will see the force of this at once-the judges cannot hear the evidence in a controverted elections case. My right hon. friend sees at once the whole trouble. He has anticipated what I was going to say.

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

If the seat is

voided is that not the first step in righting the wrong? There is another election and the thing is then decided.

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink
CON

Richard Bedford Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT:

May I put this to my hon. friend? Does he for a single moment say that it is the first step towards righting a wrong to void a seat and bring on a new election when the seat has been stolen?

Topic:   PEACE RIVER ELECTION
Subtopic:   MOTION THAT PETITION OF J. A. COLLINS BE READ AND RECEIVED
Permalink

June 16, 1926