May 9, 1941

LIB

Gerald Grattan McGeer

Liberal

Mr. McGEER:

Apparently all the bills

above Bill No. 27 have now been passed.

269S

Divorce Bills

and that leaves Bill No. 27 at the head of the list. It seems to me that we should proceed with that bill now.

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NAT
IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

Some four or five members have spoken, so that I submit there must be a point of order. If it has been decided against me, Mr. Speaker, I would respectfully appeal from your ruling.

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE (Quebec East):

I think that what was in the mind of the Prime Minister and of the house was that any bill on which a debate was desired should go to the foot of the list, as in the case of motions for the production of papers. There the word "opposed" is not used in the rules, but the purpose is really the same. The ride reads:

All such notices when called shall be forthwith disposed of; but if on any such motion a debate be desired, it will be transferred by the Clerk to the order of "Notices of Motions".

If this language had been used there would be no difficulty whatever. I am quite sure, and I agree with the Minister of Finance (Mr. Ilsley), that the intention was that the bills on which debate was desired should be placed at the foot of the list and that the house should proceed with those on which no debate was desired. It is all right for a member to say "I am not opposing the bill," but if he talks for an hour upon it while not opposing it, the purpose of the motion would not be achieved. I agree entirely with the interpretation which the Speaker has given to the motion.

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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

The Minister of Finance gave his opinion without having read the resolution.

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LIB

Georges Parent (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

As I have already said, no one knows whether a bill is opposed until opposition is taken to it in the house. The intention of the motion, as I interpret it, and the Minister of Justice has agreed with me, was that the bills to which no^ opposition would be taken should automatically go through the house and be disposed of. But if debate ensued or objection was taken to any bill, that made it, by the very fact of the member rising and stating his objection, an opposed bill within the meaning of the resolution. May, thirteenth edition, at page 214, says-and hon. gentlemen will see that this pretty well covers the case in point:

After the business under consideration at eleven o'clock or at five o'clock on Friday, has been disposed of, no opposed business can be taken, but the transaction of business can be carried on during the time set apart for unopposed business, although debate may arise thereon, until a .division be challenged upon a question proposed from the chair, or objection be taken to further proceeding. The business

then becomes opposed business; and further consideration thereof must be adjourned in accordance with the provisions of the standing order until the next sitting, or until such other sitting on any day on which the house ordinarily sits as the member in charge of the business may appoint.

I suggest to the common, sense of the house that what we are now met with is opposition to these bills, and therefore they come within the resolution passed yesterday by the house. It is therefore my ruling that these bills must go to the bottom of the list. When they are taken up, any member-and I say this in reply particularly to the hon. member for Waterloo South (Mr. Homuth)-will have the right to discuss the principle and merits of the bill on the second reading. So that no one is being deprived of the right to discuss these bills.

The hon. member for Comox-Alberni has asked for an appeal against the ruling of the Chair. Standing order 12 provides:

Mr. Speaker shall preserve order and decorum, and shall decide questions of order.

If this were a question of order the hon. member would have the right to appeal. But this is not a question of order, it is a question of interpretation of a motion of the house passed yesterday. I have given my ruling, and as a point of order is not involved I must say that there is no appeal from my ruling.

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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

Mr. Speaker, I do not want to detain the house. That is the last thing I would want to do. But I do maintain, having taken exception to the ruling of the Chair, the common right of any man or woman here in parliament to appeal. I say again, from the respect I bear to you by reason of our common origin, that I will not press the matter, and I do not want to embarrass the numerous leading men on the front benches who would have to vote against your ruling.

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?

Mr. M. J. COLD WELL@Rosetown-Biggar

Mr. Speaker, I do not want to delay the house, but I am interested in a point of procedure. I am not opposed to these bills; indeed, I favour the principle that, under proper circumstances and proper conditions, an unhappy marriage should be dissolved, and therefore, actually, I am supporting the principle of the bill and not opposing it. Now, I want to know where I stand.

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LIB

Georges Parent (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

The very fact that the hon. member made the statement that he has. indicates that he is not opposed to the bill which is now before the house, but that he wishes to debate it. Is it the pleasure of the house to adopt the motion?

Divorce Bills

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Some hon. MEMBERS:

No.

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Some hon. MEMBERS:

On division.

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LIB
CCF

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weyburn):

If it is on division it is opposed.

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LIB

CLAVELL FILLITER STROUD


Mr. D. C. ABBOTT (St. Antoine-West-mount) moved the second reading of Bill No. 33, for the relief of Clavell Filliter Stroud.


NAT

Karl Kenneth Homuth

National Government

Mr. HOMUTH:

Will the hon. member explain, please? Will he give, in respect to this bill, the information which the hon. member for Comox-Alberni asked for in regard to the previous one?

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CCF

Angus MacInnis

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. MacINNIS:

Or any other and further information that he may have.

Motion stands.

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MARY MARION GREY MCKAY


Mr. D. C. ABBOTT (St. Antoine-West-mount) moved the second reading of Bill No. 34, for the relief of Mary Marion Grey McKay.


May 9, 1941