Mr. Donald M. Fleming (Eglinlon):
I should like to go back, Mr. Speaker, to the speech made this evening by the Minister of Justice (Mr. Garson). Only he could have made it. That speech could not have been made by anyone who had sat in this house during the four previous sessions in the life of this parliament, because the review of the history of legislation with which the minister introduced his speech, and which occupied much of the time of his speech, was very inaccurate history indeed. I wish to set the record right to begin with tonight, because it would be a great mistake if the record which was given to the house by the Minister of Justice (Mr. Garson) ever by any stretch of the imagination came to be regarded by anybody as an accurate account of what happened.
The minister began with the War Measures Act, and then he said the moment the war
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Transitional Measures Act was over the government ceased to operate under the War Measures Act. Mr. Speaker, that is not a statement of fact. That is a statement which is at variance with the fact. Then he went on to talk about the bill which was introduced in 1945. I want to go back to the fall session of 1945. The bill which eventually became law in 1945 was not the bill which was originally introduced by the government. The bill which was originally introduced by the government was Bill No. 15, which was to be known as the National Emergency Powers Act, 1945. The minister completely glossed over this. Whoever wrote that speech for him had not told him about this essential feature of the history of the legislation because, Mr. Speaker, this legislation was so shocking in the powers that the government sought thereby to usurp at the expense of parliament that an outcry arose from one end of this country to the other. The powers that the government sought in this measure exceeded those which the government possessed under the War Measures Act. It is high time that the Minister of Justice made himself acquainted with the terms of Bill 15, a shocking bill, because by that bill the government sought at the hands of parliament powers as broad as these:
3. (1) The governor in council may do and authorize such acts and things, and make from time to time such orders and regulations, as he may, by reason of the existence of the national emergency . . . deem necessary or advisable for the security, defence, peace, order and welfare of Canada.
Then it goes on:
And for greater certainty, but not so as to restrict the generality of the foregoing terms, it is hereby declared that the powers of the governor in council extend to all matters coming within the classes of subjects hereinafter enumerated, that is to say:...
Bear in mind, Mr. Speaker, they are given power to do everything that was considered necessary or advisable arising out of the national emergency. What follows is not exhaustive; it is exemplary:
(a) production, manufacture, trading, exportation and importation;
(b) foreign exchange;
(c) transportation by air, road, rail or water;
(d) supply and distribution of goods and services, including the fixing of prices;
(e) employment, including salaries and wages;
(f) appropriation, control, forfeiture and disposition of property and of the use thereof, including the control of rentals and occupation;
(g) entry into Canada, exclusion and deportation, and revocation of nationality;
(h) imposition and recovery, in connection with any scheme of control contained in or authorized by orders and regulations, of charges payable to the Receiver General of Canada or into such fund or account as may be ordered.
That bill did not pass, Mr. Speaker, but it was a measure of the mind of the government.