May I be permitted to make a short statement at this time? Yesterday, when the house was considering third reading of the bill in connection with the foot-and-mouth disease, Mr. Diefenbaker moved an amendment. The Minister of Agriculture contended that the amendment was out of order. However, I allowed it to stand.
Since that time I have given further consideration to the amendment, and although it may have been technically in order I am rather doubtful of the practical result which would have followed if it had carried. The committee would have reconsidered an amendment which would have necessitated an expenditure of money. But the committee could not have taken any action on the matter without a motion by a member of the government. The government had intimated that it would not propose such an amendment. Accordingly I am doubtful if any useful purpose would have been served by referring the matter back to the committee.
The purpose of this statement is to advise the house that, for the reasons which I have stated and for other reasons, should a similar amendment be moved on any future occasion, I would not feel myself bound by the ruling which I made yesterday.
Subtopic: REFERENCE TO DECISION OF MR. SPEAKER ON AMENDMENT MOVED IN DEBATE ON MARCH 5