Sir ROBERT BORDEN:
I have said two or three times that so far as these days of religious observance and religious duty are concerned, the whole matter has rested on custom and convention. It would have been far better, I think, if this had not been disturbed by the Senate. The effect of our action is simply to transfer from custom and convention two days which formerly depended solely thereon. These two days are transferred to the list of public holidays which must be observed in the Civil Service as a matter of law. I would have preferred to have had the matter left as it originally was; that is to say, resting upon custom and convention, but bon. gentlemen will understand that we are most anxious to avoid the defeat of this Bill and that there is a possibility, and even a strong probability, that it will be defeated unless we concur in this amendment. I hope hon. gentlemen will accept the assurance on behalf of the Government that this custom and convention which has prevailed in the past will continue in the future.