Mr. St. Laurent:
With that reservation, for the convenience of hon. members I table the return at once.
Mr. Speaker, that made me curious to find out why the matter was largely academic, and I looked at the Journals of the House of Commons for May 11. There I found that the government apparently had doubts as to the legality of the act, and on that day Mr. Mackenzie King moved for leave to introduce bill No. 80, to amend the National Resources Mobilization Act of 1940. Subsequently that act became law, in 1942, and is to be found in the statutes of Canada for that year, chapter 29, page 131. There was certainly no precedent established there.
The next instance the hon. member for Essex East referred to was the emergency conservation regulations and legislation of 1942. He was referring to the then minister of finance, Mr. Abbott, and at page 1428 of the current Hansard the hon. member said:
It was not rejected. As my hon. friend knows, it was an oral opinion. Perhaps by this time my hon. friend understands that it is not possible to produce, by way of a document, an opinion that has been given orally; that was the situation in 1948.
Mr. Speaker, that was not the situation in 1948. The opinion was not an oral opinion.
Subtopic: CORRESPONDENCE RESPECTING SURCHARGE ORDER IN COUNCIL