Slike strani

a majority of voices, and the Speaker shall in all cases have a vote, and when the voices are equal the decision shall be deemed to be in the negative.

The House of Commons.

tion of

37. The House of Commons shall, subject to the pro- Constituvisions of this Act, consist of one hundred and eighty-one House of Members, of whom eighty-two shall be elected for Ontario, Commons. sixty-five for Quebec, nineteen for Nova Scotia, and fifteen for New Brunswick.1

in House

38. The Governor-General shall from time to time, in Summonthe Queen's name, by Instrument under the Great Seal of House of ing of Canada, summon and call together the House of Commons. Commons. 39. A Senator shall not be capable of being elected or Senators of sitting or voting as a Member of the House of Commons, not to sit 40. Until the Parliament of Canada otherwise provides,2 of ComOntario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick shall, Electoral for the purposes of the Election of Members to serve in the of the House of Commons, be divided into Electoral Districts as Four Provinces. follows:


Ontario shall be divided into the Counties, Ridings of Counties, Cities, parts of Cities, and Towns enumerated in the First Schedule to this Act, each whereof shall be an Electoral District, each such District as numbered in that Schedule being entitled to return one Member.3

1 Under the Representation Act of 1914 and of the Amending Act 5 G. V, ch. 19, and the Imperial Act 5 & 6 G. V, ch. 45, Ontario consists of 81 districts returning 82 members, Ottawa having two members. (It is unnecessary therefore to reprint the Schedule of the Act containing the Districts of Ontario at the time of its passing.) Quebec consists of 65 districts; Nova Scotia of 14, Halifax and Cape Breton South and Richmond having each two members; New Brunswick of 10, St. John's city and county having two members; Prince Edward Island of 3, Queen's having two members; Manitoba of 15; Saskatchewan and Alberta of 16 and 12; and British Columbia of 13 districts. These figures relate to the population in 1921.

2 At the Quebec Conference several of the Prince Edward Island representatives disapproved of the principle of representation by population; but they stood alone in this attitude. (Pope, op. cit., pp. 68-73.)

3 See note 1.



Continuance of existing election


Quebec shall be divided into sixty-five Electoral Districts, composed of the sixty-five Electoral Divisions into which Lower Canada is at the passing of this Act divided under Chapter two of the Consolidated Statutes of Canada, Chapter seventy-five of the Consolidated Statutes for Lower Canada, and the Act of the Province of Canada of the twenty-third year of the Queen, Chapter one, or any other Act amending the same in foree at the Union, so that each such Electoral Division shall be for the purposes of this Act an Electoral District entitled to return one Member.


Each of the eighteen1 Counties of Nova Scotia shall be an Electoral District. The County of Halifax shall be entitled to return two members, and each of the other Counties one Member.


Each of the fourteen1 Counties into which New Brunswick is divided, including the City and County of St. John, shall be an Electoral District. The City of St. John shall also be a separate Electoral District. Each of those fifteen 1 Electoral Districts shall be entitled to return one Member.

41. Until the Parliament of Canada otherwise provides, all laws in force in the several Provinces at the Union, relative to the following matters or any of them, namely:-til Parlia- the qualifications and disqualifications of persons to be Canada elected or to sit or vote as Members of the House of

laws un

ment of


otherwise Assembly or Legislative Assembly in the several Provinces, the Voters at Elections of such Members; the oaths to be taken by Voters; the Returning Officers, their powers and duties, the proceedings at Elections, the periods during which Elections may be continued, the trial of controverted Elections and proceedings incident thereto, the vacating of seats of Members, and the execution of new Writs in cases 1 On these subsections see note on p. 131.

of seats vacated otherwise than by dissolution,-shall respectively apply to Elections of Members to serve in the House of Commons for the same several Provinces.1 Provided that until the Parliament of Canada otherwise provides, at any Election for a Member of the House of Commons for the District of Algoma, in addition to persons qualified by the law of the Province of Canada to vote, every male British Subject, aged Twenty-one years or upwards, being a householder, shall have a vote.


42. For the first Election of Members to serve in the Writs for House of Commons, the Governor-General shall cause Writs Election to be issued by such person, in such form, and addressed to such Returning Officers as he thinks fit.

The person issuing Writs under this Section shall have the like powers as are possessed at the Union by the Officers charged with the issuing of Writs for the Election of Members to serve in the respective House of Assembly or Legislative Assembly of the Provinces of Canada, Nova Scotia, or New Brunswick; and the Returning Officers to whom Writs are directed under this Section shall have the like powers as are possessed at the Union by the Officers charged with the Returning of Writs for the Election of Members to serve in the same respective House of Assembly or Legislative Assembly.

1 For many years the Dominion Parliament refrained from establishing a uniform franchise for the Dominion; and the list of voters used in the election of representatives to the Provincial Legislative Assemblies was used at the election of members for the House of Commons. In 1885, however, a Dominion Franchise Bill was passed through Parliament in the face of fierce opposition. The Act was bitterly complained of on the ground of its partisan character, and was repealed in 1898, when the former system was restored.

With regard to controverted elections the Canadian practice has closely followed British precedent. At the time of confederation, and for several years after, controverted elections were dealt with by a 'General Committee of Elections', consisting of six members appointed by the Speaker. By Acts passed in 1873 and 1874 the trial of election petitions was transferred to the judges in the several Provinces. An appeal now lies to the Supreme Court. The law with regard to corrupt practices at elections closely resembles the law in force in Great Britain.

As to casual

43. In case a vacancy in the representation in the House vacancies. of Commons of any Electoral District happens before the meeting of the Parliament, or after the meeting of the Parliament before provision is made by the Parliament in this behalf, the provisions of the last foregoing Section of this Act shall extend and apply to the issuing and returning of a Writ in respect of such vacant District.

As to

election of Speaker.

As to


44. The House of Commons on its first assembling after a General Election shall proceed with all practicable speed to elect one of its members to be Speaker.

45. In case of a vacancy happening in the office of filling up Speaker by death, resignation, or otherwise, the House of in office of Commons shall with all practicable speed proceed to elect Speaker. another of its members to be Speaker.

Speaker to 46. The Speaker shall preside at all meetings of the preside. House of Commons.

Provision 47. Until the Parliament of Canada otherwise provides, in case of in case of the absence for any reason of the Speaker from Speaker. the chair of the House of Commons for a period of forty

absence of

Quorum of
House of

Voting in


eight consecutive hours, the House may elect another of its members to act as Speaker, and the Member so elected shall, during the continuance of such absence of the Speaker, have and execute all the powers, privileges, and duties of Speaker.


48. The presence of at least twenty Members of the House of Commons shall be necessary to constitute a meeting of the House for the exercise of its powers; and for that purpose the Speaker shall be reckoned as a Member.

49. Questions arising in the House of Commons shall be House of decided by a majority of voices other than that of the Speaker, and when the voices are equal, but not otherwise, the Speaker shall have a vote.

Its duration.

50. Every House of Commons shall continue for five

1 In 1885 the English practice was adopted of appointing the Chairman of Committees to act as Deputy-Speaker when necessary.


years 1 from the day of the return of the Writs for choosing the House (subject to be sooner dissolved by the GovernorGeneral) and no longer.


51. On the completion of the census in the year one Decennial readjustthousand eight hundred and seventy-one, and of each sub- ment of sequent decennial census, the representation of the four represenProvinces shall be readjusted by such authority in such manner, and from such time as the Parliament of Canada from time to time provides, subject and according to the following rules:

(1) Quebec shall have the fixed number of sixty-five


(2) There shall be assigned to each of the other Provinces
such a number of Members as will bear the same
proportion to the number of its population (ascertained
at such census) as the number sixty-five bears to the
number of the population of Quebec (so ascertained);
(3) In the computation of the number of Members for
a Province, a fractional part not exceeding one-half of
the whole number requisite for entitling the Province
to a Member shall be disregarded; but a fractional
part exceeding one-half of that number shall be equi-
valent to the whole number:

(4) On any such readjustment the number of Members
for a Province shall not be reduced unless the pro-
portion which the number of the population of the
Province bore to the number of the aggregate popula-
tion of Canada 2 at the then last preceding readjustment
of the number of Members for the Province is ascer-

1 The term of five years was chosen after the example of New Zealand. John A. Macdonald would have preferred to follow the British precedent. 2 These words mean the whole population of Canada, including that of Provinces which have been admitted to the Confederation since the passing of the British North America Act. The number of six members given to Prince Edward Island was not a fixed minimum; but was liable to readjustment either way under the provisions of the subsection. See Attorney-General for New Brunswick and Attorney-General for Prince Edward Island v. Attorney-General for Dominion of Canada, [1905] A. C. 37. See also Sec. 2 of 5 & 6 G. V, ch. 45.

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