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Imperial Parliament, to continue to watch over the interests of the province with the same zeal and the same devotedness as heretofore, without suffering himself to be discouraged by mere formal objections on the part of those who are unwilling to listen to the complaints of the country.
91. Resolved, That the fair and reasonable expenses of the said two committees of correspondence, incurred by them in the performance of the duties entrusted to them by this house, are a debt which it contracts towards them; and that the representatives of the people are bound in honour to use all constitutional means to reimburse such expenses to the said committee, or to such person as may advance money to them for the purposes above-mentioned.
92. Resolved, That the message from his excellency the governor-in-chief, received on the 13th of January last, and relating to the writ of election for the county of Montreal, with the extract from a despatch which accompanied it, the message from the same, received the same day, and relating to the supply bill, and the message from the same, received on the 14th January last, with the extract from the despatch which accompanied it, be expunged from the journals of this house.
These resolutions, and the memorial accompanying them, were referred to a committee composed, like the last, chiefly of liberal members, and containing several persons whose opinions were well known to be favourable to their cause. The Canadian delegate, Mr.
Morin,* was heard at great length, and I must refer you to the testimony given by him as a proof how all the vague assertions contained in their petition and resolutions vanished, when they were subjected to a critical and close examination. There are few instances on record in which a witness was so skilfully examined, or where a clever man, as he undoubtedly is, was brought to refute himself so completely as he has done. After a patient hearing of all he could say, the committee reported (June 1834) as follows:
"That the most earnest anxiety had existed, on the part of the home government, to carry into effect the suggestions of the committee of 1828; and that the endeavours of the government to that end had been unremitting, and guided by the desire, in all cases, to promote the interest of the colony; and that in several important particulars their endeavours had been completely successful; that in others, however, they had not been attended with that success which might have been anticipated, heats and animosities and differences having arisen; that it appeared to the committee some mutual mis
• See the evidence taken before the committee, and published by order of Parliament.
conception had prevailed; and that they believed they should best discharge their duty by withholding any further opinion on the points in dispute; and were persuaded the practical measures for the future administration of Lower Canada might best be left to the mature consideration of the government responsible for their adoption and execution."
SHORTLY afterwards the whole of the proceedings of government, since the year 1828 to the present period, were detailed in a very able and lucid statement of my Lord Aberdeen, in which he claims for himself and colleagues the credit of a full and faithful compliance with the recommendations of the Canada committee, as far as the powers of the executive permitted them to do so. I have, therefore, abstained from entering into the particulars myself, and prefer giving this narrative to compiling one of my own. It is not only infinitely better done than I could hope to do it, but it is desirable, in such cases, to draw one's information from the most authentic sources. I am neither the advocate nor the panegyrist of any of these administrations-what my opinion of their policy may be is of little consequence; but even if it were much more favourable than it happens to be, I should refrain from expressing it, for I have yet to learn how a poor man can eulogise the character of those who are in power, and yet sustain the reputation of his own
sincerity. With the wisdom of their measures I have nothing to do at present; my object is to show there has been no oppression, and that, whatever imputation these proceedings deserve, they are at least exempted from that of unkindness. I must therefore request a careful perusal of the following document :
In the following pages Lord Aberdeen will attempt to shew that there was sufficient reason to anticipate the entire conciliation of Lower Canada from the accomplishment of the resolutions of the Canada committee, and that, to the utmost of the power of the Crown, those resolutions were, in fact, carried into execution.
The appointment of the Canada committee of 1828 was, on every account, an important proceeding. The redress of grievances had been demanded, not by an isolated party, but by both of those great bodies which divide between them the wealth and political authority of the province. With views essentially dissimilar, or rather hostile, they had concurred in an appeal to the metropolitan government.
By each body of petitioners were deputed agents authorized to interpret their wishes, and to enforce their claims. The committee itself was certainly not composed of gentlemen unfavourable to the views of the great numerical majority of the house of assembly. They prosecuted the enquiry with great diligence and zeal. They examined the agents of both parties, and every other person capable of throwing light on the subject referred to them. None of the questions brought under their