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the recent law for vacating the seats of members accepting places of emolument under the crown. Still, in justice to Lord Aylmer, I am bound to affirm the accuracy of the distinction in reference to which he appears to have acted. In cases where the vacancy of a seat may, consistently with existing usages, be notified by the house to the governor without assigning the cause, he is bound to presume that the adjudication of the house is right, and must carry it into effect by issuing a new writ. But in cases where usage requires that in the notification to the governor the cause of vacancies should be stated, then, if the cause alleged be insufficient in point of law, the governor is not at liberty to comply with the request of the house. The concurrence of the governor and the house in any measure, cannot render it legal, if it be prohibited by the law of the land. To that rule obedience is emphatically due by those to whom the constitution has assigned the high functions of legislation and of the executive government. If, therefore, Lord Aylmer rightly judged that M. Mondelet's seat had not been lawfully vacated, his lordship adhered to the strict line of duty in declining to issue the writ for which the house applied. If he entertained a serious

and honest doubt on the subject, his lordship was bound to pause until that doubt could be removed by competent judicial authority. The subsequent introduction by statute of a law for vacating seats in such cases as that of M. Mondelet's, would seem sufficiently to establish that his acceptance of office was not followed by that legal consequence.

17. I now approach the case of Sir John Caldwell. It is a subject which has uniformly excited the deepest regret of my predecessors; and I need hardly add, that I partake largely of that feeling. His Majesty's government have offered to the province every reparation which it has been in their power to make, for the original error of allowing monies to accumulate in the hands of a public officer, without taking full securities for the faithful discharge of his trust: they have placed at the disposal of the assembly whatever could be recovered from Sir John Caldwell, or from his sureties; and your lordship will now, on the terms to which I have referred in my accompanying despatch, be authorized to surrender to the appropriation of that house, the only funds by which his Majesty could have contributed towards making good the defalcation. Every practical suggestion has

also been made to the assembly, for preventing the recurrence of similar losses. Nothing, in short, has been left undone, or at least unattempted, to mitigate the evil which the inadequacy of the securities taken from Sir John Caldwell, and the accumulations of public money in his hands, occasioned. Perhaps the legal proceedings against his property might be carried on with greater activity and effect; and if so, your lordship will lend your aid with the utmost promptitude to that object. It is, indeed, much to be lamented, that for so many years together, on such a case as this, the law should have proved inadequate to secure for the public such property as was in the possession of the defaulter, or his securities, at the time of his insolvency.

I feel, however, that incomplete justice has hitherto been rendered to the people of Lower Canada, in Sir John Caldwell's case. That gentleman has been permitted to retain his seat at the legislative council, and still holds that conspicuous station. Whatever sympathy I may be disposed to feel for individual misfortune, and in whatever degree the lapse of years may have abated those feelings of just indignation which were provoked by the first intelli

gence of so gross a breach of the public trust, I cannot in the calm and deliberate administration of justice, hesitate to conclude that it is not fitting that Sir John Caldwell should retain a seat in the legislature of Lower Canada: his continuance in that position, and his management and apparent possession of the estates which formerly belonged to him in his own right, must exhibit to the people at large an example but too justly offensive to public feeling. Your lordship will cause it to be intimated to Sir John Caldwell, that the King expects the immediate resignation of his office of legislative councillor; and that in the event of the failure of that reasonable expectation, his MaJesty will be compelled, however reluctantly, to resort to other and more painful methods of vindicating the government of the province against the reproach of indifference to a diversion of public money from its legitimate use to the private ends of the accountant.

I am not aware that there remains a single topic of complaint unnoticed, either in the preceding pages or in my accompanying instructions to your lordship and your fellow commissioners. It has been my endeavour to meet each successive topic distinctly and circumstan

tially, neither evading any of the difficulties of the case, nor shrinking from the acknowledgment of any error which may be discovered in the administration of affairs so various and complicated. I dismiss the subject for the present, with the expression of my earnest hope that his Majesty's efforts to terminate these dissensions may be met by all parties in the spirit of corresponding frankness and good-will; assured that, in that case, his Majesty will not be disappointed in that which is the single object of his policy on this subject-the prosperity of Canada, as an integral and highly important member of the British empire.

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