Page:Problems of Empire.djvu/203

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defence. In the present state of public opinion on fiscal matters in this country, such an arrangement may be impracticable. It is a problem which will undoubtedly have to be faced sooner or later if this Empire of ours is to be kept together, and it is a question on which the electors of this country will have to make up their minds.' I have long seen that the question raised by Mr. Chamberlain would be the prominent political question of the day, and I believe that on the decision of the people of this country, one way or the other, hangs the future of the Empire.

Reciprocity with United States.In his Budget speech of 1903, the Canadian Minister of Finance stated that the Canadian Government had been approached by a representative of the United States Government with a view to negotiating a treaty of reciprocity between Canada and the United States. If such a treaty be made it will not only mean the loss of the great and growing market of Canada to British goods, but it will mean, in my opinion, sooner or later, political unity between Canada and the United States. I will not ask you to accept merely my opinion, but would refer you to the statements of Mr. Blake, who was for many years the leader of the Liberal Party in Canada. Mr. Blake took no part in the Canadian General Election of 1891. He did not, until the elections were over, make known the reason of his action. He then published a letter, in which he said that, in his judgment, reciprocity between Canada and the United States would mean political union with the United States, and as he did not think that the people of Canada were prepared for annexation to the United States, he was not prepared to advocate reciprocity. I think that it will generally be admitted