Tuesday, November 5, 2013

NaWiPoMo: The Simmons Toll Road Bill

The Simmons Toll Road Bill was a major legislative act sponsored by Liberal Governor-General Henderson Dewey during his first term in office as part of what he called his "dismantling operation". As with much of Dewey's legislation, the bill was introduced simply, with little prologue, by an undistinguished Liberal back-bencher. The bill provided for the construction of confederation-sponsored toll roads, which would be self-liquidating financially in fifty years.

As was the case with other major legislation sponsored by Dewey, the Simmons Toll Road Bill passed with little difficulty after being praised by Dewey and his fellow Liberals as "liberating." Members of the opposition People's Coalition pointed out that the bill was popular in rural and underdeveloped areas of the Confederation of North America, particularly in the Confederation of Manitoba. These were areas which were rapidly gaining in population and political power through the Galloway Plan's subsidized relocation program, and which tended to support the Liberals. Although Sobel does not specifically say so, the Simmons Bill would also benefit Owen Galloway's locomobile business, which would also attract P.C. criticism.

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