§ Mr. John Smith
moved, "That a select committee be appointed to consider of the Bankrupt Laws, and of the operation thereof."
§ Mr. Lockhart
said, there was sufficient evidence before the House, to show that the state of the bankrupt laws was extremely defective. He quoted a sentence of the lord chancellor to prove that, in the present state of those laws, there was no distinction made between the moral and the immoral bankrupt, and that, in fact, he could not make any difference between those who had been honest, but unfortunate, and those who had profusely squandered the money of their creditors previously to the act of bankruptcy. He thought there should be a greater power in some tribunal to inquire into the previous conduct of the bankrupt. This power, he conceived, would be best vested in the commissioners of bankrupts. He hoped the committee would report as early as possible, as it was a subject connected with the best interests of the country.
§ A committee was then appointed.