HC Deb 18 February 1833 vol 15 cc852-3
Mr. Fryer

presented a Petition from the town of Wolverhampton, praying for the Repeal of the Assessed Taxes, in the prayer of which Petition he entirely concurred. He was sorry, that in answer to the question put to him last week upon the subject, the noble Lord (the Chancellor of the Exchequer) signified his inability to state whether there would be any reduction of the taxes until the expiration of the present quarter. In his opinion, the noble Lord and his colleagues should have, in the first place, effected considerable retrenchment, and a large reduction of the public expenditure, before they met the present House of Commons. He thought that not only the Assessed Taxes, but the duties upon malt, upon hops, soap, cotton, and wool, should be at once repealed. He did not mean, that those taxes should be taken off without supplying their places. The fundholder, for instance, should be taxed, he would tax him to the amount of 6s. 8d. in the pound. He would tell his Majesty's Ministers, that if they went on in the old way the voice of the country would not be with them, and of this he was certain, that the Reform Bill would be a complete mockery, unless the reductions he had mentioned should at once take place. The distress of the country was infinitely increased by the wicked, abominable, and infamous tax upon bread—a tax which was maintained to support the monopoly of the landholders against the people. That and many others might be reckoned amongst the blessed consequences of the working of that infamous and iniquitous measure, Peel's Bill. If he had heard the least promise of retrenchment—if he had seen the least prospect of good from his Majesty's Ministers, he would not have said a word upon this subject; but it was because he was sorry to find that there was little or nothing to be expected from them, that he had felt it his duty to state his sentiments thus plainly and unequivocally.

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