§ A Petition against the Return for Galway (Town) having been presented,
§ Mr. Hume
inquired whether election petitions were necessarily printed or not. It struck him to be a very useless expense to print a great number of those which were never followed up. Many personal attacks were made in these petitions, and no opportunity afforded to the person attacked to defend himself. As the Members of the House had full access to them, he thought it unnecessary to print them until it could be fully ascertained that they would be followed up.
§ The Speaker
said, the observations of the hon. member for Middlesex were worthy of consideration. At present they were printed under an Order of the House, not so much for the purpose of publicity as of giving full notice to all parties interested. Perhaps the hon. Member had better take a day or two to consider the subject, as he might think proper to bring forward some substantive motion.
§ Lord Althorp
agreed in the justness of many of the observations. Perhaps, if the petitions were not printed until the recognizances were entered into, the objection of the hon. Gentleman would be obviated.
§ Mr. O'Dwyer
said, that most scandalous and libellous matter was frequently put upon the records of Parliament, which, unlike any other Court, the House had no power of expunging. He hoped the suggestion of the hon. member for Middlesex would be taken into consideration.
991 Petition ordered to be taken into consideration.