§ Mr. Cobbett
rose to complain of the irregularity and uncertainty with which public business was generally conducted.
§ The Speaker
informed the hon. Member that there was no question before the House, and it was irregular for him to proceed, unless he meant to conclude with a motion.
§ Mr. Cobbett
—Then, Sir, I will make a Motion. The Ministers of the Crown, he must observe, were expressly bound to give the House every explanation they could reasonably require; and so to conduct the public business as to enable them to understand its progress, and to transact it most conveniently. With the present 32 Ministry, however, there was no knowing what was to be done. First they hrought forward the Navy Estimates, then the Civil Contingencies; then they left the Civil Contingencies and took a dip at the Army Estimates. Well: the House might reasonably have expected that they would have proceeded with the Army Estimates until they were completed—no such thing; to-night they were to go on with the Navy Estimates, and perhaps before they finished them they would be called upon to proceed with something else—he knew not what. He would, therefore, move the following resolution:—"That it is the opinion of this House, that when an Estimate of any description is presented to the House, the moving of all the votes in that estimate should be continued until the estimate be concluded."
§ Lord John Russell
was sorry he could not concur in the motion of the hon. Member; but as he considered that it would have the effect of placing an undue limit to the discretion of Ministers, he felt himself obliged to resist it.
§ Resolution negatived.