HC Deb 10 February 1837 vol 36 cc432-3
Mr. Hume

rose to ask for leave to bring in a Bill similar to the Bill of last Session, and which arose out of a recommendation of the Committee which sat last year to consider the manner in which Members of that House were put to very considerable and irregular expenses on their elections. That Committee had laid on the table many lengthened and precise details of the evils of the present system, and the Report recommended the Bill which he now moved for leave to bring in, the object of it being to define what were legal charges, and what not. The Bill, however, as compared with that of last Session, was very much improved. Many clauses had been left out, and the Bill was now limited expressly to the expenses of elections. As the Bill was not yet before the House, he considered it unnecessary to say more. He hoped he would be allowed to introduce it, as by that means hon. Members might have the Bill, and make themselves masters of its contents, and see whether or not it deserved support.

Colonel Sibthorp

said, that whatever might be the democratic tendency of the last Bill introduced by the hon. Gentleman, the Member for Middlesex, this Bill was certainly not democratic. He had himself always exercised feelings of hospitality and charity towards those with whom he had the honour to be connected, and whether this Bill passed the House or not, it should not prevent him from continuing to do so. This Bill would not be very popular—he was sure it would not be very satisfactory to the hon. Member's constituents. He thought there was a degree of niggardliness about the Bill that was inconsistent with the British character. He loved to be amongst his constituents, and they loved to be with him. If the hon. Member for Middlesex would do him the honour to accept an invitation to his place, he was sure that that hon. Member's opinion as to the necessity of this Bill would be altogether changed.

Leave given. Bill brought in and read a first time.