HC Deb 22 May 1843 vol 69 cc688-9
Mr. Blewitt

wished to put a question to the right hon. Baronet as to the irregular mode in which the Factories Bill had been introduced. By a Standing Order of the House, passed in 1772, it was laid down that no bill relating to religious matters could be brought on without a resolution in committee of the whole House. This Standing Order was acted on in a bill brought in in 1780, and he contended, that this bill as much related to religion as the one then introduced. If the right hon. Baronet felt any doubt on the subject, he ought to have given the benefit of that doubt to the immense number of petitioners who complained of the bill. There was also another objection. By one of the Standing Orders of the House, no bill imposing any charge upon the people, could be introduced except in a committee of the whole House. Now, by the 74th clause of the bill, the trustees were empowered to borrow money for the purpose of building these schools, and by another clause the trustees and overseers of the poor were authorised to discharge the expenses incurred in the maintenance of the schools out of the parochial rates.

Sir J. Graham

would allude to the last portion of the hon. Gentleman's queries first. Not to weary the House with precedents, he would only allude to three measures, each of which had been introduced without having previously gone through committee; those were, first, the Metropolitan Police Act; secondly, the County Constabulary Act; and thirdly, which was a case directly in point, inasmuch as it imposed a rate where no rate had previously been ever imposed, the act establishing poor-laws in Ireland. All those had been introduced without having been previously submitted to the consideration of a committee. Then with regard to the second point, that there were certain clauses in the bill referring to religion, he would state that an act had been passed expressly designed for the regulation of education in Ireland, which had quite as great reference to matters of religion, as the Factories Bill, and that act, had been introduced without having been previously submitted to a committee. And there was the Factories Act, which had also been introduced without going through committee.

Subject at an end.