HC Deb 05 March 1849 vol 103 cc229-33

SIR J. PAKINGTON moved the appointment of the Select Committee on the Bribery at Elections Bill.


objected to the nomination of so important a Committee at that late hour. He hoped the hon. Baronet would postpone his Motion to another day.


said, he would have yielded to the request of the hon. and gallant Colonel, if he had assigned a sufficient reason for his doing so; but the only reason of the hon. and gallant Gentleman was, that he wished for more time to consider the names proposed. He (Sir J. Pakington) had given notice of the Committee on Thursday last, and postponed it on Friday at the desire of the hon. Member for Northampton.


Then I shall move that the House do now adjourn.


said, that as the hon. and gallant Gentleman had resumed his seat without making a Motion, he could not now propose it.


objected to the practice of appointing hon. Members to sit upon more than one Committee in the same Session of Parliament. He could point to one or two Members who were placed upon no less than twelve Committees in the last Session. He wished to see a more equal distribution of public business to the Committees. At present, also, there was the greatest irregularity in the mode of conducting business by the Committees, and he could point at Committees where examinations had been conducted without a quorum being present, and in some cases solely by the Chairman. In this instance, he had no objection to the names upon the Committee, though he observed that the hon. Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. Bouverie) was already upon one Committee, and he did not see why some other hon. Gentleman should not he appointed.


said, the abuse to which the hon. Baronet had alluded was one that deserved the attention of the House. It happened on some occasions that the Chairman was the only Member of Committee that was left to examine witnesses, without there being another Member to cross-examine, or to bring out the proper bearing of the answers. To remedy this evil, he thought it would be desirable that the clerk of a public Committee should adopt the practice in private Committees, of calling the Chairman's attention to the fact, wherever there was not a quorum present, and that all business should then cease till five Members had again assembled.

The names of Sir John Pakington, Lord Ashley, Sir Frederic Thesiger, Mr. Bouverie, Viscount Mahon. Mr. Brotherton, Mr. Walpole, and Mr. Legh, were agreed to.

On the Motion that Sir John Hanmer be one of the Committee, Colonel Sibthorp opposed the Motion, and said he should divide the House.

Motion made, and Question put, "That Sir John Hanmer be one other Member of the said Committee." The House divided:—Ayes 31; Noes 3: Majority 28.

List of the AYES.
Bramston, T. W. Goddard, A.
Brotherton, J. Greene, T.
Campbell, hon. W. F. Hawes, B.
Duckworth, Sir J. T. B. Howard, Lord E.
Ebrington, Visct. Lockhart, W.
Evans, W. Moffatt, G.
Nugent, Lord Talbot, C. R. M.
Parker, J. Thompson, Col.
Patten, J. W. Thornely, T.
Pearson, C. Tufnell, H.
Pigott, F. Willyams, H.
Pilkington, J. Williamson, Sir H.
Price, Sir R. Willoughby, Sir H.
Rice, E. R. Wilson, J.
Sandars, G. TELLERS.
Spooner, R. Pakington, Sir J.
Sullivan, M. Hill, Lord M.
List of the NOES.
Buller, Sir J. Y. TELLERS.
Henley, J. W. Sibthorp, Col.
Waddington, H. S. Mackenzie, W. F.

House adjourned at One o'clock.