HC Deb 19 March 1852 vol 119 cc1402-4

moved that the Select Committee on Outrages (Ireland) should consist of fifteen Members.


said, that though the right hon. and learned Gentleman had stated that the inquiry was to be confined to only three counties in Ireland, yet from the whole tenor of the speech he made to the House, it was perfectly evident that he contemplated some changes in the law which extended not only to those three counties, but to the whole of the rest of Ireland. Under those circumstances he had read the list of the Committee with great surprise, because, though the south of Ireland was deeply affected by the inquiry, it had not a single representative in the Committee. Taking into account the very grave changes the right hon. and learned Gentleman proposed to introduce—grave in any country, but particularly so in a country so divided as Ireland was into different classes, unfortunately too often hostile to each other, he thought it would be much better to postpone the appointment of the Committee until the House had an opportunity of considering the names of those who composed it.


said, he had selected those Gentlemen whom he thought most qualified to sit on the Committee, and only six of them were at all connected with the Government. It was somewhat difficult to make a selection, but he believed he had made the best choice open to him.


hoped the request of the hon. Member for the county of Limerick (Mr. Monsell) would be acceded to. The Committee was objectionable, because seven out of fifteen of the members of the Committee were Englishmen. He wanted to know why the hon. Member for West Surrey (Mr. H. Drummond) was upon the Committee, and why the hon. Member for Rochdale (Mr. S. Crawford) should be omitted? The provinces of Munster and Connaught were not at all represented on the Committee, nor were the tenantry of Ireland at all represented there. He objected to proceeding with the nomination of the Committee to-night. It was, if not a packed jury, at least a selected one. The jury ought to be recast.


said, it was not his wish to be put upon the Committee, but thought it ought to be so constituted as would entitle its report to the confidence of the Irish people.


trusted that the Committee in its present shape might be agreed to, and that other names might be added to meet the views of the hon. Member for the county of Limerick. For his own part, he regarded the presence of the names of English Members as a guarantee of the fairness with which the inquiry would be conducted.


recommended the postponement of the Committee for the present. The question with which this Committee had to deal was essentially an Irish one, and ought to be thoroughly sifted.


said, he was willing to substitute other names in order to meet the views of the objectors to the present list. If it was thought that the interests of the south of Ireland were at all neglected, he was perfectly willing to add such names as would inspire a greater amount of confidence.


was anxious to see the name of the right hon. Baronet the Member for Ripon on the Committee. The right hon. Member for Hull (Mr. Baines) also, had given valuable evidence on the subject to be investigated; and the hon. Member for Manchester (Mr. Bright) had paid much attention to the condition of that portion of the people of Ireland in whom it was said the crime and outrage complained of had originated.

Committee agreed to.

The House adjourned at a quarter after One o'clock till Monday next.