§ [Progress, 20th June.] Order for Committee read.
§ House in Committee.
THE ATTORNEY GENERAL
said, he would appeal to the hon. Member who had charge of the Bill whether it was worth while to go on with it at the present advanced period of the Session? From the difference of opinion which existed on the subject, and in the face of the Resolution of the House of Lords not to receive any Bills for a second reading after the 24th of that month, there was very little hope of the present measure being passed into a law during the Session.
§ MR. HEYWOOD
said, he must accede to the appeal of his hon. and learned Friend, but at the same time, he must express a hope that he would be enabled to introduce a similar measure sufficiently early in the next Session to have it passed into a law. He would, therefore, move that the Chairman Report progress.
§ MR. VINCENT SCULLY
said, he 1354 hoped that in any future Bill the hon. Member would place Ireland in the same situation as Scotland, by excluding it from the operation of the measure.
§ MR. NAPIER
said, that certain parties had industriously circulated papers amongst the Members of that House, containing the grossest misrepresentations in connection with the subject. They especially misrepresented the opinions of the people of Ireland upon this question of marriage. He had himself presented a petition from the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland, which stated that the measure was peculiarly offensive to them, and at variance, as they believed, with the word of God. His constituents—Catholic, as well as Protestant—were equally opposed to the Bill. In anything that had I fallen from him upon the subject, he begged to disclaim saying anything disrespectful of the Nonconformist body. The hon. Member had excluded Scotland from the operation of his measure, but the feelings of the people of Ireland were as much entitled to consideration as the people of Scotland. Should the hon. Member introduce the Bill next year he could promise him the same opposition as he had received this year.
§ House resumed; Committee report progress; to sit again upon this day three months.