HC Deb 21 May 1867 vol 187 c880

said, he would beg to ask the Secretary of State for War, If his Royal Highness the Commander-in-Chief had ever been consulted about the 8th Clause in the Militia Reserve Bill, and given his sanction to it; and, if the late Secretary of State for War had handed the Clause over to the right hon. Baronet, or approved it?


, in reply, said, the Bill which contained the clause alluded to was not sent to the Commander-in-Chief until after it was printed, and therefore he could not say that His Royal Highness was consulted with regard to it. He found on inquiry that the Bill was drawn subsequently to the resignation of his right lion, and gallant Friend the Member for Huntingdon (General Peel.) As the hon. Gentleman appeared to be so much disturbed about this clause, he would beg to remind him there was nothing new in it. It was at this moment the law of the land, for by the 125th section of 42 Geo. III. c. 90 of the Militia Act, a militiaman who deserted might be sentenced by court martial to serve in Her Majesty's regular forces.