HC Deb 28 May 1868 vol 192 cc954-5

said, he would beg to ask the First Lord of the Treasury, What course the Government propose to take about the three boroughs proposed to be disfranchised by a late Vote of the House, and not assigned to Scotland in the Government scheme of Re-distribution; and, whether the seven boroughs to be disfranchised are those which are lowest in the scale of population?


Sir, I must remind the hon. Gentleman that the Instruction which was carried by the House only empowered the Committee to disfranchise ten boroughs. Now, I do not propose to avail myself of that Instruction, except to the extent of seven seats, to increase the representation of Scotland. We intend to adhere strictly to the programme which I introduced the other night to the attention of the Committee with regard to the representation of Scotland, and therefore I do not propose to deal at all with the other three boroughs. The boroughs which we propose to disfranchise will be taken according to population, that being the rule hitherto observed in those arrangements.


Am I correct in understanding the answer just given, that with the exception of the union of the two counties, Peebles and Selkirk, and the formation of what he calls the border boroughs, the right hon. Gentleman does not intend to go further into the question of re-distribution of counties or towns in Scotland? Is that so?


Clearly, that is the intention of the Government.