HC Deb 18 June 1883 vol 280 cc791-2

asked the Vice President of the Council, Whether he can explain how it has happened that the Education (Scotland) Bill, which was read a first time on Wednesday last, but has not yet been issued to Members, has already appeared in full in the columns of an Edinburgh newspaper?


, in reply, said, he did not think there was any breach of faith in this case. He gave the Bill in print to the Bill Office on Wednesday afternoon, after introducing it, and he had previously consulted some half-a-dozen Scottish Members with respect to one clause, which he afterwards struck out, and he gave them the rough proof. The Bill would have been delivered immediately to Members, but on Thursday he took a Memorandum to the Office, which he desired to have printed and circulated with it. He could not explain by what moans it got into the Scottish papers.


asked what steps had been taken to trace the author of this and similar offences in the present and former Sessions?


said, he was not aware that any complaint had been made in a former Session, except in the case of a Report; but, even had that been the fact, he hardly thought he was called upon to explain what had been done in the matter. He, however, did not think there had been any breach of faith in this instance, because hon. Members to whom lie had given the Bill were Members interested in it. The Bill he gave was in an incomplete form, and it was given on the understanding that it should not be used until after he had introduced it. It would have been delivered on Thursday—the day it appeared in the public print—but for the fact that he wished to circulate with it a printed Memorandum giving the reasons for introducing the Bill.