HC Deb 02 December 1884 vol 294 cc446-7

asked the Prime Minister, Whether the House would meet to-morrow; further, when it would be possible for him to state when the House was to be adjourned; and whether he could inform the House of the proposed length of the Recess?


The first Bill which is down for discussion to-morrow has not yet been printed; and consequently it could not, in accordance with the practice of the House, be taken into consideration. The second Bill is the Elections in Counties (Hours of Poll) Bill. That is not a Government measure; but, at the same time, the enactment which it contains is one of some importance, and we are of opinion that it will be convenient and advantageous if that Bill could come on so that the opinion of the House might be brought out in the debate. We, therefore, hope that the House will be disposed to meet to-morrow. With regard to the further Questions put by the noble Lord, I am not able at present to give a very distinct answer. A good deal depends upon the time the House may think proper to consume in the debate on the second reading of the Seats Bill. Of course, we could not think of moving the Adjournment of the House till we have read the Bill a second time. Consequently, I am obliged to answer the Question by putting another Question, inasmuch as the length of the debate may possibly depend, as often happens, more on the disposition of Gentlemen on the opposite side than on the disposition of Gentlemen on this side of the House. I should hope that if the Bill be read a second time even on Friday it possibly might be found practicable that the House should adjourn on Saturday in conjunction with possible proceedings in the House of Lords. If the Bill be read a second time on Thursday, I make no doubt that the House will adjourn in the course of this week. With respect to the length of the Vacation I would rather not give an answer till Thursday. I may have some better power of estimating on that day than I have at present.