§ THE CHANCELLOR OF THE EXCHEQUER (Sir WILLIAM HARCOURT) (Derby)
I am sorry to say the Prime Minister is unwell, and unable to be in his place to-day, though he hopes to be so to-morrow. He has desired me to state that on Thursday, April 8, he proposes to bring forward the subject of the Irish policy of the Government in this House.
§ SIR MICHAEL HICKS-BEACH (Bristol, W.)
I do not know whether the right hon. Gentleman is in a position to give us anymore definite information as to the statement to be made on April 8—whether the Prime Minister intends to bring in a Bill, or in what way he intends to state his policy to the House. But the Question I wish particularly to ask has reference to the Business of the House between this date and April 8. I should like to ask the right hon. Gentleman what Business will be taken next week, and also when the right hon. Gentleman himself proposes to move his Budget? I see the Crofters Bill is the second Order for to-night; but I understood yesterday evening there was an 1809 understanding that it would not be taken till Monday.
§ SIR WILLIAM HARCOURT
As regards the method in which the Prime Minister will introduce the question of his Irish policy, I am not able to state definitely. What I understand is, that he will state the views of the Government with reference to the Irish policy on the 8th of April. With reference to next week—and I do not know that I can go further than that—we propose not to take the Crofters Bill to-night, but on Monday, and we desire to go on with that Bill and complete the Committee stage as early as possible. If the Crofters Bill in Committee is not completed on Monday, of course we shall go on with it on Thursday. The next Bill in point of order it is desired to press forward is the Railway and Canal Traffic Bill. I cannot say anything as to Thursday, as I do not know anything of the condition of the Crofters Bill on Monday. Perhaps the right hon. Gentleman will allow me to name a day for the Budget a little later; but it will probably be introduced in the first fortnight in April.