HC Deb 07 May 1889 vol 335 cc1366-7

A conversation occurred the other night in reference to the taking of private Members' nights by the Government. As they have now succeeded in doing that, may I ask the right hon. Gentleman the First Lord of the Treasury whether he will use his influence and his best endeavours to see that a reasonable number of Members of the Government who were in receipt of official salaries are in their places to assist in making a House at 9 o'clock?


I have no doubt that a reasonable number of Members of the Government who are in receipt of official salaries will be in attendance. But it must be remembered that their work begins at 10 o'clock in the morning,. as the right hon. Gentleman is himself aware, having himself been an exeeedingly hard worked Member of the Government. But I think it is also only reasonable that Members who have Motions on the Paper should exercise influence with their friends who take interest in such Motions, and induce them to be present. Some consideration should be had for Members of the Government whose duties are only partly discharged in this House, and who. have heavy responsibilities in administration. I am aware that these Gentlemen are paid, but at the same time I must remind the House that there is a very deep interest in allowing Gentlemen engaged in the service of the Crown at least sufficient rest to enable them to discharge their duties of administration in the public affairs with satisfaction to the country.

MR. H. H. FOWLER (Wolverhampton, E.)

May I ask whether it has not always been laid down by Leaders of the House that the Government are under no responsibility for making a House on Tuesday evenings, but that that duty entirely falls upon private Members?


I have always understood since I have been a Member of the House that that was the rule.


No, no.


The right hon. Gentleman differs. At any rate, it is the general feeling of the House that the responsibility does not rest with the Government,

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