HC Deb 06 February 1891 vol 350 cc156-8
MR. W. E. GLADSTONE (Mid Lothian)

Will the right hon. Gentleman have the kindness to explain to the House the intention of Her Majesty's Government in regard to the course of business on Government nights next week—Monday and Thursday?


I am obliged to the right hon. Gentleman for asking that question. He is aware that the Government desired to place Monday and Thursday next at the disposal of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Newcastle (Mr. J. Morley) for the Vote of Censure of which he has given notice; but that desire was coupled with the condition that previously to the consideration of that Motion the Tithe Bill should have passed through the remaining stages in this House. I regret that sufficient progress has not been made with that measure to enable the Government to carry out their original intention. The Tithe Bill stands on the Paper for this evening, but, unfortunately, looking at the number of Notices of Motion on the Paper, I am afraid there is very little chance of reaching it. I should not, therefore, be justified in asking hon. Gentlemen who take an interest in that measure to remain in attendance in the House on the bare chance of its being reached before 12 o'clock. Under these circumstances, the further consideration of the Tithe Bill must stand over until Monday, and if the Bill is not passed on that day I am afraid I must ask the House for further facilities for the completion of this measure. If we should complete the Bill on Monday, or before Thursday next, I shall ask the House to consider the Motion of the right hon. Gentleman on Thursday. It is understood, I think, under the circumstances of Public Business, that no more than two Government days will be occupied in the discussion. If we should not reach the Motion on Thursday, I am afraid I cannot now make any arrangements with regard to it. The pressure of Public Business makes it impossible for me to do so. I think it will be felt that I have made every effort on the part of the Government to meet the reasonable desire of the right hon. Gentleman to challenge the conduct of the Government. I trust, however, that the House will dispose of the Tithe Bill before Thursday, so that we may be in a position to entertain the Motion of the right hon. Gentleman on that day.


I wish to say, on the part of my right hon. Friend and myself, that I think the right hon. Gentleman has been perfectly fair and just in his proceedings with regard to the appointment of a time for my right hon. Friend's Motion. I agree with him in thinking that two nights are as much as can be fairly asked for the discussion of the Motion. That is quite understood. Nor am I surprised at his saying that it may be necessary for him, if we are not able to reach the Motion on Thursday, to allow a further period to elapse before making a positive arrangement. The right hon. Gentleman did not mention the cause, but I venture to assume that the cause is that the time of year has arrived when it is requisite for him to take some steps for making some progress in Supply. If that is so, it is a perfectly satisfactory reason.


Yes, Sir, that is the reason. I am most anxious not to trespass upon the time of private Members, if I can avoid doing so.


I hope that due notice will be given to the Irish Members of the day when the Motion of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Newcastle will be discussed.


I am sure the hon. Gentleman will see that I always desire as much as I possibly can to consider the convenience of the Irish Members. I should hope that by Tuesday it will be perfectly clear to the House when, the Motion can be taken.

MR. LEA (Londonderry S.)

Can the right hon. Gentleman give us any information as to when the Irish Land Bill will come on?


I cannot say when that Bill will be taken at present. When we reach it we shall take it from day to day.

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