HC Deb 28 March 1893 vol 10 cc1317-8

I beg to ask the Prime Minister if he is able to state when the blank Schedules of the Home Rule Bill would be in the hands of hon. Members. It is extremely desirable that this should be done some time before the opening of the Debate on the Second Reading, as at present the House has no information as to what the Government proposals are?


My right hon. Friend desires me to answer the question, which is a perfectly fair one. The Schedule concerning the arrangements for the Constabulary I hope to be able to place in the possession of hon. Members to-morrow or Thursday. The Schedule affecting the Civil servants is postponed at the request of certain Civil servants in Ireland, who desired to have an interview with me before definitely placing proposals in the Schedule. I conceive there will be no objection to that; on the contrary, a considerable amount may be gained. In any case, however, the Schedules will certainly be in the hands of hon. Members on the day when the Debate commences.


Will it not be possible to circulate the Schedules a day or two, at all events, before the beginning of the Debate.


I can only promise to do my best, and I hope to have the interview on Saturday in Dublin. Not an hour shall be lost.


Is the House to understand that the Home Rule Bill is to be pressed forward next week, the Bill being completed only on the morning on which we are asked to read it?


The hon. Gentleman is really to understand nothing beyond what I said. All I said was perfectly reasonable and intelligible. The hon. Gentleman must be aware that it constantly happens in the case of large and important Bills that the Schedules are deferred till a late stage. The Schedule being in the hands of hon. Members at the time I have stated will give ample opportunity for the consideration of that part of the scheme.


I wish to know whether, according to the answers of the right hon. Gentleman, if the Bill had been brought on at the time the Prime Minister desired, the House would have been asked to read it a second time without having the Schedules before them?

[No answer was given.]