HC Deb 04 May 1905 vol 145 cc937-8

asked whether the Prime Minister was aware that an understanding prevailed to the effect that the vote of censure debate should not be taken before Tuesday. It would be very inconvenient' to many Irish Members if it were taken before that day. The Leader of the Irish Party had not been communicated with on the subject, and had left the House under the impression that it would not be taken before Tuesday. Would the right hon. Member for Dover be present on Monday or Tuesday, and, if not, would the Prime Minister consider the desirableness of postponing the debate until the late Chief Secretary could be present?


I am not aware of any understanding as to this debate. My right hon. friend near me (Sir A. Acland-Hood) informs me that, while he has no definite recollection of any explicit engagement, it is possible that from something which had fallen from him the impression had been gathered that Tuesday was the day when the debate would take place.


The arrangement was that the debate should not be taken before Tuesday.


In these circumstances I shall certainly not rigidly adhere to the arrangement which has been indicated to the House. If it is agreeable to the right hon. Gentleman opposite I will substitute Tuesday for Monday. In that case I shall take the Second Reading of the Scottish Education Bill on Monday and the vote of censure on Tuesday. I have every reason to hope that the late Chief Secretary will be in his place on Tuesday, as I have already said that my right hon. Friend would be here on Monday. I have no reason to doubt that.


I have no objection either to Monday or Tuesday. I understand from my right hon. friends near me that the impression is confirmed of an Understanding more or less precise that the debate would not be taken until Tuesday.