HC Deb 13 March 1906 vol 153 cc1124-88

Order read, for resuming Adjourned Debate on Question [12thMarch], "That this House, recognising that in the recent General Election the people of the United Kingdom have demonstrated their unqualified fidelity, to the principles and practice of free trade, deems it right to record its determination to resist any proposal, whether by way of taxation upon foreign corn or of the creation of a general tariff upon foreign goods, to create in this country a system of protection."—(Sir James Kitson.)

Question again proposed.

Debate resumed.

Mr. STUART WORTLEY (Sheffield, Hallam)

said they had often before noticed the kind of foredoomed misdirection of energy with which Liberal Ministries, newly returned to power with large majorities, full of high hopes and charged with serious mandates and drastic missions, had been found in good time expending their force and wasting precious days in debating purely academic reforms and even in purely theoretical discussions. Those Members who had heard the flowers of rhetoric which escaped the Prime Minister the previous night were not surprised to find those obsessions and vicious propensities still in full force. They did not therefore so very greatly wonder why this Motion had been brought on. Of course a precedent had to be sought for, and they were told that it was to be found in Sir Charles Villiers' Motion in 1852. Was that a precedent at all? He did not think it.

was a very convenient precedent for the mover of the Resolution, for, against him there were some significant differences between the two cases, differences which he might describe as of a highly ill-omened character. The Villiers' Motion was brought in because, in the first instance, there was a real doubt in the mind of the public as to the attitude of the new House of Commons toward fiscal and economic questions. The House might remember that in that House there were 325 Liberals and 299 Conservatives, and that neither the Liberals nor the Conservatives possessed the necessary 327 votes to give them a majority. Consequently, the forty Peelites held the balance between the two parties. The second difference was in the Queen's Speech. In that year the Queen, advised by Lord Derby's Ministry, used words in the Speech about free trade, which were complained of as evasive and even as disrespectful to the House of Commons. Thirdly, the Motion, far from-being engineered and inspired by Ministers, was directed against Ministers and intended as a censure upon them. Another fact concerning Mr. Villiers' Motion was that it was not carried. On the contrary, it was defeated by eighty votes, which was a larger majority than that of Conservatives and Peelites over Liberals, and even of any combination of Liberals with Peelites. Mr. Gladstone himself voted against it. It was defeated, and there was substituted the Resolution which was moved by Lord Palmerston, accepted by Mr. Disraeli and supported by Mr. Gladstone, and which purposely omitted the words "wise, just and beneficial" which the Villier's Motion had applied to the measures known as Corn Law Repeal. Further, by the use of the word "mainly" in a subsequent sentence it purposely refused to recognise unrestricted competition as the sole cause of the improved state of the country, and implied the belief that there were other contributing causes. He might mention also that three days were considered not too much to give to the debate on the subject; and yet they were now told that two days were too much to give to such a subject at this period of the session. On the other hand, in the present case they were given to understand that nothing was more free from doubt than the fiscal views of the Parliament of 1906. They saw for themselves that there were certainly no evasions and nothing disrespectful to the House of Commons in any part of the Speech His Majesty had been advised to deliver. They saw also that the Motion was really moved for the purpose of showing how large a majority the present Ministry commanded in the House, and of course it was not moved as a vote of censure on the Government, but was moved by a much honoured supporter of theirs; it was moved at the instance of the Ministers themselves. These things by themselves marked a good deal of difference between the two cases. But there was something more to which he would ask the attention of the House, something connected more closely with the Amendment which he had to move. Mr. Villiers, when he drew up his Motion, did not by any parenthetical or participial recitals seek to attribute any particular interpretation to the verdict then recently given by the electors of the country. Unlike Mr. Villiers, the hon. Baronet started by postulating that the electors had said a certain thing. He doubted whether the hon. Baronet was better advised than Mr. Villiers in making his preliminary assumption. Mr. Villiers was well advised in not asking the House to do more than to say something for itself, but the hon. Baronet asked the House to say that somebody else had said something. Surely anyone could see that what the electors had said could not be affected by anything that the hon. Baronet might move, or that, after the event, this House might resolve. Thus the hon. Baronet had put in the forefront of his Motion that which clearly distinguished it from that of Mr. Villiers. Those for whom he was speaking not only held that his objectionable recital ought not to have been propounded to them at all, but they objected to being asked, even in a subordinate sentence, to affirm its truth. They found it a very disputable thing to affirm either that the electors did say any one thing as to fiscal policy, or that that one thing was describable by the term free trade. In spite of his dubious preamble, there was, nevertheless, evidence that the hon. Baronet had been aided by some artful advisers in the framing of his Motion, at least as regarded its later and more strictly operative part. Desiring to reduce as much as possible the number of dissentients, he had carefully limited the class of proposals that he asked the House to condemn. He did not condemn all general tariffs, nor yet all taxation of corn; but only such general tariffs and such taxation of corn as were to be the means of "creating in this country a system of protection." So far, the hon. Baronet might have had a chance of carrying with him those Members who might favour a small duty on foreign corn as a means, not to protection, but to some other end. But he had gone further, and had sought to commit the House to a question-begging paragraph, both as to what the late elections meant and as to what free trade meant. Now, though he might agree with the hon. Baronet in condemning measures designed to create in this country a system of protection, he, for one, was not going to be thereby, swept into his net along with those who were ready to swallow this ingenious and unhistorical recital. He called it an unhistorical recital for many reasons, but chiefly because he considered that besides free trade and fiscal policy, there were many contributing causes to the result of the late elections. He should like to ask any gentleman who returned now to his constituents what sort of a reception he would get if he were to say that his appeals in reference to "slavery" in regard to the employment of the yellow man in the mines in South Africa had nothing to do with his success. They all knew that in the late election there was enlisted upon the side of Ministerial candidates that extremely powerful force which was best described as fully mobilised political nonconformists upon the war path. They had those earnest, almost fanatical, men working their hardest for them in the cause of education and possibly also of temperance. The men we knew, the cause we knew, but the tools were Chinese labour, trade disputes, even the Post Office Vote, expenditure, inefficiency, and some rash promises of economy. He did not speak without some texts. There were some very distinguished Gentlemen sitting opposite who took up the position that these were contributing causes. The Minister of Education at Halifax, on February 10th, said that in the election— Education formed the fiercest battle cry. Again, the same right hon. Gentleman, who had had so much to do with the education of the electorate, said that no one seems to hare realised the extraordinary unpopularity in all parts of the country of the introduction of labour from the Far East into one of our Colonies. Then in the second place, there was the fiscal question. Thank Heaven they would not talk about the fiscal question in the new Parliament. Then there was the Financial Secretary to the Treasury, speaking at Six Bells, on January 25th;he said— The country was declaring with no uncertain voice in favour of cheap food, against the Education Act, the Licensing Act, and Chinese labour, and in favour of efficiency of administration and economy in expenditure. The Member for Huddersfield, a representative private Member much trusted by His Majesty's Ministers, attributed the result primarily to reckless and wasteful expenditure, and, secondly, to free trade. Then he came to the hon. and learned Gentleman the Solicitor-General. He said, at Cambridge, on February 8th, that if the Liberal Party had any mandate it was that the question of Chinese labour should be justly and faithfully dealt with. Lastly, he came to the chairman of the Labour Party, the hon. Member for Merthyr Tydvil, who, in a moment of rather natural disappointment after a deputation to the new Ministers, said that— Probably not 10 per cent. of the Liberal Members won their seats without making more or less definite promises in regard to old-age-pensions. Then there was the general depravity theory. The Under-Secretary for India had expressed it, and the Prime Minister seemed to have been possessed by the idea. He said— The swing of the pendulum, they say! Why, it was a revolt. It was a great uprising against a doctrine. The general depravity of the late Ministry.


Did I use the word "depravity"?


No. It is my descriptive term, to which I adhere. Proceeding, he said the right hon. Gentleman said— It was a great uprising against a practice in public life, a method of government abhorrent to the conscience and the heart of the nation. He thought that was rather more than depravity.




Different and worse. Then, he continued, the right hon. Gentleman said— As a by-product of the general election we have given protection its quietus for the time, at all events. Even if they had none of these causes, they would still have had the striking fact that in many places—he ought to say most places—the only arguments used as to fiscal policy by opponents of fiscal reform were really arguments against a fiscal policy that no one had proposed at all. In most, possibly in all places, the only thing that he could say for sure as to the local verdict on fiscal matters was that the people were frightened at the prospect of dear bread, and registered at the poll their determination not to be carried back to the "starving forties." To say that they did not want to go back to the "starving forties," is not the same thing as saying that they would never change any, even the smallest, detail in our fiscal system. Still less could they say that to cling to our present system, and to refuse to lift a finger to untax our exports, was to advocate free trade. Our present system was not free trade. Hon. Gentlemen opposite when they described themselves as free traders misdescribed themselves. It was very difficult to find a simple phrase to describe a lop-sided thing, and he would defy any man to find any description, if it were true and exhaustive, in shorter words than "unreciprocated free imports." Thus it was that the preamble drove away from the hon. Baronet's respectable and even unexceptionable operative words about "creating a system of protection," adherents who might have been attracted. But there was a further reason why he wished to relieve the hon. Baronet of the embarrassment that he had created for himself. His preamble prejudiced the position and tied the hands of the Ministry in whose interest he was moving. In the election of 1900, and afterward, they were told that because South African affairs were the chief issue they were also the only issue, and that they were thereby debarred from embarking on legislative enterprise almost of any kind, and certainly of the kind that touched such things as education, help to church schools, temperance, and fair play to traders not guilty of any offence. That was what was said by supporters of the present Ministry about the electoral verdict of that day, and he would warn hon. Gentlemen opposite to be careful lest the anti-Unionist reasoning of 1900 was applied to them. They were setting up that fiscal reform was the chief issue at the late election, and it might be argued that it was the only issue. It was in any case not a very progressive ideal, this watching over the immovability of idols. Vigilance might be a great virtue, but vigilance to prevent any, even the smallest change, was not exactly salvation. If these Thibetan or Llama-like duties were to be said to be their chief functions, let him warn them, lest by the anti-Unionist reasoning of 1900 they came to be called also their only functions, lest their education, local option, trade union reform, liberationist and disunionist policies, and all the "isms" and fads for which they claimed popular authority, turned out to be not only the less-wanted policies of sections and mere minorities, but even the not-at-all wanted policies, and disliked really by the people at large. With due respect to the hon. Baronet opposite, he had ventured to put down the Amendment in the hope of doing him a service. He moved it for the purpose of correcting his deviation from precedent, of helping him towards greater unanimity in the reception of his proposals, of removing a needless embarrassment from the path of the Ministers in whose following he held so distinguished and trusted a place, and, possibly, of doing thereby something to save the time of the House. He begged to move.

Amendment proposed— In line 1, to leave out from the word 'House,' to the word 'deems,' in line 4."—(Mr. Stuart Worthy.)

Question proposed, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Question."

MR. PAUL (Northampton)

said the right hon. Gentleman's speech was not less interesting or ingenious than his Amendment. Although the Amendment did not object to condemning protection, it did object to praising free trade. The right hon. Gentleman's speech, on the success of which he congratulated him, was a highly skilful attempt to steer clear through the channel of no meaning between the Scylla and Charybdis of aye and no. He was painfully unconscious of his inability to speak on this subject with the qualifications of his hon. friend the Member for the Colne Valley, for he was not a man of business. He had indeed one negative qualification which would go far to redeem himself, if he were not past redemption in the eyes of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for West Birmingham. He was not, except by a legal fiction, a lawyer. He might be asked why he took part in that debate. He was peculiarly situated. It had been stated that a great many questions were submitted to the constituencies at the general election. However, the gentlemen of the Conservative persuasion who opposed him and his hon. colleague at Northampton fought on tariff reform, and that alone. There were also two candidates of the school of the hon. Member for Blackburn, there were six of them in all. Perhaps hon. Members opposite would say the scum always rose to the top. At all events, there he was, perhaps the worst representative of bald Cobdenism in its least attractive form which the House possessed. He comforted himself with the reflection that arguments were equally good, whoever used them, and that this House would give them a patient hearing from whatever quarter they proceeded. There was one argument—the numerical argument—which he would not use. It was not very logical or very well bred to say "we are more than you." Majorities were not infallible or everlasting. If the sentiment conveyed to the minds of hon. Gentlemen on the Opposition side any information which they did not previously possess, he made them heartily welcome to it. He had an incorrigible sympathy with minorities. He belonged to a small, harassed, ostracised minority, whose very existence was described as an intolerable strain upon the feelings of our fellow countrymen. He was one of those people still called in the idiom of an aristocratic centre as Pro-Boers. Englishmen never knew when they were beaten, therefore they were never beaten at all, and he was ready to believe that when tariff reform had been buried in the grave of bimetallism the Conservative Party would again be a great power in the land. He had no sympathy with recent attempts to improve the Sermon on the Mount. He stood in humble reverence by the original version, and he doubted whether it was a standard which they had any right to apply in this House.

MR. LAMBTON (Durham, S.E.)

I wish to ask, Mr. Speaker, is the hon. Gentleman speaking to the Amendment?


I see no reason to interfere.


said that they of the rank and file who lived in the world had better keep these sacred maxims not for condemning or judging others but for judging and condemning themselves. For a purely mundane reason he doubted the adaptability of the golden rule. He was not at all sure that it would be for our advantage that other countries should adopt the principle of free trade. Some of the principal manufacturers in Northampton had told him that it was free trade and free trade alone which would enable them to drive the American boot out of the market. He asked what would happen if the United States adopted free trade with all the world. Well, they were Englishmen, and would not admit that they would be beaten; but they said that the struggle would be very fierce, profits would be diminished, hours of labour lengthened, and wages decreased. Cobden had been called a false prophet. He believed there had not been a true prophet since the days of Cassandra, who was in the first place an avowed pessimist, and in the second place an inspired female. He yielded to none in his ignorance of the future, but it seemed strange to him that for one who could tell him what happened fifty years ago there were ten who would tell him what would happen fifty years hence. But Cobden did rest his policy not upon prophecy, but upon reason and experience. He spoke with diffidence, because the Secretary of State for India was not present to confirm what he said, but his belief was that Mr. Cobden desired that other countries should adopt free trade, not for the sake of this country, but for the sake of their own. Cobden was called an international man. He was not only a sincere patriot; he was an ardent philanthropist. So was Mr. Gladstone. He believed Mr. Gladstone considered it positively wrong, absolutely sinful, that we should derive advantage from the foolish system of bounties upon sugar given by foreign Governments, without remonstrating and expostulating with them on the error of their ways.


I would remind the hon. Gentleman that the Amendment having been moved, the debate must be now restricted to a discussion of what occurred at the last general election.


said he would implicitly obey the ruling, but he was trying to prove that what determined the general election was free trade, and he thought he might be allowed for that purpose to show in what sense he used a term variously interpreted by different persons. According to his understanding of it, the Sugar Convention had prevented us from enjoying one of the great advantages of free trade, which was to profit by the economic errors of our neighbours, and he could not rise to the level of Mr. Gladstone and Mr. Cobden. He thought we were sensible in taking what we could get by the follies of other countries, and that we were very foolish to deprive ourselves by the Convention of such advantages. Cobden always laid great stress upon foreign nations following our example, but he (Mr. Paul) never did. He always said that if free trade was a good thing for God's sake let us keep it to ourselves. Mr. Villiers knew that free trade in the explicit language of economic science meant a tariff for revenue only, a policy necessarily one-sided, an English policy adopted by Englishmen for the benefit of England, and without regard to the necessities or circumstances of any other country upon earth. When he heard the ingenious speech of the hon. Member for the City of London last night, and when he read with the greatest intellectual pleasure his complicated, elaborate, and sophisticated proofs that protectionists had never understood the meaning of protection and that free traders had never understood the meaning of free trade, his wandering fancy strayed to the convivial orator who began, and he supposed ended, his speech after dinner with the words— I perceive that this company is drunk. He wished to congratulate the Leader of the Opposition upon his return, for he had grateful recollections of his personal kindness when he had the honour of sitting in this House many years ago. The right hon. Gentleman the Member for West Birmingham had a famous formula which played a great part in the election, and it was— We have not free trade, we have only free imports. That was, he believed, what was called an epigram, and it was very witty and brilliant, but it contained two misstatements. We had a free trade tariff for revenue, but we had not free imports. Tea, sugar, tobacco and wine were taxed. Did the right hon. Gentlemen the Member for West Birmingham drink foreign wine? Did he smoke British cigars? Did he think, like Mr. Seddon, that the gold with which they paid foreign countries was produced in this country? A good deal was said in the course of the debate on the Address about placards and posters, but physical infirmities had made him inaccessible to the charms of mural literature. He did think, however, that he could see a picture, and he had carefully studied all the political cartoons in the windows of Northampton, not for identification but for artistic criticism, with the result that he walked with cheerful confidence into the wrong Committee room, totally unable to distinguish any difference between the advertised pictorial policy of the Free Trade League, the Tariff Reform League, and the Social Democratic Federation. He was received with boisterous enthusiasm as the biggest fool out, but he was afterwards told that he was the biggest fool in. Then "there was the pinch of hunger" argument Sometimes he regretted that the Prime Minister gave authority to that statement about there being 13,000,000 people suffering from hunger, because it rested upon insufficient evidence. It rested upon the examination made in the cathedral City of York, and it appeared in an election book published by the Rowntrees. He thought it was exceedingly rash to make such very large deductions from it as had been made by the right hon. Gentleman. But whether the Prime Minister was right or wrong, he had never been allowed to forget that admission. Free trade was not a panacea; it would not prevent death; it would not cure the toothache; and it had no direct influence upon that portion of our industry that was confined within the limits of our United Kingdom. Tariffs had no direct influence upon home trade. [OPPOSITION cries of " Oh, oh."] He was aware that the hon. Member for Central Sheffield contended that foreign tariffs had a great influence upon foreign trades, but that was quite another matter. They had heard from the President of the Local Government Board that the most depressed trade of all was the building trade, with which foreign tariffs had nothing whatever to do. Foreign trade was, of course, affected by tariffs. Two of the issues which were brought most prominently before the country at the last election were retaliation and preference. The retaliationist was like Falstaff, not only witty in himself, but the cause of wit in other men. Retaliation had been described by the Home Secretary as a weapon with a blunt point and a sharp handle. Retaliation drove even Mr. Gladstone into humour, because he said that the doctrine of the retaliationists was that " because a man smites you on one cheek you are to smite yourself on the other." What was preference? Preference was taxing the people of this country for the benefit of colonial manufacturers. What was this country going to get out of it? Their colonial fellow-subjects were frank and straightforward as they were loyal and patriotic, and they did not profess that they would lower their duties on British goods, although they said that they would raise their duties upon foreign goods. He often thought that an abstract argument was none the worse for a homely illustration. When he was first in Rome there had been some little difference of opinion between His Holiness the Pope and His Majesty the King. The result was that a notice was posted that the Vatican galleries were closed to the public, and especially to officers of the Italian Army. The House would observe that not being an Italian officer he was the subject of a preference, but he could not make out what benefit the special exclusion of Italian officers was to him. Any words he could use would be inadequate to express his sense of the consideration which he had received from hon. Gentlemen opposite while stating his opinions. He presumed it must be because they believed in the sincerity of his convictions just as he believed in the sincerity of theirs. A great man, the latchet of whose shoe he was unworthy to loose, did not shrink from elucidating truth by analogy and even by inuendo. There was an old Horatian tag which the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Dover knew well. Ah! these tags. The clever boy scanned and construed them and thought what a sharp fellow he was. The dull boy boldly maintained that the ancients could not talk sense, and wanted to know why he should be required to learn such stuff. When the boy left college he put away Homer and Theocritus, Horace and Virgil, hoping that he would never open them again; he adopted the popular superstition that Greek and Latin were dead languages, but it would not do. He had been in Arcadia, and some day or other when enjoying or enduring the experiences of life, and when he had gained some knowledge of the world, there came back to him, as in a flash of revelation, some phrase, some line, some part of a line, which he never fully understood before, and then he knew why it had survived the fall of empires and the wreck of creeds. His tag was a very simple one—Ridentem dicere verum quid vetat. So said a wise Roman poet more that 1900 years ago. So, perhaps, a humble politician, Divisus toto arbe Brittannus might venture on his own behalf to plead before this House to-day.

SIR FRANCIS LOWE (Birmingham, Edgbaston)

said they had all no doubt been greatly interested in the personal reminiscences and anecdotal history of the hon. Member for Northampton, but he could not see that he (the hon. Member) had contributed very much to the illumination of the question now before the House. The hon. Member had said, speaking in the House a few nights ago, that the seven Members for Birmingham were returned against sense, but he thought the electors of Northampton must be the senseless people, because the hon. Member now said that they had returned him as an opponent of tariff reform, whereas everybody knew that the staple industry of Northampton, was the manufacture of boots and shoes, and it was obvious that they should have some protection against the unfair competition of Americans who were constantly flooding our markets with cheap boots and shoes. It had been demonstrated over and over again in the course of this debate that the statements in the Resolution moved by the hon. Member for the Colne Valley Division were not only inaccurate and misleading, but that most of them were capable of several interpretations. In supporting the Amendment he could not expect to gain much sympathy from hon. Gentlemen opposite, because the attitude they had adopted towards this question during the election was just as severe and uncompromising as that which they took up with regard to Chinese labour, and they showed by their conduct that if any lay figure, even one of their own Chinese coolies in manacles, were dressed up and called free trade, they would vote in favour of it. Since the election, however, hon. Members opposite had somewhat altered their opinion with regard to the question of Chinese labour, and they had compromised with themselves upon that matter, might it not be hoped that they would do the same with regard to free trade? Now that the election was over and there was no further necessity for them to make Party capital out of it, he asked them to banish from their minds, if for one night only, the merely Party aspect of this question. The Members of the Opposition distinctly stated at nearly every meeting they addressed during the elections that they were in favour of free trade and opposed to protection; and therefore for hon. Members opposite to state—had been stating for the last two years and as they wished to affirm in the Resolution—that they desired to abolish free trade and set up a system of protectection showed at all events one thing if it shows nothing more serious and regrettable, namely, that there was a misunderstanding either real or assumed as to the meaning which ought to be attached to these somewhat high sounding phrases. If they were to engage in an argument on any subject with any chance of coming to a just and sound conclusion, it was essential to have a clear definition of the terms to be used. But that was exactly what they had never had with regard to the much-vexed question of tariff reform, or with regard to this Resolution. The result had been that hon. Gentlemen opposite had used the term free trade in a sense in which they had no right to use it and which did not at all accurately represent the system of trade which existed in this country. In the first place, they said that our present system of trade, erroneously called free trade, did not allow us to put any taxes on goods imported from abroad, and that it was especially subversive of that system to put a tax upon any articles of food. But the Leader of the Opposition brought forward several instances yesterday to show that we did already put taxes on a great many articles imported from abroad.


The hon. Gentleman is discussing another question from that raised by the Amendment. He must try to confine himself to the preamble of the Resolution.


said he was endeavouring to show the sense in which the expression free trade was used during the late election. He was going to try to show that the wording of the Resolution was not accurate. We were at present raising as much as £15,000,000 a year by taxation on imported articles of food alone. He would give two illustrations. Leaving out of account the assistance which foreign manufacturers might receive in the way of bounties everybody knew that they had a much larger free market in which to dispose of their goods without having to pay duty upon them which we had to do, and consequently they were able to produce a much larger quantity of goods than they required for their own consumption, and to sell off their surplus production in our markets, amongst others, at considerably below cost price. It might be a great advantage to us to be able to buy these goods cheap so long as it lasted; but it did not, as a rule, last very long; and, as soon as these foreign traders got control of our markets and secured a monopoly, the prices were immediately raised. On the other hand, it might be a great disadvantage to us for our trades to be ruined, and working men thrown out of employment by this unfair competition from abroad. Whichever way it was taken, it was an entire misnomer to call it free trade according to the definition of the political economists. His second example was this, if our traders and manufacturers were to dispose of their goods in foreign markets at a remunerative price, they must charge a price which would not only recoup them for their outlay and yield them a fair percentage of profit, but they must, in addition, charge a further sum to defray the heavy duties, sometimes amounting to 100 or 150 per cent. which they were forced to pay before they could gain admission to these markets. He would not now discuss the question as to the extent to which the producer or the consumer was called upon to bear the burden of these duties. Hon. Gentlemen opposite said that in the case of the export duty on coal it was the producer who paid, but when it suited their purpose they alleged that it was the consumer who had to bear this burden. But his point was that whoever had to bear the burden of this duty it meant that the price of goods was artificially raised, and, therefore, they were not interchanged at their natural and legitimate price, and their interchange could form no part of a system of free trade properly so called. Therefore, he maintained that if the electors at the last election demonstrated their unqualified fidelity to the principles of free trade, they declared themselves in favour of an alteration rather than an adhesion to the present position. And the jury of public opinion having been misdirected as to what free trade really was, they were entitled to ask for a new trial. Then they were asked to resist any proposal, whether by way of taxation on foreign corn or a general tariff on foreign foods, which would tend to set up or create a system of protection in this country. But would it not be as well to wait before taking that course until some one had really proposed that we should put protective duties on foreign corn or foreign goods. Here again they came to a question of definitions, and it entirely depended upon what was meant by protective duties. He had heard many speeches and had read many papers and pamphlets on this subject of tariff reform, but he had never heard or read of any one, except his hon. and gallant friend the Member for Central Sheffield, advocating the imposition of protective duties on these foreign commodities. Like the hon. Member for the Walton Division of Liverpool, he confessed himself to be an unrepentant tariff reformer, and tariff reformers thought that a more equal system of trade with foreign countries should be brought about and that we should have a closer commercial union with the Colonies. If in order to accomplish these ends, which all must admit were most desirable in themselves, it should be found to be necessary to make use of either temporary retaliatory duties or permanent revenue duties, they should not allow any old-fashioned prejudices to stand in the way of their doing so. He would like to ask hon. Gentlemen opposite if, in their opinion, these temporary retaliatory duties, or permanent revenue duties could be described—


The hon. Member is anticipating an Amendment on the Paper. The only question now under discussion is what was the action at the last election?


said that he was endeavouring to put forth the view of tariff reformers at the last election; and if he could show that that view was different from that which was held by hon. Gentlemen opposite, then a different opinion ought to be accepted as to the verdict passed at the general election. If hon. Gentlemen would refer to Adam Smith and other great authorities on political economy, they would find it laid down that neither retaliatory nor revenue duties could be properly described as protective. Take for instance the case of the 2s. registration duty on corn which had been proposed. He should like to ask whether that was a protective duty; and if it was a protective duty, whom did it protect? [An HON. MEMBER on the LABOUR Benches: The landlords.] Hon. Members opposite might say that it would not stop there; that it would be gradually raised until it became protective. That was the old argument of the thin edge of the wedge, and would prevent any necessary reform being carried into effect. What he said was— Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof. Then as to the question of a general tariff, the only general tariff he had ever heard of was a 10 per cent. duty on foreign manufactured articles; and he was not at all sure whether that was at present more than a tentative suggestion. But assuming that it was part of the scheme of tariff reform contemplated, could it be called a protective duty? In his opinion it could not be a protection against the surplus stocks of foreign-made goods which were constantly being dumped down in our markets and sold at less than cost price. On the other hand, it would be a very desirable and useful means of broadening the basis of taxation at a time when increased sources of revenue were urgently needed to meet the growing demands upon our national expenditure, and would cause the foreigner to have to do at all events something in the direction of contributing towards the upkeep of our country and the expenses of our Government. It was well known that at the present time our manufacturers had, at a moderate computation, to pay something like 10 per cent. on the cost of the articles they produced, in the shape of rates and taxes, from which the foreigners who used our markets were entirely exempt.


The hon. Member is not dealing with the Amendment but with the main Question.


said he would only say in conclusion that surely this imposition of a ten per cent. all-round tariff would be of great advantage to us.


I have already called the hon. Member to order three times, and I must ask him to discontinue his speech.

MR. HOUSTON (Liverpool, West Toxteth)

said he should endeavour to show that at least a portion of the people of this country had not demonstrated their unqualified fidelity to the principles of free trade. In Liverpool this was a burning question. Unlike the humorous and learned Member for Nottingham, he was a business man, and would endeavour to deal with this question from a business point of view. As this was a question of vital importance to the working classes of the country he would address himself more particularly to the hon. Members who sat below the gangway, and who were euphemistically described as Labour Members. Reminiscences, biography and autobiography had been indulged in in the course of debate, and per haps it might not be out of place if he followed the example of previous speakers He was intended for the Church, but not feeling any call in that direction, and with a view of carrying out his boyish ambition of becoming one of the great shipowners of England, he refused to go to Oxford, and served his apprenticeship as an engineer and shipbuilder. He was there fore in the same position as many hon. Gentlemen occupying positions below the gangway in claiming to be a working man. He was quite sure that during the four years of his apprenticeship he worked as hard as any man in the place. At the present moment he ran lines of steamers from the continent to the colonies and South America and from the United States to the same colonies and to South America, and he was enabled by the experience which that gave him to understand what free trade meant. He had not been dependent upon Blue-books for belated information upon what was taking place in connection with the trade of this country. He might perhaps be permitted to say that he was not a member of the Tariff Reform League, but he wanted our trade with our colonies and foreign countries to be maintained. Trades unionists were the strongest protectionists in this country, and believed in protecting their trades against foreign invasion and non-unionist labour. He endorsed the views of the trade unionist in protecting his trade. He had from the earliest days since he was an employer worked in harmony with trade unions. He had never had a strike of his workmen. If Labour Members desired to know his character as an employer he would refer them to his late opponent, Mr. James Sexton, who was a prominent member of the Trade Union Congress. Therefore, speaking in sympathy with the trade unionists, he should think that in the best interests of the workers of this country they would not think of "demonstrating their unqualified fidelity to the principles and practice of free trade," as the Motion proposed. He had business houses not only in London, and Liverpool, but in New York, Buenos Ayres, and Cape Town, and agencies in every important country in the world. He spent £10,000 a year upon cables, and he practically kept his finger on the pulse of the trade of the world. He was interested besides in the Australian and Indian trades, and ran lines of steamships between the continent and this country as well as to the colonies.


I do not see what that has to do with the Question.


said that he was trying to prove that so far as his constituents were concerned they had not demonstrated "their unqualified fidelity to the principles and the practice of free trade," for he had pointed out to them during the election the folly of free trade. Would he not be in order in doing so?


It depends upon the way in which the hon. Member does it.


said that so-called free trade must be injurious to this country; even the Duke of Devonshire the other day complained that orders for rails had left this country. In connection with the recent election, quite apart from free trade, many other questions were voted on, including that of Chinese labour. As far as the recent election was concerned, the electors of Liverpool had not "demonstrated their unqualified fidelity to the principles and practice of free trade." They did not do so in his division, or in any of the other divisions. In the Abercromby Division, the principal question voted upon was that of Chinese labour. In the Exchange Division the principal question was Home Rule.

MAJOR SEELY (Liverpool, Abercromby)

said that the leading paragraph in his address referred to free trade, but he attacked the policy of Chinese labour also.


said he quite accepted the hon. and gallant Member's statement, but would the hon. Member contradict him when he said that Chinese labour was a prominent and burning question in his constituency?




said in that case there was no need to dispute about it. In the East Toxteth Division the hon. Gentleman was returned more because of his pronounced Protestant principles than because of his free trade principles or his views on any other political question. The hon. Gentleman on one occasion said he was prepared to die for his religion. Lord George Gordon, the instigator of the "no popery" riots, also said he was prepared to die for his religion, but history recorded that before his death he became a convert to the Jewish religion and submitted to the surgical operation of the initial rite. In this House the hon. Member had expressed himself in a mild and temperate manner, but upon the platform he had been known to indulge in vitriolic vituperation of a late esteemed Member of the House, and if he were to repeat his words in the House he did not think they would commend themselves to the Ministerialists, and certainly not to Members on the Opposition side. In conclusion he could only say that a goodly proportion of the people of this country had not "demonstrated their unqualified fidelty to the principles and practice of free trade," nor did he think that the electors of Basingstoke did so. He felt that now that the "terminological inexactitude" with regard to Chinese labour had been disposed of—[MINISTERIALIST cries of "No"]—oh, but it had, on the admission of the Under-Secretary for the Colonies—now that it had been disposed of he believed that at any future bye-election which took place the country would not demonstrate in favour of free trade, but would do as Basingstoke had done.

Mr. SAMUEL ROBERTS (Sheffield, Ecclesall)

said he represented a city which had suffered very much from hostile tariffs. They returned five Members to this House, and three of them were pledged to tariff reform. He quite admitted, however, that the question of Chinese labour played a part in the election, and he himself was represented as a Chinaman with a pigtail. The hon. Baronet had said that in October last he came down and found them very busy and he thought they were very prosperous. That was quite true, because they were filling orders for the Government for armour plates of ships, in regard to which foreigners could not compete with them. They had not, however, so large a number of men now employed as they sometimes had. The hon. Baronet the Member for Colne Valley had referred to the iron and steel trades, and he (Mr. Roberts) wished to put before the House the arguments which he had put before his constituents. The hon. Baronet forgot, when referring to the prosperity of the iron and steel trade, to tell the House that whereas twenty-five years ago England was the head of the iron and steel trade, she now stood third in the race, if they took the consumption.


Order, order. I must ask the hon. Gentleman to read the Amendment and to consider it. The Question is whether or not at the general election the people of this country pronounced their opinion on free trade, unqualified or in any other manner. That is the only issue before the House.

MR. DAVID MACIVER (Liverpool, Kirkdale)

Are we not entitled to consider the Motion as it would read if this Amendment were carried?


No; the Question is whether this Amendment is to be made or not, then the Resolution can be discussed. Until this Amendment is disposed of the rest of the Resolution is not open to discussion.


said he thought he was entitled to allude to the injury done to the Sheffield cutlery trade by the action of foreign tariffs. If he was not allowed to enter into these questions it was difficult to make a speech at all. [A MINISTERIALIST: It is your own Amendment.] The hon. Member for Northampton spoke entirely on the question of free trade, and if they were not allowed to answer the arguments he brought forward, it did seem unfair [Cries of "Order"]—well it seemed a little bit inconsistent that they should not be allowed to put forward arguments infavour of tariff reform. If Mr. Speaker said he was not entitled to enter into the reasons which had made some of the industries of Sheffield suffer very severely from hostile tariffs he must bow to that ruling. He would raise the Question on an Amendment which he understood would be moved subsequently.


As the right hon. Gentleman has appealed to me I would say that the first part of the Resolution deals with the question of fact in the past and the second part as to policy in the future. The Question now before the House is, Did the people of this country or did they not at the last election pronounce finally a verdict upon the question of free trade? If the hon. Gentleman has any arguments that there were any other matters upon which the election was fought—that free trade was not a question to which they gave their unqualified fidelity—the House would be ready to listen to him. The Amendment raises a very narrow issue, and hon. Members must confine themselves to that. [An HON. MEMBER: Withdraw the Amendment and stop running away.]


said the Amendment was not his. But as to the late election he was quite satisfied with the verdict in his constituency. He won, although his majority was reduced. His colleague also won, and the hon. and gallant Member for Central Sheffield won with an increased majority. They, won the election in Sheffield on the question of tariff reform, because the workers in Sheffield, who had suffered severely from hostile tariffs, were satisfied that some reform must be made if we were to keep the industries and maintain full employment in this country. The House was aware of the increasing amount of manufactured goods we imported last year. We imported no less than £120,000,000 sterling worth of manufactured goods.


The hon. Gentleman is quite relevant in one sentence, but in the next he strays into paths of irrelevancy.


said he would not persevere with his arguments on that occasion. He hoped there would be another opportunity to bring them forward, and he also hoped that as their arguments were put before the country, the working men would come to see that tariff reform was the great cure for all their evils.

MR. STUART (Sunderland)

said he thought the best proof of the fact that the country expressed itself in favour of free trade was in the condition of Parties in the House. No one would deny that other questions influenced the electors, but the main question was undoubtedly free trade. Another matter that had had great effect on the electorate was their dissatisfaction with the attitude of the Leaders of the Party opposite, and their incapability of understanding what the Leader of the Party opposite meant. The electors were also dissatisfied with the way the Government had conducted the business of the House. Nobody supposed that free trade was a panacea for all the troubles of this country, but the people who advocated protection put it forward as the means of providing old-age pensions, of meeting the question of the unemployed, and of doing many other things. The questions that had been raised by the Labour Party which affected the working classes were going to be dealt with in this Parliament. In his own constituency free trade was advocated, because the people not only believed in free trade itself but believed that there was no antagonism between that question and social reform, and that the problems of social reform could be easier solved in an environment of free trade than in an environment of protection. He should therefore give his vote for the retention of these words in the Resolution, with the most perfect confidence that in the constituencies that he had seen, at any rate, the views, thoughts, and votes centred round the question of free trade.

COLONEL KENYON-SLANEY (Shropshire, Newport)

said that in the Motion they were now considering it was asserted that the people of the United Kingdom had demonstrated their unqualified fidelity in the principle of free trade. He objected to that, for it ought to be put that a majority of the people had demonstrated their unqualified fidelity. If that assertion in the Motion were true, it was equally true that the minority had demonstrated their unqualified opposition to free trade. He thought, therefore, that to make the matter clear they should insert the word "majority." There was a prevailing idea that the agricultural interest—which naturally, and by universal consent, was entitled to take a very keen personal interest in the issue between free trade and protection—as represented by the tenant farmer, had voted largely in favour of hon. Members on the Opposition side of the House, because they thought that the propositions put forward would benefit them by increasing the price of corn in this country. Anybody who thought that was entirely mistaken, for he did not think it was present at all in the minds of any large number of farmers and certainly not in the case of the more intelligent and thinking members of that class. On the contrary, as far as he was entitled to speak for them—and he thought he knew as much about them as most hon. Members of this House—he knew that the reason they adopted the course they did was not because they expected any benefit from a rise in the price of corn, but because they recognised in the policy of the Opposition the probability of an increased general prosperity, and it was because of the better markets which they expected would result from that prosperity that they supported fiscal reform. It was on those grounds, in his opinion, that the great mass of the agricultural community gave their votes to the Opposition. That contention had been largely maintained. The farmers had been charged with voting for the Conservative Party because they saw a possible rise in the price of their wheat. The farmers were sufficienly wide awake to recognise that the policy suggested from the Opposition side would have the effect of lowering rather than raising the price of corn Therefore he hoped that hon. Members on the Ministerial side, and the country, generally, would acquit the agricultural and farming interests of any such narrow-minded views, and recognise that they were looking to a wider issue on this question, and that it was in the general prosperity of the country that they expected to find their own legitimate advantage and chance of success.

MR. BERTRAM (Hertfordshire, Hitchin)

said he wished to say a few words of a more or less personal kind on the actual Question before the House. In common with a large number of hon. Members on the Ministerial side, he should have made no effort whatever to get a seat in the House of Commons but for the tariff reform question which was raised by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for West Birmingham in the year 1903. He felt sure that Liberal candidates would not have been so successful at the election but for the grave apprehension which was felt by practically all the poor people in the constituencies as to the danger and misfortune which awaited them if the tariff reformers succeeded at the polls. So far as the farmers were concerned, they almost universally supported the tariff reformers, not because they believed that a 2s. duty upon wheat would be a benefit to them, but because, although they expected no immediate advantage from the tax, they saw in it the beginning of a protective system, and that weighed very heavily with them. It had been said that the Ministerialists owed their seats to having pushed forward the question of Chinese labour. [OPPOSITION eries of "Slavery."] Yesterday was given up to a denunciation of Liberal candidates for putting forward this question, but surely it could not be contended that any tariff reformers voted for free traders because they were opposed to Chinese slavery, and that they gave up their great ideal in order to support people who were determined to remove the Chinese labourer from South Africa. Surely it could not be seriously contended that they on the Government side of the House did not represent the policy of free trade with which the original Motion dealt. He was afraid the right hon. Gentleman the Member for West Birmingham would be indignant at his suggestion, but he believed that the right hon. Gentleman was the political father of a great number of those who were now sitting on the Ministerial side of the House, because, but for the raising of the fiscal question which he had two years ago deliberately placed before the country, and which he and his newspapers and supporters had assiduously preached ever since, they would probably have made no effort to enter Parliament. It was therefore of the utmost importance that they should register upon the journals of this House those words which the right hon. Gentleman had suggested should be omitted; and when the time came to vote, he thought they would be practically unanimous against the Amendment.

MR. A. J. BALFOUR (City of London)

You have stated from the Chair, Sir, that the Amendment now before us is narrow in its scope. I need hardly say that I should be the last person in the House to minimise that declaration, and as far as I myself am concerned, and as far as I can speak for my hon. friends, there is no reason why there should be a prolonged discussion on this aspect of the Resolution; and when the Government have thought fit to treat us with that ordinary respect which Governments generally pay to their critics, and to make some reply to the Amendment which has been moved in so clear and able a speech—when they have thought fit to carry out that elementary duty of a Government, it may be an advantage that we should take a decision on the Amendment. May I point out to the hon. and learned Gentleman, who, I presume, as the only occupant of the Front Bench, is detailed to offer a reply on behalf of the Government—may I point out that these words which we desire to leave out are a perfectly gratuitous addition to a perfectly gratuitous Resolution? There is no conceivable reason why the Government should ever have brought forward the Resolution. They have brought forward a subject which took six days to discuss on the Address two years ago, six full days, morning and evening; and, not content with bringing forward a Resolution on the fiscal question which in their hands took six days to discuss two years ago, they have loaded that Resolution with an addition which does not strengthen it, which is, as we believe, untrue, and which, whether it be true or untrue, is undoubtedly debateable in the highest degree, and on which they have deliberately provoked every man in this House to show from his own electioneering experiences whether it is a fact or not that the verdict of the country was given on the fiscal question. But really the Gentlemen who have spoken from those benches, with the exception of the Gentleman who preceded me—whose speech was absolutely relevant, for he gave his own experiences—I do not see that Gentlemen on the other side have dealt with the topic before us at all. There has been a long, very interesting, and very discursive oration from the hon. Gentleman the Member for Northampton who told us a great deal about his biography and something about his constituency; but, so far as I remember, he told us nothing whatever which would enable us to make up our minds as to whether he is the elected champion of the constituency of Northampton because he is a free-trader, or whether there was some other natural and proper reason which would induce the constituency to vote for him. And what am I to say of another speech, that of the hon. Member for Sunderland? I listened to that speech with the greatest doubt as to which way the hon. Gentleman means to vote, because he told us that the motives which actuated his constituents were of a most mixed kind, and he did me the honour to explain that the most powerful motive which brought his friends into power was the general detestation of the British public of the speeches, the methods, and the policy which I individually and personally have pursued during the last ten years. That may be a good motive or a bad motive. It may show wisdom or folly on the part of those who held it. It may show a happy discrimination of political motives and an admirable and lucid judgment on political performances. But, whether it be good or bad, whether those descriptions are proper to apply to it or not, this at all events is certain, it is not the motive mentioned in the Resolution; and if the reason why hon. Gentlemen opposite are now enjoying, if that be the word, what are poetically but very falsely described as the sweets of office—if the reason is because of my deficiencies, my positive evil deeds, my shortcomings, then in the interests of truth cut out the words which we desire to cut out, and bring forward a separate Resolution explaining why it is that we are sitting on the left hand of the Speaker instead of the right, on which we shall be able to discuss my performances for ten years with great advantage to myself, the House, and, no doubt, the country as a whole. But is it not folly for a Government to put into a controversial Resolution a controversial parenthesis like the present, and is it not doubly foolish when their own men cannot get up and speak with regard to the reason why they were returned to this House without showing, as indeed everybody knows is the fact, that the motives that actuated the constituencies were of various kinds? Labour questions, personal questions, the demerits of the late Government, the transcendent but hitherto unexperienced merits of the present Government, and many other causes contributed to the great result. Very well, if that be true, at all events in this respect try and make your Resolution conform with facts. You have not been able, with regard to the fiscal aspect of it, either to answer the questions which I and other people have put on the subject as to its true meaning, or to make it clear, lucid, and explicit; but do not at all events, put in the absolutely gratuitous mis-statement to which we object. At all events perhaps the Government will feel that they have taken up quite enough public time by a wholly unnecessary controversy which they have dragged into the middle of their distribution of public business, and will diminish that controversy as far as they can by acceding to the Amendment, and allow us to get on to what I admit is far more interesting, inasmuch as it deals with the future as well as the past, the real discussion on the fiscal question. If so, I do not see why this portion of the debate should not finish with a speech from the hon. and learned Gentleman opposite and a division. I make this suggestion in the interests of progress and I hope it will be acceded to by the Government.


The suggestion which the right hon. Gentleman has just made is one that I am sure the House is very glad to hear. The progress of the debate on this Amendment has not been by any means servicable from any point of view, certainly not from the point of view of conserving and using carefully the time of the House. The Leader of the Opposition has not had the advantage of hearing the whole of the debate on this Amendment.


More than anybody on that bench.


If he had heard the whole of the debate, he would have been, I am afraid, almost pained to observe the difficulties which his followers felt in doing their best to follow out the strategical policy which the Amendment illustrates, and to take up as much time as could be taken up without transcending the rules of order so as to avoid any discussion on the main Resolution. His loyal followers, one after another, rising in obedience to some word of command [OPPOSITION Cries of "No" and "Withdraw"], proceeded to do their very best to deal with the Amendment, and they found themselves unable to utter, may I say, an orderly word on the subject on which they were supposed to speak. The Speaker, with the kindness which he always shows, gave every latitude; hon. Members were allowed to proceed in the hope that they would ultimately develop their point; but whenever they reached it, it was invariably discovered to be out of order. [Cries of "Oh" and "Are you in order?"] To proceed with the main Resolution is what we desire, and what we have been desiring for some time. There is very little indeed to answer in the speeches that have been delivered. I do not think I can pursue them without meeting with the same fate as the speakers themselves; I should inevitably be called to order at every point. There is perhaps one material point raised by the speakers opposite. It has been complained that the election was won upon some leaflets relating to Chinese labour. According to hon. Members opposite, the issue of free trade and protection was almost as irrelevant to the election as it is to this particular Amendment. The only thing apparently upon which the ignorant multitudes of the country were giving their votes was some leaflet or picture relating to Chinese labour in which Asiaties appeared in a suspicious attitude with their hands behind their backs, suggesting to the fervid imaginations of hon. Gentlemen opposite manacles and worse things besides. There is a very easy answer to the suggestion that those leaflets really affected the issue of the election. Do hon. Members opposite suggest that if the leaflets had not been issued, or if they had been issued in a different form, the election would have had a different result? [OPPOSITION cries of "Yes."] Let us see whether these leaflets did the mischief hon. Members suggest. The only fault I can find with them is that they fell far below any adequate portraiture of the true facts of the case. The picture ought to have been one of Chinamen, laid across the block and suffering the lash, Chinamen laid there by the hand of an English Governor.


I beg to ask you, Mr. Speaker, as you ruled that several Gentlemen were out of order who did not discuss the actual motives which produced the present majority on the other side of the House, whether the learned Solicitor-General is in order, whether he is not obstructing business by discussing the exact degree to which these outrages on Chinamen have or have not been perpetrated in South Africa.


The description of a picture or a placard which was not used at the general election is certainly irrelevant.


Let us examine exactly what the point of the Amendment is. We are not in this Amendment discussing free trade, or the merits of Chinese labour. We are discussing, according to the rule already laid down by you, Sir, whether or not free trade was the main and decisive subject at the election. It is suggested on the other side that free trade was not the decisive subject, but that it was Chinese labour, and that Chinese labour was made the decisive subject by means of misrepresentation which exaggerated the evils attaching to that form of industry. I have shown, and I submit with great respect that nothing can be more in order, that no such alleged misrepresentation could have had the effect supposed. Instead of it being an exaggeration it fell below the true state of things, and if a true picture had been presented it would not have altered the result, but would have been much more detrimental to the interests of hon. Members opposite. The right hon. Gentleman says that the words of which he complains are totally superfluous. I am not aware that any of the words referred to by the Amendment have met with strong rebuke, except the words, "unqualified fidelity," which were made the subject of a very witty observation by the hon. and learned Member for the Walton Division in a most brilliant, yet not, I think, luminous, speech. That criticism was material not so much to the general subject of the debate as to this very Amendment. The hon. and learned Member complained that he did not understand what the words "unqualified fidelity" meant. I advise him to put the same question in the same satirical tone in the domestic sphere. I imagine that in the home circle he would find that a philosophic attitude or Platonic deviations from unqualified fidelity were by no means welcome. We know perfectly well what the words mean, and I think the hon. and learned Member also was not unaware of their meaning. His speech, as I have said, was brilliant, but not luminous. It is not always the light that glitters, and, beyond the admirable jokes with which he diverted the House, what instance did he give us relating either to the main question or to the particular subject of this Amendment? As one listened to his speech, and, indeed, to many of the speeches from hon. Gentlemen opposite, one could not help thinking of a Shakespearian parallel. It was that of Falstaffs tavern bill. Hon. Members may remember that when Prince Henry finds Falstaffs reckoning, he reads out the items—Item No. 1, two gallons of sack, five shillings; item No. 2, bread, one halfpenny—and he goes on to observe— Here is an intolerable deal of sack to a very small quantity of bread. We have had, in these brilliant speeches, an intolerable deal of sack, and a very small quantity of fiscal bread. I entirely concur with the desire expressed by the Leader of the Opposition that we should pass from the Amendment, that we should now take a vote upon it, and proceed forthwith to deal with the main subject of the debate.

MR. KEIR HARDIE (Merthyr Tydvil)

said the terms of the Amendment made it imperative that those who fought the elections, not with free trade as the main issue, should make their position clear. When they were to be called upon to vote for or against the Amendment they did not desire their vote to be misinterpreted or misunderstood. In his own case and that of the bulk of his colleagues they accepted free trade as an existing fact, and their constituents in the main favoured it. They did not waste time discussing a point upon which they were agreed. Neither free trade nor protection was with them the main issue. They pointed out that in countries where protection obtained it had not brought any benefit which they could discover to the great bulk of the common people. They showed how in America and Germany—countries which were constantly being held up to us for imitation—despite the fiscal policy, the condition of the people was not a whit better than it was at home. They pointed out that in America, despite its system of high tariffs the condition of the worker was gradually worsening, and therefore they disposed of protection as being in any sense a remedy for the social evils which admittedly existed. But in like manner they pointed to the fact that sixty years of free trade in Great Britain had not solved the social and industrial problem. It must be admitted that whilst in America great cartels and trusts were accumulating under protection, in our own country under free trade great cartels were existing and great combines were being formed. He and his friends, therefore, reasoned that the distinct issue was what means should be taken to improve the condition of the people apart from what was to them the settled question of protection versus free trade. One point which most of them made was that whilst upholding free trade as applied to our trade and commerce, they discarded utterly, as every party in the country had discarded, the main body of the doctrine underlying the free trade movement. It was a quarter of a century since Mr. Gladstone was taunted in the House with having banished political economy to Saturn. From that day to this not only in Ireland, but in connection with the factory legislation and trade legislation of various kinds, they had abandoned the idea that the individual was free to do as he pleased with his own. That was an essential part of the doctrine underlying the free trade movement. He and his friends pointed out to their constituents that it was no longer safe to leave the individual free with the old free trade theory, that if each were left free to do as he pleased that each would find his proper place in society. They pointed out that the State had interfered to remove restrictions which the law had imposed on trade and commerce, but they claimed that there was now an equal duty on the State to impose restrictions upon those who by reason of ownership and the abuse of ownership of land and capital were imposing hardships on the great majority of the common people. They believed in free trade, but held that in itself it would not solve the problem of providing for the necessities of the aged poor. He was in this difficulty, that the Motion as drafted would commit them to vote for or against the assertion that free trade was the one issue before the country at the last election. He entered a caveat against time being given for this Motion when the Premier was first questioned on the subject. He repeated that to-night with increased emphasis. They had wasted a day and a half in discussing an issue which was a foregone conclusion. The time might have been profitably spent in redeeming some of those promises upon the strength of which the Government won so handsomely at the late election. But there was no mistaking the fact that free trade was one of the issues, and a prominent one, in the contests lately concluded. Whilst he and his friends would vote against the Amendment he wished it to be understood that by so doing they did not commit themselves to the statement that free trade was the issue on which they won their elections. It was an incident, but the great question which won the election was the condition of the people and the need for having a Party in the House which was tied neither to free trade nor to protection, but was free to use its power in any way necessary to bring about social reforms.

MR. HUNT (Shropshire, Ludlow)

said the hon. Member for Northampton did not appear to be able to say whether we had free trade or not. It seemed to him that free trade was quite a wrong name. We had not even free imports, because we were obliged to tax certain commodities.


The speech of the hon. Member is not relevant to the Amendment before the House.


said he was sorry if he had said anything which was not in order. He thought at all events he might be allowed to speak on the question of how Gentlemen opposite won the late election. The Solicitor-General had said that the question of Chinese labour had not much to do with it. He understood that the pictures of how Chinamen were alleged to be treated in South Africa were taker, for the purpose of being sent home to help the Radical cause at the election The only real cases of cruelty that they proved were got in that way. In his own constituency a picture was displayed showing a Chinaman chained round the neck. His opponent declared wherever he went that the Chinese in South Africa were slaves. He had not the slightest doubt that such representations had a great deal to do with the result of the elections throughout the country It was probably the most misleading political cry that had ever been used, and he hoped it would not be repeated in future. They had even gone as far as this, that a speech was made in one of the border towns of Wales, that if the people voted for him their children would be burned. He had been trying to disabuse the people in his constituency of these extraordinary inexactitudes which had been told them all over the country by Liberal canvassers—both ladies and gentlemen. These canvassers went into the cottages and said, "Do you know what a quarter is?" The reply was a quarter is a quarter of a cwt. or 28 lbs.; and then the canvassers said that the right hon. Gentleman the Member for West Birmingham was going to put a tax of 2s. a quarter on wheat which came into this country. That was in the local papers, and he did not think there was much doubt about it. His opponent at one of his meetings told the audience that the proposed tax on wheat would increase their cost of living in one family by 4s. 6d. per week. But the proposal of the right hon. Member for West Birmingham was to impose a tax of 2s. a quarter, which was 496 lbs., and a quarter would make at least 120 loaves.


The hon. Gentleman must come more closely to the subject matter of the Amendment.


said he was going to show the difference between the facts and the pictures of the Radical candidates which he had in his possession.


That is certainly not in order.


said he regretted that he could not tell the House what it was possible for a 2s. duty per quarter to bring about. The Opposition candidate in his division was running the big loaf for all it was worth; and he wanted to show that even supposing—which was most unlikely that the consumer paid the whole of the tax—


As I have already twice called the hon. Member to order for irrelevance, I must now direct him to resume his seat.

Question put.

The House divided:—Ayes, 445; Noes, 118. (Division List No. 12).

Abraham, William (Cork, N. E.) Chance, Frederick William Flavin, Michael Joseph
Acland, Francis Dyke Channing, Francis Allston Flynn, James Christopher
Agnew, George William Cheetham, John Frederick Foster, Rt. Hon. Sir Walter
Ainsworth, John Stirling Cherry, R. R. Fowler, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry
Alden, Percy Churchill, Winston Spencer Fuller, J. M. F.
Allen,A. Acland (Christchurch) Clancy, John Joseph Fullerton, Hugh
Allen, Charles P. (Gloucester) Clarke, C. Goddard (Peckham) Furness, Sir Christopher
Ambrose, Robert Cleland, J. W. Gardner, Col. A (Herefordsh. S.
Armitage, R. Clough, W. Gibb, James (Harrow)
Ashton, Thomas Gair Coats, Sir T. Glen (Renfrew, W.) Gilhooly, James
Asquith. Rt. Hn. Herbert Henry Cobbold, Felix Thornley Gill, A. H.
Astbury, John Meir Cogan, Denis J. Ginnell, L.
Atherley-Jones, L. Collins, Stephen (Lambeth) Gladstone. Rt. Hn. Herbert John
Baker, Sir John (Portsmouth) Collins, Sir W. J. (S. Pancras, W Glover, Thomas
Baker, Joseph A. (Finsbury, E. Cooper, G. J. Goddard, Daniel Ford
Balfour, Robert (Lanark) Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow) Gooch, George Peabody
Baring, Godfrey (Isle of Wight) Corbett, C. H. (Sussex, E. Grins'd Grant, Corrie
Barker, John Cornwall, Sir Edwin A. Greenwood, G. (Peterborough)
Barlow, John E. (Somerset) Cory, Clifford John Greenwood, Hamar (York)
Barlow, Percy (Bedford) Cotton, Sir H. J. S. Grey, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward
Barnard, E. B. Cowan, W. H. Grove, Archibald
Barnes, G. N. Cox, Harold Gulland, John W.
Barran, Rowland Hirst Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) Gurdon, Sir W. Brampton
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Crean, Eugene Haldane, Rt. Hon. Richard B.
Beale, W. P. Cremer, William Randal Hall, Frederick
Beauchamp, E. Crombie, John William Halpin, J.
Beaumont, Hubert (Eastbourne Crooks, William Hammond, John
Beaumont, W. C. B. (Hexham) Crosfield, A. H. Harcourt, Rt. Hon. Lewis
Beck, A. Cecil Crossley, William J. Hardie, J. Keir (Merthyr Tydvil)
Bellairs, Carlyon Cullinan, J. Hardy, George A. (Suffolk)
Benn, John Williams (Devonp't Dalmeny, Lord Harmsworth, Cecil B. (Worc'r)
Benn, W. (T'w'r Hamlets. S. Geo. Dalziel, James Henry Harmsworth, R. L. (Caithn'ss-sh)
Berridge, T. H. D. Davies, M. Vaughan-(Cardigan) Harrington, Timothy
Bertram, Julius Davies, Timothy (Fulham) Hart-Davies, T.
Bethell, J. H. (Essex, Romford) Delany, William Harvey, A. G. C. (Rochdale)
Bethell, T. R. (Essex, Maldon) Devlin, Charles Ramsay (Galway Harwood, George
Billson, Alfred Dewar, Arthur (Edinburgh, S.) Haslam, James (Derbyshire)
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Dickinson. W. H. (S. Pancras, N. Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth)
Black, Arthur W.(Bedfordshire Dickson-Poynder, Sir John P. Haworth, Arthur A.
Boland, John Dilke, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles Hazel, Dr. A. E.
Bolton, T. D. (Derbyshire. N. E. Dillon, John Hazleton, Richard
Bottomley, Horatio Dobson, Thomas W. Healy, Timothy Michael
Brace, William Dolan, Charles Joseph Hedges, A. Paget.
Branch, James Donelan, Captain A. Helme, Norval Watson
Brigg, John Duckworth, James Henderson, Arthur (Durham)
Broadhurst, Henry Duffy, William J. Henry, Charles S.
Brocklehurst, W. D. Duncan,C. (Barrow-in-Furness Herbert, Colonel Ivor (Mon., S.)
Brodie, H. C. Dunn, A. Edward (Camborne) Herbert, T. Arnold (Wycombe)
Brooke, Stopford Dunne, Major E. M. (Walsall) Higham, John Sharp
Brunner. J. F. L. (Lancs., Leigh) Edwards, Clement (Denbigh) Hobart, Sir Robert
Bryce, Rt. Hn. James (Aberdeen Edwards, Enoch (Hanley) Hobhouse, Charles E. H.
Bryce.J. A. (Inverness Burghs) Edwards, Frank (Radnor) Hodge, John
Buchanan, Thomas Ryburn Elibank, Master of Hogan, Michael
Buckmaster, Stanley O. Ellis, Rt. Hon. John Edward Holden, E. Hopkinson
Burke, E. Haviland- Erskine, David C. Holland, Sir William Henry
Burns, Rt. Hon. John Esmonde, Sir Thomas Hooper, A. G.
Burnyeat, J. D. W. Essex, R. W. Hope, John Deans (Fife, West)
Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Eve, Harry Trelawney Hope, W Bateman (Somerset, N
Buxton, Rt. Hn. Sydney Charles Everett, R. Lacey Horridge, Thomas Gardiner
Byles, William Pollard Faber, G. H. (Boston) Howard, Hon. Geoffrey
Cairns, Thomas Fenwick, Charles Hudson, Walter
Caldwell, James Ferens, T. R. Hutton, Alfred Eddison
Cameron, Robert Ferguson, R. C. Munro Hyde, Clarendon
Campbell-Bannerman, Sir H. Ffrench, Peter Idris, T. H. W.
Carr-Gomm, H. W. Field, William Illingworth, Percy H.
Causton, Rt. Hn. RichardKnight Fiennes, Hon. Eustace Jackson, R. S.
Cawley, Frederick Findlay, Alexander Jacoby, James Alfred
Johnson, John (Gateshead) Morrell, Philip Roe, Sir Thomas
Johnson, W. (Nuneaton) Morse, L. L. Rose, Charles Day
Jones, David Brynmor (Swans'a Morton, Alpheus Cleophas Rowlands, J.
Jones, Leif (Appleby) Murphy, John Runciman, Walter
Jones, William (Carnarvonshire Murray, James Rutherford, V. H. (Brentford)
Jowett, F. W. Myer, Horatio Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland
Joyce, Michael Napier, T. B. Samuel, S. M. (Whitechapel)
Kearley, Hudson E. Newnes, F. (Notts, Bassetlaw) Scarisbrick, T. T. L.
Kekewich, Sir George Newnes, Sir George (Swansea) Schwann, C. Duncan (Hyde)
Kelley, George D. Nicholls, George Schwann, Chas. E. (Manchester
Kennedy, Vincent Paul Nicholson, Charles N. (Doncas'r Scott, A. H. (Asthon under Lyne
Kilbride, Denis Nolan, Joseph Sears, J. E.
Kincaid-Smith, Captain Norman, Henry Seaverns, J. H.
King, Alfred John (Knutsford) Norton, Capt. Cecil William Seddon, J.
Kitson, Sir James Nussey, Thomas Willans Seely, Major J. B.
Laidlaw, Robert Nuttall, Harry Shackleton, David James
Lamb, Edmund G. (Leominster O'Brien, Kendal (Tipperary, Mid Shaw, Charles Edw. (Stafford)
Lamb, Ernest H. (Rochester) O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny) Shaw, Rt. Hn. T. (Hawick B.)
Lambert, George O'Brien, William (Cork) Sheehan, Daniel Daniel
Lamont, Norman O'Connor,James (Wicklow, W.) Sheehy, David
Law, Hugh Alexander O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.) Shipman, Dr. John G.
Lawson, Sir Wilfrid O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool) Silcock, Thomas Ball
Layland-Barratt, Francis O'Doherty, Philip Simon, John Allsebrook
Lea, Hugh Cecil (St. Pancras, E. O'Donnell, C. J. (Walworth) Sinclair, Rt. Hon. John
Leese, Sir Joseph F. (Accrington O'Dowd, John Smeaton, Donald Mackenzie
Lehmann, R. C. O'Grady, J. Smyth, Thomas (Leitrim, S.)
Lever, A. Levy (Essex, Harwich O'Kelly, Conor (Mayo, N.) Snowden, P.
Lever, W. H. (Cheshire, Wirral O'Kelly, James (Roscommon, N Soares, Ernest J.
Levy, Maurice O'Malley, William Spicer, Albert
Lewis, John Herbert O'Shaughnessy, P. J. Stanger, H. Y.
Lloyd-George, Rt. Hon. David Palmer, Sir Charles Mark Stanley, Hn. A. Lyulph (Chesh.)
Lough, Thomas Paul, Herbert Steadman, W. C.
Lundon, W. Paulton, James Mellor Stewart, Halley (Greenock)
Lupton, Arnold Pearce, William (Limehouse) Strachey, Sir Edward
Luttrell, Hugh Courteney Pearson, Sir Weetman D. Straus, B. S. (Mile End)
Lyell, Charles Henry Perks, Robert William Strauss, E. A. (Abingdon)
Lynch, H. B. Philipps, Col. Ivor (S'thampton) Stuart, James (Sunderland)
Macdonald, J. R. (Leicester) Philipps, J. Wynford (Pembroke Sullivan, Donal
Macdonald, J. M. (Falkirk B'ghs Philipps, Owen C. (Pembroke) Summerbell, T.
Mackarness, Frederic C. Pickersgill, Edward Hare Sutherland, J. E.
Maclean, Donald Pirie, Duncan V. Taylor, Austin (East Toxteth)
Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J. Power, Patrick Joseph Taylor, John W. (Durham)
MacNeill, John Gordon Swift Price, C. E. (Edinb'gh, Central) Taylor, Theodore C. (Radcliffe)
Macpherson, J. T. Price, Robert John (Norfolk, E.) Tennant, E. P. (Salisbury)
MacVeagh, Jeremiah (Down, S. Priestley, Arthur (Grantham) Tennant, H. J. (Berwickshire)
MacVeigh, Charles (Donegal, E.) Priestley, W. E. B. (Bradford, E. Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan,E.)
M'Arthur, William Radford, G. H. Thomas, David Alfred (Merthyr
M'Callum, John M. Rainy, A. Rolland Thompson, J. W. H (Somerset. E
M'Crae, George Raphael, Herbert H. Thorne, William
M'Kean, John Rea, Russell (Gloucester) Tillett, Louis John
M'Kenna, Reginald Rea, Walter Russell (Scarboro' Tomkinson, James
M'Laren, H. D. (Stafford, W.) Reddy, M. Torrance, A. M.
M'Micking, Major G. Redmond, John E. (Waterford) Toulmin, George
Maddison, Frederick Redmond, William (Clare) Trevelyan, Charles Philips
Mallet, Charles E. Rees, J. D. Verney, F. W.
Mansfield, Harry (Northants) Rendall, Athelstan Villiers, Ernest Amherst
Mansfield, H. Randall (Lincoln Renton, Major Leslie Vivian, Henry
Marks, G. Croydon (Launceston) Richards, T. F. (Wolverh'mp'n Wadsworth, J.
Marnham, F. J. Richardson, A. Waldron, Laurence Ambrose
Mason, A. E. W. (Coventry) Rickett, J. Compton Walker, H. De R. (Leicester)
Massie, J. Ridsdale, E. A. Wallace, Robert
Masterman, C. F. G. Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln) Walsh, Stephen
Meehan, Patrick A. Roberts, G. H. (Norwich) Walters, John Tudor
Menzies, Walter Roberts, John Bryn (Eifion) Walton, Sir John L. (Leeds, S.)
Micklem, Nathaniel Roberts, John H. (Deabighs) Walton, Joseph (Barnsley)
Molteno, Percy Alfred Robertson, Rt. Hn. E. (Dundee) Ward, John (Stoke upon Trent
Mond, A. Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside) Ward, W. Dudley (Southampt'n
Money, L. G. Chiozza Robertson, Sir G. Scott (Bradf'd Wardle, George J.
Montgomery, H. H. Robinson, S. Warner, Thomas Courtenay T.
Mooney, J. J. Robson, Sir William Snowdon Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan)
Morgan, G. Hay (Cornwall) Roche, Augustine (Cork) Wason, John Cathcart (Orkney)
Morley, Rt. Hon. John Roche, John (Galway, East) Waterlow, D. S.
Watt, H. Anderson Wilkie, Alexander Wilson, P. W. (St. Pancras, S.)
Weir, James Galloway Williams, J. (Glamorgan) Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)
Whitbread, Howard Williams, Osmond (Merioneth) Wood, T. M'Kinnon
White, George (Norfolk) Williams, W. L. (Carmarthen) Woodhouse, Sir J. T. (Hudders'd
White, Luke (York, E. R.) Williamson, A. (Elgin & Nairn) Young, Samuel
White, Patrick (Meath, North) Wills, Arthur Walters Yoxall, James Henry
White, J. D. (Dumbartonshire) Wilson, C. H. W. (Hull, W.)
Whitehead, Rowland Wilson, Henry J. (York, W. R.) TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—Mr. George Whiteley and Mr. J. A. Pease.
Whitley, J. H. (Halifax) Wilson, John (Durham, Mid)
Whittaker, Thomas Palmer Wilson, J. H. (Middlesbrough)
Wiles, Thomas Wilson, J. W. (Worcestersh. N.)
Anson, Sir William Reynell Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers- Mildmay, Francis Bingham
Anstruther-Gray, Major Du Cros, Harvey Morpeth, Viscount
Arkwright, John Stanhope Duncan, Robt. (Lanark, Govan Muntz, Sir Philip A.
Arnold-Forster. Rt. Hn. Hugh O Faber, George Denison (York) Nield, Herbert
Ashley, W. W. Fardell, Sir T. George O'Neill, Hon. Robert Torrens
Aubrey-Fletcher, Rt. Hn. Sir H. Fell, Arthur Parker, Sir Gilbert (Gravesend)
Balcarres, Lord Finch, Rt. Hon. George H. Parkes, Ebenezer
Baldwin, Alfred Fletcher, J. S. Pease. Herbert Pike (Darlington
Balfour, Rt. Hn. A. J. (City Lond.) Gardner, Ernest (Berks, East) Percy, Earl
Balfour, Capt. C. B. (Hornsey) Gibbs, G. A. (Bristol, West) Powell, Sir Francis Sharp
Banner, John S. Harmood- Gordon, J. (Londonderry, S.) Ratcliff, Major R. F.
Baring, Hon. Guy (Winchester) Gordon, Sir W. Evans-(T'r Ham. Rawlinson, John Frederick P.
Beach, Hn. Michael Hugh Hicks Haddock, George R. Remnant, James Farquharson
Beckett, Hon. Gervase Hambro, Charles Eric Roberts, S. (Sheffield. Ecclesall
Bowles, G. Stewart Hamilton, Marquess of Ropner, Colonel Sir Robert
Boyle, Sir Edward Hardy, Laurence (Kent, Ashf'd Rothschild, Hon. Lionel Walter
Bridgeman, W. Clive Harrison-Broadley, Col. H. B. Rutherford, W. W. (Liverpool)
Bull, Sir William James Hay, Hon. Claude George Sassoon, Sir Edward Albert
Burdett-Coutts, W. Heaton, John Henniker Sloan, Thomas Henry
Butcher, Samuel Henry Helmsley, Viscount Smith, Aber H. (Hertford, East)
Campbell, J. H. M. (Dublin Univ. Hervey, F. W. F.(Bury S. Edm's Smith, Hon. W. F. D. (Strand)
Carlile, E. Hildred Hill, Sir Clement (Shrewsbury) Starkey, John R.
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Hill, Henry Staveley (Staffs) Stone, Sir Benjamin
Castlereagh, Viscount Hills, J W. Talbot, Rt. Hn. J. G. (Oxf'd Univ
Cave, George Houston, Robert Paterson Thomson, W. Mitchell-(Lanark)
Cavendish, Rt. Hn.Victor C. W. Hunt, Rowland Thornton, Percy M.
Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Kennaway, Rt. Hn. Sir John H. Turnour, Viscount
Cecil, Lord J. P. J. (Stamford) Kenyon-Slaney, Rt. Hn. Col. W. Vincent. Col. Sir C. E. Howard
Cecil, Lord R. (Marylebone, E.) Kimber, Sir Henry Walrond, Hon. Lionel
Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. J. (Birm. Lambton, Hon. Frederick Wm. Williamson, G. H. (Worcester)
Chamberlain. Rt. Hn J. A. (Worc. Lee Arthur H. (Hants Fareham Willoughby de Eresby, Lord
Clarke, Sir Edward (City London Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage Wilson, A. Stanley (York, E. R.
Coates, E. Feetham (Lewisham Liddell, Henry Wortley,Rt.Hon. C. B. Stuart-
Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E. Lockwood. Rt. Hn. Lt.-Col. A. R. Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George
Courthope, G. Loyd Lonsdale, John Brownlee Younger, George
Craig, Charles Curtis (Antrim, S. Lowe, Sir Francis William
Craig, Captain James (Down, E. MacIver, David (Liverpool) TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—Sir Alexander Acland-Hood and Mr. Forster.
Craik, Sir Henry Magnus, Sir Philip
Cross, Alexander Marks, Harry Hananel (Kent)
Dalrymple, Viscount Mason, James F. (Windsor)
Dixon-Hartland, Sir Fred Dixon Meysey-Thompson, Major E. C.

Main Question again proposed.


said he rose to move to leave out from "proposal" to the end of Motion, and to insert "involving artificial protection against legitimate competition, but, with that reservation, is prepared to consider any scheme framed to secure more equal terms of competition for British trade and closer commercial union with the Colonies, or for purposes of revenue." He said that the House must see that it would be well advised to omit the latter part of the Resolution of the hon. Member for Colne Valley. Those words would entail three consequences. In the first place, the House would be bound from the present time until the next election not to create a system of protection either by a duty on foreign corn or by setting up a general tariff. In the next place, the House would be free in the same period to create a system of protection by any other method—for example, by imposing a tax on colonial corn, or by setting up a discriminating tariff. A general tariff meant a tariff operating equally against all other countries, and after the passing of this Resolution the Government would be precluded at any future time from putting on a general tax on luxuries and manufactures, but they would not be precluded from imposing such a tax, provided that it discriminated unfavourably against three or four nations. In the third place, the House would be free to impose a tax on foreign corn or to set up a general tariff if it were held that neither measure amounted to a system of protection; this was where the ambiguity of the Resolution came in. The President of the Board of Trade last night admitted in terms that a small tax on corn would not necessarily create a system of protection. He had been credibly informed by persons conversant with these matters that no duty less than 15s. a quarter on corn would have any protective effect, would bring into cultivation any greater area of wheat in this country. Therefore the shilling tax, once imposed by this House, or even a tax of two shillings, could not approach to setting up a system of protection. Did the present Indian tariff create a system of protection? The question threw a great deal of light on what was considered proper by orthodox political economists. The finances of India were ultimately under the control of the House of Commons. India had a tariff of 5 per cent. on a very large number of articles; but the tax on cotton was lowered against the wishes of India to 3½ per cent., and in that case only, in the sacred name of free trade, an Excise duty of exactly corresponding value was imposed. Very much the same condition of affairs was reproduced in Egypt. There there was a general tariff of 8 per cent.; but in the case of cotton alone it had been thought due to the sacred cause of free trade to place an Excise duty of 8 per cent. on the manufacture of cotton in Egypt. That was not protection, and therefore the House would be free to imitate the system which obtained in India and Egypt. The Prime Minister had said last night that this Resolution was quite intelligible, and in one sense it was. If it was read as he had read it, with the care demanded by that which had been obviously given to its composition, then it yielded the sense he had given. This House was bound not to create a protective system by these two means, but it was free to create a protective system by any other method, and free to adopt these methods if they did not create protection. There was one other sense in which this Resolution might be understood—that after the House had passed the Resolution the Government reserved to themselves the right to maintain the existing differentiation in the case of tobacco and cocoa, or to add new taxes to the list which were included in the present fiscal system. But if gentlemen on the Opposition side of the House were ever to advocate for purposes of revenue or any other purposes the imposition of taxes which deviated from the custom to which the country had become inured, they would be charged with a breach of faith. The Resolution left a great deal to be inferred. The electorate who read it would continue to think that any tax of a novel character—than any departure from the established habits of Budget-making which had obtained since Mr. Cobden's tariff—was a lapse into protection, and having been regaled with the pictures of the "big loaf" and having been instructed in accordance with historic methods, they understood that protection meant a recrudescence of those distressing circumstances which were described by Macaulay, though not by Emerson, as "the hungry forties." It was bad enough that the Opposition should be charged on no just ground with contemplating any policy which could reproduce the condition of "the hungry forties." But it was worse to be accused of a breach of faith simply for having departed from the routine of Budget-making. On these grounds he submitted that the words which he proposed to leave out should be omitted. But he proposed to substitute other words which would embody the views of the Opposition on many aspects of a very important problem. He and his friends repudiated any intention of bolstering up home industries against legitimate foreign competition, and without great discourtesy hon. Gentlemen opposite were not entitled to challenge the sincerity of that repudiation. They believed that these objects were expedient, and apprehended that they might become vital. They preferred to say so, in order that their language might not be open to misconception. There was a case for reconsidering the customary Budgets of the last forty or fifty years. Some, he knew, affected to believe that the only kind of Budget which they had had for many years was the concrete embodiment of scientific truths universally and eternally comparable only to the Principia of Newton, and also of moral obligations no less binding than those in the Decalogue. That was the view which had been studiously inculcated into the people of this country. The House, he knew, was always impatient of theory, hut when a theory of this kind in political economy was embodied in our present fiscal system, any departure from it was a breach of universal law, the old guard was brought up, practical considerations were shattered, and they were entitled to invite the House to listen to a few words on theory, at the peril, of course, of emptying the House. No political economist in recent years had ever alleged that the objects to which they were accustomed were the embodiment of these high canons or principles, or even that these principles were eternally true and universally applicable. Most of them were prudent enough to talk about English political economy. If he took a popular writer, Walter Bagehot, who tried to explain to Englishmen that these were not great scientific truths and moral laws, he should avoid, he hoped, being too theoretical. That writer declared that at the base of this view there lay the transferability of capital, and the transferability of labour, but when people wrote in that sense they did not contemplate the transfer of capital from this country to other countries. They did not contemplate that capital had been transferred to an amount which would almost daunt their imagination, for no less than £1,200,000,000 of English capital had been invested abroad in recent years, and a financier had told him that the official Return was well within the mark, and that £2,000,000,000 was nearer the sum. So long as capital was transferred from Ireland to England, so long as labour was transferred from Ireland to the United States, they watched the operation of these supposed eternal laws with the equanimity which became philosophers. But it did not end there. Those who dealt with the transferability of capital and labour contemplated still less that other countries, while accepting our capital in these enormous sums, would accept the best and reject the worst of our labour, would take the strong and healthy men, and return upon us the old men and the impoverished. They contemplated still less that other countries would reject the most highly finished products of labour. So long as our large cities were manned with cheap labour, so long as it was only a question of cheap food to keep that labour cheap every one was delighted; but now the markets of the world, like a monster lobster pot, accepted and retained all the best we had to give and refused and returned the worst upon our hands. There was another process at work. The same author declared that these so-called truths were not universally applicable, that they were not applicable to any country in which slavery existed. If it were true that the presence of real slavery in any country prevented the operation of these laws on which their practice was founded, then it was to a great extent true that the immigration of aliens, the importation into the country of goods which were "dumped" below their cost value, or goods produced by "white slaves," interfered also with the proper application of those principles to the conditions of life in this country. There used to be an elegant dining-room trick whereby one glass was filled with wine, and another glass with water; by the aid of a card the one glass was superimposed upon the other, and it was difficult to trace exactly what was going on; but the end of the trick was that the wine in one glass had gone into the other. Thus it was very hard to prove, nay, impossible to prove, by figures exactly what was going on now in this country. But he believed that the rejection by other countries of the worst men from the labour point of view, the rejection of the best products of labour from the labour point of view, and the gradual reabsorption of the worst form of labour and the worst products of labour had been something very like this dining-room trick. Was the existing system adequate to meet all the exigencies of the conditions under which we lived? It did not attain many of the objects which they, at any rate, believed to be desirable objects. They had been told that they could not do a number of things at the same time, that the same tax would not provide revenue and elicit better terms in foreign countries and give stability to the productions of the home markets, and that it could not at the same time assist in arriving at a closer union with the Colonies. The existing system, which they were warned on no account to touch or tamper with, did not attempt many of the changes—such as closer commercial union—that had been advocated, and it did not attain any of them in a manner satisfactory to any class in this country. Take the growing difficulties experienced in selling our goods in foreign markets. The present system did nothing to help us to get better terms for our goods in these foreign markets, and when complaint was made of this foreign treatment the people were told that it did not matter, because the volume of trade was so immense. They might examine that volume of trade and show that the best kind of trade went year after year more readily into the neutral markets of the world—such as China and Argentina—and went less readily into the great protective markets of the world. Because it went less readily the profit upon it was cut down. The manhood of a country could not live on the volume of trade; they must live on the profit of trade. Besides profit they had to consider security. It was necessary both to the employer and the working men that they should know whether they were likely to get a profit which would exist over a period of years. It was not worth while for the employer to put capital into a business, or for an artisan to train up his child to a skilled trade, unless each knew that for ten or a dozen years there was likely to be a return for the capital of the one, and the industry and skill of the other. The country, however, was given another solatium. It was told that there was the most-favoured-nation clause. There was very little consolation in that argument, which had been so frequently repeated throughout the country by the Chancellor of the Exchequer. How did it work with Russia? There was no duty on wheat in Russia; but though we were free to export our wheat, every one knew that there was precious little wheat grown by us that we could export. On the other hand, the duty on coal in Russia was almost incredible. It was 2s. on 36lb., and the duty on imported coal in the neighbourhood of the Black Sea, adjacent to Russia's own fuel fields, was 8s. per 36lb. He had addressed a number of meetings of working men, including miners, during the last few months, and he had always found them extremely sceptical that a duty of 1s. a ton at this end of the voyage was a grievous burden, when the same coal had to pay a tax of from 2s. to 8s. per 36lb. at the other end of the voyage.

MR. CAIRNS (Newcastle-on-Tyne)

But Russia pays the tax.


That opinion is not universally held by the working men.


But it is true all the same.


Nor is it laid down by the great pundits of political economy. What benefit did we get from the most-favoured-nation clause in other foreign protected markets? Lord Lansdowne's statement had never been disproved, wherein he showed that, under the old conventional tariff with Germany, out of a total trade of £33,700,000 relief was obtained in respect of only £87,620, and no relief was obtained under the most-favoured-nation clause in respect of £33,612,000. It was true that Lord Avebury had asserted the value of the most-favoured-nation clause, but its value had not been proved; whilst other authorities equally, perhaps more competent, had given their opinion that it had little or no effect. Upon this question of the most-favoured-nation clause he would quote the opinion of Sir Edward Law. After sketching the manner in which the most-favoured-nation clause worked, he concluded with these words— It simply results in an undertaking that cotton goods coming from England will not be taxed higher than if coming from some other country, it being perfectly well known that England is the only country from which they will be imported; it does not secure any favoured treatment of cotton goods. The real fact is that most-favoured-nation privileges constitute no guarantee against the common practice of showing less favour to British trade than to that of any other nation. He was asked to produce evidence and he supposed he would have to turn to the new conventional tariff agreed to by Germany. In respect to cotton yarns our trade with Germany was valued at £2,500,000 a year, £800,000 of which represented yarns above the figure in the new tariff at which there was an increased duty. The whole tendency of the new tariff was to militate mainly, and it would seem almost exclusively, against British industry. In regard to woollen manufactures, Germany bought goods valued on the average at £5,000,000 a year. The duties on articles of our manufacture had been almost uniformly increased. The duties were heaviest in respect of those classes in which there was the largest trade, while in respect of those in which the trade was relatively quite small there was a decrease of duty. What else could we expect? We positively invited this sort of treatment. The French had a saying that the absent are always wrong; and that was never more true than when we absented ourselves from conferences where other people were trying to deal with each other. We almost invited foreign nations to tax us. It was said that onlookers saw more of the game than the players. The onlookers had exulted in what they believed to be the result of the last general election. The election began on the 13th of January, and by the 16th it was seen pretty well how it was likely to go. The American papers were full of comments on what they expected would be the verdict. The Sun exulted that no English tariff was possible, and that the United States and Germany and the other "business enemies of England" had nothing to fear. He should not himself call Germany and the United States the "business enemies of England," because they took advantage of all the opportunity which we gave them, but that was how they happened to describe themselves. Even at home dispassionate observers were not very well satisfied with the present condition of affairs. He was very much struck by one account of those conditions— Industry is burdened, enterprise is restricted, workmen are thrown out of employment, and the poorer classes are straightened still further in their circumstances. He believed that was a true description. That was a description which came from the Prime Minister's electoral address. Of course he attributed it to the fault of the wicked Tory Government. What filled the butcher's shop with big blueflies? The Tories. If that was an accurate de- scription, then surely there was a case for not binding the House of Commons for a period of six years. Why had we been, beaten in respect of the motor-car industry by the foreigner? Why had motor-cars of the value of over three millions been coming into this country? And why was a great factory in his part of the country making only the wooden tops of the cars, while all the bottom machinery parts came in from abroad? One reason was no doubt owing to the fact that we did not repeal certain laws in this country so soon as was the case in France, and France therefore got the start in that industry; but he thought that, according to the most orthodox political economy, we should have been perfectly entitled to shelter our national industry during that period, and we should have had a great deal of revenue and acquired skill into the bargain. That was another reason for not binding ourselves solemnly never to discover any change in the principles of Budget-making which prevailed in this country. Turning to our investments abroad, we might regret that less and less money coming from many sources was being invested in this country. He was not one of those fortunate persons who had money of their own to invest, but he was frequently ask to act as trustee for other people. In his capacity as trustee he had to follow the advice given him by English bankers and brokers, and it was a remarkable fact that in recent years, the uniform advice he had received was to invest every penny he could abroad, and above all to invest very little, if any, in English home industries. ["Oh," and a Voice: They are not trust securities.] That was his experience, but it might have been singular. It was very strange that that advice had been tendered to one person three or four times if the same advice had not been tendered to other people in a similar position. In the neutral markets, our trade prevailed as the President of the Board of Trade pointed out last night. But what security had we that any market not now protected would not follow the example of other markets which were protected? The treaty with Rumania, as he happened to know, was not obtained by talking about the virtue of political economy. He had heard on the authority of Sir Charles Kennedy, who had much to do with bringing that treaty about, that we obtained it because in Rumania a belief prevailed that the result of the general election would be different from that which had actually happened. In the Colonial markets we also prospered exceedingly—in fact prospered more than in any other market. But there, again, the question of security arose. Was it wise in respect to any of these markets, foreign, neutral, or Colonial, to trust for our trade to the chance arrangements of other people instead of entering into treaties of our own? Even supposing that by entering into treaties with our Colonies we suffered some slight disability, would it not be better to increase by no great amount the cost of production at home, if for that charge we had the security that tariffs should not be set up against us in markets where they did not now prevail? He knew when they argued in that sense they were told that, after all, the population of the United States was greater than that of Canada. The right hon. the Secretary for India stated during the recent election campaign that there were 80,000,000 of people in the United States and only 6,000,000 in Canada. But our trade with the United States was only 7s.6d. per head of the population, while our trade with Canada was £2 per head of the population. Did any one suppose that the population of Canada was going to remain at the present 6,000,000? Just as the expansion of the United States was the great feature of the nineteenth century, so the similar expansion of Canada might not improbably be the great feature of the twentieth century. Was it, therefore, wise for the House to declare formally that never, under any circumstances, would it even consider—and that was all he urged—any change of plan which might enable this country to secure the advantages which it now enjoyed in Canadian markets? But the matter had a higher aspect. The Unionist Party believed that modifications in our fiscal system might legitimately be made for the purpose of drawing the component parts of the Empire more closely together. It was so regarded in respect to India. It was thought perfectly right to interfere with the fiscal system of India and to put an excise duty on Indian manufactured cotton goods in order that the Lancashire cotton spinners might prosper; but it was thought to be wrong when an alteration was proposed in the existing fiscal system in order to produce similar results in Canada and the other Colonies. It was said that our present fiscal system was the best from the point of view of revenue. But was it? The Chancellor of the Exchequer had declared that the 1s. income-tax in a time of peace was too burdensome, that it cut into the reserve of credit to which we must look in time of peace. Well, the existing taxes on food pressed as heavily upon labour as the 1s. income-tax pressed upon capital. Both taxes pressed upon the middle classes, and he believed that if the sources of unemployment were analysed it would be found that much of it was due to the fact that the middle classes were not in a state of affluence. Therefore, it could not be said that the present fiscal system was an ideal one. How was it to be improved? By retrenchment? He wondered what hopes could reasonably be cherished by hon. Members of any great retrenchment on the Army and Navy. They had seen the Estimates; they had heard the pronouncements of the Ministers in charge of these Departments who took a more sanguine view than he was able to entertain. The Chancellor of the Exchequer said that before diminishing taxation the existing debt should be paid off. But surely that was not relevant to his argument. His point was that the existing system was onerous and ill-adjusted, and one could not reasonably hope to modify it by cutting down the Army and Navy. Besides, the Government had made promises in regard to many admirable objects, every one of which would entail a larger call upon the Exchequer than could possibly be saved on the Army and Navy. Was it therefore unreasonable to ask that the House should keep its liberty to impose new taxes, if necessary, for Imperial defence and domestic reform? If that were a reasonable plea might it not prove to be the case that perhaps by approximating our fiscal system to that of India we might get all the other parts of the Empire to share the burden we bore? Such a proposition violated no tradition of free trade, and was the one put forward by a distinguished South African statesman, Mr. Hoffmeyer. Was this House to say that it would not even consider such a proposition if it were to come from Mr. Hoffmeyer in the future as it came in the past? It was said that the present fiscal system was fair because under it the proportion between direct and indirect taxation was more equal than it used to be in former times. In Great Britain it was fifty-one to forty-seven, but in Ireland it was twenty-seven to seventy-two. He mentioned that not as a plea for Ireland, but because the case of Ireland was typical of all agricultural districts, and to show that the boasted equality between direct and indirect taxation did not benefit the agriculturist. On that account also much could be said for the principle of considering what changes might be made in our fiscal system from the point of view of obtaining revenue without imposing onerous burdens upon any class of the taxpayers. Out of this fiscal controversy he saw two ideals distinctly emerging. One of these ideals found expression in the speeches of the labour representatives. He and his friends could applaud the object of these representatives, though they might have to criticise the methods by which they hoped to reach it. That ideal was that taxation should be imposed in ever-increasing amount upon the accumulated wealth of the country, in order that the standard of life of the less fortunate of our people should, by the indirect operation of that taxation, be raised to a higher plane. The other ideal was the Unionist ideal. That was to enlist, if they could, all classes from all parts of the Empire in a common attempt to secure a fair return for the labour of the workers at home, and at the same time to draw the component parts of the Empire more closely together, a necessary step against the growing menace of other Powers. Their ideal might be called Conservative and Imperial, which now he understood wore terms of abuse. It was based on the experience of the known past and not on an imaginary future; it was Imperial because they looked on the Empire as the beginning of what might be a great organic State. Whichever of those two ideals prevailed, he believed that political controversy in the near future would turn on the clash between those two ideals and upon nothing else, and that would be the line ultimately dividing two great Parties in that House. When that happened, as he believed it would, he ventured to think there would be less and less room for the useful activity of such a Government as that which now sat opposite. The Government seemed to him to claim the right to postpone the realisation of either ideal, because forsooth moderate men and recent converts must not be alarmed. That was Whiggery with a vengeance; it used to be the sacred principle of 1688, it was now to be the sacred principle and practice of free trade. Lest the custodians of that ark of the covenant should be disturbed in the possession of office, labour must be helped, and great care must be taken not to pursue too vigorous a foreign policy! He saw all the signs that marked the inception of a new Whig domination, a domination over open antagonists and their deluded allies, and a new Churchill might lead new hosts of Radicals into a new land of promise flowing with the unctuous adulation of Socialistic experiment. But for anything more substantial the Radicals were invited to wait. Meanwhile timid Tories were assured that any man of vigour and originality who had gravitated into close and loyal alliance with their own leaders was really, like Mr. Disraeli, a desperate fellow, bent on tampering with all that made England what she was. Those, they were to understand, were the sacred principles of free trade, which would not bear investigation, and which could not be intelligibly expressed. Meanwhile, as the guardian of eternal principle, by parity of reasoning, the new Whig claimed permanent office for the purpose of doing nothing in particular. But events moved rapidly in the twentieth century. In the late election a huge vote was given against the fiscal system, and many who voted for it were doubtful of its merits. It was doomed. The English fiscal system was doomed, and when it failed, as fail it must, if for example the nation desists from drinking more alcohol than was good for it; as fail it must if the Government attempted to fulfil the promises it made and satisfy the hopes it had raised—when it failed they meant to be free to construct from its ruins a system deliberately designed to secure fairer terms for the worker at home and foster an organic evolution of the Empire. He submitted that this House would be well advised to preserve its liberty of administration, and to that end he moved the Amendment which stood in his name.


I beg to move that the Question be now put.

Motion made, and Question put, "That the Question be now put."

The House divided: Ayes, 471; Noes, 123. (Division List No. 13.)

Abraham, William (Cork, N.E.) Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Elibank, Master of
Abraham, William (Rhondda) Buxton, Rt. Hn. Sydney Charles Ellis, Rt. Hon. John Edward
Acland, Francis Dyke Byles, William Pollard Erskine, David C.
Adkins, W. Ryland Cairns, Thomas Esmonde, Sir Thomas
Agar-Robartes, Hon. T. C. Caldwell, James Essex, R. W.
Agnew, George William Cameron, Robert Evans, Samuel T.
Ainsworth, John Stirling Campbell-Bannerman, Sir H. Eve, Harry Trelawney
Alden, Percy Carr-Gomm, H. W. Everett, R. Lacey
Allen, A. Acland (Christchurch) Causton, Rt. Hn. Richard Knight Fenwick, Charles
Allen, Charles P. (Gloucester) Cawley, Frederick Ferens, T. R.
Ambrose, Robert Chance, Frederick William Ferguson, R. C. Munro
Armitage, R. Channing, Francis Allston Ffrench, Peter
Ashton, Thomas Gair Cheetham, John Frederick Field, William
Asquith. Rt. Hon. Herbert Henry Cherry, R. R. Fiennes, Hon. Eustace
Astbury, John Meir Churchill, Winston Spencer Findlay, Alexander
Atherley-Jones, L. Clancy, John Joseph Flavin, Michael Joseph
Baker, Sir John (Portsmouth) Clarke, C. Goddard (Peckham) Flynn, James Christopher
Baker, Joseph A. (Finsbury, E.) Cleland, J. W. Foster, Rt. Hon. Sir Walter
Balfour, Robert (Lanark) Clough, W. Fowler, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry
Baring, Godfrey (Isle of Wight) Coats, Sir T. Glen (Renfrew, W.) Fuller, J. M. F.
Barker, John Cobbold, Felix Thornley Fullerton, Hugh
Barlow, John E. (Somerset) Cogan, Denis J. Furness, Sir Christopher
Barlow, Percy (Bedford) Collins, Stephen (Lambeth) Gardner, Col. A. (Herefordsh. S.)
Barnard, E. B. Collins, Sir Wm. J. (S. Pancras, W Gibb, James (Harrow)
Barnes, G. N. Cooper, G. J. Gilhooly, James
Barran, Rowland Hirst Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow) Gill, A. H.
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Corbett. CH (Sussex, E. Grinst'd Ginnell. L.
Beale, W. P. Cornwall, Sir Edwin A. Gladstone, Rt. Hn. Herbert John
Beauchamp, E. Cory, Clifford John Glendinning, R. G.
Beaumont, W. C. B. (Hexham) Cotton, Sir H. J. S. Glover, Thomas
Beck, A. Cecil Cowan, W. H. Goddard, Daniel Ford
Bell, Richard Cox, Harold Gooch, George Peabody
Bellairs, Carlyon Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) Grant, Corrie
Belloc, Hiliare Joseph Peter R. Crean, Eugene Greenwood, G. (Peterborough)
Benn, John Williams (Devonp't Cremer, William Randal Greenwood, Hamar (York)
Benn, W. (T'w'r Hamlets, S. Geo. Crombie, John William Grey, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward
Bennett, E. N. Crooks, William Grove, Archibald
Berridge, T. H. D. Crosfield, A. H. Guest, Hon. Ivor Churchill
Bertram, Julius Cross, Alexander Gulland, John W.
Bethell, J. H. (Essex, Romford) Crossley, William J. Gurdon, Sir W. Brampton
Bethell, T. R. (Essex, Maldon) Cullinan, J. Haldane, Rt. Hon. Richard B.
Billson, Alfred Dalmeny, Lord Hall, Frederick
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Dalziel, James Henry Halpin, J.
Black Arthur W.(Bedfordshire Davies, M. Vaughan-(Cardigan Hammond, John
Boland, John Davies, Timothy (Fulham) Harcourt, Rt. Hon. Lewis
Bolton, T. D. (Derbyshire. N. E.) Davies, W. Howell (Bristol, S.) Hardie, J. Keir (Merthyr Tydvil
Bottomley, Horatio Devlin, Charles Ramsay Galway Hardy, George A. (Suffolk)
Brace, William Dewar, Arthur (Edinburgh, S.) Harmsworth, Cecil B. (Worc'r)
Branch, James Dickinson, W. H. (St. Pancras, N Harmsworth, R. L. (Caithn'ss-sh
Brigg, John Dickson-Poynder, Sir John P. Harrington, Timothy
Broadhurst, Henry Dilke, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles Hart-Davies, T.
Brocklehurst, W. D. Dillon, John Harvey, A. G. C. (Rochdale)
Brodie, H. C. Dobson, Thomas W. Harwood, George
Brooke, Stopford Dolan, Charles Joseph Haslam, James (Derbyshire)
Brunner, J. F. L. (Lancs., Leigh) Donelan, Captain A. Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth)
Brunner, Sir John T. (Cheshire) Duckworth, James Haworth, Arthur A.
Bryce, Rt. Hn. James (Aberdeen Duffy, William J. Hazel, Dr. A. E.
Bryce, J. A. (Inverness Burghs) Duncan, C. (Barrow-in Furness Hazleton, Richard
Buchanan, Thomas Ryburn Duncan, J. H. (York, Otley Healy, Timothy Michael
Buckmaster, Stanley O. Dunn, A. Edward (Camborne) Hedges, A. Paget
Burke, E. Haviland- Dunne, Major E. M. (Walsall) Helme, Norval Watson
Burns, Rt. Hon. John Edwards, Enoch (Hanley) Henderson, Arthur (Durham)
Burnyeat, J. D. W. Edwards, Frank (Radnor) Henderson. J. M. (Aberdeen, W.
Henry, Charles S. M'Arthur, William Power, Patrick Joseph
Herbert, Colonel Ivor (Mon., S.) M'Callum, John M. Price, C. E. (Edinb'gh. Central)
Herbert, T. Arnold (Wycombe) M'Crae, George Price, Robert John (Norfolk, E.
Higham, John Sharp M'Kean, John Priestley, Arthur (Grantham)
Hobart, Sir Robert M'Kenna, Reginald Priestley, W. E. B. (Bradford, E.)
Hobhouse, Charles E. H. M'Laren, Sir C. B. (Leicester Radford, G. H.
Hodge, John M'Laren, H. D. (Stafford, W.) Rainy, A. Rolland
Hogan, Michael M'Micking, Major G. Raphael, Herbert H.
Holden, E. Hopkinson Maddison, Frederick Rea, Russell, (Gloucester)
Holland, Sir William Henry Mallet, Charles E. Rea, Walter Russell (Scarboro'
Hooper, A. G. Manfield, Harry (Northants) Reddy, M.
Hope, John Deans (Fife, West) Mansfield, H. Rendall (Lincoln) Redmond, John E. (Waterford)
Hope, W. Bateman (Somerset. N Markham, Arthur Basil Redmond, William (Clare)
Horniman, Emslie John Marks, G. Croydon (Launcetons Rees, J. D.
Horridge, Thomas Gardiner Marnham, F. J. Rendall, Athelstan
Howard, Hon. Geoffrey Mason, A. E. W. (Coventry) Renton, Major Leslie
Hudson, Walter Massie, J. Richards, Thomas (W. Monm'th
Hutton, Alfred Eddison Masterman, C. F. G. Richards, T. F. (Wolverh'mptn
Hyde, Clarendon Meehan, Patrick A. Richardson, A.
Idris, T. H. W. Menzies, Walter Rickett, J. Compton
Illingworth, Percy H. Micklem, Nathaniel Ridsdale, E. A.
Isaacs, Rufus Daniel Molteno, Percy Alfred Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)
Jackson, R. S. Mond, A. Roberts, G. H. (Norwich)
Jacoby, James Alfred Money, L. G. Chiozza Roberts, John Bryn (Eifion)
Jardine, Sir J. Montgomery, H. H. Roberts, John H. (Denbighs.)
Jenkins, J. Mooney, J. J. Robertson. Rt. Hn. E. (Dundee)
Johnson, John (Gateshead) Morgan, G. Hay (Cornwall) Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside)
Johnson, W. (Nuneaton) Morley, Rt. Hon. John Robertson, Sir G. Scott (Bradf'rd
Jones, David Brynmor, (Sw'nsea Morrell, Philip Robinson, S.
Jones, Leif (Appleby) Morse, L. L. Robson, Sir William Snowdon
Jones. William (Carnarvonshire Morton, Alpheus Cleophas Roche, Augustine (Cork)
Jowett, F. W. Murphy, John Roche, John (Galway, East)
Joyce, Michael Murray, James Roe, Sir Thomas
Kearley, Hudson, E. Myer, Horatio Rose, Charles Day
Kekewich, Sir George Napier, T. B. Rowlands, J.
Kelley, George D. Newnes, F. (Notts, Bassetlaw) Runciman, Walter
Kennedy, Vincent Paul Newnes, Sir George (Swansea) Rutherford, V. H. (Brentford)
Kilbride, Denis Nicholls, George Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland)
Kincaid-Smith, Captain Nicholson, Charles N. (Doncastr Samuel, S. M. (Whitechapel)
King, Alfred John (Knutsford) Nolan, Joseph Scarisbrick, T. T. L.
Kitson, Sir James Norman, Henry Schwann, C. Duncan (Hyde)
Laidlaw, Robert Norton, Capt. Cecil William Schwann, Chas. E. (Manchester)
Lamb, Edmund G. (Leominster Nussey, Thomas Willans Scott, A. H. (Ashton under Lyne
Lamb, Ernest H. (Rochester) Nuttall, Harry Sears, J. E.
Lambert, George O'Brien, Kendal (TipperaryMid Seaverns, J. H.
Lamont, Norman O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny) Seddon, J.
Law, Hugh Alexander O'Brien, William (Cork) Seely, Major J. B.
Lawson, Sir Wilfrid O'Connor, James (Wicklow, W. Shackleton, David James
Layland-Barratt, Francis O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.) Shaw, Charles Edw. (Stafford)
Lea, Hugh Cecil (St. Pancras. E. O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool) Shaw, Rt. Hon. T. (Hawick B.)
Leese, Sir Joseph F. (Accrington O'Doherty, Philip Sheehan, Daniel Daniel
Lehmann, R. C. O'Donnell, C. J. (Walworth) Sheehy, David
Lever, A. Levy (Essex, Harwich O'Dowd, John Shipman, Dr. John G.
Lever, W. H. (Cheshire, Wirral) O'Grady, J. Silcock, Thomas Ball
Levy, Maurice O'Kelly, Conor (Mayo, N.) Simon, John Allsebrook
Lewis, John Herbert O'Kelly, James (Roscommon. N Sinclair, Rt. Hon. John
Lloyd-George, Rt. Hon. David O'Malley, William Smeaton, Donald Mackenzie
Lough, Thomas O'Mara, James Smyth, Thomas (Leitrim, S.)
Lundon, W. O'Shaughnessy, P. J. Snowden, P.
Lupton, Arnold Palmer, Sir Charles Mark Soares, Ernest J.
Luttrell, Hugh Courteney Paul, Herbert Spicer, Albert
Lyell, Charles Henry Paulton, James Mellor Stanger, H. Y.
Lynch, H. B. Pearce, Robert (Staffs. Leek) Stanley. Hn. A. Lyulph (Chesn.)
Macdonald, J. R. (Leicester) Pearce, William (Limehouse) Steadman, W. C.
Macdonald, J. M. (Falkirk B'ghs Pearson, Sir Weetman D. Stevenson, Francis S.
Mackarness, Frederic C. Perks, Robert William Stewart, Halley (Greenock)
Maclean, Donald Philipps. Col. Ivor (S'thampton) Stewart-Smith, D. (Kendal)
Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J. Philipps. J. Wynford Pembroke Strachey, Sir Edward
MacNeill, John Gordon Swift Philipps, Owen C. (Pembroke) Straus, B. S. (Mile End)
Macpherson, J. T. Pickersgill, Edward Hare Strauss, E. A. (Abingdon)
MacVeagh, Jeremiah (Down. S. Pirie, Duncan V. Stuart, James (Sunderland)
MacVeigh, Charles (Donegal. E.) Pollard, Dr. Sullivan, Donal
Summerbell, T. Walsh, Stephen Williams, J. (Glamorgan)
Sutherland, J. E. Walters, John Tudor Williams, Osmond (Merioneth)
Taylor, Austin (East Toxteth) Walton, Sir John L. (Leeds, S.) Williams, W. L. (Carmarthen)
Taylor, John W. (Durham) Walton, Joseph (Barnsley) Williamson, A. (Elgin and Nairn
Taylor, Theodore C. (Radcliffe) Ward, John (Stoke upon Trent Wills, Arthur Walters
Tennant, E. P. (Salisbury) Ward, W. Dudley (Southampt'n Wilson, C. H. W. (Hull, W.)
Tennant, H. J. (Berwickshire) Wardle, George J. Wilson, Henry J. (York, W. R.
Thomas, Abel (Carmarthen, E.) Warner, Thomas Courtenay T. Wilson, John (Durham, Mid)
Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan, E.) Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan) Wilson, J. H. (Middlesbrough)
Thomas. David Alfred (Merthyr Wason, John Cathcart (Orkney Wilson, J. W. (Worcestersh. N.)
Thompson, J. W. H (Somerset, E Waterlow, D. S. Wilson, P. W. (St. Pancras, S.)
Thorne, William Watt, H. Anderson Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)
Tillett, Louis John Wedgwood, Josiah C. Winfrey, R.
Tomkinson, James Weir, James Galloway Wodehouse, Lord (Norfolk Mid)
Torrance, A. M. Whitbread, Howard Wood, T. M'Kinnon
Toulmin, George White, George (Norfolk) Woodhouse. Sir J. T. (Huddersf'd
Trevelyan, Charles Philips White, Luke (York, E. R.) Young, Samuel
Verney, F. W. White, Patrick (Meath, North) Yoxall, James Henry
Villiers, Ernest Amherst White, J. D. (Dumbartonshire)
Vivian, Henry Whitehead, Rowland TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—Mr. George Whiteley and Mr. J. A. Pease.
Wadsworth, J. Whitley, J. H. (Halifax)
Waldron, Laurence Ambrose Whittaker, Thomas Palmer
Walker, H. De R. (Leicester) Wiles, Thomas
Wallace, Robert Wilkie, Alexander
Anson, Sir William Reynell Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers- Muntz, Sir Philip A.
Anstruther-Gray, Major Du Cros, Harvey Nield, Herbert
Arkwright, John Stanhope Duncan, Robert (Lanark, Govan O'Neill, Hon. Robert Torrens
Arnold-Forster. Rt. Hn. Hugh O Faber, George Denison (York) Parker, Sir Gilbert (Gravesend)
Ashley, W. W. Fardell, Sir T. George Parkes, Ebenezer
Aubrey-Fletcher, Rt. Hon. Sir H Fell, Arthur Pease, Herbert Pike (Darlington
Balcarres, Lord Finch, Rt. Hon. George H. Percy, Earl
Baldwin, Alfred Gardner, Ernest (Berks, East) Powell, Sir Francis Sharp
Balfour, Rt. Hn A. J. (City Lond.) Gibbs, G. A. (Bristol, West) Ratcliff, Major R. F.
Balfour, Capt. C. B. (Hornsey Gordon, J (Londonderry, S.) Rawlinson, John Frederick P.
Banner, John S. Harmood- Gordon, Sir W. Evans-(T'rHam. Remnant, James Farquharson
Baring, Hon. Guy (Winchester) Haddock, George R. Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Ecclesall)
Barrie, H. T. (Londonderry, N.) Hambro, Charles Eric Ropner, Colonel Sir Robert
Beach, Hn. Michael HughHicks Hamilton, Marquess of Rothschild, Hon. Lionel Walter
Beckett, Hon. Gervase Hardy, Laurence (Kent, Ashford Rutherford, W. W. (Liverpool)
Bowles, G. Stewart Harrison-Broadley, Col. H. B. Sandys, Lieut.-Col. Thos. Myles
Boyle, Sir Edward Hay, Hon. Claude George Sassoon, Sir Edward Albert
Bridgeman, W. Clive Heaton, John Henniker Scott, Sir S. (Marylebone, W.)
Bull, Sir William James Helmsley, Viscount Sloan, Thomas Henry
Burdett-Coutts, W. Hervey, F. W. F. (Bury S. Edm'ds Smith, Abel H. (Hertford, East)
Butcher, Samuel Henry Hill, Sir Clement (Shrewsbury) Smith, Hon. W. F. D. (Strand)
Campbell, J. H. M. (DublinUniv. Hill, Henry Staveley (Staff'sh.) Stanley, Hn. Arthur (Ormskirk
Carlile, E. Hildred Hills, J. W. Starkey, John R.
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Houston, Robert Paterson Stone, Sir Benjamin
Castlereagh, Viscount Hunt, Rowland Talbot, Rt. Hn. J. G. (Oxf'dUniv
Cave, George Kennaway, Rt. Hn. Sir John H. Thomson, W. Mitchell-(Lanark
Cavendish, Rt. Hon. VictorCW Kenyon-Slaney, Rt. Hn. Col. W. Thornton, Percy M.
Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Kimber, Sir Henry Turnour, Viscount
Cecil, Lord J. P. J. (Stamford) King. Sir Henry Seymour (Hull) Vincent, Col. Sir C. E. Howard
Cecil, Lord R. (Marylebone, E.) Lambton, Hon. Frederick Wm. Walker, Col. W. H. (Lancashire)
Chamberlain, Rt. on. J. (Birm. Lee, Arthur H (Hants., Fareham Walrond, Hon. Lionel
Chamberlain, Rt Hn. J. A. (Worc Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage Williamson, G. H. (Worcester)
Clarke, Sir Edward (City London Liddell, Henry Willoughby de Eresby, Lord
Coates, E. Feetham (Lewisham) Lockwood, Rt. Hn. Lt.-Col. A. R. Wilson, A. Stanley (York, E. R.)
Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E. Lonsdale, John Brownlee Wortley, Rt. Hon. C. B. Stuart
Corbett, T. L. (Down, North) Lowe, Sir Francis William Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George
Courthope, G. Loyd MacIver, David (Liverpool) Younger, George
Craig, Charles Curtis (Antrim, S. Magnus, Sir Philip
Craig, Captain James (Down, E. Marks, Harry Hananel (Kent) TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—Sir Alexander Acland-Hood and Mr. Forster.
Craik, Sir Henry Mason, James F. (Windsor)
Dalrymple, Viscount Meysey-Thompson, Major E. C.
Dixon-Hartland, Sir FredDixon Mildmay, Francis Bingham
Doughty, Sir George Morpeth, Viscount

Main Question put accordingly.

The House divided: Ayes, 474; Noes, 98. (Division List No.14).

Abraham, William (Cork, N. E.) Cairns, Thomas Evans, Samuel T.
Abraham, William (Rhondda) Caldwell, James Eve, Harry Trelawney
Acland, Francis Dyke Cameron, Robert Everett, R. Lacey
Adkins, W. Ryland Campbell-Bannerman, Sir H. Fenwick, Charles
Agar-Robartes, Hon. T. C. Carr-Gomm, H. W. Ferens, T. R.
Agnew, George William Causton, Rt. Hn. Richard Knight Ferguson, R. C. Munro
Ainsworth, John Stirling Cawley, Frederick Ffrench, Peter
Alden, Percy Cecil, Lord R. (Marylebone, E.) Field, William
Allen, A. Acland (Christchurch) Chance, Frederick William Fiennes, Hon. Eustace
Allen, Charles P. (Gloucester) Channing, Francis Allston Findlay, Alexander
Ambrose, Robert Cheetham, John Frederick Flavin, Michael Joseph
Armitage, R Cherry, R. R. Flynn, James Christopher
Ashton, Thomas Gair Churchill, Winston Spencer Foster, Rt. Hon. Sir Walter
Asquith. Rt. Hn. Herbert Henry Clancy, John Joseph Fowler, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry
Astbury, John Meir Clarke, C. Goddard (Peckham) Fuller, J. M. F.
Atherley-Jones, L. Cleland, J. W. Fullerton, Hugh
Baker, Sir John (Portsmouth) Clough, W. Furness, Sir Christopher
Baker, Joseph A. (Finsbury, E. Coats, Sir T. Glen (Renfrew, W.) Gardner, Col. A. (Hereford, S.)
Balfour, Robert (Lanark) Cobbold, Felix Thornley Gibb, James (Harrow)
Baring, Godfrey (Isle of Wight) Cogan, Denis J. Gilhooly, James
Barker, John Collins, Stephen (Lambeth) Gill, A. H.
Barlow, John E. (Somerset) Collins, Sir Wm. J. (S. Pancras, W Ginnell, L.
Barlow, Percy (Bedford) Cooper, G. J. Gladstone, Rt. Hn. Herbert John
Barnard, E. B. Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow) Glover, Thomas
Barnes, G. N. Corbett, C. H. (Sussex, E. Grins' d Goddard, Daniel Ford
Barran, Rowland Hirst Cornwall, Sir Edwin A. Gooch, George Peabody
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Cory, Clifford John Grant, Corrie
Beale, W. P. Cotton, Sir H. J. S. Greenwood, G. (Peterborough)
Beauchamp, E. Cowan, W. H. Greenwood, Hamar (York)
Beaumont, W. C. B. (Hexham) Cox, Harold Grey, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward
Beck, A. Cecil Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) Grove, Archibald
Bell, Richard Crean, Eugene Guest, Hon. Ivor Churchill
Bellairs, Carlyon Cremer, William Randal Gulland, John W.
Belloc, Hiliare Joseph Peter R. Crombie, John William Gurdon, Sir W. Brampton
Benn, John Williams (Devonp't Crooks, William Haldane, Rt. Hon. Richard B.
Benn, W. (T'w'rH'mlets, S. Geo. Crosfield, A. H. Hall, Frederick
Bennett, E. N. Cross, Alexander Halpin, J.
Berridge, T. H. D. Crossley, William J. Hammond, John
Bertram, Julius Cullinan. J. Harcourt, Rt. Hon. Lewis
Bethell. J. H. (Essex, Romford) Dalmeny, Lord Hardie, J. Keir (Merthyr Tydvil
Bethell, T. R. (Essex, Maldon) Dalziel, James Henry Hardie, George A. (Suffolk)
Billson, Alfred Davies, M. Vaughan-(Cardigan Harmsworth, Cecil B. (Worc.)
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Davies, Timothy (Fulham) Harmsworth, R. L. (Caithness)
Black, Arthur W. (Bedfordshire Davies, W. Howell (Bristol, S.) Harrington, Timothy
Boland, John Delany, William Hart-Davies, T.
Bolton, T. D. (Derbyshire. N. E.) Devlin, Charles Ramsay (Galway Harvey, A. G. C. (Rochdale)
Bottomley, Horatio Dewar, Arthur (Edinburgh, S.) Harwood, George
Bowles, G. Stewart Dickinson, W. H. (St. Pancras, N. Halam, James (Derbyshire)
Brace, William Dickson-Poynder, Sir John P. Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth)
Branch, James Dilke, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles Haworth, Arthur A.
Brigg, John Dillon, John Hazel, Dr. A. E.
Broadhurst, Henry Dobson, Thomas W. Hazleton, Richard
Brocklehurst, W. D. Dolan, Charles Joseph Healy, Timothy Michael
Brodie, H. C. Donelan, Captain A. Hedges, A. Paget
Brooke, Stopford Duckworth, James Helme, Norval Watson
Brunner. J. F. L. (Lancs., Leigh Duffy, William J. Henderson, Arthur (Durham)
Brunner, Sir John T. (Cheshire) Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness Henderson, J. M. (Aberdeen, W.)
Bryce, Rt. Hn. James (Aberdeen Duncan, J. H. (York, Otley) Henry, Charles S.
Bryce. J. A. (Inverness Burghs) Dunn, A. Edward (Camborne) Herbert, Colonel Ivor, (Mon. S.
Buchanan, Thomas Ryburn Dunne, Major E. M. (Walsall) Herbert, T. Arnold (Wycombe).
Buckmaster, Stanley O. Edwards, Enoch (Hanley) Higham, John Sharp
Burke, E. Haviland Edwards, Frank (Radnor) Hobart, Sir Robert
Burns, Rt. Hon. John Elibank, Master of Hobhouse, Charles E. H.
Burnyeat, J. D. W. Ellis, Rt. Hon. John Edward Hodge, John
Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Erskine, David C. Hogan, Michael
Buxton, Rt. Hn. Sydney Charles Esmonde, Sir Thomas Holden, E. Hopkinson
Byles, William Pollard Essex, R. W. Holland, Sir William Henry
Hooper, A. G. Mallet, Charles E. Reddy, M.
Hope, John Deans (Fife, West) Manfield, Harry (Northants) Redmond, John E. (Waterford)
Hope, W. Bateman (Somerset, N. Mansfield, H. Rendall (Lincoln) Redmond, William (Clare)
Horniman, Emslie John Markham, Arthur Basil Rees, J. D.
Horridge, Thomas Gardiner Marks, G. Croydon (Launceston) Rendall, Athelstan
Howard, Hon. Geoffrey Marnham, F. J. Renton, Major Leslie
Hudson, Walter Mason, A. E. W. (Coventry) Richards, Thomas (W. Monm'th
Hutton, Alfred Eddison Massie, J. Richards, T. F. (Wolverh'mptn
Hyde, Clarendon Masterman, C. F. G. Richardson, A.
Idris, T. H. W. Meehan, Patrick A. Rickett, J. Compton
Illingworth, Percy H. Menzies, Walter Ridsdale, E. A.
Isaacs, Rufus Daniel Micklem, Nathaniel Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)
Jackson, R. S. Molteno, Percy Alfred Roberts, G. H. (Norwich)
Jacoby, James Alfred Mond, A. Roberts, John Bryn (Eifion)
Jardine, Sir J. Money, L. G. Chiozza Roberts, John H. (Denbighs.)
Jenkins, J. Montgomery, H. H. Robertson, Rt. Hn. E. (Dundee)
Johnson, John (Gateshead) Mooney, J. J. Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside)
Johnson, W. (Nuneaton) Morgan, G. Hay (Cornwall) Robertson, Sir G. Scott (Bradf'rd
Jones, David Brynmor (Swansea Morley, Rt. Hon. John Robinson, S.
Jones, Leif (Appleby) Morrell, Philip Robson, Sir William Snowdon
Jones, William (Carnarvonshire Morse, L. L. Roche, Augustine (Cork)
Jowett, F. W. Morton, Alpheus Cleophas Roche, John (Galway, East)
Joyce, Michael Murphy, John Roe, Sir Thomas
Kearley, Hudson E. Murray, James Rose, Charles Day
Kekewich, Sir George Napier, T. B. Rothschild, Hon. Lionel Walter
Kelley, George D. Newnes, F. (Notts, Bassetlaw) Rowlands, J.
Kennedy, Vincent Paul Newnes, Sir George (Swansea) Runciman, Walter
Kilbride, Denis Nicholls, George Rutherford, V. H. (Brentford.)
Kincaid-Smith, Captain Nicholson, Charles N. (Doncas'r Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland.
King, Alfred John (Knutsford) Nolan, Joseph Samuel, S. M. (Whitechapel
King, Sir Henry Seymour(Hull Norman, Henry Scarisbrick, T. T. L.
Kitson, Sir James Norton, Capt. Cecil William Schwann, C. Duncan (Hyde)
Laidlaw, Robert Nussey, Thomas Willans Schwann, Chas. E. (Manchester.)
Lamb, Ernest H. (Rochester) Nuttall, Harry Scott, A. H. (Ashton under Lyne
Lambert, George O'Brien, Kendal(Tipperary Mid Sears, J. E.
Lambton, Hon. Frederick Wm. O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny) Seaverns, J. H.
Lamont, Norman O'Brien, William (Cork) Seddon, J.
Law, Hugh Alexander O'Connor, James (Wicklow, W. Seely, Major J. B.
Lawson, Sir Wilfrid O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.) Shackleton, David James
Layland-Barratt, Francis O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool) Shaw, Charles Edw. (Stafford.
Lea, Hugh Cecil (St. Pancras, E. O'Doherty, Philip Shaw, Rt. Hon. T. (Hawick B.
Leese, Sir Joseph F. (Accrington) O'Donnell, C. J. (Walworth) Sheehan, Daniel Daniel
Lehmann, R. C. O'Dowd, John Sheehy, David
Lever, A. Levy(Essex, Harwich O'Hare, Patrick Shipman, Dr. John G.
Lever, W. H. (Cheshire, Wirral) O'Kelly, Conor (Mayo, N.) Silcock, Thomas Ball
Levy, Maurice O'Kelly, James (Roscommon, N Simon, John Allsebrook
Lewis, John Herbert O'Malley, William Sinclair, Rt. Hon. John
Lloyd-George, Rt. Hon, David O Mara, James Smeaton, Donald Mackenzie
Lough, Thomas O'Shaughnessy, P. J. Smyth, Thomas (Leitrim, S.)
Lundon, W. Palmer, Sir Charles Mark Snowden, P.
Lupton, Arnold Paul, Herbert Soares, Ernest J.
Luttrell, Hugh Courteney Paulton, James Mellor Spicer, Albert
Lyell, Charles Henry Pearce, Robert (Staffs. Leek) Stanger, H. Y.
Lynch, H. B. Pearce, William (Limehouse) Stanley, Hn. A. Lyulph (Chesh.
Macdonald, J. R. (Leicester) Pearson, Sir Weetman D. Steadman, W. C.
Macdonald, J. M. (Falkirk'B'ghs Perks, Robert William Stevenson, Francis S.
Mackarness, Frederic C. Philipps, Col. Ivor (S'thampton Stewart, Halley (Greenock)
Maclean, Donald Philipps, J. Wynford (Pembroke Stewart-Smith, D. (Kendal)
Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J. Philipps, Owen C. (Pembroke) Strachey, Sir Edward
MacNeill, John Gordon Swift Pickersgill, Edward Straus, B. S. (Mile End)
Macpherson, J. T. Pirie, Duncan V. Strauss, E. A. (Abingdon)
MacVeagh, Jeremiah (Down. S. Pollard, Dr. Stuart, James (Sunderland)
MacVeigh, Charles (Donegal, E. Power, Patrick Joseph Sullivan, Donal
M'Arthur, William Price, C. E. (Edinb'gh, Central) Summerbell, T.
M'Callum, John M. Price, Robert John (Norfolk, E.) Sutherland, J. E.
M'Crae, George Priestley, Arthur (Grantham. Taylor, Austin (East Toxteth)
M'Kean, John Priestley, W. E. B. (Bradford, E) Taylor, John W. (Durham)
M'Kenna, Reginald Radford, G. H. Taylor, Theodore C. (Radcliffe)
M'Laren, Sir C. B. (Leicester) Rainy, A. Rolland Tennant, E. P. (Salisbury)
M'Laren, H. D. (Stafford) W.) Raphael, Herbert H. Tennant, H. J. (Berwickshire)
M'Micking, Major G. Rea, Russell (Gloucester) Thomas, Abel (Carmarthen, E.)
Maddison, Frederick Rea, Walter Russell (Scarboro' Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan, E.)
Thomas, David Alfred (Merthyr Ward, W. Dudley (Southamptn Williams, W. L. (Carmarthen)
Thompson, J. W. H. (Somerset, E Wardle, George J. Williamson, A. (Elgin and Nairn
Thorne, William Warner, Thomas Courtenay T. Wills, Arthur Walters
Thornton, Percy M. Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan Wilson, C. H. W. (Hull, W.)
Tillett, Louis John Wason, John Cathcart (Orkney Wilson, Henry J. (York, W. R.)
Tomkinson, James Waterlow, D. S. Wilson, John (Durham, Mid)
Torrance, A. M. Watt, H. Anderson Wilson, J. H. (Middlesbrough)
Toulmin, George Wedgwood, Josiah C. Wilson, J. W. (Worcestersh. N.)
Trevelyan, Charles Philips Weir, James Galloway Wilson, P. W. (St. Pancras, S.)
Verney, F. W. Whitbread, Howard Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)
Villiers, Ernest Amherst White, George (Norfolk) Winfrey, R.
Vivian, Henry White, Luke (York, E. R.) Wodehouse, Lord (Norfolk, Mid)
Wadsworth, J. White, Patrick (Meath, North Wood, T. M'Kinnon
Waldron, Laurence Ambrose White, J. D. (Dumbartonshire Woodhouse, Sir JT. (Huddersf'd
Walker, H. De R. (Leicester) Whitehead, Rowland Young, Samuel
Wallace, Robert Whitley, J. H. (Halifax) Yoxall, James Henry
Walsh, Stephen Whittaker, Thomas Palmer
Walters, John Tudor Wiles, Thomas TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Mr. George Whiteley and Mr. J. A. Pease.
Walton, Sir John L. (Leeds, S.) Wilkie, Alexander
Walton, Joseph (Barnsley) Williams, J. (Glamorgan)
Ward, John (Stoke upon Trent Williams, Osmond (Merioneth)
Anstruther-Gray, Major Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers- Meysey-Thompson, Major E. C.
Arkwright, John Stanhope Du Cros, Harvey Morpeth, Viscount
Arnold-Forster, Rt Hn Hugh O. Duncan, Robert (Lanark, Govan Muntz, Sir Philip A.
Aubrey-Fletcher, Rt. Hn. Sir H. Faber, George Denison (York) Nield, Herbert
Balcarres, Lord Fardell, Sir T. George O'Neill, Hon. Robert Torrens
Baldwin, Alfred Fell, Arthur Parker, Sir Gilbert (Gravesend)
Balfour, Rt Hn. A. J. (City Lond. Finch, Rt. Hon. George H. Parkes, Ebenezer
Balfour, Capt. C. B. (Hornsey) Gardner, Ernest (Berks, East) Pease, Herbert Pike (Darlington
Banner, John S. Harmood Gibbs, G. A. (Bristol, West) Percy, Earl
Baring, Hon. Guy (Winchester) Gordon, J. (Londonderry, S.) Ratcliff, Major R. F.
Barrie, H. T. (Londonderry. N.) Gordon, Sir W Evans-(T'r Ham. Rawlinson, John Frederick P.
Beckett, Hon, Gervase Haddock, George R. Remnant, James Farquharson
Boyle, Sir Edward Hambro, Charles Eric Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Ecclesall)
Bridgeman, W. Clive Hamilton, Marquess of Ropner, Colonel Sir Robert
Bull, Sir William James Hardy, Laurence (Kent, Ashford Rutherford, W. W. (Liverpool)
Burdett-Coutts, W. Hay, Hon. Claude George Sandys, Lieut.-Col. Thos. Myles
Butcher, Samuel Henry Heaton, John Henniker Scott, Sir S. (Marylebone, W.)
Campbell, J. H. M. (DublinUniv Hervey, F. W. F. (Bury S. Edm'ds Sloan, Thomas Henry
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Hill, Sir Clement (Shrewsbury) Stanley, Hn. Arthur (Ormskirk
Castlereagh, Viscount Hill, Henry Staveley (Staff'sh.) Starkey, John R.
Cave, George Hills, J. W. Stone, Sir Benjamin
Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Houston, Robert Paterson Thomson, W. Mitchell (Lanark)
Cecil, Lord J. P. J. (Stamford) Hunt, Rowland Turnour, Viscount
Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. J. (Birm. Kenyon-Slaney Rt. Hon. Col. W. Vincent. Col. Sir C. E. Howard
Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. J. A. (Worc Kimber, Sir Henry Walker, Col. W. H. (Lancashire
Coates, E. Feetham (Lewisham Lee, Arthur H (Hants., Fareham Williamson, G. H. (Worcester)
Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E. Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage Willoughby de Eresby, Lord
Corbett, T. L. (Down, North) Liddell, Henry Wilson, A. Stanley (York, E. R.)
Courthope, G. Loyd Lockwood, Rt Hn. Lt. Col. A. R. Wortley, Rt. Hon. C. B. Stuart
Craig, Captain James (Down, E.) Lonsdale, John Brownlee Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George
Craik, Sir Henry Lowe, Sir Francis William
Dalrymple, Viscount MacIver, David (Liverpool) TELLERS FOR THE NOES—Sir Alexander Acland-Hood and Mr. Forster.
Dixon-Hartland, Sir Fred Dixon Marks, Harry Hananel (Kent)
Doughty, Sir George Mason, James F. (Windsor)

Question put, and agreed to.

Resolved, That this House, recognising that in the recent general election the people of the United Kingdom have demonstrated their unqualified fidelity to the principles and practice of free trade, deems it right to record its determination to resist any proposal, whether by way of taxation upon foreign corn or of the creation of a general tariff upon foreign goods, to create in this country a system of protection.