§ 43. Sir HENRY CRAIK
asked the Prime Minister whether the Solicitor-General expressed the view of the Government when he said, in the London Opera House on 4th December, that the Franchise Bill, with a woman suffrage Amendment, was secure in enjoying the full advantage of the Parliament Act; and whether a Bill, altered in a sense contradictory of a previous decision of the present House of Commons, would be one to which the Government would be prepared, without any further appeal to the people, to apply the provisions of the Parliament Act?
§ The PRIME MINISTER (Mr. Asquith)
My hon. and learned Friend, in the speech to which the hon. Member refers, was, I am informed, careful to point out that what he was saying did not constitute any new declaration made either on behalf of the Government or of myself. I must refer the hon. Gentleman to my own public declarations on the subject, to which at present I have nothing to add.
§ Sir H. CRAIK
Can the right hon. Gentleman give a plain answer to the latter part of the question, as to whether the Parliament Act would apply to the case where this current Parliament had altered its decision?
§ The PRIME MINISTER
I think we had better discuss that question when we come to the Bill itself. In the meantime I refer the hon. Member to my declaration.
§ Mr. CLYNES
Would the right hon. Gentleman say what chance such a Bill would have if the Parliament Act did not apply?
§ Lord ROBERT CECIL
Can the Prime Minister indicate to the House when the Franchise Bill will be taken?