HC Deb 17 April 1913 vol 51 cc2162-78

This Act shall continue in force for a period of eighteen months from the date of the passing thereof.


I beg to move, "That the Clause be read a second time."

We on this side think that this Clause embodies a very important subject, and I hope the Chancellor of the Exchequer will not think the matter less important because it can be briefly stated. Let me state briefly what the circumstances are under which this Bill has been introduced, and therefore what are the reasons why I suggest it should be limited in duration to a period of eighteen months. I think it is common ground that this Bill makes a new and very important departure in the law of the land and in the practice of this House. On the one hand, the Government are met with the difficulty that the system which has hitherto obtained of collecting taxes under a mere Resolution of a Committee of this House in anticipation of legislation has been declared to be illegal, and they apparently think that the best thing they can do is to introduce this Bill and for the first time in our history to give statutory effect to a mere Resolution of a Committee of this House. Many of us regard this system with great apprehension. The discussions in this House on such a Resolution must necessarily be brief. The object for which the Resolution is introduced is that it may go through quickly, and we think that the amount of discussion that can be given to what in the future will be a law authorising taxation is entirely inadequate to the importance of the subject. We fear that the Committee of Ways and Means in this House may become a mere automatic machine for registering and legalising schemes of Treasury officials. We fear also any scheme which shall give to the Government of the day, from whichever side it may be drawn, additional powers to use its party majority in the direction of minimising discussion and removing from the House of Commons its real control over the finances of the country. I believe that these fears are shared by a considerable number of Members on the other side of the House.

Under these circumstances, what is the obvious course to pursue? The obvious course was and is to appoint a Select Committee recruited from those who have considerable experience of Parliamentary procedure and finance, and to get from them a suggestion as to the best means, on the one hand, of safeguarding our rights and through us the rights of the taxpayer, and, on the other hand, of facilitating for the Treasury the collection of the taxes of the country without fear of evasion. The Chancellor of the Exchequer has consented to the appointment of such a Select Committee. Personally, I think it ought to have been appointed a long time ago. In my opinion, the Chancellor of the Exchequer would have been well advised if, as soon as the decision was given in the action brought by Mr. Bowles, when he must have foreseen the difficulties that would arise, he had at once, or within a reasonable time, appointed a Select Committee to suggest the proper course to pursue in order to obviate the difficulties in which that decision would place the Government. However, better late than never; at last we are to have the Committee. The question which really comes before the House is whether the Report of this Select Committee is to be given a reasonable chance of being incorporated in legislation. The Committee will have many schemes to consider. I have no doubt that even among the treasures of the official mind, lurking behind the "modern eye," there are various schemes which will be brought before the Select Committee for consideration. There is the procedure of many foreign countries to be investigated. Information is to be derived from the experience of the procedure in other Parliaments. There are those who think that some scheme by which, if the Standing Orders of this House were altered, the Resolutions which precede the Finance Act could be done away with, the Budget could be introduced earlier in the year, and that part of it which deals with Customs and Excise could become immediately operative, and would be preferable to the scheme of a statutory Resolution incorporated in this Bill. Many schemes will have to be considered by the Select Committee. That being so, if the Committee is to do any good, and is to devise, as I hope it will, a workable scheme, just to all, what is the common sense of passing a permanent Bill first and then asking from the Select Committee a Report as to what that Bill should contain?

Those who have experience of this House know what the fate of a Report under these circumstances is likely to be. The tragedy of "Love's Labour Lost" is nothing compared to the pathetic spectacle of gentlemen of eminence passing their valuable time in devising a Report which we know and they know, as soon as it appears, will receive decent permanent interment in the Blue Books of this House, which the youngest Member does not trouble to read after his first Session in Parliament. If that is so, and I think the statement is not exaggerated, surely common sense dictates that we should limit the duration of the Bill to a period which will give proper time for the completed scheme to come from the experts whom you yourselves are going to appoint. To make the Bill permanent will discourage those who are going to inquire. Then if you desire to act on the Report when it is presented, you will have to find time for it. It may come at a time when circumstances are altered. What Chancellor of the Exchequer, from this party or that, if he has this measure ready to his hand, will be able to resist the temptation to put it into operation without troubling himself about the Report of an expert Committee appointed eighteen months before? This is the net result. If your Committee of experts reports in accordance with the scheme of this Bill, if after due examination it comes to the conclusion that this scheme is the best, the measure can be included in the Expiring Laws Continuance Act, and it will go on automatically. If, on the other hand, as we on this side ardently hope, a new and better scheme is devised, this Bill will cease to be operative in eighteen months' time, and the new scheme can be incorporated in a perfect Bill, at which I am sure the Chancellor of the Exchequer is aiming as we are. Such a Bill could be presented, and, in the ordinary course, one is entitled to hope it would go through practically without opposition. Take this as a test—I think this is a legitimate observation—of the real intention of the Government, not to get themselves out of a temporary difficulty, but to secure a perfect scheme which shall remain in operation for all future time. If they really desire that, there is no possible reason why they should not accept a Clause limiting the duration of a measure which they admit is to deal with a temporary emergency only. If they desire that the Report of the Committee should be a farce, and that this new and startling procedure should be utilised for all time by all parties, of course there is no object in appointing the Select Committee and still less in limiting the duration of the Bill. I hope that these arguments will appeal to the Chancellor of the Exchequer. It seems to me that a time limit is the legitimate corollary of that to which he has already consented. I think the whole House is grateful to the Government for having recognised that an expert inquiry into this difficult question is required, and this is a way of making the work of that Committee effective.


I beg to second the Motion.

The CHANCELLOR of the EXCHEQUER (Mr. Lloyd George)

This Clause was moved in identical terms on the Committee stage. The Government, after some discussion, promised to appoint a Select Committee to consider the best method of meeting the difficulties with which this Bill is intended to deal, and upon that promise the hon. and learned Member, although he distinctly stated that he preferred both to appoint the Committee and to limit the duration of the Bill, stated that half a loaf was better than no bread, and withdrew the Clause.


The Chancellor of the Exchequer will remember that I said at the time that I was no party to the bargain, and that I knew nothing of it.


That is so, but I think the hon. and learned Gentleman will agree that I am within my rights in reminding him of the circumstances under which similar Clauses were withdrawn on Tuesday last. The hon. and learned Gentleman suggests that we should not merely appoint a Select Committee, but should also limit the duration of the Bill, and that the Government should undertake at once to give statutory effect to the Report of the Committee. That would be rather a rash pledge for any Government to give. Whatever Government happens to be in power eighteen months since would be bound to legislate at the time, and there might be reason why they should put it off for the time being. If the hon. and learned Gentleman has watched the whole proceedings carefully he will have found that this Bill has been very considerably limited since its first introduction into this House—at least since it was first outlined to the House; since the summary of the Bill and its pro- visions were outlined. Since then there have been Clauses introduced which will have the effect of limiting its operations very considerably indeed. As a matter of fact, the Bill does not represent 50 per cent. of the accommodation and facility which the old practice represented. The right hon. Gentleman the Member for East Worcestershire knows that very well.

The Amendment of the Noble Lord opposite (Lord Hugh Cecil), which the Government accepted, involves the statutory guarantee that the Budget will be debated during the course of the live part of the Session. Although no doubt the hon. and learned Gentleman will say that this Government have abused the facilities which they had under the old practice, still if he looks at the precedents he will find that many Governments have put off to the end of the Session the discussions on the Committee and Report stages of Resolutions. The Noble Lord will find possibly several cases of the Report, stages of Finance Bills which were put off till the end of July. I have no doubt there was some temporary justification for it. But that will be impossible while you have this statutory guarantee. It cannot be done. There are other limitations which have been introduced into the Bill. There is the limitation which confines it to Customs and Excise and the Income Tax. There are two or three other limitations, including the very serious one in regard to the new taxes. I would suggest to the hon. and learned Gentleman that when the Select Committee reports the Report may not be in favour of further limiting the Bill, but in favour of extending the powers. I would not mind predicting that the point of view of that Committee will possibly be that of old Members of this House and of those who studied the procedure on this matter, and that the Report will be in favour of widening and extending the powers. Therefore it will be rather in the interests of the Government of the day than those who are criticising the Bill from the point of view of excessive powers. The hon. and learned Gentleman has presented his case, and has presented it very clearly and fairly—as he always does—and I hope, having done so, he will now be able to see his way to withdraw the Amendment.


I extremely regret the tone of the reply which the Chancellor of the Exchequer has given…




Because it seems obvious to me that he contemplates not only this Bill, but still larger Bills in this direction as part of the permanent machinery of the Government and of the Executive.


indicated dissent.


The right hon. Gentleman shakes his head, but he was predicting just now that the result of any examination by any Select Committee would be to give to future Chancellors of the Exchequer even more powers. He will understand, then, why I regret it is so. I have taken some exception to the tone of his speech…




Well, then, if the right hon. Gentleman will have it so, let me say I regret the outlook of the right hon. gentleman.


Hear, hear.


That outlook is a very different outlook to that which we hoped he was going to indulge in to-day. We have observed during the progress of this Bill that the right hon. Gentleman has made many concessions to those who have been criticising his proposals. Amongst those concessions—I was not able to continue in the House the other evening—there was the right hon. Gentleman's consent to the appointment of a Select Committee to inquire into the whole procedure attaching to this Resolution and this Bill. I was very grateful to the right hon. Gentleman for having promised to set up that Committee. I was one of those whom the right hon. Gentleman beneath me consulted in respect to a Select Committee in the early days, when we were debating the Resolution on which this Bill is founded, and I was strongly in favour of such a Committee being set up. If we are to have that Committee, I think that Committee, having reported, there ought to be on the part of the Government some real desire to legislate on the lines of the Report, unless they strongly disagree upon it. I cannot help thinking as it is that it is this Government, after all, that has occasioned the difficulty. By challenging action in another place they have really created this difficulty, and therefore it is this Government which ought to deal with the difficulty and extricate this House and the country from the position in which they find themselves. From the speech of the right hon. Gentleman it seems perfectly patent when he gets these powers put into his hands, he is not likely to pay any attention to any Report of any Select Committee during, at any rate, the existence of this Parliament. Obviously this Parliament cannot last more than another two and a half years, even if it lasts its full time, and unless there is some limiting time put into the powers that are given to the Chancellor of the Exchequer by this Bill, I am quite certain that the Chancellor will not find time to indulge in any legislation which will be found recommended in the Report of the Select Committee. The Chancellor of the Exchequer will find himself in the possession of very large powers which he will fully enjoy. He will not be at all anxious to part with them for any lesser powers such as I think will be recommended by the Select Committee. I am quite aware that Chancellors of the Exchequer will be glad of the powers which are given by this Bill.

For my own part I have been more anxious for the rights of the House, the rights of the subject, and the rights of the taxed subject than for the rights of the Treasury and the rights of Chancellors of the Exchequer. I think it is high time that there were more in this House who were ready to take the side of the House and the side of the subject against the side of the Treasury and the side of the Executive, even although they themselves may have had some experience on the Treasury side and may in every way possible be anxious to promote the getting in of our revenue in the proper and orthodox way. I regret that the Government do not see their way to put any Clause into this Bill making it a temporary Bill. If they have no intention of making it a temporary Bill that is almost conclusive that they are hoping to make this part of the permanent machinery of the Executive and of the practice of the Treasury. I have always said that this is a most dangerous power to give to any Chancellor of the Exchequer or to any Treasury. I fully admit that these powers have been very much limited, and particularly limited by the Amendment of the Noble Lord the Member for Oxford University. His Amendment seems to me a very valuable Amendment. Yet these powers, limited as they are, are enormous. I can never fail to remember, when I am speaking on this Bill, the speech of my right hon. Friend the Member for East Worcestershire, in which he himself admitted that even under the limited powers of the Bill it might be perfectly possible, by a single Resolution in Committee of Ways and Means, to raise the Income Tax from 1s. 2d. to 15s. in the £—this by one single Vote. Now, however, the Amendment of the Noble Lord has been put in, of course such a Resolution would have to be debated by the whole House within ten days; and within twenty days would have to find itself in a Finance Act. At the same time I have a great dislike to, and a great distrust of, giving such enormous powers to any Government, even for ten days.

When taxation is once on it is very difficult to take off. The expenditure based on that taxation begins almost at once, and the arguments proposed against it are not always advanced at the right time or in the right place: the tax becomes part of the taxation of the country, and it is very difficult, after it has been actually passed by Committee of this House, to oppose it; for a successful opposition would probably lead to the overthrow of the Government of the day. The Government in defence would bring up all their forces. The Members might have very much disliked the Resolution when they first heard it; but the Government would subsequently say to their supporters, "You must support us; we will make this a matter of confidence, and if you oppose us you will help to turn the Government out at a critical time." So the Government are able to use this unfair power in respect to taxation, and the whole subject is not debated in that free way in which it would be debated under the present system. I cannot help thinking that there should be some limit, and I shall strongly support the Amendment of my hon. and learned Friend that the operation of this Bill should be limited to eighteen months. That period would give the present Government time to legislate and extricate themselves from the difficulty in which they have landed this House of Commons. I think we ought to take every opportunity of registering our opinion that this Bill and the legislation founded upon a Resolution of Committee of Ways and Means is not legislation that ought to be passed as the permanent machinery of this country.


This Amendment is put forward not in the least degree in a spirit of complaint against the Government or the Chancellor of the Exchequer. We quite recognise the concession made on Tuesday evening, and the spirit in which it was made. This Amendment is merely put forward with a desire to improve the Bill. I confess, in spite of the arguments that were used by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, that it still seems to me that it would be an improvement. The right hon. Gentleman says, "You are quite as likely to have arrangements altered for the worse from your point of view as for the better; on the other hand, restrictions of this kind might be inconvenient and put forward at an awkward moment when it might be difficult to give the necessary time for the passing of the Resolution." In respect to the last matter no such difficulty could arise, for it would be always possible to meet it. No one could reasonably complain of its being put into one year in order to relieve Parliament of any congestion of business that it was suffering from at that time. So far as the other argument goes, I recognise fully that, if it was the danger the Chancellor of the Exchequer speaks of, nothing we do on this occasion can make that danger either less or greater. It is quite true that once having made this great breach in the constitutional security of the subject it is only too likely that it will be enlarged. Nothing is easier than to enlarge it. You do not require a new Bill. You can do it by a Clause in the Budget Bill, and you can sweep away any of those safeguards the Chancellor of the Exchequer speaks of. And I think it is very likely that a Clause would be introduced by my right hon. Friend the Member for East Worcester (Mr. Austen Chamberlain) including new taxes. He has not concealed from the House that he has a very strong opinion that the Bill is almost useless unless it includes new taxes. When we have a majority in this House, and he is the Minister in charge of the finances of the country, he would lose no time in proposing such an addition to this Bill, the necessity of which he has always urged. The Government know they cannot restrain a future Chancellor of the Exchequer. As things are, there is no doubt in any future Budget it could be extended to any degree by any Chancellor of the Exchequer, and if it suited the purposes of the Treasury, whether presided over by a Unionist or a Liberal, to enlarge this Bill, this Bill will be enlarged. And the ineffectiveness of our resistance, not in argument, in which I think our resistance has been very effective, but the ineffec- tiveness of our resistance to having this thing done, shows how helpless those are who seek to put any limit upon the growing authority of the Executive Government. It is merely a question of how much the Treasury likes to ask for; they will get it. I think the main value of making the Bill temporary is the moral effect. By making it temporary we recognise that we are doing something which is a very serious change. We pay, at any rate, that debt of hypocrisy, which, as we know, is the tribute that vice pays to virtue, and we maintain, at any rate, the externals of the Constitution, and therefore, if there is any reaction of opinion which really thinks that the Executive Government has more power than they ought to have and that Parliament has less power than it ought to have, we are ear-marking this as one of the things on which reform should be made.

There are many alternatives by which the convenience of the public might be served besides this breach in the Constitution. You might do it by getting importers to give security where a Resolution was passed, or you might allow the rapid passing of a temporary Act of Parliament which would be infinitely less harmful to a Constitutional procedure if you are to preserve the procedure resembling that which is sanctioned by tradition in this country, and you might allow a Bill to pass through all its stages in a short time if you have to deal with an emergency. I mention this to show that there are other alternatives. Therefore, if a Select Committee considered it thoroughly, it might well be that while they might report favourably as to the convenience of this particular Bill, they might also report amendments in our view desirable and they might also report that there are alternative schemes. Then you might have a reaction of opinion and if Parliament should think it was desirable to put a check upon the extraordinary power of the Executive Government, then you would have this scheme urged and this Bill ear-marked. On these grounds I think it would be better to make it a temporary Bill. We ought to maintain the forms of great deference to the ancient Constitution and show upon the Act of Parliament that we are conscious we are doing a thing which, even though it be necessary, is a matter of regret to those who wish to preserve our ancient constitutional procedure.


I think it is a matter of great importance, having regard to the enormous change that this Bill would undoubtedly introduce, that it should be only of a temporary character. I go further than the Noble Lord the Member for Oxford University. I think it would have more than a moral effect and I think it would have a great protective effect as regards the maintenance of the true spirit of our Constitution in the future. Take the case of the Army Act. Why is that temporary and renewable from year to year? It is that this House of Commons—not the Government—should maintain the control which would enable it to enforce whatever it thinks right as to public policy by the Army Act being passed only from year to year. It might be thought at the present day that the time has passed when it is necessary to keep these old safeguards. According to my view, there never was a time when it was more important to keep these old safeguards than at the present moment. It is just the same with regard to the Budget itself, because, according to constitutional practice, we only grant Supplies for one year. Why is that done? In order that this House may have the control, which it ought to have, in directing the public policy of this country, and that theory is the right one, because as long as we retain the power of the Purse, as it was known in the old days, nothing can be done contrary to our view of public policy, because in such circumstances we would not vote the necessary Supplies.

Let me consider the present position of this constitutional question. It is no longer the House of Commons on the one side and the Executive in the form of the King on the other. It is the House of Commons struggling—and I want to call the attention of hon. Gentlemen to this—to maintain its effective and independent control against the Executive which gets its power from the majority of the House itself. That is the great difficulty at the present day. Can we ever effectively enforce the rights of the House as against the views of the Government supported by a particular majority? In old days, when these safeguards were formed, extreme party spirit was not the dominant factor, and the House of Commons view was that we were here as the representatives of the people in order to preserve control of taxation and in order to see that the rights of those whom we represented were not unduly interfered with. I have been looking to see if I could find a precedent for the action of the Government in the present Bill which gives statutory effect to a Resolution, and I have looked through the constitutional law books, and I can only find one precedent anything like the present, and that only endured for a very short time, and was, in fact, temporary. That was in the time of Henry VIII. Henry VIII. was not a very squeamish monarch as regards constitutional matters, but this was an Act passed in his day and it was repealed immediately afterwards. It was in these words:— The King for the time being, with the advice of his Council, or the most part of them, may set forth proclamations which shall be deemed as if they were made by Act of Parliament. What are we doing now? We are doing exactly the same if we substitute the words "Resolution of the House of Commons" for what were called "Proclamations" by one of the most tyrannous monarchs that ever sat upon the throne of this country. That is the only precedent I can find for putting on one side the Crown and constitutional rule, because although the House of Commons or Parliament have the sovereign power, they can only express that sovereignty in a constitutional method named in an Act of Parliament which has gone through the form, at any rate, of being agreed to by the Second Chamber, and also by the King, who represents the third element in our Constitution. In fact, this proposal as it stands is a direct attack on the prerogative of the King, because you are giving statutory effect to a Resolution in which he takes no part at all. It is also, of course, a direct attack upon the rights of the Second Chamber, even a Second Chamber in its mutilated form as it exists at the present time, because you are overruling the Parliament Act. I thought the Parliament Act gave sufficient powers to this House, and although I am very much opposed to the idea of the Parliament Act, you are now overruling that Act. It is like the "Rake's Progress," once you give too much power, you are always seeking to make it worse, you are always seeking to make it more tyrannous against the principles of freedom and liberty. What is the difference between the proposal of Henry VIII. and what you are now doing? Let me put into my own language what was done in giving the power of an Act of Parliament to the proclamation of Henry VIII. It is "this House, for the time being, with the assent of the majority of Members, may pass a Resolution which will be taken to have statutory effect." That is paraphrasing the brutal Act passed giving these powers to Henry VIII., and applying it to modern times. I have protested against this and shall do so on every occasion, and if you insist on doing anything of the kind, surely you ought to put in some such limitation as is suggested by the Amendment now before the House! I do not say for a moment that any limitation would reconcile me to the upsetting of the whole basic fabric of our freedom and liberty in this House and country which is involved in making a mere Resolution of any body, whether the House of Commons or any other body, to have statutory effect as regards the imposition of new taxes upon the subject. When we come to consider the point which we constantly deplore, but which we do not go to the root or reason of, namely, why it is that we are losing our popularity and our hold upon the affections of the people of the country, of course the answer is because we are sacrificing and giving up the very duties that won us the affections of the people and made us popular in past history. It is as the sole guardian of the freedom of the people of this country that the House of Commons won its position, and to the extent to which it gives up that position it loses its hold upon the affections of the people. I feel most strongly the retrograde doctrines which are embodied in this Bill. Of course I must not go into that in any detail at the present moment, but at least let us do this: Let us put it in a temporary form in order to emphasise the fact that we are dealing with a temporary difficulty owing to the dilatory action of the present Government in introducing a particular Budget. Is that any reason for sacrificing the basic fabric of the right of this House and the liberties of the subject? I deny that. I say there is no difficulty whatever in dealing with what has been suggested as regards the claims of the Treasury without bringing forward a Bill of this kind, which ought never to have been initiated and the principle of which ought never to have been admitted, having regard to the spirit of the House of Commons. I do not care whether Liberals or Unionists sit upon the Front Bench. I draw no distinction between one side or the other. It is always the interest of the Executive of the party in power to run down the rights and liberties of this House, and they have done it to such an extent by the gag and the guillotine that we have only got a mere fragment of our old rights in existence at the present moment. It is because I look upon the House of Commons as the sole and real guardian of right government in this country, and because I regard the House of Commons with a deep affection, and believe historically that it stands in a unique position, that I hope this temporary Amendment may be introduced in order to emphasise the fact that we are only sacrificing our liberties and our rights for a temporary difficulty brought about by exceptional conditions.


I feel somewhat in a difficulty on this Amendment because I moved a similar Amendment during the Committee stage, and when the Chancellor of the Exchequer promised to appoint a Select Committee I was beguiled into withdrawing my Amendment, and therefore in any Division on this Amendment I should not feel at liberty to vote for it. I would like to know, however, whether the

Division No. 53.] AYES. [5.3 p.m.
Agg-Gardner, James Tynte Fisher, Rt. Hon. W. Hayes Newman, John R. P.
Amery, L. C. M. S. Fitzroy, Hon. Edward A. Nicholson, William G. (Petersfield)
Anstruther-Gray, Major William Fletcher, John Samuel Parkes, Ebenezer
Ashley. W. W. Forster, Henry William Perkins, Walter
Astor, Waldorf Gibbs, G. A. Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Ecclesail)
Baird, J. L. Gilmour, Captain John Rutherford, John (Darwen)
Baker, Sir Randolf L. (Dorset, N.) Glazebrook, Captain Philip K. Samuel, Sir Harry (Norwood)
Banbury, Sir Frederick George Gordon, Hon. John Edward (Brighton) Sanders, Robert A.
Barnston, Harry Goulding, Edward Alfred Scott, Sir S. (Marylebone, W.)
Bathurst, Charles (Wilts, Wilton) Guinness, Hon. Rupert (Essex, S.E.) Smith, Rt. Hon. F. E. (L'pool, Walton)
Beach, Hon. Michael Hugh Hicks Haddock, George Bahr Snowden, Philip
Bentinck, Lord H. Cavendish- Hall, Frederick (Dulwich) Spear, Sir John Ward
Bigland, Alfred Hambro, Angus Valdemar Stanley, Hon. G. F. (Preston)
Bird, A. Harris, Henry Percy Staveley-Hill, Henry
Blair, Reginald Henderson, Major H. (Berks, Abingdon) Steel-Maitland, A. D.
Boscawen, Sir Arthur S. T. Griffith- Hewins, William Albert Samuel Stewart, Gershom
Bridgeman, W. Clive Hibbert, Sir Henry F. Strauss, Arthur (Paddington, N.)
Bull, Sir William James Hoare, Samuel John Gurney Sykes, Alan John (Ches., Knutsford)
Burn, Colonel C. R. Hope, Major J. A. (Midlothian) Sykes, Mark (Hull, Central)
Butcher, J. G. Houston, Robert Paterson Talbot, Lord E.
Carlile, Sir Edward Hildred Hunt, Rowland Terrell, G. (Wilts, N.W.)
Castlereagh, Viscount Hunter, Sir C. R. Thompson, Robert (Belfast, North)
Cecil, Lord Hugh (Oxford University) Jardine, Ernest (Somerset, East) Thomson, W. Mitchell- (Down, N.)
Chaloner, Colonel R. G. W. Jones, Leif Straiten (Notts, Rushcliffe) Touche, George Alexander
Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. J. A. (Worc'r., E.) Kerr-Smiley, Peter Kerr Tryon, Captain George Clement
Clay, Captain H. H. Spender Kerry, Earl of Valentia, Viscount
Clive, Captain Percy Archer Lane-Fox, G. R. Warde, Colonel C. E. (Kent, Mid)
Craig, Charles Curtis (Antrim, S.) Law, Rt. Hon. A. Bonar (Bootle) Weigall, Captain A. G.
Craig, E. (Ches., Crewe) Lewisham, Viscount Weston, Colonel J. W.
Craig, Captain James (Down, E.) Locker-Lampson, G. (Salisbury) Wheler, Granville C. H.
Cripps, Sir Charles Alfred Lockwood, Rt. Hon. Lt.-Colonel A. R. Wills, Sir Gilbert
Croft, H. P. Lyttelton, Hon. J. C. (Droitwich) Wilson, A. Stanley (Yorks, E.R.)
Dalrymple, Viscount MacCaw, Wm. J. MacGeagh Wood, John (Stalybridge)
Dalziel, Davison (Brixton) Macmaster, Donald Worthington-Evans, L.
Denniss, E. R. B. M'Calmont, Major Robert C. A. Wortley, Rt. Hon. C. B. Stuart-
Dickson, Rt. Hon. C. Scott M'Neill, Ronald (Kent, St. Augustine's) Wright, Henry Fitzherbert
Duffy, William J. Malcolm, Ian Yate, Colonel Charles Edward
Eyres-Monsell, Bolton M. Mildmay, Francis Bingham
Faber, George Denison (Clapham) Mills, Hon. Charles Thomas TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Mr. Hume-William and Major Willoughby.
Falle, Bertram Godfray Mount, William Arthur
Fell, Arthur
Abraham, William (Dublin, Harbour) Ainsworth, John Stirling Baker, H. T. (Accrington)
Acland, Francis Dyke Arnold, Sydney Baker, Joseph Allen (Finsbury, E.)
Adkins, Sir W. Ryland D. Atherley-Jones, Llewellyn A. Balfour, Sir Robert (Lanark)

Government are going to appoint this Select Committee at once, because it is important that it should be appointed at the earliest moment. My desire in asking for the appointment of a Select Committee was not what the Chancellor of the Exchequer seems to think. It was to ascertain whether there were not alternatives which would enable us to deal with the situation without violating the Constitution in the way which has been so eloquently dealt with by my hon. Friend. What convinces me that there must be such alternatives that no country in the world has yet been cited except the Isle of Man, which has legislation similar to this. On these grounds I hope we shall be told, before the discussion on this Amendment concludes, when the Government are going to appoint this Select Committee.

Question put, "That the Clause be now read a second time."

The House divided: Ayes, 118; Noes, 258.

Baring, Sir Godfrey (Barnstaple) Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth) O'Kelly, James (Roscommon, N.)
Barlow, Sir John Emmott (Somerset) Havelock-Allan, Sir Henry O'Malley, William
Barnes, G. N. Hayden, John Patrick O'Shaughnessy, P. J.
Barton, w. Hazleton, Richard O'Shee, James John
Beale, Sir William Phipson Helme, Sir Norval Watson O'Sullivan, Timothy
Beauchamp, Sir Edward Henderson, Arthur (Durham) Outhwaite, R. L.
Beck, Arthur Cecil Henderson, J. M. (Aberdeen, W.) Palmer, Godfrey Mark
Bethell, Sir J. H. Henry, Sir Charles Parker, James (Halifax)
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Herbert, General, Sir Ivor (Mon., S.) Parry, Thomas H.
Black, Arthur W. Higham, John Sharp Pearce, Robert (Staffs, Leek)
Boland, John Pius Hinds, John Phillips, John (Longford, S.)
Booth, Frederick Handel Hogge, James Myles Pirie, Duncan V.
Boyle, D. (Mayo, North) Holmes, Daniel Turner Pointer, Joseph
Brace, William Holt, Richard Durning Price, C. E. (Edinburgh, Central)
Brady, P. J. Horne, C. Silvester (Ipswich) Price, Sir Robert J. (Norfolk, E.)
Brocklehurst, W. B. Howard, Hon. Geoffrey Primrose, Hon. Neil James
Bryce, J. Annan Hughes, Spencer Leigh Pringle, William M. R.
Burke, E. Haviland- Illingworth, Percy H. Radford, G. H.
Burns, Rt. Hon. John Isaacs, Rt. Hon. Sir Rufus Raffan, Peter Wilson
Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Jones, Rt. Hon. Sir D. Brynmor (Sw'nsea) Reddy, M.
Buxton, Rt. Hon. Sidney C. (Poplar) Jones, Edgar (Merthyr Tydvil) Redmond, John E. (Waterford)
Byles, Sir William Pollard Jones, H. Hayden (Merioneth) Redmond, William Archer (Tyrone, E.)
Carr-Gomm, H. W. Jones, J. Towyn (Carmarthen, East) Rendall, Athelstan
Cawley, Sir Frederick (Prestwich) Jones, W. S. Glyn- (T. H'mts., Stepney) Richardson, Thomas (Whitehaven)
Cawley, H. T. (Lancs., Heywood) Jowett, Frederick William Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)
Chancellor, H. G. Joyce, Michael Roberts, G. H. (Norwich)
Chapple, Dr. William Allen Keating, Matthew Roberts, Sir J. H. (Denbighs)
Clancy, John Joseph Kellaway, Frederick George Robertson, Sir G. S. (Bradford)
Clough, William Kelly, Edward Robertson, John M. (Tyneside)
Clynes, John R. Kennedy, Vincent Paul Robinson, Sidney
Collins, G. P. (Greenock) Kilbride, Denis Roch, Walter F.
Compton-Rickett, Rt. Hon. Sir J. King, J. Roche, Augustine (Louth)
Condon, Thomas Joseph Lambert, Rt. Hon. G. (Devon, S. Molton) Roe, Sir Thomas
Cornwall, Sir Edwin A. Lambert, Richard (Wilts, Cricklade) Rowlands, James
Cotton, William Francis Lardner, James C. R. Rowntree, Arnold
Cowan, W. H. Lawson, Sir W. (Cumb'rld, Cockerm'th) Runciman, Rt. Hon. Walter
Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) Leach, Charles Russell, Rt. Hon. Thomas W.
Crawshay-Williams, Eliot Lewis, John Herbert Samuel, Rt. Hon. H. L. (Cleveland)
Crooks, William Lough, Rt. Hon. Thomas Samuel, J. (Stockton-on-Tees)
Crumley, Patrick Low, Sir Frederick (Norwich) Schwann, Rt. Hon. Sir C. E.
Davies, E. William (Elfion) Lundon, Thomas Scott, A. MacCallum (Glas., Bridgeton)
Davies, Timothy (Lincs., Louth) Lyell, Charles Henry Seely, Rt. Hon. Colonel J. E. B.
Davies, Sir W. Howell (Bristol, S.) Lynch, A. A. Sheehy, David
Davies, M. Vaughan- (Cardiganshire) Macdonald, J. M. (Falkirk Burghs) Sherwell, Arthur James
Delany, William McGhee, Richard Shortt, Edward
Denman, Hon. R. D. Maclean, Donald Smith, Albert (Lancs., Clitheroe)
Dickinson, W. H. MacNeill. J. G. Swift (Donegal, South) Smith, H. B. L. (Northampton)
Dillon, John Macpherson, James Ian Smyth, Thomas F. (Leitrim, S.)
Donelan, Captain A MacVeagh, Jeremiah Soames, Arthur Wellesley
Doris, W. M'Callum, Sir John M. Spicer, Rt. Hon. Sir Albert
Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness) M'Curdy, Charles Albert Strauss, Edward A. (Southwark, West)
Duncan, J. Hastings (Yorks, Otley) McKenna, Rt. Hon. Reginald Sutherland, J. E.
Esmonde, Dr. John (Tipperary, N.) M'Micking, Major Gilbert Sutton, John E.
Essex, Sir Richard Walter Marks, Sir George Croydon Taylor, John W. (Durham)
Esslemont, George Birnie Marshall, Arthur Harold Taylor, Theodore C. (Radcliffe)
Farrell, James Patrick Mason, David M. (Coventry) Taylor, Thomas (Bolton)
Fenwick, Rt. Hon. Charles Meagher, Michael Tennant, Harold John
Ferens, Rt. Hon. Thomas Robinson Meehan, Francis E. (Leitrim, N.) Thomas, J. H.
Ffrench, Peter Millar, James Duncan Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton)
Field, William Molloy, M. Thorne, William (West Ham)
Fitzgibbon, John Molteno, Percy Alport Toulmin, Sir George
Flavin, Michael Joseph Mond, Sir Alfred Moritz Trevelyan, Charles Philips
Gelder, Sir W. A. Montagu, Hon. E. S. Ure, Rt. Hon. Alexander
Gill, A. H. Mooney, J. J. Wadsworth, J.
Ginnell, L. Morgan, George Hay Walsh, Stephen (Lancs., Ince)
Gladstone, W. G. C. Morrell, Philip Wardle, George J.
Glanville, Harold James Morison, Hector Waring, Walter
Goddard, Sir Daniel Ford Morton, Alpheus Cleophas Warner, Sir Thomas Courtenay
Goldstone, Frank Muldoon, John Wason, John Cathcart (Orkney)
Greenwood, Granville G. (Peterborough) Munro, R. Watt, Henry A.
Greenwood, Hamar (Sunderland) Murphy, Martin J. Webb, H.
Griffith, Ellis J. Needham, Christopher T. White, J. Dundas (Glasgow, Tradeston)
Guest, Hon. Frederick E. (Dorset, E.) Neilson, Francis White, Patrick (Meath, North)
Gulland, John William Nicholson, Sir C. N. (Doncaster) Wiles, Thomas
Gwynn, Stephen Lucius (Galway) Norman, Sir Henry Williamson, Sir Archibald
Hackett, J. Norton, Captain Cecil W. Wilson, John (Durham, Mid)
Hall, F. (Yorks, Normanton) Nugent, Sir Walter Richard Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)
Hancock, John George Nuttall, Harry Winfrey, Richard
Harcourt, Rt. Hon. L. (Rossendale) O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny) Wing, Thomas
Harcourt, Robert V. (Montrose) O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.) Wood, Rt Hon. T. McKinnon (Glas.)
Hardle, J. Keir O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool) Yoxall, Sir James Henry
Harmsworth, R. L. (Caithness-shire) O'Donnell, Thomas
Harvey, T. E. (Leeds, West) O'Dowd, John TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—Mr. Wedgwood Benn and Mr. W. Jones.
Harvey, W. E. (Derbyshire, N.E.) O'Kelly, Edward P. (Wicklow, W.)