HC Deb 29 May 1913 vol 53 cc313-4

asked the Secretary to the Treasury the total public expenditure connected with the illegal retention of a seat in this House by Sir Stuart Samuel?


The total expenditure on behalf of the Select Committee was £310, and in connection with the proceedings before the Privy Council £745.


asked the Attorney-General whether the correctness and regularity of the Roll of Parliament is or is not within the non-contentious business of the Law Officers; the date of the first contract incapacitating Sir Stuart Samuel as a Member of this House; all the subsequent dates upon which he sat or voted illegally; if the Law Officers had no official duty in the matter, the date upon which they first expressed an opinion; and, if that opinion was in accordance with the law and the previous practice in like cases, will he explain how any necessity arose for public expenditure in this matter?

The ATTORNEY-GENERAL (Sir Rufus Isaacs)

The answer to the first part of the question is in the negative. The only opinion expressed by the Law Officers was, as stated by me to the House in November, 1912, that, in accordance with precedent, the matter should be referred to a Select Committee of the House. The subsequent proceedings before the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council were in pursuance of the recommendation of that Select Committee. With regard to the other questions asked, they are at present sub judice.


The right hon. Gentleman has not answered anything as to what was the nature of the opinion expressed by the Law Officers on this case?


I have.