HC Deb 21 December 1925 vol 189 cc2037-71

Order read for consideration of Lords Amendments.

The MINISTER of HEALTH (Mr. Neville Chamberlain)

I beg to move, "That the Lords Amendments be now considered."


I want to ask the Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury a question. The sixth Order on the Paper is the Second Heading of the Rating (Scotland) Bill. I do not know whether he intends taking that to-night.

The PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY to the TREASURY (Commander Eyres Monsell)

We hope to get Orders (1) Rating and Valuation Bill, (2) Criminal Justice Bill, (3) Tithe Bill, and (4) Sandwich Port and Haven Bill, consideration of Lords Amendments, and (5) Mines (Working Facilities and Support) Bill [Lords], Committee; and the Motion on Iraq standing in the name of the Prime Minister.


I would like to ask whether this Motion that has been made is debatable.




I do not think we should proceed to consider the Lords Amendments. After what has already been said to-day by the right hon. Gentleman the Deputy-Leader of the Opposition, it seems to me this House has been put into a very unfair position, and if the matter of Mosul and the questions appertaining thereto are of so much importance, it is a farce to go on with the discussion of the Amendments to the Rating and Valuation Bill. The House has not had a sufficient opportunity for the consideration of the Amendments that have been made in the other House. There are far more outstanding questions than the Amendments to this Rating and Valuation Bill, which I feel that this House would be far better discussing at the present time, and, therefore, I submit that we do not proceed with these Amendments.


I would certainly like to support my hon. Friend. Being one of the Members of the Rating and Valuation Committee, it seems to me that we have got pretty well as many Amendments from the Lords as we had to consider in Committee, and we were there some 10 days considering alterations to this important Bill. I think the Minister himself will admit that this is a very important Measure, very wide-spreading, and will cause a good deal of contention in the country. I, along with other Members of the Committee, cannot agree to sit here and consider these Amendments of the Lords without full consideration. It seems to me we shall not be able to claim much credit if we accept these Amendments, and say that this Bill is to be worked as an Act of Parliament by various people throughout the country. In my opinion the Minister would not be justified in taking these Amendments this afternoon.


I want to lodge my protest against this method of conducting business. On Friday afternoon, two hours before the House was due to rise, the Prime Minister came in and rushed a new system of housing upon us. Today we are to have something else rushed through. There is the question of unemployment. But that is a home question and there is no time for that, and the Government want us to rush through the business in order to get on to the question of Iraq. They are not going to do it. We have made up our minds to fight every inch we can, and we shall divide at every chance we get.


I should like to add my voice to the general protest against these Amendments being considered at the present time. This Bill is of vital importance to the whole country, and the Amendments deserve to be considered in the fullest possible House. It is common knowledge that on this, the last day of the Session, the House is not anything: like full. A large number of Members, both from the agricultural districts and from the urban districts, are not in the House to-day, and these Amendments vitally concern the constituents of those Members. I certainly think we ought to have the full intelligence, the full knowledge, of the House brought to bear upon these very important Amendments which have been sent down to us from the House of Lords.

There is another point. This House ought to take into consideration the relative importance of the subjects it decides to discuss, and I consider this particular subject for which time is asked this afternoon, is not nearly so important to the people of this country as a whole as other subjects which may be discussed at a later stage. Therefore, I protest very strongly at the Government seeking to take several hours of the very valuable time of this House in asking us to consider these Lords Amendments. After all what is the House of Lords? I have no title, I believe, to refer to it in a particular sense, but I regard this House of Commons as being infinitely more important than the other place.


The hon. Member cannot now discuss that.


I have not had time to go through the list of these Amendments from the other place, but I find, from a very rapid glance, that they are very numerous. There are no less than 15 pages of them, and they number 91. I think everyone will agree that the task of giving adequate consideration to Amendments of this character is such, that there is really not sufficient time the last day of the Session for us to perform that task properly. Not only are the Amendments numerous, but there are some which deal with matters of vital importance to great urban constituencies like that which I have the honour to represent. I know from a cursory glance there are such Amendments, and if I am going to discharge my duty faithfully by my constituents—and it has been my object ever since I came into the House to do that whenever I see a Motion on the Order Paper which tends to impose additional burdens on my constituents— it is my duty to bring the full play of my intellect to bear upon that proposal, and to see whether or not I can prevent injustice being done to my constituents. Looking, as I say, in very cursory fashion through these Amendments, I am bound to come to the conclusion that, because they are so numerous and so complicated in their character, there is not adequate time, between now and the time when the House will be prorogued, for the proper consideration of all these Amendments. Therefore, supported, I hope, by every one of my fellow Members on those benches, I am determined to raise my voice against this very unnecessary and unjust proposal.


I want to take exception once again to the manner in which the Government, are rushing business through this House, in that we are being asked to consider this Bill of 90 pages of closely printed matter this afternoon. A long period is spent in Committee on this Bill, the House goes through a Report stage which takes up several days, and, alter Third Heading, the Bill is sent to the other place, and comes back to this House with 15 pages of Amendments containing no fewer than 131 specific and definite Amendments. As far as I can see, the Government are under the impression that they can treat this House and that they can treat the Opposition in this House with contempt. That may be all right for people who allow themselves to be treated with contempt. As long as I am here, I am going to protest, and, what in more, I am going to fight against any Government trying to rush through this House 131 Amendments to this Bill, then the Tithe Bill, then the Criminal Justices Bill with Amendments from the other place, and then go on to Mosul and discuss the Iraq situation, and carry a Resolution.

I ask the right hon. and learned Gentleman, who is going to he the adviser with regard to this Rating and Valuation Bill, if he, in his capacity as a legal luminary outside, would allow any Court to rush through business in this v ay, or to treat any of the counsel in a case in the way this Government is treating the Opposition this afternoon? It is not only an insult to the Opposition, but it is an insult to the country to be asked to accept a Bill of this character, thrown at us with four other Bills and a Resolution with regard to Mosul on the same day. The Government have complained, and are complaining, that they have not time to deal with many Bills, and have-dropped them from the list. So far as we are concerned, they are not going to get this Bill and the other Bills down to-night. I shall speak upon every Amendment on this Bill and the four subsequent Bills, and there are sufficient Amendments in all these Bills to keep us Dividing right through until the House is supposed to meet to-morrow at 11 o'clock, without any discussion at all. [HON MEMBERS: "Hear, hear!"] I am glad the supporters of the Government appreciate the number of Divisions they are going to get. No doubt it will send up their score, and it will give, what some of them require, a good deal of exercise, as a result of which I am sure they will enjoy their Christmas holidays very much more.

I take it these Amendments which the Lords have made to the Rating and Valuation Bill have been put in by them in all good faith, but that does not mean that when they come before this House we are not to be allowed sufficient time to examine them, and to debate them in a way that will enable us to decide exactly what this House desires to do with regard to these Amendments. Many of these Amendments in this long list, although, as I have said, they have been made in good faith by the other place, are absolutely, in my opinion, ineffective and undesirable. The great bulk of them are ineffective in so far as they are likely to make better the Bill which left this Chamber. When you look at these things in a practical way, I submit that, so far as this Bill is concerned, there is one more argument of the necessity of abolishing the other place altogether.


I have been wondering what would have happened if Lord Banbury had been in this House now. I have heard him on many occasions protesting against legislation in a hurry, and we have the fact that we are asked to take another 130 Amendments to this Bill, and a lot of Amendments to some other Bills, and to put them through practically in a comparatively brief time and without any discussion at all. I remember hearing Lord Banbury say that one result of this slipshod method of carrying through legislation was to make work for lawyers and Courts of Justice. This is a Bill which will be very easy to operate in that fashion. What guarantee have we about it? We are told that these are all drafting Amendments, but who has told us this? The people who have told us this are the people who brought the Bill originally into the House of Commons itself, and put it through in the form in which it went to the other place. I understand that the other place could not possibly have given full consideration to any of the Clauses in the circumstances, or any of the Amendments which they put in, except one or two.

There are two Amendments that I have had time to pick out, and they are the substance. Lord Banbury himself got a very good portion of the Clause removed that deals with trading interests. There was a claim that trading profits should be put on the demand note, but Lord Banbury saw the red light and got the whole of that, as regards municipal trading profits, knocked out altegether. That is a matter which we on these benches feel very strongly about. Then there is—


On a point of Order. Is it in order, Mr. Speaker, for an hon. Member, on the question, "That the Lords Amendments be now considered," to raise the question of specific amendments?


A reference to the matter is in Order, but the hon. Member must stop at that.


Yes, Mr. Speaker, I have no intention until the time comes of debating the matter. I was calling attention to this particular Amendment because of its importance, and because Members of this House have had very little information that such Amendment had been passed before they were called upon to discuss it, and decide upon it. There is another equally important-Amendment about which I should like to have the opportunity of consulting the trade unions concerned. That is in relation to a quarrel that has taken place between trade union barristers and trade union solicitors. It is one of those disputes about demarcation, where one branch of the law should come in and the other should be kept out.

I had no opportunity of consulting my friends in either of the organisations concerned. I shall have to listen to what the right hon. and learned Gentlemen, probably the Attorney-General, or his partner, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Health, have to say, but I should have preferred to consult people outside to hear what they had to say on the question. I object further to this hurrying on of legislation, because it is on the assumption that the House has not got proper time, and that there is not proper time available to do the business. The only reason there is not proper time is that Members want to get away tomorrow. We could have sat on Wednes- day. We could have sat on Thursday. We could come back immediately after New Year's day, and have done the business in a businesslike manner. We are called upon, however, to deal with legislation of this sort, and the Government refuse altogether to give time to discuss questions that some of us here think are of infinitely more importance than these. It is for these reasons, and for many others with which I do not want to weary the House that I, at least—and I hope, hon. Members on this side—will do my best to protest, and vote against this Motion, and vote against every other Motion on the Paper this evening.


I also desire to join my voice in protest with that of my colleagues. I wish to draw the attention of the House to the fact that this is not merely a method of hurrying on legislation, but it is, in effect, asking us to cease our functions as legislators, and it is treating this House as if it were a squire's club. There are at least 90 per cent. of Members on the other side who are ready to support the Government in this action, and I suggest that they have not honestly and correctly read these Amendments, but are ready to vote, for they are under the orders of an oligarchy and the slavish direction of the Government. This particular question, Mr. Speaker, is not merely a question of Amendments from the other side. We know that Members in the other House have a peculiar interest in land and valuation—


We must rest content with dealing with our own House in matters of this sort.


The function of this House, Mr. Speaker, is continuously to make a struggle and safeguard the pecuniary interests of our electors against the rapacious demands of the Members of the other House. We are not quite sure as to what may have crept into these eleventh-hour Amendments. They may completely destroy legitimate and constitutional interests, and the rights of our constituents. We are bound to safeguard these against every Amendment that comes from the other place, especially on questions relating to land and valuation. It may be pretended that these are merely drafting Amendments, but we see there are proposals made to omit wholesale many of the Ci3,uses, or to insert new Clauses; and these are far from being merely drafting Amendments.

We are told that these amendments are altogether unimportant, of no value at all. The Government possesses sufficient influence over their own friends in the other House to leave such unimportant matters, and not to worry this House with them. Why bring in unimportant revisions in legislation merely to disturb the process of legislation as carried out by this House? If these Amendments are important, then I should like to know if this House has tacitly to agree that we are unable to do our own work efficiently, and discover that 136 serious errors are found out by members of the other House? That would certainly seem to be a very grave reflection upon the capacity and ability of Members of this House to deal with legislation. If the Government honestly presume and want us to believe that all these Amendments are not of any far-reaching consequences, and that we must just say "yes" as if we were putting on our old exits and hats to go out on a holiday, we may just as well do that, but if they are important then, I submit to the Government, that they are not acting in conformity with the dignity and responsibility of this House to ask us to look at more than 100 Amendments in not even 100 minutes, and simply give our blessing because they happen to have come from the other House. It is not as though this House had not primarily gone carefully through the various stages of this Bill. We are told by members in another place that we do not know our business, that it is not merely an error here and there in the Bill, but that in over 100 places we do not know our business, and that they are going to put us right where we have gone wrong.

If the Government themselves are equal to accepting that sort of reproach, then it is their first duty to send their members away to the country, and an opportunity should be given for more competent members to come back than the present occupants of the Government benches. If the Government themselves are prepared to say that these are frivolous Amendments, then they ought to advise their friends in the other place to withdraw them. I appeal to the Government to modify their attitude in this respect, and to give us that sufficient time for which we are entitled to ask as representatives of responsible constituencies.


Observations have been made with regard to the Constitution and the other Chamber. I am not going into the latter matter. I do not propose to debate the Lords. They are Lords, and they cannot help themselves. But i have always noticed that whenever Lords' Amendments have been submitted in the ordinary way as legislation, generally speaking, very few Amendments have been brought forward to any Bill, and most of them have been Amendments upon which there could be very little criticism. I think I could ask even the oldest Member of this House, wherever he may be sitting, to tell me whether, in his recollection, such a number of Amendments have ever been brought forward to be dealt with in so small a space of Parliamentary time.

I am not going to enter into most )f the Amendments—though I could do it if necessary—but some of them are fundamental to those of us who are representatives upon local authorities. We know how they will affect us in our own districts. In my own this Valuation Bill means a 6d. increase in the £ upon our rates. There are Members on the Government benches who know that this Bill is going to affect them in exactly the same way so far as rateable values are concerned. Yet we are here asked to buy a, pig in a, poke. I do not care whence it comes. Whether it comes from the House of Lords or from Madame Tussaud's. But I am not going to get "waxy" over it.

I want to ask the House to recognise that the House of Lords may be a revising chamber so long as we are prepared to stand it. So long as it is a revising chamber, surely, we are the last people, and we should have the last word to say in matters of this character, because finance is closely interwoven with the structure of this Bill. If we have the last word to say, why should we not have the time to say it in? If the Government had had their way, we should now be discussing Mosul. I do not know where it is, and I do not care. I know only that some of the new Mussolinis are going to explain it to us, I know more about West Ham. This Bill affects hundreds of thousands of people who will be the victims of some of its provisions. The Lords Amendments will affect these people deleteriously. Although I am not a member of the House of Lords, I would be prepared to argue this Bill against any of them.

Among right hon. and hon. Members on the benches opposite are lawyers, and there is no one who will get more out of the Bill than the lawyers. I am not saying another word about that, although I happen to be a member of an assessment committee. We have to meet these gentlemen. We know that they are very clever. They will always speak on either side according to the necessity of their profession. We are only common or garden people who have to face the music as ordinary citizens. We are here to protect our constituents, and we want to know where we come in. We have not had, and we never will have, a proper opportunity of discussing any of these 131 Amendments. Cannot the Government postpone this Bill until they have had an opportunity of discussing them with the intellectuals on their own back benches? It is a very clever dodge to bring a Bill of this important character along at the last moment. We have had no chance of finding out what these Amendments involve. The Amendments are modifications of practically all the Clauses of the Bill. We want to know where we are, because we do not know where we are. We know how the House of Lords do these things. I have been watching them. Out of about 300 Members of the other House, you generally find about 20 present to discuss these things, and they get their orders from the foreman who sits on a sack of wool.


It is not allowable to make reference to the proceedings of another place.


I cannot make that reference, because they do not proceed. I say that in the framing of these Amendments there were never more than 50 members of another place present. We have a right to say that if men hold public positions on a body to carry out legislation, they ought at least to do the body the honour of attending and carrying out the work they are supposed to do. Instead of that the work is done by legal gentlemen. The Law Lords have done this job, and I am suspicious of them. I fear the Greeks, even when they bring gifts. We want to oppose these Amendments. Let us have time to discuss them in their proper order.


I make one other appeal to the Government not to proceed with these Amendments, and I do so on different grounds from those advanced by my colleagues. I am inclined to treat Amendments that come from the other place with the respect that they undoubtedly deserve, and it is because the other place has seen fit to amend this Bill in so many particulars that I am convinced that this House would not be doing the other place justice by proceeding immediately to consider the Amendments. If, as has been suggested, these are merely drafting Amendments, what were the Law Officers of the Crown doing in allowing such bad drafting to go from the House of Commons for correction in another place? The Law Officers are expected to be masters of their own business, and the fact that it has been necessary to make so many drafting Amendments—these are not all drafting Amendments, though very many of them are—is evidence that the Law Officers have not been so vigilant in framing this Bill as they should have been with so important a Measure.

In looking through the pages of Amendments I am bound to ask myself whether I can possibly give each of them the attention that it deserves. I find that there are important advances from file meaning of the original Measure. It is quite true that, so far as the Metropolis is concerned, this Measure does not affect the position, but everything that we pass in this Main Bill must be very closely followed in any other Bill relating to London generally. Therefore, the Bill should not pass in its amended form without full discussion. The conversation in progress between Ministers on the Front Bench opposite seems to indicate that our appeals will go unheard. The House of Commons has fallen rather low when a suggestion from the Opposition Benches that the Law Officers have not done their business as they should have done it can pass without any apparent notice being taken of it, and without their feeling under an obligation to answer the accusation. That is an additional reason why our protest should be made. Most of us here are prepared to discuss the Amendments on their merits, but it is impossible to do that in the short time at our disposal. However honest we may be in our desire to examine each of these Amendments, it is not possible for us to give to them that consideration which our constituents would expect us to give.

Your duties, Mr. Speaker, are much more difficult when an attempt is made to rush legislation in this way, It means that you will be endeavouring to secure the passing of these Amendments at a time when many hon. Members will be desiring to express their views. We speak of free speech outside this House. Are we to forget the lights of free speech within? Surely no Government has the sight to dictate to any Members or to any party how long it ought to take in considering important Amendments of this kind. I protest most strongly against our being expected to pass or to reject these alterations of the Bill within a period of a few hours. I hope that the Government will see the wisdom of what has been said from these benches, and will gracefully withdraw from its position by giving the House full time for consideration of the Lords Amendments.

Colonel DAY

I must add my protest to that of other hon. Members against the Government's procedure. If hon. Members opposite expressed their own opinions on the subject, I believe that they would be adding their protests to ours. Many of them have sat here through the early hours of the morning discussing this Bill. If is very disrespectful to us that, after so much discussion here, the Bill should go to another place, have these Amendments made in so little time, and then be sent back here in the expectation that we shall push the Amendments through in an hour or so. We have not only this Bill, which is of great moment to many of my constituency, but also the Lords Amendments to the Criminal Justice Bill, the Sandwich Port and Haven Bill, and the Tithe Bill. It is only fair that Members of the Opposition should have time to consider the Amendments to these several Bills. I heard the Prime Minister this afternoon speak of a football match and playing the game. I would remind him that it is very unfair of the Government, with a great majority, to try to trample on the minority in this House, and to rush these Amendments through without an opportunity for discussion. There are 131 Amendments to this Bill, and if we had a reasonable opportunity of discussing them, no doubt the Minister of Health would see that some of them were removed, having regard to the considerable time that has been spent in consideration of the Bill since its introduction in this House.

5.0 P.M.


After the many appeals that have been made we may hope soon to get some response from the Government. That we should have, on the last effective day of the Session, four or five Bills brought before us, of which this is the first and most important, with this enormous mass of detailed Amendments, is clear proof that the time table of the Government has been mismanaged. The only thing to have done was to have jettisoned some of the cargo, to have lightened the ship, in order to get through the business; in reasonable time. This Bill is a Bill which occupied a very large part of last Session. It seems to me very bad management on the part of the Government to have sent a Bill to the House of Lords such a short time before the conclusion of the Session, when there were a largo number of drafting Amendments to be made. We ought to protest against this growing tendency to refuse on the Floor of this House to accept Amendments that are moved from the Opposition side, and then, later on, for a lot of drafting Amendments to be inserted in another place. It is very unsatisfactory, because it means that instead of the House being able to discuss these matters in the first instance here, we have to take them all in a great hurry at the end of the Session. It has already been said that between 130 and 140 Amendments have been put down to this Bill, some of them of great importance, and some of them absolutely trivial. Some of them could very well have been accepted at an earlier stage. It is because of the future conduct of business, as well as in regard to this particular problem, that I protest against this House being involved in all this mass of Amendments, many of which might have been dealt with at an earlier stage.

A point was raised by my hon. Friend the Member for Silvertown (Mr. J. Jones) when he observed that this Bill is a Bill dealing with finance— An Act to simplify the law in regard to the making and collection of rates, etc. It seems to me that it is very nearly a Bill which would come within the scope of the provisions of the Parliament Act. It is quite true that the Government mismanaged their business and sent this Bill to the other House within a month before the end of the Session, and it is quite true that the Speaker's certificate would not cover this Bill, even if it were ruled to be a Money Bill. This is a ease where the House of Lords has been sailing very near the wind in regard to the privileges of this House. It has been laid down in the Parliament Act that this House only shall deal with the matters of raising and spending money, and although it is true that the Lords might say, as an excuse for their conduct, that this is a matter of local finance and not national finance, it is only right on this Motion that a word of caution should be spoken from these benches about a very serious precedent which has been set, in a Finance Bill, even though it be a local Finance Bill, being mauled about in another place to the extent of 140 Amendments and 15 pages of type. I have no doubt that the Government would be only too pleased to see further breaches made in the wall which was built up around this House in regard to finance in the year 1911, and, if for no other reason, we should take a Division on this question in order to protest once more that this is the House, and not the other House, which is the guardian of the financial policy of this country.

I do not suppose it will be possible at this late stage to protect this Bill technically against the Lords, because the Session is so shortly coming to an end; therefore, I have merely to limit myself to making this protest in general terms. I submit that when you have a majority in another place of the same complexion as the majority in this place, then it is urgent that we should pay very careful attention to the rules and practices of the House and to the Parliament Act procedure, because no great conflict of principle is going to arise between the two Houses. The majorities in the two places will play into each other's hands, as we well know, and it is just in circumstances of that kind that a precedent might be let through which will be very embarrassing to the next Labour Government when we desire to introduce a Finance Bill which the Lords, through the constitutional negligence of the present Government, we might find are enabled to deal with and amend. For these reasons, I make an appeal to the Government to postpone the consideration of this Bill.


I wish to add my protest to the opposition to this Bill, particularly as the Bill is positively the most important Measure introduced by the present Government. It has attracted attention throughout the country because it affects every ratepayer and every business in the country. We have spent many weeks in this House and in Committee stage seeking to make the Bill acceptable to the people and one that would apply the principles of equitable rating. It has gone to another place, and that place has considered fit, in a few days, to rush through over 130 Amendments. It is true the Government in this House might say that nearly all of them are drafting Amendments. That, in itself, is a matter of opinion. We had a large number of so-called drafting Amendments presented in this House, which, when they were fully considered, turned out in many instances to be of vital importance, and not merely drafting Amendments. The same thing applies to the Amendments which are sent down to this House from another place. Some of them, possibly, we may agree to and not discuss as absolutely drafting Amendments, but considerable numbers of the so-called drafting Amendments are something much more. There are certainly at least half-a-dozen Amendments in the Lords Amendments which are of the utmost importance. There is one which ought to appeal to the Law Officers at any rate. That is the one that deals with the proposal that solicitors shall not take part in appeals at the Quarter Sessions. I do not propose to discuss that Amendment, but I am entitled to show that there are several very important and far-reaching Amendments in this set of Amendments and that it is impossible for Members of this House to honestly say to this House or to convince their constituents that they have been given reasonable opportunity and time to study them and relate them to the Bill as it left the House in the Report stage. There is not a Member of the House can honestly say so, whether he is a lawyer, or anything else. I, therefore, protest that we must have far more time to consider all these Amendments than is possible in a. half-hour's Debate this evening. The responsibility rests on the Government to find a way out. If they are going to press these Amendments on the House, then we have to take up the rights of an Opposition and will oppose at even possible stage and occupy the time of this House to-day and to-morrow and other days if necessary, to see that the rights of this House shall not be trampled on by the other House.

Mr. DEPUTY - SPEAKER (Captain FitzRoy)

The hon. Member stated that he was not going to discuss the Amendments; I hope he will keep his word.


I submit that for 130 Amendments to be thrust upon us last Friday by another place expecting us to devote our week-end to this kind of thing is unreasonable. We did not take the time necessary to consider them, and their relation to the Bill. I would point out to the House that a very large number of Members are connected with bodies in the country which will be seriously affected if these Amendments were accepted in the House to-night. The Government are raising a hornet's nest about their ears on that one Amendment concerning the solicitors. It would be interesting, to find out now whether the legal profession is one trade union or two trade unions, and is organised on a craft basis or upon an industrial basis.


The hon. Member must not refer to that, it is out of Order.


I am only refer ring to that Amendment about the solicitors as an illustration. I think it is a most important illustration because that particular Amendment is one that will attract the greatest opposition in the country and in this House, and it therefore remains to be seen whether the legal profession is organised upon an industrial basis or upon a craft union basis, whether they are in one body—


The hon. Member must not refer to that. I have told him it is out of order.


I stand corrected on that point. I would like to point out to the House that this is not merely a fictitious opposition. We consider that the other House may have in its jurisdiction tried honestly by these Amendments to improve the Bill, in the interests of the general body of ratepayers. In so far as the Amendments have been seriously considered and decided upon by the other place, so should we require adequate time in this House to consider these considered Amendments, and we are not getting it, under the programme of work outlined by the Government for the consideration of this Bill. I want, therefore, to protest. I might say that I have received a number of letters from several bodies of ratepayers, and the legal profession protesting, against certain Amendments to this Bill. How are we going to have time to discuss them adequately in the hours the Government intend to give us? For these reasons I shall certainly vote against the Motion, and, if we are defeated, as we shall be, in the Lobby, we shall keep you walking for the rest of the night.


The treatment the House has received this afternoon by the Government is on a par with the action of the Government throughout the whole of the discussion of this Eating and Valuation Bill. When, in a Memorandum to the local authorities of this country, the Ministry of Health set forth the main proposals of this Measure, those proposals were generally accepted by the various local authorities, because they were bringing about an improvement in our rating and valuation system.

The Bill as originally introduced was very largely drafted on the proposals that were contained in the memorandum. It was accorded, therefore, a general blessing by this House when it went to Committee upstairs and there was no factious opposition from those of us who sit on these benches. We did our best to help the Minister of Health in his work. On more than one occasion it was the votes of the Members of the Opposition that saved the Government from defeat on one or two of their principal proposals in face of their own supporters, and then after two or three days, after a tremendous fight on behalf of the Minister of Health, he forgot his family traditions and made a cowardly surrender to the back benches, who are supporting him on the present occasion. The consequence was that in Committee upstairs and afterwards on Report in this House the Bill has been so amended that it is not at all recognisable as the Bill that was originally introduced. It has now gone to another place, and there, I am informed, these 130 odd Amendments, contained in the 15 pages, are supposed to be drafting Amendments. When we turn to page 2 of these Amendments I see that, under page 6, there is an Amendment to line 13 to leave out Sub-section (4) and then to insert a number of words amounting to 34 lines. This is a drafting Amendment, 34 lines! I find other Amendments with 20 and 30 lines. Drafting Amendments! I look at one of these, and I am really puzzled as to its moaning. It says: A person who is in occupation of a hereditament for part only of the period in respect of which the rate is made, shall, subject to the provisions of this Sub-section, be liable to be charged with such part only of the total amount of the rate as the number of days during which he is in occupation boars to the total number of days comprised in the said period.


It is entirely out of order to discuss these Amendments.


I was reading it to show how, with that involved language, it was impossible in the time at our disposal, on the eve of the close of the Session, to discuss the Amendments. All the way through the Government have treated the House in a manner which, in every sense of the word, is reprehensible, with regard to the conduct of this Bill. We had, first of all, London included in the Bill. London is now put out of the Bill, and the. Minister of Health has said that in the time to come next year, or possibly in 1927, he will introduce a Bill which will concern London. If it is possible to delay a Bill dealing with London for two years, cannot the Government defer this Bill, instead of taking it at the fag-end, practically the last day, of the Session. Why should not this Bill also be put off until 1927? The right hon. Gentleman the Minister of Health knows that the majority of rating authorities in this country do not want the Bill at all, and will think a great deal more of him if he drops it. If hon. Members opposite dared to have the courage of their convictions and to throw aside the party whip, they would go into the Lobby and throw out this Bill. For the Minister to ask us, at the fag-end of the Session, to go through all these Amendments is a disgrace and a scandal in every sense of the word; and, as far as I am concerned, if the Minister will not say what he ought to say, "I will withdraw the Bill and we will consider it anew next Session, when we will have proper time," I will fight every Amendment which comes before us this afternoon.


I do not know that I should have risen to take part in this discussion, strongly as I feel about the hurried nature of this legislation, had it not been for the hilarity provoked on the Government Benches by the statement of the hon. Member for Pontypridd (Mr. Mardy Jones) that this was not a fractious or factious opposition. I always try to regard this House as a very serious Chamber, concerned with the welfare of a large body of people who have entrusted us with their business, and when a quite honest and, so far, a dignified protest has been made against the Government's treatment of the Opposition, it ill-becomes hon. Members opposite to treat it with hilarity. I want to add my very serious protest to the rushing tactics of the Government, with their big majority, in trying to force business through in this way at the end of the Session. Some of the people who have sent Members on these benches to this House—and in a mistaken moment have also sent hon. Members on the benches opposite—still believe very strongly in democracy and disbelieve in the authority and government of the hon. people who sit in another place. Some few years ago there was a great election stunt about its abolition. I am afraid that was merely party tactics, for election purposes, but that does not do away with the fact that there are a large number of democrats in this country who believe in its abolition, and, consequently, we who are here representing democrats must raise our voices when the power of another place is used so drastically in adding these very large Amendments to a Measure which is now to be rushed through. We hear sometimes of the terrible rule of a form of government called Soviets in Russia. Just as I object to autocracy governing anywhere, so I object to a Soviet in another place being sufficiently all-powerful to be able to shower Amendments on to this House at the last moment, and to our being asked to accept them willy nilly and without consideration.

But to come to my own feelings in the matter. I want to say, and I say it with every respect to hon. Members opposite, and to the right hon. Gentlemen on the Treasury Bench, that I realise, they are beset with difficulties, and I have no desire to minimise them, but I do suggest that it is impossible for anyone, with the best intentions in the world, to go carefully through these pages and pages of Amendments and dual with them with that logical understanding which we ought to apply to legislation. I have the honour to represent a constituency which can be justly said to be a necessitous area. I have watched very closely, with anxiety and with grief, the passage of the Rating and Valuation Bill, because it will press exceedingly heavily on my constituency, with its thousands upon thousands of unemployed, some of whom have found it impossible to obtain work for three or four years. There are tradesmen going-out of business, bankruptcies are following each other almost daily, there are empty shops, and the general position of the town is like that of a bird with a broken wing. Knowing this, and knowing the damage this legislation may do, I am yet asked as a serious legislator suddenly to take into consideration 140 or so Amendments which may intensify the horror of the thing for those whom I am endeavouring to serve. All this is to be done at the will, if I may say so without being offensive, of an autocratic Government. Therefore, I am compelled to protest against these Amendments being taken in this hurried fashion, and I add my request to the Minister of Health to take the Measure back and give us a legitimate and fair opportunity of consideration. We know, to our sorrow, that, however justifiable our protests may be, the Bill will eventually go through, not, I am sorry to say, in the interests of the ordinary ratepayers of necessitous areas, but in other interests; and for that reason we ought not willingly to submit to this forced legislation.

As hon. Members on these benches have said, the Amendments are not just drafting Amendments. There is one as to which I have notification that my constituents are very much interested in it. I know that I shall not be allowed to discuss it, but I do want to say this about it as a trade unionist and a member of a disputes committee in which we settle demarcation disputes between organisations. In regard to this Bill there is a demarcation dispute between two organisations who have not yet honoured us by becoming affiliated to the trade union congress. I can see by the storm of protest it has aroused among residents in my division that it excites pretty keen feeling. One of the Amendments made in another place takes away from a certain body of law-abiding citizens the right of carrying on and practising their profession under certain conditions. In the interests of the members of that union whom I represent, I naturally want time to see whether those Amendments will detrimentally affect them. Much as I am used to examining demarcation disputes, I cannot, with the best intentions in the world, adjudicate fairly upon them at so short notice.

I appeal to the Government to give us further opportunity for considering these Amendments, and I add my protest to their rushing tactics. As respectfully as possible, I again suggest that it does not redound to the credit of the Government that because they possess a brutal machine, as far as voting power is concerned, they should force the House to pass ill-considered legislation in a hurried or panicky fashion. If the appeal to the Government to withdraw these Amendments for the time being is ignored, I, in common with other speakers from these benches, must carry my protest further in the Division Lobby on all these Amendments. I would again appeal to the Government so to arrange the business this afternoon that we may do it in a sane, proper and dignified manner, and then we can go for a holiday, which everyone in the House needs, satisfied that we have done our duty to the country, and not rushed the business in such a manner as to evoke, not only protests at the moment, but soreness at other times.


while I have sat listening to the eloquent appeals of my hon. Friends on these benches I have been hoping we should be favoured with some reasons from hon. Members opposite as to why, at this very late stage, the House should be called upon to consider a whole bookful of Amendments introduced into a Bill which, by its very nature, ought to have been exempt from interference by the House of Lords, We do not believe in the House of Lords as it is at present constituted, but I understand there are some 400 Members of this House who do believe very strongly in the necessity for that Chamber. I am sorry we have not been favoured with speeches from some who do believe in the House of Lords to tell us something of the fount of wisdom and knowledge and rating ability residing in that Chamber which entitle them to spring on us at this stage of the Session a whole series of sweeping and drastic Amendments. This Measure is one that affects very vitally indeed the whole life of the poorer sections of the community. In my own constituency, and in many others which are very hardly hit areas, especially those connected with the coal, shipping, and the iron and steel trades, which are suffering so badly at the present moment, it is a matter of vital importance.


rose in his place, and claimed to move, "That the Question be now put," but Mr. SPEAKER, withheld his assent, and declined then to put that Question.


I gave way to the hon. Member in the hope that he was going to give us some reasons why we should concur with the action of the Government in this matter. I hope hon. Members opposite are going to give us some better reasons for asking us to pass this Motion than the mere parrot cry of the Closure. I moved the rejection of this Bill on the Third Reading in the hope that I might be able to persuade the Minister responsible to make some concessions to the necessitous areas, and although I got no concessions I would like to point out that this Bill at that stage did not threaten the local authorities with such drastic proposals as are foreshadowed in the Amendments which we are asked to adopt, and which have been sent to us from another place. I cannot imagine any hon. Member opposite who has had any business experience permitting the directorate of any company with which he may be connected to sit in some stuffy chamber all night and then proceed to deal with important and sweeping Amendments, affecting the very life of the business in which he is interested. I suggest to the Government that if it is not good enough to treat your private interests and your private business in this manner it is certainly not good enough to ask us to transact national business in that way. When I look at this long list of Amendments, I realise the tremendous futility and injustice of attempting to deal with them. Of course, I know I should be out of order if I attempted to deal with the merits or demerits of these Amendments, but I think I should be in order if I simply indicated some of the more important Amendments in order that hon. Members opposite may see the vital necessity of postponing this Motion until we have had more time to consider these Amendments. There are a few drafting Amendments on pages 1 and 2 of the Lords Amendments to which no hon. Member could raise any reasonable objection, but when we come to line 13 there is a proposal to leave out Subsection (4) and insert the following words: (4) The following provisions shall have effect with respect to the assessing of persons to and their liability in respect of a rate— ("(a) a person who is in occupation of the hereditament for part only of the period in respect of which the rate is made, shall, subject to the provisions of this subsection, be liable to be charged with such part only of the total amount of the rate as the number of days during which he is in occupation bears to the total number of days comprised in the said period; (b) a person who is in occupation of the hereditament for any part of the said period may be assessed to the rate in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (a) of this subsection, notwithstanding that he ceased to be in occupation before the rate was made; That Amendment, as far as I can understand it, means that the powers which are already being taken away from local authorities to raise income to meet their many needs are being made greater every week by the Government proposals, and the small income at their disposal is being swept away by new paragraphs and Amendments which are calculated to improve the position of the large ratepayers as against the small ratepayers who have to bear the burden. I want to suggest to hon. Gentlemen opposite that it is not really playing the game, after you have passed a Bill, taking away the income of these small local authorities by machinery which hits the poorer authorities in the urban areas very seriously, to use your huge majority to force these things upon us in this House, and then in another place where there is an even larger majority than in this. House in favour of the landlords as against the tenant, you are now suggesting the insertion of more Amendments calculated to relieve one class of the community. You refuse to give us reasonable time to state our objections and you also refuse to give us the benefit of your wisdom in order that we may be convinced of the necessity for adopting such autocratic methods.


I wish to add my protest against the Government's management of the business during the whole of this Session. Now we find ourselves confronted at the last minute of the twenty-third hour of the day with a whole series of Amendments presented almost in the form of a three volume novel, and we are expected to pass them without adequate discussion because we are told that they are mere drafting Amendments. The conduct of the business of this House by the Government for the last two or three weeks has been of a scandalous description. After a vacation lasting 14 weeks, we come back here and proceed to work overtime by sitting night after night until two or three o'clock in the morning. No reasonable body of men will consent to conduct their business in that way. After curtailing the period of discussion in that way, we are now asked to come here and swallow all these: Amendments, holus bolus, whether we like them or not. The municipalities do not want this Bill, which simply sets one interest against another.

Amendments have been accepted placing our great municipalities at a great disadvantage at the expense of other portions of the community. As a matter of fact, the constituencies of hon. Members opposite have been bribed by a series of wholesale Amendments under which agricultural interests have benefited, and have been given power to extract at the expense of the industrial community hundreds of thousands of pounds in addition to the assistance which they have already received under other Bills. I protest against the method which has been adopted by the Government. My hon. Friend who has just sat down has pointed out some of these methods, but there is an Amendment on page 6 which has already been quoted as far as paragraphs (a) and (b) are concerned, but paragraph (c) reads as follows: a person who is in occupation of the hereditament at any time after the rate is made may be assessed to and shall in the first instance be liable to pay if he was in occupation at the beginning of the period the whole rate, or if ho came into occupation subsequently a proportion of the rate calculated on the basis that he will remain in occupation until the end of the said period, but shall, if he goes out of occupation before the end of the said period, be entitled to recover from the rating authority any sum paid by him in excess of the amount properly chargeable against him in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (a) of this sub-section, except in so far as he has previously recovered the sum from an incoming occupier. To call this a drafting Amendment is an absurdity, and I do not think even the Minister of Health understands it himself. More time ought to have been given for the careful consideration of these Amendments which are not drafting Amendments at all. I think it is quite time that an emphatic protest was made from these benches against the rushing tactics of the Government, and the use of their overwhelming majority in this way. The other place is using its power in rather a remorseless fashion, and they are doing whatever they are told by the Government without any consideration whatever, and therefore I think we are justified in protesting and I hope the plea which has been put forward by my hon. Friend (Mr. Beckett) will be listened to by the Government.


I would like to ask when the Lords Amendments to this Bill were available to Members of the House. I am told they were only dealt with late on Thursday evening in the House of Lords, and were only available-on Saturday morning. Many hon. Members by that time had returned to their homes and their constituencies. [HON. MEMBERS: "Why?"] That would be a reasonable question to put to hon. Members opposite, because on this side we know something about the views of our constituents, and we feel it a moral obligation on our part to explain to our constituents what the Government are doing. From the fact that so many Members on these benches, and, I presume, on the other side also, did retire to their homes, they would have had little or no time to go through these 140 Amendments, and, bearing in mind the very important international question referred to by the Prime Minister, it is almost asking too much to expect Members to give detailed attention to the various Amendments which they are called upon to consider this afternoon. To refer to the drafting Amendments is one thing, but to refer to the very vital Amendments is quite another thing. Might I draw the attention of the House to one particular Amendment, which is going to revise the considered opinion of the right hon. Gentleman on the Report stage of this Bill that solicitors should be given audience in. any case of appeal? It seems to mo that to ask us to revise the considered decisions and conclusions that were reached on the Report stage is asking altogether too much.

I agree with my hon. Friend the Member for Merthyr (Mr. Wallhead) that the business has been so complicated and so badly arranged at various intervals during this year that we ought not on the very last day to enter into detailed, lengthy, and technical Debates on Amendments such as these. I suggest that, if. the Bill is to have the effect anticipated by the right hon. Gentleman, careful consideration should be given, in the last stage at all events, to any change that may (be effected as the result of the acceptance of any one of these Amendments. For these reasons, I think we are at least entitled to say that the fact that the Amendments wore not available to Members before Saturday of last week, and that they have had little or no time to examine them thoroughly and put themselves in a position to cast an intelligent vote, justifies us in asking that these Amendments be not dealt with to-day, and, indeed, that they be deferred until we can go into them thoroughly and examine them as they ought to be examined, and then give a final judgment on the 140 Amendments one by one. For this reason I add my protest against the method adopted in bringing these 140 Amendments before us to-day.


I beg to move, "That the Debate be now adjourned."

No one who has listened to the Debate this afternoon, and who has notice the unwonted unanimity of the speeches from the benches opposite, could fail to be moved by them. It is quite true that, in our anxiety to meet the wishes of hon. Members opposite to return to their homes at the earliest possible moment— [Interruption]—we had thought of taking this afternoon the Amendments that have been made in another place, so that those who still remain here could rejoin their friends. I see, however, that in that we were mistaken, and that hon. Members opposite desire to have a little more time to study the Amendments. We, on our side, are also anxious to get through the 'discussion of a question of some international importance that is to be found on the Order Paper, and if it be true that hon. Members opposite, as indicated by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Platting (Mr. Clynes), do not propose to remain here to listen to what may be said in the course of that Debate, that will give them at any rate ample time in which to study the Amendments— [Interruption]—


On a point of Order. Are Members in this House permitted to pretend to listen to one Debate and study another question in the House at the same time?


I think they often do that.


—and to assure themselves that they are of that importance which has been attributed to them by some hon. Members opposite. In the circumstances, therefore, I think it would be desirable that this Debate should now be adjourned, and I hope that, as we are meeting the desire which has been put to us with so much moderation by hon. Members opposite-, we shall receive some consideration from them, and that they will be prepared to take some of the other business on the Order Paper to-day as well as the Motion which my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister is going to move.


The right hon. Gentle man, no doubt, considers that he has made an adequate reply to the observations of my hon. Friends who have already addressed the House. He has been sufficiently facetious, if he has not endeavoured to present, any case to justify his Motion. Nothing that the right hon. Gentleman has said has in the slightest degree altered my mind as I expressed it in the earlier part of the day, and we shall resist the Motion.


I do not think that we should accept this Motion. I myself moved that we should not proceed with the Lords Amendments, and I gave various reasons why; and I was supported in my contention by practically the unanimous voice of the Members of this House. I think we had a unanimous voice in this House that we should not proceed, because, as I understand, the Minister of Health agreed with us that it was a preposterous business that he and the Government had sought to undertake to-day the consideration of all these Amendments to this Bill. With regard to the question of the adjournment generally, I do not think the Government are treating the House with proper respect. It is true that there are very important international questions involved in the matter of Mosul and what has been taking place in connection with Mosul, but at the same time, if those questions are of such paramount importance, I submit that the. Government have no right to come along in the fashion that they have and fling this business at us and try to get us to discuss this question without proper notice being given to every Member of the House as to how the business is going to be arranged. I am sun? that, as an Opposition, we have been very conciliatory to the Government time and time again, and have tried to meet them on every occasion when they have been reasonable in their proposals; but I am sure that my colleagues on these benches are not simply going to allow the Government to deal with us in any fashion that they think fit. I, myself, while admitting that there is this important international matter, believe that there are very many domestic matters which are of greater importance still, and that, if we began to treat our own working-class people properly, if the Government treated the working-class people of the country properly, then the Government would find that a great many of their international problems would find a far speedier solution. I myself put a question to the Prime Minister to-day, which was answered by the Minister of Labour. It, too, had to do with an international question—it had to do with the ratification—


This is not allowable on the Motion before the House, which is "That the Debate be now adjourned."


I am trying, in connection with this Motion that the House do now adjourn, to give reasons why that Motion should not be accepted, and one of the reasons, I submit, why it should not be accepted, is that there are so many matters of pressing domestic importance that should be considered by this House before it adjourns.


The question is not "That the House do now adjourn," but "That the Debate be now adjourned."


With regard to this Debate adjourning, I think, myself, that it is very disrespectful on the part of the Government to came to the House and treat it in this fashion. I think the Prime Minister, in view of the fact that we have already spent so much time in this connection, should have given us some indication as to what the Government are really intending to do for the rest of the day. At Question Time the Prime Minister indicated a certain course, and the Minister of Health has now moved that this Debate be adjourned. He has never given us any indication for how long the Debate should be adjourned, what he intends to do with the Bill, whether he is intending to go on with it this Session or not. There is simply the Motion before the House, "That the Debate be now adjourned," and not a member of the Government is advising the House in the least degree as to the course the Government are proposing to take. I believe that a minority has certain rights, and I believe that the minority in this House, if its rights are not going to be given to it by the majority, will find ways of asserting itself and securing that its rights shall be observed.



I am not going to give way. It is all very well for the right hon. Gentleman to seek to interrupt me in that fashion. I have tried to do the same with regard to him, and he has never been courteous enough to give way to me. [Hon. MEMBERS: "Oh!"] I am following hie example. [Hon. MEMBERS: "No!"] I simply want to point out that, if the right hon. Gentleman had information to give us, he should have given it when he was moving his Motion, but, in that highly condescending manner of his, in that sort of "know-all" attitude that he adopts when addressing Members on this side of the House, he did not think it worth while, and now, when I am trying to make a protest on behalf of myself and my colleagues on this side of the House, the right hon. Gentleman is going to give us a little more information. I hope that, as this Debate on the Adjournment proceeds, we shall get from the Government Front Bench far different treatment from that which we have been receiving, that we shall be taken into their confidence in a way that we have not been hitherto, and that, whichever Minister replies, whichever Minister takes part in the Debate, will try to give us some indication for more than five minutes ahead of what the Government propose to do. [HON. MEMBERS: "Hear, hear!"]

6.0 P.M.

I am gratified by the signs of assent which have been given from all parts of the House to that statement. I know hon. Members on the back benches oppotite will let their Government know that they are not going to be treated by them in the fashion they have been treated to-day. It is all very well for us to come here expecting that the arranged programme is going to be carried out. Even if we are on the back benches we are entitled to be given far more consideration by the Government than has been given to-day, and I hope my colleagues on this bench will not agree until the Government tell us more about its plans, what it is going to do with regard to this Debate, what it is going to do with regard to this Bill ultimately, whether it is going to act in a very business-like fashion and say, even though it means sitting into Christmas, we are going to give the benefit of our labours to the country and do as much for the welfare of the people as possible. So far in the conduct of this administration in the year it has been in office there is nothing to suggest that that is going to be the case, and I am surprised at the optimism of hon. Members opposite who by their cheering seemed to think that their Government was going to repent and take heart of grace. I think we are entitled to more consideration from the Government, and I hope we are going to

get a proper understanding so that the business of the House can be conducted in a proper and business-like way.

Mr. CHAMBERLAIN rose in Ms place, and claimed to move, "That the Question be now put."

Question put, "That the Question be now put."

The House divided: Ayes, 225; Noes, 72.

Division No. 503.] AYES. [6.5 p.m.
Agg-Gardner, Rt. Hon. Sir James T. Dixey, A. C. Lister, Cunliffe, Rt. Hon. Sir Philip
Ainsworth, Major Charles Eden, Captain Anthony Locker-Lampson, G. (Wood Green)
Allen, J. Sandeman (L'pool, W. Derby) Edmonson, Major A. J. Loder, J. de V.
Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M.S. Elliot, Captain Walter E. Looker, Herbert William
Applin, Colonel R. V. K. Elveden, Viscount Luce, Maj.-Gen. Sir Richard Harman
Ashley, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Wilfrid w. Erskine, Lord (Somerset, Weston-s.-M.) Lumley, L, R.
Ashmead-Bartlett, E. Erskine, James Malcolm Monteith McDonnell, Colonel Hon. Angus
Atkinson, C. Evans, Captain A. (Cardiff, South) McLean, Major A.
Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley Everard, W. Lindsay Macmillan, Captain H.
Ballour, George (Hampstead) Falle, Sir Bertram G. Macnaghten. Hon. Sir Malcolm
Barclay-Harvey, C. M. Falls, Sir Charles F. McNeill, Rt. Hon. Ronald John
Barnett. Major Richard W. Fanshawe, Commander G. D. Macquisten, F. A.
Barnston. Major sir Harry Fermoy, Lord Maitland, Sir Arthur D. Steel-
Benn, Sir A. S. (Plymouth, Drake) Ford, P. J. Makins, Brigadier-General E.
Betterton, Henry B. Fester, Sir Harry S. Malone, Major P. B.
Birchall, Major J. Dearman Galbraith, J. F. W. Margesson, Captain D.
Bird, E. R. (Yorks, W. R., Skipton) Ganzoni, Sir John Marriott, Sir J. A. R.
Blades, Sir George Rowland Gates, Percy Merriman, F. B.
Blundell, F. N. Gee, Captain R. Meyer, Sir Frank
Bourne, Captain Robert Croft Gibbs, Col. Rt. Hon. George Abraham Milne, J. S. Wardlaw-
Bowyer, Captain G. E. W. Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. B. M.
Boyd-Carpenter, Major A. Glyn, Major R. G. C Moore, Lieut.-Colonel T. C. R. (Ayr)
Bridgeman, Rt. Hon. William Clive Goff, Sir Park Morrison-Bell, Sir Arthur Clive
Briscoe Richard George Gower, Sir Robert Murchison, C. K.
Brocklebank, C. E. R. Grattan-Doyle, Sir N. Nall, Lieut.-Colonel Sir Joseph
Brooke, Brigadier-General C. R. I. Greene, W. P. Crawford Newman, Sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter)
Buckingham, Sir H. Gretton, Colonel John Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge)
Bullock, Captain M. Guinness, Rt. Hon. Walter E. Nicholson, O. (Westminster)
Burton, Colonel H. W. Gunston, Captain D. W. Nicholson, Col. Rt. Hon W.G.(Ptrsf'ld.>
Butt. Sir Alfred Hacking, Captain Douglas H. Nield, Rt. Hon. Sir Herbert
Cadogan, Major Hon. Edward Hall, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich) Nuttall, Ellis
Caine, Gordon Hall Hall. Vice-Admiral Sir R, (Eastbourne) Oakley, T.
Campbell, E. T. Hanbury, C. Ormsby-Gore. Hon. William
Cassels, J. D. Harrison, G. J. C. Pennefather, Sir John
Cayzer, Sir C. (Chester, City) Hartington. Marquess of Penny, Frederick George
Cazalet, Captain Victor A. Harvey, Major S. E. (Devon, Totnes) Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings)
Cecil, Rt. Hon. Sir Evelyn (Aston) Haslam, Henry C. Perring, William George
Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Ladywood) Headlam, Lieut.-Colonel C. M. Pilcher, a.
Charteris, Brigadier-General J. Henderson, Lieut.-Col. V. L. (Bootle) Pilditch, S r Philip
Christie. J. A Henn, Sir Sydney H. Pownall, Lieut.-Colonel Assheton
Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston Spencer Herbert, Dennis (Hertford, Watford) Ramsden, E.
Churchman, Sir Arthur C. Herbert, S.(York, N. R., Scar. & Wh'by) Rawlinson, Rt. Hon. John Fredk. Peel
Clarry, Reginald George Hills. Major John Walter Remer, J. R.
Clayton, G. C. Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S J. G. Remnant, Sir James
Cobb, Sir Cyril Hogg. Rt. Hon. Sir D.(St. Marylebone) Rentoul, G S.
Cochrane. Commander Hon. A. D. Hohler, Sir Gerald Fitzroy Rhys, Hon. C. A. U.
Cohen, Major J. Brunei Holt, Capt. H. P. Rice, Sir Frederick
Colfox, Major Wm. Phillips Hopkins, J. W. W. Ruggles-Brise, Major E. A.
Cooper, A. Duff Hopkinson, A. (Lancaster, Mossley) Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)
Cowan, Sir Wm. Henry (Islington, N.) Hore-Belisha, Leslie Salmon, Major I.
Craig, Capt. Rt. Hon. C. C. (Antrim) Horne. Rt. Hon. Sir Robert S. Samuel, A. M. (Surrey. Farnham)
Craig, Ernest (Chester, Crewe) Howard, Capt. Hon. D. (Cumb., N.) Sandemar, A. Stewart
Craik, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry Hudson. Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney. N.) Sanderson, Sir Frank
Croft, Brigadier-General Sir H. Hudson, R. S. (Cumberl'nd, Whiteh'n) Sandon, Lord
Crook, C. W. Hurst. Gerald B. Sassoon. Sir Philip Albert Gusatve D.
Crookshank. Col. C. de W. (Berwick) Hutchison, G. A. Clark (Midl'n & P'bl's) Savery, S, S.
Crookshank, Cpt. H.(Lindsey, Gainsbro) Inskip, Sir Thomas Walker H. Scott, Sir Leslie (Liverp'l, Exchange)
Cunliffe, Joseph Herbert Jackson, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. F. S. Shaw, R.G (Yorks, W.R., Sowerby)
Curzon, Captain Viscount Jackson, Sir H. (Wandsworth, Cen'l) Shaw, Capt. W. W. (Wilts. Westb'y)
Davidson. J.(Hertf'd, Hemel Hempst'd) James, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. Cuthbert Skelton, A. N.
Davies, Dr. Vernon Joynson Hicks, Rt. Hon. Sir William Smith-Carington, Neville W.
Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset, Yeovil) Kennedy, A. R. (Preston) Smithers, Waldron
Dawson, Sir Philip Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)
Dean, Arthur Wellesley Lamb, J. Q. Sprot, Sir Alexander
Stanley, Lord (Fylde) Ward, Lt.-Col. A. L. (Kingston-on-Hull) Wolmer, Viscount
Stott, Lieut.-Colonel W. H. Warner, Brigadier-General W. W. Womersley. W. J.
Streatfeild, Captain S. R. Warrender, Sir Victor Wood, B. C. (Somerset, Bridgwater)
Sueter, Rear-Admiral Murray Fraser Watson, Rt. Han. W. (Carlisle) Wood, E, (Chest'r, Stalyb'dge & Hyde)
Tasker, Major R. Inigo Watts, Dr. T. Wood, Sir Kingsley (Woolwich, W.).
Thomson, F. C. (Aberdeen, South) Wells, S. R. Wood, Sir S. Hill- (High Peak)
Thomson, Rt. Hon. Sir W. Mitchell White, Lieut.-Colonel G. Dairymple Woodcock, Colonel H. C.
Tinne, J. A. Williams, C. P. (Denbigh, Wrexham) Worthington-Evans, Rt. Hon. Sir L
Titchfield, Major the Marquess of Williams, Herbert G. (Reading) Yerburgh, Major Robert D. T.
Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement Wilson, R. R. (Stafford, Lichfield)
Vaughan-Morgan, Col. K. P. Winby, Colonel L. P. TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—
Wallace, Captain D. E. Wise, Sir Fredric Major Hennessy and Major Cope.
Alexander. A. V. (Sheffield. Hillsbro') Guest, Dr. L. Haden (Southwark, N ) Ponsonby, Arthur
Ammon, Charles George Hardie, George D. Riley, Ben
Baker, J. (Wolverhampton, Bilston) Harney, E. A. Runciman, Rt. Hon. Walter
Baker, Walter Hartshorn, Rt. Hon. Vernon Saklatvala, Shapurji
Beckett, John (Gateshead) Hayes. John Henry Scurr, John
Benn, Captain Wedgwood (Leith) Henderson, Right Hon. A. (Burnley) Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)
Bowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W. Hudson, J. H. (Huddersfield) Sinclair, Major Sir A. (Caithness)
Briant, Frank Jones, J. J. (West Ham, Silvertown) Sitch, Charles H.
Broad, F. A. Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly) Slesser, Sir Henry H.
Bromley, J. Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd) Snell, Harry
Clynes, Rt. Hon. John R. Kelly, W, T Stephen, Campbell
Crawfurd, H. E. Kennedy, T. Thomas, Rt. Hon. James H. (Derby)
Dalton, Hugh Kenworthy, Lt.-Com. Hon. Joseph M. Thorne, W. (West Ham, Plaistow)
Davies, Evan (Ebbw Vale) Lansbury, George Thurtle, E.
Day, Colonel Harry Lee, F. Viant, S. P.
Dennison, R. Livingstone, A. M. Wallhead, Richard C.
Duncan, C. Lowth, T. Watts-Morgan, Lt.-Col. D. (Rhondda)
Dunnico, H. Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan) Wilkinson, Ellen C.
Fenby, T. D. March, S. Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)
Garro-Jones, Captain G. M. Montague, Frederick Windsor, Walter
Gillett, George M. Morris, R. H. Wright, W.
Gosling, Harry Morrison, R. C. (Tottenham, N.) Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)
Greenwood, A. (Nelson and Colne) Naylor, T. E.
Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan) Palin, John Henry TELLERS FOR THE NOES —
Groves, T. Pethick-Lawrence, F. W. Mr. A. Barnes and Mr. B. Smith.

Question put accordingly, "That the Debate be now adjourned."

The House divided: Ayes, 233; Noes, 63.

Division No. 504.] AYES. [6.12 p.m.
Agg-Gardner, Rt. Hon. Sir James T. Cassels, J. D. Elliot, Captain Walter E.
Ainsworth, Major Charles Cayzer, Sir C. (Chester, City) Elveden, Viscount
Allen, J. Sandeman (L'pool. W. Derby) Cazalet, Captain victor A. Erskine, Lord (Somerset, Weston-s.-M.)
Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M. S. Cecil, Rt. Hon. sir Evelyn (Aston) Erskine, James Malcolm Monteith
Applin, Colonel R. V. K. Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Ladywood) Evans, Captain A. (Cardiff, South)
Apsley, Lord Charteris, Brigadier-General J. Everard, W. Lindsay
Ashley. Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Wilfrid W. Christie, J. A. Falle, Sir Bertram G.
Ashmead-Bartlett, E. Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston Spencer Falls. Sir Charles F.
Atholl, Duchess of Churchman, Sir Arthur C. Fanshawe, Commander G. D.
Atkinson, C. Clarry, Reginald George Fermoy, Lord
Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley Clayton, G. C. Ford, P. J.
Balfour, George (Hampstead) Cobb, Sir Cyril Foster, Sir Harry S.
Barclay-Harvey, C. M. Cochrane, Commander Hon. A. D. Galbraith, J. F. W.
Barnett, Major Sir Richard Cohen, Major J. Brunei Ganzoni, Sir John
Barnston, Major Sir Harry Colfox, Major Wm- Phillips Gates, Percy
Benn, Sir A. S. (Plymouth, Drake) Cooper, A. Duff Gee, Captain R.
Betterton, Henry B. Cope, Major William Gibbs, Col. Rt. Hon. George Abraham
Birchall, Major J. Dearman Cowan, Sir Wm. Henry (Islington, N.) Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John
Bird, E. R. (Yorks, W. R., Skipton) Craig, Capt. Rt. Hon. C. C. (Antrim) Glyn, Major R. G. C.
Blades, Sir George Rowland Craig, Ernest (Chester, Crewe) Goff, Sir Park
Blundell, F. N. Craik, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry Gower, Sir Robert
Bourne, Captain Robert Croft Croft, Brigadier-General Sir H. Grattar, Doyle, Sir N.
Bowyer, Captain G. E. W. Crookshank. Col C. de W. (Berwick) Greene, W. P. Crawford
Boyd-Carpenter, Major A. Crookshank, Cpt. H.(Lindsey, Gainsbro) Gretton, Colonel John
Bridgeman, Rt. Hon. William Clive Cunliffe, Joseph Herbert Guinness, Rt. Hon. Walter E.
Briscoe, Richard George Curzon, Captain Viscount Gunston, Captain D. W
Brocklebank, C. E. R. Davidson, J.(Hertf'd, Hemel Hempst'd) Hacking, Captain Douglas H.
Brooke, Brigadier-General C. R. I. Davies, Dr. Vernon Hall, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich)
Buckingham, Sir H. Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset, Yeovil) Hall Vice Admiral Sir R. (Eastbourne)
Bullock, Captain M. Dawson, Sir Philip Hanbury, C.
Burton, Colonel H. W. Dean, Arthur Wellesley Harney, E. A.
Butt. Sir Alfred Dixey, A. C. Harrison, G. J. C.
Cadogan, Major Hon. Edward Eden, Captain Anthony Hartington, Marquess of
Caine, Gordon Hall Edmondson, Major A. J. Harvey, Major S. E. (Devon, Totnes)
Campbell, E. T. Edwards, John H. (Accrington) Haslam, Henry C.
Headlam, Lieut.-Colonel C. M. Marriott, Sir J. A. R. Shaw, R. G. (Yorks, W.R., Sowerby)
Henderson, Lieut.-Col. V. L. (Bootle) Merriman, F. B. Shaw, Capt. W. W. (Wilts, Westb'v)
Henri, Sir Sydney H. Meyer, Sir Frank Sinclair, Major Sir A. (Caithness)
Herbert, Dennis (Hertford, Watford) Milne, J. S. Wardlaw- Skelton, A. N.
Herbert, S. (York, N. R, Scar. & Wh'by) Mond, Rt. Hon. Sir Alfred Smith-Carington, Neville W.
Hills, Major John Walter Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. B. M. Smithers, Waldron
Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S. J. G. Moore, Lieut.-Colonel T. C. R. (Ayr) Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)
Hogg, Rt. Hon. Sir D, (St. Marylebone) Morrison-Bell, Sir Arthur Clive Sprot, Sir Alexander
Hohler, Sir Gerald Fitzroy Murchison, C. K. Stott, Lieut.-Colonel W. H.
Holt, Captain H. P. Nail, Lieut.-Colonel Sir Joseph Streatfeild, Captain S. R.
Hopkins, J. W, W. Newman, Sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter) Sueter, Rear-Admiral Murray Fraser
Hopkinson, A. (Lancaster, Mossley) Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge) Tasker, Major R. Inigo
Hore-Belisha Leslie Nicholson, O. (Westminster) Thomson, F. C. (Aberdeen, South)
Home, Rt. Hon. Sir Robert S. Nicholson, Col. Rt. Hn. W.G.(Ptrsf'ld.) Thomson, Rt. Hon. Sir W. Mitchell-
Howard, Captain Hon. Donald Nield, Rt. Hon. Sir Herbert Tinne, J. A.
Hudson, Capt. A. U.M. (Hackney, N.) Nuttall, Ellis Titchfield, Major the Marquess of
Hudson, B. S. (Cumb'l'nd, Whiteh'n) Oakley, T. Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement
Hurst, Gerald B. O'Connor, T. J. (Bedford, Luton) Vaughan-Morgan, Col. K. P.
Hutchison, G. A. Clark (Midl'n & p'bl's) Ormsby-Gore, Hon. William Wallace, Captain D. E.
Hutchison, Sir Robert (Montrose) Pennefather, Sir John Ward. Lt.-Col. A. L.(Kingston-on-Hull)
Inskip, Sir Thomas Walker H. Penny, Frederick George Warner. Brigadier-General W. W.
Jackson, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. F. S. Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings) Warrender, Sir Victor
Jackson, Sir H. (Wandsworth, Cen'l) Perkins, Colonel E. K. Watson, Rt. Hon. w. (Carlisle)
James, Lieut.- Colonel Hon. Cuthbert Perring, William George Watts, Dr. T.
Joynson-Hicks, Rt. Hon. Sir William Pilcher, G. Wells, S. R.
Kennedy. T. Pilditch, Sir Philip White, Lieut.-Colonel G. Dairymple
Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement Pownall, Lieut.-Colonel Assheton Williams, C. p. (Denbigh, Wrexham)
Lamb, J. Q. Ramsden, E. Williams, Herbert G. (Reading)
Lister, Cunliffe-, Rt. Hon. Sir Philip Rawlinson, Rt. Hon. John Fredk. Peel Wilson, R. R. (Stafford, Lichfield)
Locker-Lampson, G. (Wood Green) Remer, J. R. Winby, Colonel L. p.
Loder, J. de V. Remnant, Sir James Wise, Sir Fredric
Looker, Herbert William Rentoul, G. S. Wolmer, Viscount
Luce, Maj.-Gen. Sir Richard Harman Rhys, Hon. C. A. U. Womersley W. J.
Lumley, L. R. Rice, Sir Frederick Wood, B. C. (Somerset, Bridgwater)
McDonnell, Colonel Hon. Angus Ruggles-Brise, Major E. A. Wood, E. (Chest'r, Stalyb'ge & Hyde)
McLean, Major A. Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth) Wood, Sir Kingsley (Woolwich, W.)
Macmillan, Captain H. Salmon, Major I. Wood, Sir S. Hill- (High Peak)
Macnaghten, Hon. Sir Malcolm Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham) Woodcock, Colonel H. C.
McNeill, Rt. Hon. Ronald John Sandeman, A. Stewart Worthington-Evans, Rt. Hon. Sir L.
Macquisten. F. A. Sanderson, Sir Frank Yerburgh. Major Robert D. T.
Maitland, Sir Arthur D. Steal- Sandon, Lord
Makins, Brigadier-General E. Sassoon, Sir Philip Albert Gustave D. TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—
Malone, Major P. B. Savery, S. S. Major Hennessy and Colonel
Margesson, Captain D. Scott, Sir Leslie (Liverp'l, Exchange) Stanley
Alexander, A. V (Sheffield, Hillsbro') Hardie, George D. Riley, Ben
Amman, Charles George Hartshorn, Rt. Hon. Vernon Saklatvala, Shapurji
Baker J. (Wolverhampton, Bliston) Hayes, John Henry Scurr, John
Baker, Walter Henderson, Rt. Hon. A. (Burnley) Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)
Beckett, John (Gateshead) Hudson, J. H. (Huddersfield) Sitch, Charles H.
Bowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W. Jones, J. J. (West Ham, Silvertown) Slesser, Sir Henry H.
Broad, F. A. Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly) Snell, Harry
Bromley, J. Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd) Stephen, Campbell
Clynes, Rt. Hon. John B. Kelly, W. T. Thomas, Rt. Hon. James H. (Derby)
Dalton, Hugh Kennedy. T. Thorne, W. (West Ham, Plaistow)
Davies. Evan (Ebbw Vale) Kenworthy, Lt.-Com. Hon. Joseph M. Thurtle, E.
Day, Colonel Harry Lansbury, George Viant, S. P.
Dennison, R. Lee, F. Wallhead, Richard C.
Duncan, C. Lowth, T. Watts-Morgan, Lt.-Col. D. (Rhondda)
Dunnico, H. Maclean, Neil (Glasgow, Govan) Wilkinson, Ellen C.
Garro-Jones, Captain G. M. March, S. Williams. T. (York, Don Valley)
Gillett, George M. Montague, Frederick Windsor, Walter
Gosling, Harry Morrison, R. C. (Tottenham, N.) Wright, W.
Greenwood. A. (Nelson and Colne) Naylor, T. E. Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)
Grenfell, D, R. (Glamorgan) Palin, John Henry
Groves, T. Pethick-Lawrence, F. W. TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—
Guest, Dr. L, Haden (Southwark, N.) Ponsonby, Arthur Mr. A. Barnes and Mr. B. Smith.

Debate to be resumed To-morrow.

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