§ The SOLICITOR - GENERAL (Sir Stafford Cripps)
I beg to move, in page 5, line 6, to leave out the word "In."
This is a consequential Amendment, and also the next Amendment, to leave out the wordsthe words 'according to the principle of the alternative vote' shall be substituted forand to insert instead thereof the words—shall have effect as if the words 'according to the principle of the alternative vote or' were inserted therein before.The reason for these two Amendments is that, as the Committee has decided to retain university representation, and as the Government accepts that decision, there must be a consequential alteration in this Clause. The Clause, as amended, will read as follows:Sub-section (2) of Section twenty-seven of the principal Act shall have effect as if "the words 'according to the principle of the alternative vote or' were inserted therein before words under the system of the transferable vote'.Formerly, the Clause provided to omit the words dealing with the transferable vote and to substitute words only dealing with the alternative vote. Now, as the university vote is still to be conducted on the transferable vote system under the Act of 1918, it is necessary to have them both in the Clause, and, therefore, these Amendments propose to allow the Sub-section to read either according to the principle of the alternative vote or under the system of the transferable vote, whichever is applicable to the election that is taking place.
§ Amendment agreed to.
Further Amendment made: In page 5, line 7, leave out from the word "Act" to the second word "the," in line 8, and insert instead thereof the words
shall have effect as if the words 'according to the principle of the alternative vote or' were inserted therein before."—[The Solicitor-General.]
§ The SOLICITOR-GENERAL
I beg to move, in page 5, line 13, at the end, to add the words:(4) For the words 'I have not voted at this General Election in respect of any qualification other than a residence qualification,' wherever those words occur in Part II of the Second Schedule to the principal Act, and wherever those words occur in the Fifth Schedule to the principal Act there shall be substituted the words 'I have not already voted at this General Election.'This Amendment is also consequential upon the retention of the university vote. It is an addition to Sub-section (4) of this Clause. Under the existing law a voter can exercise a vote at a General Election, both in respect of his residence qualification and his university qualification, but he cannot exercise a vote in respect of his university qualification if he elects to vote in respect of a business premises qualification to which he may be entitled. The existing law, therefore, requires a university elector to make a declaration before voting for his university constituency that he has not voted at the General Election in respect of any qualification other than his residence qualification. As Clause 3 has been passed by the Committee it does away with all plural voting in the case of universities as well as in the case of other qualifications, but Clause 4 has been deleted which, therefore, leaves university representation still in the Bill, and it becomes necessary to provide by this Amendment that the declaration which is made by a university voter shall be in different words to those in the present Act. That alteration is made by substituting the words "I have not already voted at this General Election" for the words which at present stand in the Schedule, "I have not voted at this General Election in respect of any qualification other than a residence qualification." It makes it clear that the university voter has not given any vote at all and, therefore, has not contravened the provisions of Clause 3 of the Bill.
§ Lord E. PERCY
We have no objection to this Amendment purely as a drafting Amendment, but we do not accept the principle that the restoration 1241 of the university vote should be combined with a continued prohibition of plural voting in that respect. It would reduce the university franchise almost to a reductio ad absurdam. I do not want to argue that question at this stage, nor should I be in order, but I should like to point out that of all the extraordinary pieces of drafting this is one of the most amazing. When I send in my voting paper for my university I have only to say on it that I have not voted at this General Election and, as I always send in my paper two days before the poll, I shall continue to do this with the utmost candour and honesty. I do not know whether that is the intention of the Government, but it is so obvious a point that I should have thought they had considered it.
§ 8.0 p.m.
§ Mr. CHARLES WILLIAMS
I should have thought that this was an excellent Amendment. The Government, apparently, will enable a university voter to vote at his university and then vote somewhere else. This is one of the occasions on which the Government have had a sudden influx of common sense. This is an Amendment which we can accept without any great quibbling, but it would be interesting to know exactly how it is proposed to enforce these words and how it is proposed to enforce this particular form of oath, which the university elector is to take on these occasions. It rather looks as if the Government are sticking into this Bill words which have no meaning, and I have always been opposed to a superfluity of words in any legislation. [Interruption.] The hon. Member opposite is dying to say something on this Amendment. Why have the Government been so sloppy in their drafting of this Bill? They have had weeks and weeks with practically nothing to do during which they could have put this Clause right. Is it really a sort of mean, underhand way of the Government's to try to get some unseen benefit which we have not yet discovered? It is a waste of printing to put these words down, and on the whole I think they would be better left out. If the Committee would follow my advice, they would negative the Amendment. I notice that the Home Secretary is shy about supporting these words, and has left his more or less legal advisers to tell 1242 the Committee what the position is. I think we ought to have the help of the so-called advisers in the matter, if they are capable of giving the advice, and I hope to hear it in due course.
§ Mr. KELLY
May I assure the hon. Member for Torquay (Mr. C. Williams) that he makes many mistakes in this House, and when he says he is very anxious that too many words should not be used, he may have referred to the words in the Bill, but I do not think anyone would accuse him of any brevity in the use of words? I assure him also that there is no hon. Member on this side who is dying to join in this discussion. We know that it is usual for those who cast their votes for university candidates to do so by post before the date when they are called upon to attend a polling booth in any other constituency throughout the country, and does this declaration, "I have not already voted at this general election," mean that they will have satisfied the Act if, having signed the declaration, they vote at a university election, and are then at liberty to vote in some other constituency? If language means anything, it means that they are only asked to make this declaration once, and that is when they are casting a vote in a university election.
§ Mr. C. WILLIAMS
I think I am entitled to reply to the very personal observations which were made about myself by the hon. Member for Rochdale (Mr. Kelly) when he referred to my brevity. May I assure him that it was only last night that I was accused by someone on his own Front Bench of not having taken part in the Debate? I think it is a wicked thing that he should accuse me of a lack of brevity at any time, when it is well known that my main object is to make my speeches brief.
§ The SOLICITOR-GENERAL
The right hon. Gentleman opposite has drawn my attention to the form of this Amendment. It is in the form which follows the wording of the Act of 1918, and exactly the same point would of course arise under that Act as the right hon. Gentleman has pointed out would arise in this case when there is a university vote. A declaration made some days before the polling itself would obviously not be of very much value in such circumstances. The actual prohibition is under Clause 3, where there is a prohibi- 1243 tion against any plural voting at all. The penalty is that it is an illegal practice under Section 22 of the principal Act:If any person at a General Election votes for more constituencies than he is entitled to vote for in accordance with this Act, or asks for a ballot or voting paper for the purpose of so voting, be shall be guilty of an illegal practice.That is the penalty under Section 22, so that, although these words appear to be rather useless, they would not affect a right to vote in more than one constituency. In these circumstances, I think it would be better if I were to ask leave to with draw the Amendment now, so as to have an opportunity of looking into the matter a little more closely and dealing with it on the Report stage.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
§ Captain BOURNE
I beg to move, in page 5, line 13, at the end, to add the words:(4) In any election conducted upon the principle of the alternative vote,—Hon. Members will see that I have also put upon the Order Paper a new Schedule, on lines recommended by, I cannot remember whether it was Mr. Speaker Lowther's Conference or one of the Departmental Committees which were set up At that period on the question of the Alternative Vote. In the preparation of the Act of 1918, there was a great deal of activity, and, hon. Members will remember, the Alternative Vote And Proportional Representation were both brought into the original draft of the Act of 1918 and subsequently omitted by the decision of this House and another place. It was suggested that these alterations which I am now putting forward should be made in the case of seats where the Alternative Vote was to operate. An enormous amount of consideration was given to these rather technical problems at the time of the 1918 Act, and I put this Amendment down in order to ask the 1244 Home Secretary why those particular recommendations have not been incorporated in this Bill.
- (a) the substitutions specified in the Schedule to this Act entitled 'Directions to Voters' shall be made in the form of directions for the guidance of the voter contained in the Second Schedule to the Ballot Act, 1872;
- (b) the figures on the left-hand side of the names of the candidates shown on the form of front of ballot paper in the Second Schedule to the Ballot Act, 1872, shall be omitted."
We have not had a great deal of experience in this country of the Alternative Vote. We have had a certain amount from our Dominions, which are the only parts of the world where this system of voting is carried out. Investigations in 1918 evidently suggested that these particular proposals would be desirable in the event of the Alternative Vote being adopted in this country, and they do not seem to me to affect any very far-reaching point of principle. I think that further instruction to voters than are contained in the existing instructions under the 1918 Act in the Third Schedule to this Bill are needed, and if voters are going to be asked to number the candidates on the voting paper, it is very undesirable that the numbers 1, 2, 3 and so on should appear on the opposite side of the ballot paper. It seems to me that there is no point in having those numbers on the opposite side, and they might very well be Abolished. I move my Amendment chiefly in order to inquire why these recommendations of either a Departmental Committee or one of the committees of investigation in 1918 have not been carried into effect in this Bill.
§ The SOLICITOR-GENERAL
The hon. and gallant Member for Oxford (Captain Bourne) has raised quite an interesting point and one which the Government have attempted to cover in a way which they think more useful, especially in view of the novelty of the procedure, to which he has drawn attention. There were two possible ways of dealing with this necessary alteration to the directions for the guidance of voters and other matters which would arise with regard to Regulations under the existing Acts. One was to attempt to put them in the Schedule to this Bill in the form in which they are set out here, and the other was to leave the matter, as it is left in Clause 1, Subsection (2), to Regulations to be made by Order in Council. It was felt that that far more flexible method was a wiser method to adopt in view of the novelty of the procedure. Therefore, Subsection (2) of Clause 1 was put in to give power to make Rules by Order in Council to deal with any of the matters which might arise, such as those dealt with in the Amendment. I think perhaps the 1245 hon. and gallant Member will appreciate that that may be a wiser way of doing it when flexibility is rather necessary in introducing a new matter of this sort.
§ Lord ERSKINE
The learned Solicitor-General said that this matter can be covered by regulations to be made by the Home Secretary under Clause 1, and it may well be that that is a better method of carrying out the intention of the Amendment of my hon. and gallant Friend, but I want to ask whether, if theses regulations are made, they have to be laid on the Table of each House of Parliament, or if Parliament has any control at all over them.
§ Mr. C. WILLIAMS
I am horrified to think that these regulations should be dealt with in any way by Order-in-Council. I have always had a very grave dislike of Orders-in-Council which are made to take the place of legislation. It is never very satisfactory, and on a matter such as this, it is all the more important that the House of Commons should be able to make up its mind, and that either these figures should be on the left side of the paper before the voting has taken place or on both sides of the paper after the voting has taken place. That should either be the law of this country and made plain to every elector in the land that that is the position, or else you should have some alternative method.
The learned Solicitor-General referred to a previous part of the Bill which deals with this iniquitous method of Orders-in-Council, but Orders-in-Council have been run to an absurdity. They have been used in such a way as to enable almost any hon. or right hon. Member who is defending a Bill to say, "This is a difficult point, and therefore we will leave it to Orders-in-Council." The learned Solicitor-General took that defence upon himself this evening and seemed to think that that was an adequate answer to the very interesting and able exposition which was given by my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Oxford (Captain Bourne). The point which my hon. and gallant Friend made was that in a case such as this, the confusion which might arise should be dealt with clearly, and that you should not leave it to be dealt with at some future date.
1246 I realise that when you are in difficulties it is very nice to put the whole question on one side and to leave it to someone else to deal with, but the Solicitor-General did not give any real reason for objecting to the Amendment. If he had come down to the House with all those resources which he has behind him for the collection of information, and said that this Amendment was irrelevant and would not work, we might have been able to take another view of it. But he merely said that he thought another part of the Bill dealt with it fairly adequately. The Amendment is a real effort to make the Bill workable and clear as far as it is possible to make an almost imbecile Bill workable. For that reason we are entitled to have something very much stronger from the Government before we go over the Amendment. I wish that some of my hon. Friends would explain to me the first part of the Amendment. I am not certain what is the meaning of paragraph (a).
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
I did not resent the interruption. I should be delighted to hear the hon. Gentleman, if he can, make a speech on the subject. I am not sure whether he can or not. It is not a case of looking up anything. The complications of various Acts are sometimes so great that it is not possible for the ordinary layman to be in the position in which he ought to be, to be able to explain a Bill in detail to his constituents. I ask some hon. Member to give me a clear definition of what paragraph (a) of the Amendment means. I see the Solicitor-General smiling. I hope that he has the information there and that he is going to give it. I shall listen to him with the greatest attention. Are the Government and their supporters prepared to say that they have got the very best possible form under the Bill for dealing with the matter that is referred to in the Amendment? I do not think that they have. Therefore, I hold that the Government are wrong in turning down the Amendment, which has been most carefully drawn up by one of the greatest experts in election matters on this side of the Committee. If we 1247 have to go to a Division I shall vote for the Amendment without any qualms of conscience. I see that the Under-Secretary for the Home Department is looking anxious.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
Then he is not looking anxious. I can only say that he has a most misleading expression on his face. I thought he was dying to make a speech, a thing which I abominate doing. If he does make a speech, I hope he will give us the benefit of his full legal knowledge, because otherwise some of his supporters may be following the Government into the Lobby under misguided circumstances without full knowledge of what they are doing.
§ The SOLICITOR-GENERAL
In reply to the Noble Lord, under Section 40 of the Act of 1918, all rules, regulations or provisions made under that Act have to be laid before each House of Parliament.
§ Captain BOURNE
In view of the Solicitor-General's statement that the Government propose to deal with this matter by Orders in Council, and that we shall have an opportunity of seeing the Orders, I beg to ask leave to withdraw the Amendment.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Clause, as amended, stand part of the Bill."
§ Mr. C. WILLIAMS
Now that we come to the Clause in the whole of its so-called glory, my first duty is to congratulate the Government on their great wisdom in having withdrawn one of their Amendments. If they had not withdrawn that Amendment the Clause would have been even worse than it is. I see at the side of the Clause the words, "Consequential Amendments." The Clause begins by saying:In Sub-section (1) of Section twenty-two of the principal Act.It is always going back to the principal Act. I object to these reference Clauses. It is always better to have things clearly in print so that registration officers and others may know clearly what is meant. That is my outstanding objection to the Clause as it stands. Another objection is to Sub-section (2). It starts: 1248In Sub-section (2) of Section twenty-seven of the principal Act the words 'according to the principle of the alternative vote' shall be substituted for the words under the system of the transferable vote.'"
§ The CHAIRMAN
The hon. Gentleman should pay attention to the business done. Those words have been taken out.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
That is just my difficulty. It is very difficult when things have been taken out to know exactly where one is. I objected to these words. I did not say that they were in or that they were out.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
Yes, I read them and I congratulate the Government on having taken them out of the Clause, but, while that has considerably improved the Clause, it is still a Clause which will not be easily understandable by those who have to administer it. It is the position of those who will have to administer this Measure—people like returning officers, election agents and the candidates themselves—to which I wish to draw attention. Their present position is very difficult, but the complications of this Clause will make their difficulties greater than ever, and before we place it on the Statute Book the Home Secretary ought to give us a clear definition of it and explain precisely what is being done by it. We have had no definition of the Clause during this evening's proceedings, and, on an occasion such as this, we ought to have a legal definition of what we are doing from some part of the House. I admit that the Clause is better than it was, but originally it could not have been very much worse.
It has, I think, been a principle of the Liberal party to try to ensure that electors going to the poll will find it easy to avoid breaking the law in any way. I wonder if the hon. Member for Cardigan (Mr. Morris) could give me some enlightenment on this matter, because I value his opinion. Can he explain the last part of this Clause, and is he prepare to go to his constituency and give an exposition of the Clause and to reply to the heckling of his Scottish constituents on this matter? [HON. MEMBERS: "Welsh."] I most respectfully beg the 1249 hon. Member's pardon. I always thought he had some connection with Scotland, but this Clause applies to Wales as well as to Scotland. I should also like to ask the Under-Secretary if he has consulted with the Scottish Law Officers as regards the application of this Clause to Scotland. There may be complications in that respect, and, as there are no Scottish Members present, it is only right that someone should raise the question of Scotland's position in relation to this very important matter.
I am glad to know that my own party propose to divide against this Clause, and, unless we have a better explanation of it than we have had up to the present, I shall be reluctantly compelled to vote with my party on this occasion. If the Government are out for converts I am willing to be converted—if they can explain to me the exact meaning of this Clause and show me that it is any improvement on the present electoral law. But their coyness in answering questions shows that they are really ashamed of the Clause and that they regard it as a disgraceful Clause which reflects no credit upon them. It has not merely a hidden meaning but many hidden meanings. As I said in reference to a Clause of another Bill which we were dealing with in Committee this morning, it shows that the Government and their supporters put forward proposals like this with no object and no intention, but simply because they are absolutely controlled by an inferiority complex.
§ Sir BASIL PETO
I wish to ask the Government if they propose that the polling officer is to ask every elector before he votes, "Have you already voted at this General Election?" I wish to know whether any Member of the Government, or any hon. Member, has ever been asked by the officer in charge of a polling station this or any other personal question after the presentation of his card duly numbered and certifying that he is a registered voter? If the answer to that question be in the negative, then I ask the Government why they do not try to find some other method of dealing with the matter? Why put into an Act of Parliament a Clause which they know will not be operated? It is clear that in the rush hour at the end of a polling day, when a large number of electors are anxious to 1250 vote, it will be physically impossible for the officer in charge to ask this or any other question of each elector before the elector is allowed to vote. I object to any Clause in any Bill which seeks to enact something which those responsible know will never be carried into effect. I regard this Clause as a futility. It is not likely to be operated, and it serves no useful purpose whatever. I also ask the Government if they have considered whether they ought not to repeal these tests for electors and rely on the electors themselves or on any other method they like of imposing penalties for voting twice in an election, or anything of that sort, instead of throwing on the officer in charge a duty which it will be physically impossible for him to fulfil.
That being my view, I would like seine justification from the Government for asking us to pass this Clause. Such a Clause ought to have been in a totally different form. The Government ought to have considered the conditions of modern elections with the enormous body of electors. It is not a question of a few privileged people in the possession of property who are alone entitled to use the franchise, and to whom it might be appropriate that the returning officer should ask all sorts of questions as to whether they have the proper qualifications one way or another, and whether they have voted once, twice, or, as was the law up to a few years ago, 11 times in one general election under different qualifications. All these circumstances do not exist in the present day, and for the returning officer in charge of a polling station to have to find out whether each individual elector has broken the law before he is allowed to exercise the franchise is an anachronism and a folly, and perpetuates tests which belong to another age and not to the elections of to-day.
I seriously ask the Home Secretary that the Government should consider this from that point of view, and that they should employ simpler methods which are more applicable to the conditions of 1931. All that they have done is to consider whether this question, which has in the past had to be asked of electors before exercising the franchise, exactly fits the new conditions under which the franchise is to be exercised under this present Bill. They have then proposed 1251 such Amendments in the words as they thought are appropriate to the alteration they are making in the law. That is not the point of view from which they should have considered the question at all. They should have began by considering whether to ask this question of the electors is reasonably possible under the present conditions, and whether this ancient method of dealing with the subject is appropriate to the conditions of the present day. I do not think that they have ever considered the question from that point of view.
Before we pass this Clause we are entitled to know how much hard thinking the Government put into this question before they had the Clause printed. We are entitled to ask the Government that they should not bring before the House and have considered in Committee a question to which they have not given any practical thought. As it stands, the Clause is useless and will never be operative. The Government know that, and, knowing it, ought to have considered whether a totally different way of dealing with the question ought not to have been adopted. If we proceed in legislation on these lines there will be no end to it. In every Bill that is brought in, we ought, instead of merely tinkering with the question, to use the brain power that God has given us and consider the question in the light of the present day and from an original point of view. If we merely look at it in a pedantic way, considering precisely what is written in some previous more or less ancient Act of Parliament, and considering only what slight verbal change is necessary in order to make it conform to the particular alteration we are proposing at the moment, what will our legislation look like in 50 years time, and who will be able to interpret it? I beg the Government, who are so up to date, and who represent a progressive party, and are introducing new legislation entirely in their own interest, to give at any rate one passing thought to the general public interest, and to bring just one fragment of the light of original thought to bear on to this matter.
§ Mr. MORRIS
The hon. Gentleman the Member for Barnstaple (Sir B. Peto) urges some hard thinking before the question is allowed to pass. I would 1252 certainly urge the Government to do a little more thinking on other parts of the Bill, but in this case I would ask the hon. Member himself to do a little more thinking. With regard to the question set out in the Schedule of the principal Act., it is clear under Clause 22 that the question need not be compulsorily put. It is clearly put for the protection of the voter who might be committing an offence. To vote twice in certain circumstances is an offence under the principal Act, and to vote twice in any circumstances will be an offence under this Bill. In order to protect a person who might be committing an offence, the presiding officer can, if he suspects that an offence is being committed, put the question set out in the Second Schedule. That therefore disposes of the hon. Member's picture of the rush hours at the last moment. Apart from this Clause, the presiding officer would not have the power to put the question at all.
§ Sir B. PETO
I do not think that that disposes of my point at all. My point was that in the rush hours of a modern election it is practically impossible for the presiding officer to put this question to electors. I asked the question whether any Member of the House has ever been asked one of these qustions.
§ Mr. MORRIS
I agree that it may be impossible for the presiding officer to ask the question, but it is not mandatory upon him to ask it. The Act, does not say he shall ask the question, but that he may ask it of any person who may possibly be committing an offence. He need not necessarily ask it. There are many unreasonable things in this Bill, but this is not one of them. As Amendments are being made to the principal Act, it is necessary to make consequential Amendments. This Clause is one of the most reasonable Clauses in the Bill. I am not enthusiastic about many of the Clauses, but I think that this Clause is a good one.
Mr. R. W. SMITH
There is one question I have to ask. Suppose a voter is not asked the question: "Have you already recorded your vote?" Will that fact be a complete defence for him if proceedings are taken against him? It is hardly fair to say the returning officer has power to ask him that question; it 1253 ought to be his duty to do so; if he does not put that question, it should be a dereliction of duty on his part. In the rush hour at the poll, how could the returning officer scan the face of each person? Those who preside in the polling booths will be asking for extra pay if they have to run over whole lists of questions and say to themselves: "Must I put one of those questions to this man? Does he look as though he had voted before?" It is perfectly ridiculous that a returning officer should have to ask himself these questions. If a person goes up to the desk and asks for a voting paper that ought to be sufficient for the returning officer. He ought to regard the man as saying: "I am entitled to vote and I have not voted before."
§ Mr. CLYNES
There is very little information which the Committee require in addition to that which has already been given by the Solicitor-General. I rise only to reassure the hon. Baronet that in his absence this Clause has been treated in the kindliest way. No other proposal in the Bill has been better treated, and the discussion has been of the most harmonious character. All the Clause is designed to do is to prevent an elector from innocently violating the law. The point is likely to arise in only a very few cases, and will not cause inconvenience to the general body of electors. It states what is intended in brief and simple language, and I hope the hon. Baronet will now be content.
§ Sir B. PETO
Will the right hon. Gentleman say whether he has ever known a case where these provisions dealing with a question to be asked by the presiding officer have ever had any effect or have ever been put into force?
§ Mr. CLYNES
No such instances have come under my personal notice, but that does not mean that cases have not occurred, nor does it mean that we ought to frame the law without regard to the possibility of such occurrences in the future.
§ Sir JOHN WITHERS
I am afraid there must be something smacking of the double vote about me, because I have been frequently asked whether I have voted before. I mention that for the information of the Home Secretary.
Mr. R. W. SMITH
Will the right hon. Gentleman answer my question as to 1254 whether it would be a reasonable defence for a man to say that he was not asked the question when it is possible for the returning officer to have put the point to him?
§ Mr. CLYNES
We have to concern ourselves with the actual terms of the Clause, and not with possible questions in a court of law if an action ever arose. It would then be for the court to decide that point, and I had better not attempt to give an answer now.
According to (1, a) of Clause 22 of the principal Act of 1918, the court has a discretion, in the special circumstances of a case, to mitigate or entirely remit any incapacity imposed by Section 10 of the Corrupt and Illegal Practices Prevention Act. Therefore, whether a man was or was not asked whether he had voted before, if he innocently violated the law, and could prove there had been a genuine mistake, the court would have power to mitigate or remit the penalty.
§ Mr. CECIL WILSON
I would like to point out that Section 22 of the principal Act reads thus:If any person at a General Election votes for more constituencies than he is entitled to vote for in accordance with this Act, or asks for a ballot or voting paper for the purpse of so voting, he shall be guilty of an illegal practice.I think that answers the point put by the hon. Gentlemen opposite.
§ Mr. HARRIS
In answer to the observations of the hon. Member for Cambridge University (Sir J. Withers), I can assure him that he is not a suspicious looking character. The last thing that a presiding officer would think would be that he was trying to break the law. The reason why he is singled out for special inquiry is, no doubt, that he has the business qualification vote, and in such cases it is customary to ask whether the man has already voted. Where a man has a business qualification vote that fact is shown on the register, as well as his private address, and it is in such cases that it is customary for the presiding officer to ask the question.
§ Question put, "That the Clause, as amended, stand part of the Bill."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 219; Noes, 68.1239
|Division No. 224.]||AYES.||[7.38 p.m.|
|Adamson, W. M. (Staff., Cannock)||Brothers, M.||Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton)|
|Addison, Rt. Hon. Dr. Christopher||Brown, C. W. E. (Notts, Mansfield)||Denman, Hon. R. D.|
|Aitchison, Rt. Hon. Craigle M.||Brown, Ernest (Leith)||Dudgeon, Major C. R.|
|Alexander, Rt. Hon. A. V. (Hillsbro')||Brown, Rt. Hon. J. (South Ayrshire)||Dukes, C.|
|Ammon, Charles George||Buchanan, G.||Duncan, Charles|
|Angell, Sir Norman||Burgess, F. G.||Ede, James Chuter|
|Aske, Sir Robert||Butler, R. A.||Edmunds, J. E.|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Buxton, C. R. (Yorks, W. R. Elland)||Edwards, E. (Morpeth)|
|Ayles, Walter||Caine, Hall-, Derwent||Elmley, Viscount|
|Baker, John (Wolverhampton, Bilston)||Cameron, A. G.||Fison, F. G. Clavering|
|Balfour, Captain H. H. (I. of Thanet)||Cape, Thomas||Freeman, Peter|
|Barnes, Alfred John||Carter, W. (St. Pancras, S.W.)||Gardner, B. W. (West Ham, Upton)|
|Barr, James||Chater, Daniel||George, Rt. Hon. D. Lloyd (Car'vn)|
|Bennett, Sir E. N. (Cardiff, Central)||Church, Major A. G.||George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)|
|Benson, G.||Clarke, J. S.||George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesea)|
|Bevan, Aneurin (Ebbw Vale)||Cluse, W. S.||Gibbins, Joseph|
|Birchall, Major Sir John Dearman||Clynes, Rt. Hon. John R.||Gibson, H. M. (Lancs, Mossley)|
|Bird, Ernest Roy||Cocks, Frederick Seymour.||Gill, T. H.|
|Birkett, W. Norman||Cove, William G.||Glassey, A. E.|
|Bondfield, Rt. Hon. Margaret||Cripps, Sir Stafford||Gossling, A. G.|
|Bowen, J. W.||Daggar, George||Gould, F.|
|Bowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W.||Dallas, George||Greene, W. P. Crawford|
|Bracken, B.||Dalton, Hugh||Greenwood, Rt. Hon. A. (Colne)|
|Broad, Francis Alfred||Davies, D. L. (Pontypridd)||Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan)|
|Bromfield, William||Davies, E. C. (Montgomery)||Griffith, F. Kingsley (Middlesbro' W.)|
|Groves, Thomas E.||McShane, John James||Sexton, Sir James|
|Grundy, Thomas W.||Malone, C. L'Estrange (N'thampton)||Shakespeare, Geoffrey H.|
|Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Manning, E. L.||Shaw, Rt. Hon. Thomas (Preston)|
|Hall, J. H. (Whitechapel)||Mansfield, W.||Sherwood, G. H.|
|Hamilton, Mary Agnes (Blackburn)||March, S.||Shield, George William|
|Hamilton, Sir R. (Orkney & Zetland)||Marcus, M.||Shiels, Dr. Drummond|
|Hardie, George D.||Margesson, Captain H. D.||Shillaker, J. F.|
|Harris, Percy A.||Marley, J.||Shinwell, E.|
|Hastings, Dr. Somerville||Marshall, Fred||Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)|
|Hayday, Arthur||Mason, Colonel Glyn K.||Simmons, C. J.|
|Hayes, John Henry||Mathers, George||Sinclair, Sir A. (Caithness)|
|Henderson, Rt. Hon. A. (Burnley)||Matters, L. W.||Sinkinson, George|
|Henderson, Arthur, Junr. (Cardiff, S.)||Maxton, James||Sitch, Charles H.|
|Henderson, W. W. (Middx., Enfield)||Messer, Fred||Smith, Ben (Bermondsey, Rotherhithe)|
|Herriotts, J.||Middleton, G.||Smith, Frank (Nuneaton)|
|Hicks, Ernest George||Mills, J. E.||Smith, Lees-, H. B.|
|Hirst, G. H. (York W. R. Wentworth)||Morgan, Dr. H. B.||Smith, Rennie (Penistone)|
|Hoffman, P. C.||Morley, Ralph||Smith, Tom (Pontefract)|
|Hollins, A.||Morris, Rhys Hopkins||Snowden, Thomas (Accrington)|
|Hopkin, Daniel||Morris-Jones, Dr. J. H. (Denbigh)||Sorensen, R.|
|Horrabin, J. F.||Morrison, Rt. Hon. H. (Hackney, S.)||Stamford, Thomas W.|
|Howard-Bury, Colonel C. K.||Morrison, Robert C. (Tottenham, N.)||Stephen, Campbell|
|Hutchison, Maj.-Gen. Sir R.||Mort, D. L.||Strauss, G. R.|
|Isaacs, George||Murnin, Hugh||Sullivan, J.|
|John, William (Rhondda, West)||Naylor, T. E.||Sutton, J. E.|
|Johnston, Rt. Hon. Thomas||Newman, Sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter)||Taylor, R. A. (Lincoln)|
|Jones, Llewellyn-, F.||Noel Baker, P. J.||Taylor, W. B. (Norfolk, S.W.)|
|Jones, J. J. (West Ham, Silvertown)||Noel-Buxton, Baroness (Norfolk, N.)||Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. H. (Derby)|
|Jones, Rt. Hon. Leif (Camborne)||O'Connor, T. J.||Thorne, W. (West Ham, Plaistow)|
|Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)||Oldfield, J. R.||Thurtle, Ernest|
|Jowett, Rt. Hon. F. W.||Oliver, George Harold (Ilkeston)||Tillett, Ben|
|Jowitt, Sir W. A. (Preston)||Owen, H. F. (Hereford)||Tinker, John Joseph|
|Kedward, R. M. (Kent, Ashford)||Palin, John Henry.||Toole, Joseph|
|Kelly, W. T.||Palmer, E. T.||Vaughan, David|
|Kennedy, Rt. Hon. Thomas||Peake, Capt. Osbert||Viant, S. P.|
|Kinley, J.||Penny, Sir George||Walkden, A. G.|
|Lambert, Rt. Hon. George (S. Molton)||Perry, S. F.||Walker, J.|
|Lang, Gordon||Pethick-Lawrence, F. W.||Wallace, H. W.|
|Lansbury, Rt. Hon. George||Phillips, Dr. Marion||Watkins, F. C.|
|Lathan, G.||Picton-Turbervill, Edith||Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)|
|Law, Albert (Bolton)||Pole, Major D. G.||Watts-Morgan, Lt.-Col. D. (Rhondda)|
|Law, A. (Rossendale)||Potts, John S.||Wayland, Sir William A.|
|Lawrence, Susan||Price, M. P.||Wellock, Wilfred|
|Lawson, John James||Pybus, Percy John||Welsh, James (Paisley)|
|Lawther, W. (Barnard Castle)||Quibell, D. J. K.||West, F. R.|
|Leach, W.||Ramsay, T. B. Wilson||Westwood, Joseph|
|Lee, Frank (Derby, N.E.)||Rathbone, Eleanor||White, H. G.|
|Lee, Jennie (Lanark, Northern)||Raynes, W. R.||Whiteley, Wilfrid (Birm., Ladywood)|
|Lees, J.||Richards, R.||Wilkinson, Ellen C.|
|Lloyd, C. Ellis||Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring)||Williams, David (Swansea, East)|
|Longbottom, A. W.||Riley, Ben (Dewsbury)||Williams, Dr. J. H. (Llanelly)|
|Lovat-Fraser, J. A.||Romeril, H. G.||Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)|
|Lunn, William||Rosbotham, D. S. T.||Wilson, C. H. (Sheffield, Attercliffe)|
|Macdonald, Gordon (Ince)||Rothschild, J. de||Wilson, J. (Oldham)|
|MacDonald, Rt. Hon. J. R. (Seaham)||Rowson, Guy||Wilson R. J. (Jarrow)|
|MacDonald, Malcolm (Bassetlaw)||Salter, Dr. Alfred||Winterton, G. E. (Leicester, Loughb'gh)|
|McElwee, A.||Samuel, Rt. Hon. Sir H. (Darwen)||Wise, E. F.|
|McEntee, V. L.||Samuel, H. Walter (Swansea, West)||Young, R. S. (Islington, North)|
|McKinlay, A.||Sanders, W. S.|
|MacLaren, Andrew||Sandham, E.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Maclean, Neil (Glasgow, Govan)||Sawyer, G. F.||Mr. Paling and Mr. Charleton.|
|MacNeill-Weir, L.||Scurr, John|
|Atholl, Duchess of||Edmondson, Major A. J.||Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney, N.)|
|Atkinson, C.||Elliot, Major Walter E.||Hunter-Weston, Lt.-Gen. Sir Aylmer|
|Balfour, George (Hampstead)||Everard, W. Lindsay||Hurst, Sir Gerald B.|
|Bevan, S. J. (Holborn)||Falle, Sir Bertram G.||Jones, Sir G. W. H. (Stoke New'gton)|
|Bowyer, Captain Sir George E. W.||Ferguson, Sir John||Lane Fox, Col. Rt. Hon. George R.|
|Briscoe, Richard George||Fielden, E. B.||Law, Sir Alfred (Derby, High Peak)|
|Brown, Brig.-Gen.H.C.(Berks, Newb'y)||Ford, Sir P. J.||Lewis, Oswald (Colchester)|
|Buchan-Hepburn, P. G. T.||Fremantle, Lieut-Colonel Francis E.||Little, Graham-, Sir Ernest|
|Cayzer, Sir C. (Chester, City)||Ganzoni, Sir John||Nicholson, Col. Rt. Hn. W. G. (Ptrsf'ld)|
|Cayzer, Maj.Sir Herbt. (Prtsmth,S.)||Gretton, Colonel Rt. Hon. John||Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings)|
|Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston Spencer||Hall, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich)||Peto, Sir Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple)|
|Clydesdale, Marquess of||Hamilton, Sir George (Ilford)||Remer, John R.|
|Conway, Sir W. Martin||Hanbury, C.||Reynolds, Col. Sir James|
|Courthope, Colonel Sir G. L.||Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry||Rodd, Rt. Hon. Sir James Rennell|
|Crookshank, Capt. H. C.||Hartington, Marquess of||Ruggles-Brise, Colonel E.|
|Croom-Johnson, R. P.||Harvey, Major S. E. (Devon, Totnes)||Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)|
|Dalkeith, Earl of||Henderson, Capt. R. R.(Oxf'd,Henley)||Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney)|
|Davies, Maj. Geo. F.(Somerset, Yeovil)||Herbert, Sir Dennis (Hertford)||Sandeman, Sir N. Stewart|
|Duckworth, G. A. V.||Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S. J. G.||Shepperson, Sir Ernest Whittome|
|Skelton, A. N.||Sueter Rear-Admiral M. F.||Womersley, W. J.|
|Smith-Carington, Neville W.||Train, J.|
|Smithers, Waldron||Warrender, Sir Victor||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Somerset, Thomas||Wells, Sydney R.||Lord Erskine and Captain Bourne.|
|Spender-Clay, Colonel H.||Williams, Charles (Devon, Torquay)|
Question, "That the Clause stand part of the Bill," put, and agreed to.
|Division No. 225.]||AYES.||[8.58 p.m.|
|Adamson, W. M. (Staff., Cannock)||Henderson, Arthur, Junr. (Cardiff, S.)||Palmer, E. T.|
|Addison, Rt. Hon. Dr. Christopher||Henderson, W. W. (Middx., Enfield)||Perry, S. F.|
|Aitchison, Rt. Hon. Craigle M.||Herriotts, J.||Pethick-Lawrence, F. W.|
|Alexander, Rt. Hon. A. V. (Hillsbro')||Hicks, Ernest George||Phillips, Dr. Marion|
|Ammon, Charles George||Hirst, G. H. (York W. R. Wentworth)||Picton-Turbervill, Edith|
|Angell, Sir Norman||Hoffman, P. C.||Pole, Major D. G.|
|Aske, Sir Robert||Hollins, A.||Potts, John S.|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Hopkin, Daniel||Pybus, Percy John|
|Ayles, Walter||Horrabin, J. F.||Quibell, D. J. K.|
|Baker, John (Wolverhampton, Bilston)||Isaacs, George||Ramsay, T. B. Wilson|
|Barnes, Alfred John||John, William (Rhondda, West)||Raynes, W. R.|
|Barr, James||Johnston, Rt. Hon. Thomas||Richards, R.|
|Batey, Joseph||Jones, Llewellyn-, F.||Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring)|
|Benn, Rt. Hon. Wedgwood||Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)||Riley, Ben (Dewsbury)|
|Benson, G.||Jowett, Rt. Hon. F. W.||Rosbotham, D. S. T.|
|Bevan, Aneurin (Ebbw Vale)||Jowitt, Sir W. A. (Preston)||Rowson, Guy|
|Birkett, W. Norman||Kedward, R. M. (Kent, Ashford)||Salter, Dr. Alfred|
|Bondfield, Rt. Hon. Margaret||Kelly, W. T.||Samuel Rt. Hon. Sir H. (Darwen)|
|Bowen, J. W.||Kennedy, Rt. Hon. Thomas||Samuel, H. Walter (Swansea, West)|
|Bowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W.||Kinley, J.||Sanders, W. S.|
|Broad, Francis Alfred||Lang, Gordon||Sandham, E.|
|Bromfield, William||Lansbury, Rt. Hon. George||Sawyer, G. F.|
|Brothers, M.||Lathan, G.||Scurr, John|
|Brown, C. W. E. (Notts. Mansfield)||Law, Albert (Bolton)||Sexton, Sir James|
|Brown, Ernest (Leith)||Law, A. (Rossendale)||Shakespeare, Geoffrey H.|
|Brown, Rt. Hon. J. (South Ayrshire)||Lawson, John James||Shaw, Rt. Hon. Thomas (Preston)|
|Buchanan, G.||Lawther, W. (Barnard Castle)||Sherwood, G. H.|
|Burgess, F. G.||Leach, W.||Shield, George William|
|Buxton, C. R. (Yorks, W. R. Elland)||Lee, Frank (Derby, N.E.)||Shiels, Dr. Drummond|
|Caine, Hall-, Derwent||Lee, Jennie (Lanark, Northern)||Shillaker, J. F.|
|Cameron, A. G.||Lees, J.||Shinwell, E.|
|Cape, Thomas||Lewis, T. (Southampton)||Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)|
|Chater, Daniel||Lindley, Fred W.||Simmons, C. J.|
|Clarke, J. S.||Lloyd, C. Ellis||Sinkinson, George|
|Cluse, W. S.||Longbottom, A. W.||Sitch, Charles H.|
|Clynes, Rt. Hon. John R.||Lovat-Fraser, J. A.||Smith, Ben (Bermondsey, Rotherhithe)|
|Cocks, Frederick Seymour||Lunn, William||Smith, Frank (Nuneaton)|
|Cove, William G.||Macdonald, Gordon (Ince)||Smith, Lees-, H. B.|
|Cripps, Sir Stafford||MacDonald, Rt. Hon. J. R. (Seaham)||Smith, Rennie (Penistone)|
|Daggar, George||MacDonald, Malcolm (Bassetlaw)||Snowden, Thomas (Accrington)|
|Dallas, George||McElwee, A.||Stamford, Thomas W.|
|Dalton, Hugh||McEntee, V. L.||Stephen, Campbell|
|Davies, D. L. (Pontypridd)||McKinlay, A.||Sullivan, J.|
|Davies, E. C. (Montgomery)||MacLaren, Andrew||Sutton, J. E.|
|Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton)||MacNeill-Weir, L.||Taylor, R. A. (Lincoln)|
|Dudgeon, Major C. R.||McShane, John James||Taylor, W. B. (Norfolk, S.W.)|
|Dukes, C.||Malone, C. L'Estrange (N'thampton)||Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. H. (Derby)|
|Duncan, Charles||Manning, E. L.||Tinker, John Joseph|
|Ede, James Chuter||March, S.||Vaughan, David|
|Edmunds, J. E.||Marcus, M.||Viant, S. P.|
|Edwards, E. (Morpeth)||Marshall, Fred||Walkden, A. G.|
|Elmley, Viscount||Mathers, George||Walker, J.|
|Gardner, B. W. (West Ham, Upton)||Matters, L. W.||Wallace, H. W.|
|George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)||Maxton, James||Watkins, F. C.|
|George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesea)||Messer, Fred||Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)|
|Gibbins, Joseph||Middleton, G.||Watts-Morgan, Lt.-Col. D. (Rhondda)|
|Gibson, H. M. (Lancs. Mossley)||Mills, J. E.||Wellock, Wilfred|
|Gill, T. H.||Montague, Frederick||Welsh, James (paisley)|
|Glassey, A. E.||Morgan, Dr. H. B.||Westwood, Joseph|
|Gossling, A. G.||Morley, Ralph||White, H. G.|
|Greenwood, Rt. Hon. A. (Colne)||Morris, Rhys Hopkins||Whiteley, Wilfrid (Birm., Ladywood)|
|Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan)||Morris-Jones, Dr. J. H. (Denbigh)||Wilkinson, Ellen C.|
|Griffith, F. Kingsley (Middlesbro' W.)||Morrison, Rt. Hon. H. (Hackney, S.)||Williams, David (Swansea, East)|
|Grundy, Thomas W.||Mort, D. L.||Williams, Dr. J. H. (Llanelly)|
|Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Murnin, Hugh||Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)|
|Hall, J. H (Whitechapel)||Naylor, T. E.||Wilson, C. H. (Sheffield, Attercliffe)|
|Hall, Capt. W. G. (Portsmouth, C.)||Newman, Sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter)||Wilson, J. (Oldham)|
|Hamilton, Mary Agnes (Blackburn)||Noel Baker, P. J.||Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)|
|Hardie, George D.||Noel-Buxton, Baroness (Norfolk, N.)||Winterton, G. E. (Leicester, Loughb'gh)|
|Harris, Percy A.||Oldfield, J. R.||Wise, E. F.|
|Hastings, Dr. Somerville||Oliver, George Harold (Ilkeston)||Young, R. S. (Islington, North)|
|Hayday, Arthur||Owen, H. F. (Hereford)|
|Hayes, John Henry||Palin, John Henry||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Henderson, Right Hon. A. (Burnley)||Paling, Wilfrid||Mr. Thurtle and Mr. Charleton.|
|Albery, Irving James||Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H.||Campbell, E. T.|
|Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M. S.||Bourne, Captain Robert Croft||Castle Stewart, Earl of|
|Atkinson, C.||Bracken, B.||Conway, Sir W. Martin|
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley (Bewdley)||Brown, Brig.-Gen. H. C. (Berks, Newb'y)||Crookshank, Cpt. H. (Lindsey, Gainsbro)|
|Balfour, Captain H. H. (I. of Thanet)||Butler, R. A.||Croom-Johnson, R. P.|
|Cunliffe-Lister, Rt. Hon. Sir Philip||Lewis, Oswald (Colchester)||Somerset, Thomas|
|Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset,Yeovil)||Margesson, Captain H. D.||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)|
|Elliot, Major Walter E.||Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. Sir B.||Spender-Clay, Colonel H.|
|Erskine, Lord (Somerset, Weston-s-M.)||Muirhead, A. J.||Stanley, Hon. O. (Westmorland)|
|Ferguson, Sir John||Nicholson, O. (Westminster)||Titchfield, Major the Marquess of|
|Ford, Sir P. J.||Peake, Captain Osbert||Train, J.|
|Fremantle, Lieut.-Colonel Francis E.||Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings)||Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement|
|Greene, W. P. Crawford||Peto, Sir Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple)||Wallace, Capt. D. E. (Hornsey)|
|Grenfell, Edward C. (City of London)||Remer, John R.||Warrender, Sir Victor|
|Hanbury, C.||Reynolds, Col. Sir James||Wayland, Sir William A.|
|Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry||Rodd, Rt. Hon. Sir James Rennell||Wells, Sydney R.|
|Henderson, Capt. R. R.(Oxf'd, Henley)||Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)||Williams, Charles (Devon, Torquay)|
|Hennessy, Major Sir G. R. J.||Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)||Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl|
|Herbert, Sir Dennis (Hertford)||Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney)||Withers, Sir John James|
|Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S. J. G.||Sandeman, Sir N. Stewart||Womersley, W. J.|
|Howard-Bury, Colonel C. K.||Shepperson, Sir Ernest Whittome|
|Hunter-Weston, Lt.-Gen. Sir Aylmer||Skelton, A. N.||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Hurst, Sir Gerald B.||Smith, R.W.(Aberd'n & Kinc'dine, C.)||Sir Frederick Thomson and Captain|
|Inskip, Sir Thomas||Smithers, Waldron||Sir George Bowyer.|