HL Deb 08 June 1837 vol 38 cc1246-7
Viscount Duncannon

said, in reference to the question put to him at an earlier period of the evening by the Earl of Wicklow, relative to the omission of some paragraphs from the correspondence which had been laid before the House between Mr. Senior and the Government that he had inquired into the subject, and the gentleman to whom the letter was written had, it appeared, thought it advisable to withdraw the paragraphs refered to.

The Earl of Wicklow

said that the return which had been made to their lordships was different from that which had been presented to the other House of Parliament. Whether the omissions which had been made were material or not was a question of no importance, but it was a question of which Mr. Senior was not competent to form a judgment. He thought the paragraphs which had been omitted were of very great importance, and he considered that nothing could be more mischievous than a practice of making alterations in public papers.

Earl Fitztwilliam

did not see that the omission signified much, because this paragraph, after all, only contained the opinion of a private individual. He thought that the Legislature ought to call for facts. He could not help expressing his regret and astonishment that the system about to be proposed was totally different to that recommended by the Irish Poor Law Commissioners themselves, and he lamented that Parliament should be called on to legislate in this manner, throw overboard the facts and inferences collected after a most minute and careful investigation, and that the measure should be adopted, founded on a report, to support which there were no documents in existence.

Viscount Melbourne

said their lordships were not called upon to legislate without information, for they had before them the results of the very minute inquiry and investigation which had been made by the Poor Law Commissioners, and they were called upon to legislate in the manner in which Parliament was always called upon to legislate—namely, their general knowledge of the circumstances of the case, and their acquaintance with the state of Ireland.

Subject dropped.

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