THE MARQUESS of WESTMEATH
said, he must beg the attention of their Lordships for a very few moments in consequence of what appeared on the face of the Votes and Proceedings of the House of Commons of that morning. It appeared that a question was put by an hon. Gentleman to the right hon. Baronet the Secretary of State 2 for the Home Department, to know whether any deputation from the county of Westmeath had waited on the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland in reference to the case of Bryan Seery, who, as their Lordships probably knew, had been lately tried by a Special Commission in the county of Westmeath, where he had been convicted and sentenced to be hung; and the question asked was, whether the deputation had gone up to pray the Lord Lieutenant that the law might take its course? Now, as far as he could put a construction upon the answer of the right hon. the Home Secretary, he stated that a deputation had proceeded from the county of Westmeath for that purpose. This being the case, he thought their Lordships would not be disposed to refuse him the opportunity of expressing his regret that the right hon. Gentleman should have given that answer, because no such deputation had gone up from the county of Westmeath. The noble Marquess was proceeding, when—
§ The EARL of ST. GERMANS
rose to order, and begged to call their Lordships' attention to the inconvenience of the course 3 which the noble Marquess was pursuing in remarking, not on the proceedings of the other House of Parliament, but upon a speech which he said had been delivered there, but respecting which he could know nothing except through the ordinary channels of information, that was to say, the newspapers.
quite agreed with the noble Earl. But the noble Marquess need not have spoken of what he wished to refer to as having been a speech delivered in the other House of Parliament. All he had to do was to say he had seen it represented that so and so had been stated in another place, and then to have asked whether that was the case or not; or he might have taken it for granted that the statement had been made, and then made his own remarks upon it.
The MARQUESS of WESTMEATH
said, it was far from his intention to take any unfair proceeding in that House. It was no object of his to take advantage of the ignorance of any noble Lord as to what had fallen from a Colleague in office; but he thought the noble Earl could tell him whether that answer was given or not. When that answer, as reported, went forth to Ireland, the whole of that side of the press would bear on the magistrates of Westmeath. He should have been bound to have given notice of his question if he had thought that the thing would have kept. He asked whether the Secretary of State had made that answer or not?
said, it was plain that the noble Marquess had got his object, for he had given the most positive contradiction to the whole statement, and that without contradiction.