HL Deb 26 March 1852 vol 120 cc174-5

in moving the Second Reading of this Bill, said, he thought it was well worthy the consideration of their Lordships, whether the thirty-five days, which by this Bill would be the minimum between the proclamation and assembling of a new Parliament, could not be reduced to twenty-eight days. The reason he had no so framed the Bill as to shorten the interval for four weeks, was, that in order to do so it would be neoessary to repeal an Act passed in the reign of George III., by which the minimum for Irish elections was thirty-three days.


submitted that the present measure was unnecessary, as the existing law would allow of the assembling a new Parliament thirty-five days after proclamation by the Crown.


urged that the present Bill would put an end to any doubts on the point. He wished to hear from the Lord Chancellor whether he would like to recommend the issuing of writs for less than fifty days. He rather thought to noble Lord's answer would be in the negative.


said, it did not appear to him that the Bill was necessary, upon the construction which he thought applied to the existing law. He would not oppose the second reading; but would take care to look more closely into the point before it went into Committee.


contended that it was better to provide against any doubt by enactment that a Parliament convened upon writs issued and returnable in thirty-five days should be a legal Parliament. He had great respect for the opinion of the noble and learned Lord on the woolsack; but he feared the point was not clear, and without the Act no Minister would advise the Crown to summon the Parliament one day less than the fifty days. As to further reducing the time from thirty-five days to twenty-eight, there would be abundance of time to consider that in Committee on the Bill.

Bill read 2a.

House adjourned to Monday next.