§ Order of the Day for the Second Reading read.
§ Moved, "That the Bill be now read 2a."—(The Earl of Derby.)
§ THE EARL OF DERBY
, in moving that the Bill be now read a second time, said, that the object of the Bill was merely to remedy an oversight in the Reform Act of the last Session. It was enacted by the 12th section, that from and after the end of this present Parliament the four boroughs reported against shall respectively cease to return any Member or Members to serve in Parliament; and by the 60th section it was provided that in the event of any vacancy in the representation of any constituency, or of the calling a new Parliament before the 1st of January, 1869, the election shall take place in the same manner as if the Act had not been passed; except that the four boroughs disfranchised by the Act shall not return Members to the New Parliament. The wording of these clauses left it doubtful whether, in the event of a vacancy occurring in any one of these four boroughs during the existing Parliament, it would not be 574 necessary to issue a writ for the election of a new Member. It was moreover thought that a Resolution of the House of Commons to suspend the issue of the writ was not the proper way of meeting the case. This Bill had therefore been introduced to remove this doubt.
§ Motion agreed to: Bill read 2a (according to Order); Committee negatived; and Bill to be read 3a To-morrow.