HC Deb 15 October 1912 vol 42 cc1075-187

Subject to the provisions of this Act, the Irish Parliament shall have power to make laws for the peace, order, and good government of Ireland with the following limitations, namely, that they shall not have power to make laws except in respect of matters exclusively relating to Ireland or some part thereof, and (without prejudice to that general limitation) that they shall not have power to make laws in respect of the following matters in particular, or any of them, namely:—

  1. (1) The Crown, or the succession to the Crown, or a Regency; or the Lord Lieutenant except as respects the exercise of his executive power in relation to Irish services as denned for the purposes of this Act; or
  2. (2) The making of peace or war or matters arising from a state of war; or the regulation of the conduct of any portion of His Majesty's subjects during the existence of hostili- 1076 ties between foreign States with which His Majesty is at peace, in relation to those hostilities; or
  3. (3) The Navy, the Army, the Territorial Force, or any other naval or military force, or the defence of the realm, or any other naval or military matter; or
  4. (4) Treaties, or any relations, with foreign States, or relations with other parts of His Majesty's dominions, or offences connected with any such treaties or relations, or procedure connected with the extradition of criminals under any treaty, or the return of fugitive offenders from or to any part of His Majesty's dominions; or
  5. (5) Dignities or titles of honour; or
  6. (6) Treason, treason felony, alienage, naturalisation, or aliens as such; or
  7. (7) Trade with any place out of Ireland (except so far as trade may be affected by the exercise of the powers of taxation given to the Irish Parliament, or by the regulation of importation for the sole purpose of preventing contagious disease); quarantine; or navigation, including merchant shipping (except as respects inland waters and local health or harbour regulations); or
  8. (8) Lighthouses, buoys, or beacons (except so far as they can consistently with any general Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom be constructed or maintained by a local harbour authority); or
  9. (9) Coinage; legal tender; or any change in the standard of weights and measures; or
  10. (10) Trade marks, designs, merchandise marks, copyright, or patent rights; or
  11. (11) Any of the following matters (in this Act referred to as reserved matters), namely:—
    1. (a) The general subject-matter of the Acts relating to Land Purchase in Ireland, the Old Age Pensions Acts, 1908 and 1911, the National Insurance Act, 1911, and the Labour Exchanges Act, 1909;
    2. (b) The collection of taxes;
    3. (c) The Royal Irish Constabulary and the management and control of that force;
    4. 1077
    5. (d) Post Office Savings Banks, Trustee Savings Banks, and Friendly Societies; and
    6. (e) Public loans made in Ireland before the passing of this Act:

Provided that the limitation on the powers of the Irish Parliament under this Section shall cease as respects any such reserved matter if the corresponding reserved service is transferred to the Irish Government under the provisions of this Act.

Any law made in contravention of the limitations imposed by this Section shall, so far as it contravenes those limitations, be void.

Amendment proposed [3rd July], to leave out from the word "laws" ["Subject to the provisions of this Act the Irish Parliament shall have power to make laws"], and to insert instead thereof the words "concerning matters exclusively relating to Ireland and coming within the following classes of subjects, namely:—

  1. (1) Education;
  2. (2) Agriculture to the extent and subject to the conditions to be defined by the Parliament of the United Kingdom;
  3. (3) The establishment, maintenance, and management of hospitals and charitable institutions;
  4. (4) Municipal institutions, county councils, and other local institutions of a similar nature;
  5. (5) Local works and undertakings in Ireland, other than railways and harbours, and subject to the power of the Parliament of the United Kingdom to declare any work a national work, and to provide for its construction by arrangement with the Irish Parliament or otherwise;
  6. (6) Roads and bridges;
  7. (7) Markets and pounds;
  8. (8) Fish and game preservation, except as to sea fisheries;
  9. (9) The imposition of punishment by fine, penalty, or imprisonment for enforcing any law made by the Irish Parliament in relation to any matter coming within any of the classes of subjects enumerated in this Clause;
  10. (10) All other subjects in respect of which the Parliament of the United Kingdom shall by any Act delegate the power of legislation to the Irish Parliament."—[Mr. Sandys.]

Question again proposed, "That the words 'for the' stand part of the Clause."


The Amendment was moved by my hon. Friend, the Member for Somerset (Mr. Sandys), in a speech which I think, arrested the attention of the whole House. My hon. Friend pointed out that the object of the Amendment was not to provoke a discussion on the particular powers to be given to an Irish Parliament, if one was set up, but only to raise the general question whether, assuming there is to be a federal Parliament in Ireland, the better plan is the plan in the Bill of giving to the Irish Parliament and Executive general powers of administration and legislation, reserving to this Parliament only certain specified and excepted powers, or the plan proposed by the Amendment, which is to delegate to the Irish Parliament and Executive certain specified and enumerated powers, reserving to ourselves those powers which are not so specially delegated. I believe the question to be very important and indeed vital, and although I do not suppose that anything that I may say, or that may be said on this side of the House, will affect the votes of hon. Members opposite, still, I desire if possible to get Members to consider the matter, and see whether from a public point of view the proposal of the Amendment is not a fair one. As regards the teaching of history, it is all in favour of the plan proposed by the Amendment. My hon. Friend mentioned on the last occasion that the United States of America, against the advice given to them by Alexander Hamilton, adopted the plan of the Bill, giving the residuary powers, as they are called, to the States, and reserving to the Federal Parliament only specified and excepted powers. He thought that that particular course was at all events one of the causes of the Civil War in the United States. I can quote in favour of that view more than one authority. Sir John Macdonald, when discussion was taking place in Canada, in 1865 or 1866, in connection with the Canada Act, took exactly that view. He said, dealing with this very point which we are discussing to-day:— I am strongly of opinion that we have in a great measure avoided in this system, which we propose for the adoption of the people of Canada, the defects which time and events have shown to exist in the American Constitution, We have thus avoided that great source of weakness which has been the cause of the disruption of the United States 4.0 P.M.

A well-known Canadian writer, Bourinot, who wrote on "Parliamentary Procedure and Practice in Canada," in 1884, says this:— In arranging this part (i.e., Sections 91 and 92) of the Constitution, its trainers had before them the experience of eighty years' working of the federal system of the United States, and were able to judge in what essential and fundamental aspects that system appeared to be defective. The doctrine of State sovereignty had been pressed to extreme lengths in the United States, and had formed one of the most powerful arguments of the advocates of secession. The doctrine had its origin in the fact that all powers not expressly conferred upon the general Government are reserved in the Constitution to the States. Therefore, in his opinion, the fact that the wrong line was taken on the very point which this Amendment raises, was at all events one of the causes of the terrible evils which occurred in the United States. I can quote an authority more modern, and possibly more agreeable, to hon. Gentlemen opposite, namely, Professor Morgan, who, as many will know, was chosen by a Committee of Members opposite, including several Members of the Government, to write the constitutional chapter in the well-known book called "Home Rule Problems." Professor Morgan, himself a Liberal, I need hardly say, and a student of history, said this:— In these respects the modern tendency exhibits a departure from the examples of the United States, where the plan of reserving those powers (residuary powers) to the States, and conferring upon the Federal Legislature none but certain denned powers, has throttled the legislative development of the nation, and left it powerless to cope with grave industrial and commercial problems. So much about the United States. Canada, as we know, took the opposite side, I think with admittedly excellent results. Next came the case of Australia. No doubt it was difficult to induce the Australian Colonies, which had existed for some time as sovereign States, to give up any great part of their powers, and Australia reverted to the older type, it is possibly too early to say with what results, but I think every student of Australian history will admit that, as I believe, in consequence of that decision, far-reaching disputes have arisen in Australia between the States and the Commonwealth Government—disputes on labour questions, disputes on very important constitutional matters, and I need hardly mention the case of the Vondel, familiar to many here, to remind them how seriously that decision of Australia affected the history of the Commonwealth. Then came South Africa. The South African Constitution adopted exactly the opposite course to that which is recommended by the Government. Nobody can say that South Africa is more uniform in race than the people of the United Kingdom. There are grave racial and historical differences in South Africa, and yet in South Africa they adopted the plan of reserving the residuary powers to the central body, giving to the other bodies, the Provinces or States, only certain specified powers. My hon. Friend quoted a sentence from the speech of the Secretary of State for War upon this very point. What he said was this, in commending the South Africa Bill to this House:— All such powers as the Provincial Councils may have are specifically delegated to them, and all the rest belong to the Union Parliament. The importance of this provision cannot be overestimated by those of us —and nearly all of us are of one mind—who see the great advantage of a centralised form of Government. That was the Government's own form, and this Amendment follows exactly the form taken in the South Africa Constitution. Therefore I am inclined to say that, so far as experience goes, it is in favour of the Amendment, and all against the Bill. I think it will be seen why it is that the form we are now recommending to the Committee has worked better, and a good deal better, than the other. Under the system of the Bill—that is, the system of what is State Sovereignty as distinguished from Imperial Sovereignty—there is no real subordination of what is a nominally subordinate Parliament. It is the tendency in all these cases that the body which has the general powers, whose powers are not limited and denned, shall increase in power. It is that body which has authority over the whole undefined field of legislation and administration, and, therefore, when those points arise, as they do from year to year in this House, and which nobody has foreseen or thought of beforehand, questions which are of vital importance to the country, naturally fall to the body with the greater power, and that body therefore strengthens itself by increasing its area, while a body with nothing but the specified powers is confined to those powers—the tendency is to limit them more and more strictly—and that body cannot grow in strength, while the body with residuary powers does. Nothing more true was said than what was said by the right hon. Gentleman, the Member for West Birmingham (Mr. J. Chamberlain) in 1893:— A supreme authority always delegates and defines its delegated powers, reserving to itself all the other powers which it does not specifically give away. The argument of my hon. Friend was answered by the Solicitor-General, whom I do not see at the moment in his place, but I hope when he does return he will forgive me for saying that I think for once he did not grapple with the speech he had to answer. No doubt the time allowed him was very short. In that time he only used, so far as I followed his speech, two arguments. First, he said that in forming our Colonies or giving Governments to our Colonies we have always given them the residuary powers. Of course that is true. But that is not the point. I think it has been assumed throughout that the relation of Ireland to the United Kingdom is not to be like the relation of a British Colony to the United Kingdom, but is to be as a relation of a State to one of our great Dominions. The hon. Member for the Scotland Division of Liverpool (Mr. T. P. O'Connor) travelled through Canada telling the Canadians, time after time, that the intention of the Government was that the relation of Ireland to the United Kingdom should be as the relation of the Canadian States to the Dominion itself.


What I said in Canada was that I wanted the Irish question settled on Canadian lines, and I left it at that.


I am afraid the hon. Member did not quite leave it at that. What he recommended was this, and I have his words of a speech delivered at Ottawa on 4th October, 1910, and reported in the "Freeman's Journal" of 5th October. He advocated:— a federal scheme of government for the four Kingdoms of the British Isles such as the Provinces of Canada enjoy under a central Government. Therefore I do not think that the argument of the Solicitor-General upon that point can be maintained. He failed altogether to deal with, in fact he did not even mention, the South African precedent, upon which my hon. Friend the Member for Wells very naturally rested his case. The second point made by the Solicitor-General in answer was this: He said it is a matter of practical convenience, because it is very difficult to enumerate fully the powers you are going to delegate to the new body so that the enumeration may stand for all time. The answers to that are two. In the first place it is not more difficult to enumerate the powers to be delegated than it is to enumerate the powers to be specially reserved. If the Committee will only look at the pages of Amendments by which it is desired to increase the number of the reserved powers, they will at once see how many difficult questions arise under the system of the Bill, all of which may be avoided by the system of the Amendment, although I quite agree disputes would still arise as to the powers to be specially delegated to the Irish Parliament. Let me add this which bears on that point. The Solicitor-General was not right in saying that it is now the desire to enumerate for all time the powers to be delegated. If the Committee will only look at the last Clause of the Amendment, they will see there is express provision made for increasing from time to time the powers to be delegated to the Irish Parliament. Therefore we do not propose to enumerate for all time the powers to be delegated, but only to enumerate such as ought to be now at once given, and as time goes on the number of delegated powers may be extended. On that point let me quote again one passage from Professor Morgan. He says:— All these considerations point. T think, in the direction of confining the Irish Legislature to certain definite subjects of legislation education, licensing, direct taxation, etc.—and proceeding on the principle adopted in Canada, that whatever is not conceded is withheld. This is, moreover, the line of least resistance. It will be much easier to grant new powers to Ireland as the case arises, if we have granted too few, than to take old powers away if we have granted too many. That is very wise. Moreover, it must be remembered that it is highly desirable to limit the exercise of the Imperial veto upon Irish legislation to as few cases as possible, and this will be easier if the powers granted can be foreseen, because definite, than if unforeseen. I think that disposes of the second point of the Solicitor-General. I am going to deal with one other field of argument. I think the case for the Amendment is very greatly strengthened when we consider that this Bill is obviously brought in as a precedent for future Bills. The Committee will not forget the Resolution passed by this House with regard to Scotland, and supported by Members of the Government. It was:— That in the opinion of this House, any measure providing for the delegation of Parliamentary powers to Ireland should be followed in this Parliament by the granting of similar powers of self-government to Scotland, as a part of a general scheme of devolution. I do not think anybody will deny that if Scotland is to have a scheme of delegation at all, she will be well satisfied with the scheme of the Amendment. I can support that by quotations. Are you going to so frame the scheme for Ireland as to make it almost necessary for the Scottish Members to ask for the same measure of self-government for themselves, or is there going to be after all a different scheme for Scotland from that which is proposed for Ireland? Putting Scotland aside, I think we are entitled to refer to a speech made the other day by the First Lord of the Admiralty in regard to this great question of federation. I have endeavoured to understand exactly what was in the mind of the right hon. Gentleman when he made that speech. If I understand him rightly, his view was that if you create a federation for England, Scotland, Ireland, and Wales, England would be too strong a member of that federation, and he desired to assist in the coercion of England by dividing England into fractions, and so, I suppose, rendering that country weaker than it would otherwise be. With that view, what he proposed to his audience was that you should cut up this country into a number of units, which he called units of local self-government, to each of which should be given a Parliament or a National Council, and he suggested as an instance of a National Council the London County Council, to which body he said additional powers might be delegated. I have tried to understand what that means. If the right hon. Gentleman means what he says, if he only desires a number of local councils in this country and in Ireland, if he only-desires to increase the powers of such a body as the London County Council by further delegation, then there may be room for discussion between him and those who believe that the true remedy for the congestion of business in this House is not to cut off a part of the kingdom, but to make a horizontal division of powers and make a further delegation of powers to bodies like the county councils. But the essence of that policy is that a county council, or a body standing on the footing of a county council, although covering a larger area, must have limited and revocable powers. There need not be any difficulty in the delegation of the powers, but that is of the essence of it. If we look into the speech of the First Lord of the Admiralty that is what he means; not to create a whole number of Parliaments each with general powers, each with its own executive, each governing a certain part of this island of ours—the idea is too fantastic to attribute even to him—but what he means is that there should be a number of bodies, with specific powers delegated to each of them, and that the Scottish and Irish Governments should stand on the same footing. If that is so, I think we are entitled to claim from him support for this Amendment, because the idea which underlies his speech also underlies the Amendment. I have kept the Committee long enough, but I do beg them to give serious consideration to the Amendment, which is seriously put forward.


The hon. Gentleman very properly began his observations by reminding the Committee that we are now resuming a Debate which began on 3rd July, when the Amendment was moved by the hon. Member opposite (Mr. Sandys) in a speech deserving the commendation it has already received, and which received such reply in the time, which was limited, that was at the disposal of the Solicitor-General when he rose. This is a question which lies at the very threshold of any creation by an Imperial Parliament, out of the plenitude of her powers, of a subordinate Parliament with powers which are derived out of the inexhaustible bosom of the Imperial Parliament itself. That question has engaged the attention of all framers of measures of this kind, whether for Ireland or for remoter portions of the British Empire. I can only say from the researches I have made among the Papers which have been at my disposal, that the method which is now recommended by this Amendment was most carefully considered by the draftsmen of the Bills of 1883, 1886, and 1893, and I had the advantage of examining the drafts they then prepared while they were considering the respective merits of these two schemes.


Do we understand that the Government received from the draftsmen their policy?


The hon. Gentleman must really allow me to proceed. I am only saying this is the question which must present itself to the mind of draftsmen or of the Government as to which method you are going to adopt in dealing with a question of this sort. You create a subordinate Parliament and you have to consider what that Parliament has to do. You have two courses open to you. You may say, "This Parliament may do everything except what is here enumerated," or you may say, "This Parliament can do nothing except what is here enumerated," and hon. Gentlemen opposite are deeply convinced that the right method is to say, "You shall do nothing except what is here stated." They conceive that to be the best way out of a difficult position. These are the two methods which you have to consider. It has been suggested now that the method we have not adopted is the right one. T cannot help thinking if we had adopted the other, I do not say the hon. and learned Gentleman, but others would be found to present to the Committee, as they would be perfectly well entitled to do, the advantages, which are obvious, in favour of the scheme of the proposal which we have adopted.

These are the two methods for which there are advocates, both political critics and politicians, on both sides and on which material exists from which anyone who wishes to support either the one or the other can derive arguments. It is a question which has been discussed and debated for a considerable number of years by very accomplished persons, and differences of opinion undoubtedly exist between the two rival schools. Is it best to say what they are to do and to say they are to do nothing else, or to give them general powers and say these general powers do not include certain specified subject-matters of importance? Of course, you have to consider, in dealing with that question, whether you propose to give the powers exclusively or whether you propose that the powers should be held concurrently with the Imperial Parliament. If you propose to do as has been done in some parts of the Empire and distribute the powers between certain Legislatures and say "One Legislature shall have this power and no one else shall have any power to legislate in connection with these matters," that is a real distribution. You survey the whole field of possible legislation and you divide it into two parts and say, "The local provincial Parliament shall have power to deal with that and no one else shall." The other subjects you reserve to the Imperial Parliament. That is not the course which is adopted or which the Government propose in this case. We propose here that the powers should be concurrent and that this Imperial Chamber, which will continue to receive its representatives from all parts of Ireland, should have the power, concurrently with the Irish Parliament, to legislate upon these same subjects. Therefore you must really keep in mind the distinction, because it is a vital one, between whether the Imperial Parliament retains, concurrently with the derivative Assembly, complete power of legislation over these matters or whether you propose to distribute, as has been done in other parts of the Empire, the power of legislature and say, "The local Parliaments shall have this and the Imperial Parliament shall have no power in these matters at all." We have adopted the concurrent system. We are retaining in this House full power of legislating concurrently for all these purposes.


Will you exercise it?


Certainly. The examples which have been cited do not seem to be necessarily of very great use in this matter having regard, in the Canadian instance particularly, to the difference that exists in that way. Now let us take the point which the hon. and learned Gentleman (Mr. Cave) dealt with. He ignored the practical difficulty. Advocates of the scheme which we have adopted and opponents of the scheme which finds favour with the hon. and learned Gentleman, have always dwelt upon the practical difficulty of enumerating in your Schedule, in the way the hon. Member who moved the Amendment does, the things and the things alone which you propose to give to your derivative and subordinate Parliament. Here the hon. and learned Gentleman, with his accustomed candour, admitted that he had not got rid by any means of litigation or of difficulty by adopting the method of enumerating in the Schedule the only thing which the Government can do. We have made very careful inquiry into the matter and we find, I should say it was impossible, unless indeed you are willing to restrict your Schedule to the meagre and unsatisfactory proportions to which the hon. and learned Gentleman himself proposes to reduce it, to say what they include or what they do not. He suggests that there may be power from time to time to extend, by legislation, I suppose, or by Order in Council or something of the kind, the list of things that the Irish Parliament may deal with, but that really can hardly be described as a settlement of the question at all. It is not for that that this Bill proposes to set up in Dublin a Parliament and Executive of its own. It is not simply for the purpose of a glorified county council or for gas and water or anything of that sort; nor is it in any sense of the word meeting the necessities of the case which we, at all events, present to say you can hope to restrict to the meagre and unsatisfactiry limits of this Amendment the legislative functions, and consequently the executive authority, of the Irish Parliament.

It has been stated by lawyers of the greatest eminence who have considered, for example, the American Constitution, that were you to attempt in a Bill of this sort to define, I will not say for ever, but even for any length of time, the executive functions and the exact authority of your Parliament, your Schedule would partake of the prolixity of a legal code and could scarcely be conceived by the human mind. This is the objection which has been taken to an attempt to enumerate in a Schedule definitely and exclusively the subject-matter of the legislative authority of a derivative Parliament. The thing really cannot be done, and even in Canada itself you do not get rid of the difficulty of enumerating in a further Section the things which are reserved to the Imperial Parliament. They have actually found it necessary to have another list, as, for example, in the case of the solemnisation of matrimony. That was a thing which was given exclusively to the provincial councils, and therefore everything else was reserved to the central Parliament, and yet in the Act itself they had to have a Clause for safety and in order to prevent litigation and in order to prevent provincial Parliaments from thinking that the language which had been used was wide enough, including marriage.

Marriage was reserved to the central Parliament. Of course, it was reserved under this theory because it was not not given to the other; and yet so sensitive and alive were the authorities and the draftsmen of the measure to the importance of preventing litigation that, having given solemnisation of matrimony to the provincial Parliament, they were careful to go on and say, "Oh, yes, you distinctly understand that although we have only given you that and reserved everything else, marriage is reserved to us." Draftsmen of this measure would find out, if they came to consider this proposition, that even if they 'adopted that course they would, for safety and to avoid litigation and what is worse, to avoid dissatisfaction and confusion and discontent, find it absolutely necessary to enumerate some of the things which you have generally reserved to yourself. I am perfectly satisfied of this, that were you to rely upon the course which is now recommended this Schedule would have to be extended so as to include, I should think something between 130 and 150 distinct heads of subject-matter of legislation. Lord Watson, in a celebrated judgment, said, "The world is not big enough to hold the book which would have to be written to contain a precise and exact enumeration of all the things relating to the complexity of human affairs which you meant, or did not mean, to hand over to any legislative assembly." You do not get rid of the difficulty. I do not want to press my own case too high. We are satisfied that, on the whole, it gets rid of more difficulties than are got rid of by adopting the scheme favoured by the hon. and learned Gentleman, but the moment you attempt, whether by reservation or in any way, to enumerate all the subject-matters of legislation, you get into difficulties at once.

The hon. and learned Gentleman said that from time to time there should be power by Act of Parliament to increase the multiplicity of the new Parliament. That may do very well, and I suppose that is why he introduced the reference to the speech of the First Lord of the Admiralty. I quite agree, if you are setting up a county council or a small local provincial assembly, it may very well be that you might start it off with half a dozen subjects and see how it got on, and if it managed them fairly well you might say, "You have not done so badly in the last four or five years. We will add another power to your hitherto restricted area of legislative authority." That is a method which may apply very well, but it would not solve or even satisfy in any way the difficulties which we believe to exist at present in the government of Ireland, and which we are endeavouring to remedy in the form of this Bill, whereby we create a Parliament with an Executive responsible to it, and we say, "You shall have all the powers and all the authority necessary for peace, order, and good government, but remember this: you shall not have power to deal with certain specified subjects." In these subjects I do not doubt we may have difficulty and litigation, and the Amendments on the Paper by way of addition are already tolerably numerous; but in that way we should get into difficulties at once, and so far from getting rid of litigation, dissension, and difference, I think we are perfectly entitled to say that experience has shown, and language of lawyers could be quoted to show that it is absolutely bonâ fide impossible to hope to enumerate on anything like a large scale the subject-matters which should be entrusted to a particular Parliament. We base our objection to this proposal on two grounds: First of all that we are not distributing once and for all between rival legislative assemblies certain powers. We are not saying to the Irish Parliament, "You can do this and we will not interfere with you; we resign all legislative authority over these matters." We do not distribute the powers in that way. We reserve concurrent authority over them all. Therefore, that being so, we say, "You shall have power to do whatever is necessary legislatively for the peace, order, and good government of Ireland," but we proceed by way of remuneration to say the things which they cannot deal with. Having considered the matter very carefully, we think that is the best way of lessening friction and litigation, although I dare say there will be friction and litigation. We think that by that means we minimise it to a very considerable extent. Therefore I hope the hon. and learned Gentleman will not suppose that we have not recognised the difficulties. Our predecessors considered them, and left some records. We have had the advantage of considering these, and we think that is the best way of avoiding the practical difficulties which must present themselves in any legislation.


My hon. and learned Friend has gone so fully into this matter that I do not intend to detain the House at any great length, but one or two observations have been made by the Chief Secretary with which I should like to deal. In the first place, the right hon. Gentleman said if they had gone on with the scheme we propose as the best way for the devolution of the business of this House, he would have been sure some of us would have opposed it. May I remind him that in 1893 we put forward exactly the same scheme as we are doing now. This is not a new proposal. I think he will see when I proceed that the whole question as regards this matter depends upon what is the real view to take of the claims and ambitions you are attempting to satisfy by the Government you are setting up. There is a real matter at the bottom of all these arguments as to the ultimate goal at which each particular side are trying to aim. I hope, at all events, that if these Debates do nothing else, they may clear away a great deal of hypocritical speaking throughout the country, when you mix up local government, which we are always said to be opposed to, with devolution and federated government as between the different parts of the country, because this Home Rule scheme—and nothing will show to anyone the position more than this present Amendment—is absolutely opposed to every one of those ideas which have been so often mixed up in the speeches of hon. and right hon. Gentlemen throughout the country. Everyone who has followed the controversy will have to admit that, just according as hon. Members find their audience in the country, they either minimise or exaggerate the scheme that has been put forward for the self-government of Ireland. In some places people are told that it has only powers to deal with the ordinary local affairs of Ireland, such as you find given to provincial assemblies in Canada, or something of that kind, or, on the other hand, when we go to Ireland they tell the people they are taking a great step forward to that national independence which the Irish have never ceased to demand, and do not cease to demand at the present moment, at all events, in Ireland.

In addition to that this Amendment, if it is looked into by anyone who takes sufficient concern about the matter to see what we are really doing, also puts an end to the idea that all Ireland is asking from us, and that the Government propose to give, is some kind of Government such as the provinces have in Canada, or that the constituent parts of South Africa have, a federation which you yourselves have set up. Of course, this is a matter which also lends itself to a great deal of mystery where people do not ask for clear thinking upon what it is we are really doing. Lots of people will say, "Why not let them have what Canada has?" That has two absolutely different meanings. There is one meaning, which is, that you are setting up really an independent state to all intents and purposes, and there is the other that you are setting up a Parliament with delegated powers. So far as I can see, except for the fact that Ireland has to rely upon England and Scotland to pay them £2,000,000 a year, to all intents and purposes what you are really setting up by the methods of this Bill is not a provincial system at all, as it prevails in Canada or South Africa, but you are really establishing the Dominion system, and to-morrow you would grant the Dominion system but that the Irish cannot afford to take it, because they want the £2,000,000 a year, and they want other help that they get under the Bill. Really when we come to consider the Amendment what you have at the bottom of it is the contrast between real local self-government and a step in the claim for national independence. That is what is really at the bottom of it. There is no use shirking it. It is nationality that is at the bottom of the whole claim of the Nationalist Members below the Gangway, and that is why in reality you never can make, and never will make, this Home Rule scheme any part of a general federated scheme for the United Kingdom. You cannot do it. The Irish would not take it. They would not thank you for it if you were to set up such a scheme as the First Lord of Admiralty, for some reason or other of his own, threw out in his speech at Dundee. That is the very reason why this question of Home Rule all round, or Scottish Home Rule, only arises every time that Home Rule for Ireland comes forward. It is a sort of red herring which enables you in the country to go into this kind of matters which draw off attention from what you are really doing in the Home Rule Bill in making the concession of a scheme for independent nationality.

When the Chief Secretary solemnly gets up and says they really did consider which would be the best way of framing the Bill, I think it was a consideration with a very keen eye to hon. Members below the Gangway, because he knows perfectly well that if he had proceeded with what they did in Canada or South Africa, or with what they claim throughout the country they are only doing, the Irish Members would have nothing to do with such a system. He knows that they would not accept it. They could not accept it. The right hon. Gentleman came down to this House not so very long ago, and told us that the real way to govern Ireland was under the system of devolution in the Councils Bill. That was his opinion at that time. That was at the time when the Government were independent of the Irish vote. Then they said to the country, "What is the use of talking of the old Home Rule. That is dead and gone. Let us have something in the nature of devolution. There are so many Boards in Ireland that it is better to put them all under councils." Well, when the Irish Members went back to Ireland they were taken to task, not by the House of Lords, but by the Convention in Dublin, a much stronger power. They were asked, "What do you mean by entertaining such a proposal as the Councils Bill? We will have nothing to do with it." The right hon. Gentleman now says that such a system would not work in Ireland, and that it is no use there. It was the only real thing for Ireland, as I said, when the Government were independent of the Irish, but the only real thing now is a step towards independent nationality just as the Dominion has in Canada. Therefore, I say there is no reality whatsoever in the argument of the right hon. Gentleman if you look at the history of this question. What you are now really laying down is— let there be no mistake about it in future—that there is no question of local government concerned in this matter. There is no real question of devolution concerned in this matter.

The right hon. Gentleman says it is the setting up of a concurrent Parliament, and he seems to think that is a satisfactory solution. If I thought it was a concurrent Parliament that was being set up, I should say that was the most impossible system in the world—that is, if you had really two Parliaments that were going to legislate for the same subject-matters. The thing could not stand for a day. But that is part of your sham safeguards. Call it "concurrent" if you like, it will not be concurrent at all. This Parliament in Dublin will not bear you interfering with it. The right hon. Gentleman knows perfectly well that nothing could be more fatuous than the attempt to interfere with it after you have set it up. I would like to see the Government or the party that would set itself against, the Irish Parliament after you have established it in this way. There is a complete grant of powers, which is what we object to by this Amendment. I would like to see this House attempting to interfere. How could they interfere? In addition to that, in order that you may not be able to interfere you give them forty-two champions in this House. I say that the Irish Parliament must be the dominant Parliament in relation to all these matters which are being given them in this general way in the Bill. Therefore let us have an end of the local government argument. Let us not be charged in future that our objection is to the devolving of certain classes of measures upon local councils, or, if you like to call them, local Parliaments, or provincial councils, and told that the devolution is to get rid of certain purely local matters out of this House. It is only throwing dust in the eyes of the electors to put forward such a claim. It is not the real claim, and you know that if you put it before the House it would not receive the support of hon. Members below the Gangway for ten minutes. You failed before when you tried to do it, and you would fail again. The right hon. Gentleman opposite, knowing all that in the background, proceeded to make what I really must say were very shallow objections to the Amendment proposed by my hon. Friend. He said, for instance, that you have great difficulties in enumerating the subjects. I really cannot see that. Would it not be better to say exactly what we are doing?

The right hon. Gentleman said we avoid difficulties by not enumerating them. Would not it be better for us to face the difficulties now? The postponement of difficulties, while you are taking two countries like Great Britain and Ireland, is postponing a settlement, and so far from making the working of your Bill easier, it is going to make it much more difficult. I know that the right hon. Gentleman says this, that it is difficult to enumerate those subjects. I do not say that it is altogether free from difficulties, but it is not impossible. Probably if we were allowed to discuss them, if our view prevailed, eight or nine pages would serve to set out the very subjects which this Parliament ought to have. But the very best evidence that it is not impossible is that it has been done. Has it worked badly in Canada? I am aware that there has been some difference from time to time, as there always will be between the provincial or subordinate or concurrent or dominant Parliaments, or whatever you like to call them. You cannot have a system of this kind without friction between one Parliament and the other; but it has been done there and you yourselves were so satisfied that that was the best way of working it, that having considered all the alternatives, and when the claim of nationality was not concerned you yourselves, having full, free power, apart from this House altogether, adopted that very system in relation to South Africa, which is the most recent precedent, and which is the precedent that you are always putting before us to show how easy it is to grant Home Rule to Ireland. No, that is not the real difficulty. The real difficulty is whether von start off on devolution or local government or you start off on satisfying the claim of nationality. It has always gone back to that, and that is really the root difference.

The bitter feeling created over this Home Rule Bill does not arise on questions of local government or devolution. Everybody knows that it would be impossible to create that feeling on such subjects. Everyone knows that it is far deeper and further back. Then what are we to say as to the reality of the claim so often put forward that you are now starting on the basis of a federal scheme? What single provision is there in this Home Rule Bill that would be applicable to a general scheme? Take the finance. Is each Parliament going to have £2,000,000 a year, and if so, out of what? Is each Parliament to pay nothing towards Imperial Services? Is each Parliament to have the same provisions as regards Customs and Excise? Well, you will have an extraordinary conglomeration of Parliaments in this kingdom. Everybody knows, and this Amendment points it out more than anything else, that you have not the slightest intention of any federal scheme, at all events, of which this will be a basis; and if you are in earnest as regards a federal scheme the moment you say that this cannot be a basis of it, so far from facilitating a federal scheme by your Home Rule Bill, you are postponing it, and making it almost absolutely impossible. And for this simple reason. When you come to frame it, you will not have to consult this Parliament alone but you will have to consult the Parliament you have set up in Ireland with its forty-two champions here, and do what they wish and not what you wish. Therefore, I say that this Amendment is of vast importance and goes to the very root of this controversy, as showing what are the real differences between the parties in this House, and I only wish that people who talk so glibly of devolution and local government in reference to this kind of legislation could only see that what really lies at the root of this matter which is before us is a claim, or the commencement of a claim, to independent nationality.


I do not think that the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Dublin University (Sir E. Carson) has quite done justice to the argument that was used from this side of the House. It was this: that Imperial questions do transcend in importance local and domestic questions." But there is one difference. Imperial questions are comparatively few in number. They do not alter in their nature. They are comparatively easy to enumerate in an Act of Parliament. When you come to local questions you find that they are very numerous, and that their sphere is continually extending. At the present day there are numerous questions which no one could have anticipated twenty years ago within the scope of local and domestic Government. If we were to adopt this Amendment and attempt to enumerate all local and domestic matters, I am certain that within a few years the enumeration would be insufficient. We have in the case of local authorities adopted the plan proposed in this Amendment. Every year they come to us for private Acts of Parliament. In the same way the Irish Parliament would be continually coming to us for a further proper and legitimate extension of its powers. We should not have the power to save time, as we do with local authorities by referring the matter to Private Bill Committees. The whole system would become a nuisance to this House and a legitimate cause of irritation to the Irish Parliament.

The hon. and learned Member for Kingston (Mr. Cave) quoted a number of comparisons of other countries and with our own Colonies. I think that a review of all the cases will show that the comparisons are against him. In Germany, the United States, and the Commonwealth of Australia, and in the grant of self-government to every one of the self-governing dominions, the questions reserved to the local legislature were not enumerated. The case upon which the hon. and learned Member relies is that of the provinces of Canada. I admit that the British North America Act enumerates the powers of the provinces of Canada, but the result, according to my reading of the subject, is exactly the opposite to that which the hon. Member stated. There is incessant and continual friction between the local and the Imperial Government. It is so difficult to enumerate those subjects and the powers of the local legislature are so continually extending in all anticipated directions, that the very friction which the Imperial Government hoped to avoid has now arisen. The hon. Member quoted some authorities. May I quote the standard authority on this subject, the book of Mr. Keith, one of the secretaries to the Imperial Conference on the Dominions: It appears to have been the intention of the framers of the Constitution of the Federation to devise a plan under which there could be no overlapping of authorities. Then he describes it, and he concludes:— These expectations of the trainers of the Act have not been realised. The number of cages which have been raised and decided under the Act is almost appalling, if it is really the serious matter for consideration when the advantages of this form of Federal Government are considered. Some months ago when the question was being discussed, it was said that it was proposed to confer on Ireland powers corresponding to those which were given to the provinces in South Africa. The Amendment does not do that. In the provinces of South Africa there is a supremely important provision, that all matters are to be within their power which in the opinion of the Governor-General in Council are of local nature. The hon. and learned Member's Amendment has been carefully drafted to omit that provision. As an example, take licensing legislation. The licensing system in Ireland is altogether different from that of this country, yet by the hon. and learned Member's Amendment we shall in this House have to legislate on licensing over the head of the Irish Parliament. This comparison with the South African provinces is not complete. If you are going to compare the power of the South African provinces and the power of an Irish Parliament over local concerns, you must go on to the resulting comparison of the corresponding share of control over the central concern. You propose to give to the Irish Parliament powers which are less than those enjoyed by the South African provinces. Do you propose to compensate the Irish Parliament by giving them in this House a representation equivalent with that which the South African provinces enjoy in the Parliament of South Africa? I see no Amendment to that effect in the name of the hon. Member; but if your comparison is going to be fair you must allow to Ireland in this House a representation not only of forty-two Members, but in proportion to its population. In the South African Parliament all the provinces have an equality of representation in the Second Chamber, and if your comparison is fair you must give Ireland that privilege also. That is to say in the reconstituted Second Chamber, which takes the place of the House of Lords, Ireland will have to have representation equal to that of England itself. I claim that the comparison breaks down.

5.0 P.M.

The hon. and learned Member for Dublin University spoke as if we on this side of the House were in the habit of comparing Home Rule for Ireland with the Union of South Africa. That comparison misses the point. The comparison which we are entitled to is not with the Union of South Africa of 1009, but with the grant of self-government to South Africa in 1906, without which no union would have been possible. As to the Union of South Africa in 1909, there was no difference of opinion between the two sides of the House; but in the great Act of Emancipation of 1906, lion. Members opposite refused to share responsibility. That is why we say that they turned their back on their own supreme test, a test, between the principles of Conservatism and the principles of Liberalism. The lion, and learned Member for Dublin University went on to argue that it was impossible to fit this proposal of the Bill in with a scheme of Home Rule all round. Why not? Why should not the powers of the various Legislatures be specified in a scheme of Home Rule all round? I take it for granted that when Home Rule is extended to Scotland she will be given powers enumerated on the same method as that contained in this Bill. The hon. and learned Member for Kingston spoke throughout as if he were moving an Amendment merely of a drafting character, by which you would frame this Bill on one model rather than on another. But this Amendment is nothing of the sort. It is an Amendment to destroy the Bill and to set up a Parliament in Ireland with merely gas and water powers. To do that is to play with Home Rule. The wider the liberty of action that is given to the Irish Parliament, the more surely will it fulfil its mission, and I believe that a Home Rule Bill such as this Amendment would produce, built upon distrust, would be built on sand, and would fail and deserve to fail, while it would certainly and rightly be repudiated by the Irish people.


In the interesting speech to which we have just listened from the other side of the House, the most interesting subject was, not the attack on this Amendment, but the attack on Home Rule. The hon. Member, thinking he was going to damage this Amendment, was at great pains to show us that under the system prevailing in Canada great friction subsists between the Central and Provincial Governments. I am quite willing for the sake of argument to accept the hon. Member's authority that that is the case; but friction, as my hon. and learned Friend the Member for Kingston has shown, under another system in the United States has been infinitely worse, and has produced the greatest civil war we have ever known. It is also pretty common knowledge that at the present moment there is very severe friction under the system which prevails in the Commonwealth of Australia, and you will find, by whatever system of federation you bring a number of States together under a central Government, whatever plan you adopt, experience shows that dangerous friction is the result. Why in the world then should we go out of our way to create a federation which we do not require, seeing that Ave have already one sufficient Central Government?

The hon. Member said one other very interesting thing in the course of his remarks, and I think he has given us some information which we have been trying for some time to get from the Government without success. We have, throughout these debates, been endeavouring to find out whether the Government really do look upon the Irish Constitution they are proposing to set up as analagous to the Government of the Colonial Dominions or to that of Colonial provinces. The hon. Member candidly tells us that when he and his party speak about the analogy of South Africa—which they are always dinning into our ears when they do speak on this subject—what they refer to is what he called the great Act of Emancipation of 1908, of self-government granted to the Transvaal. We have it on the authority of the hon. Member, and I hope he is speaking in this respect for the Government, that the party opposite, in granting Homo Rule to Ireland, are deliberately granting what amounts to a separate and independent Constitution. If Ireland is to have the same measure of self-government under this Bill as the Transvaal enjoys under what the hon. Member calls the great Act of Emancipation of 1906, then Ireland will be practically as independent of this country as France or Germany, for everybody knows perfectly well that the tie which exists between this country and the Transvaal and the rest of South Africa is a purely sentimental tie. That is really a very interesting admission on the part of the hon. Member, because we have been anxious for some time to discover which of these two analogies the Government tie themselves to.

It is, of course, much more important that we should precisely know which of these systems prevails, in view of the speech which the First Lord of the Admiralty recently made, and which everybody has been talking about, extending in a most fantastic way the proposals for federation. I have noticed, in the course of the last few days, that when we have alluded to that speech it has provoked a somewhat supercilious smile on the countenances of hon. Members opposite. What do hon. Members think of that speech made by one of the leaders of their party? If we were to go entirely by the demeanour of hon. Members one would only assume that it was sheer stupidity on the part of the First Lord. But we have a high opinion of him on this side of the House. Whatever his other shortcomings may be, we do not believe he would deliberately have made a speech to be read throughout the length and breadth of the land out of sheer stupidity. Various interpretations have been put upon it. Some people have suggested that the object was to show the absurdity of the federal idea. Others have been unkind enough to suggest that it was intended as a blow in the back of Home Rule. I think it is incumbent on the part of the colleagues of the right hon. Gentleman to tell us what this pronouncement of policy by a Cabinet Minister means, if it means anything at all.

The hon. Member who has just spoken appears to me to have, like some of the previous speakers, fallen into a certain amount of confusion when dealing with the precedents for the two different propositions now before us—the one in the Bill and the other in the Amendment. We have had various precedents laid before us, the United States of America representing the one principle, and Canada the other. What I think hon. Members will find to be the really governing principle throughout is this, that, hitherto, the sovereign power, when parting with any portion of its authority, has enumerated the powers which it devolves upon some other authority. Under the Act of the United States of America the original sovereign authority were the separate States, and, consequently, they followed out that principle by enumerating the powers to be conferred on the central Government. In our case we are the sovereign power, and if we follow out the principle adopted in every other case it is our function to enumerate the powers that we are going to confer on the subordinate body. The same thing is true of the German Federation. In Germany the sovereign power was originally in the separate States, who were to be brought together in a confederation, and there also the powers conferred on the Empire were enumerated by the separate States.

When we pass from precedents and come to the practical reasons for that nothing can be more astonishing than the speech delivered by the Chief Secretary for Ireland, who spent his time, with his usual invincible good humour, in trying to persuade us that it was utterly impossible to do a thing which has been done over and over again. My right hon. and learned Friend the Member for Dublin University has demonstrated the futility of the argument by showing, in point of fact, examples before us in the history of the world which are rather more in favour of what the right hon. Gentleman considers an impossibility than in favour of the plan which he is about adopting. There is another reason, I think, in our ease which points very, strongly in favour of the plan put forward in this Amendment. We have had a good deal of discussion between the two sides of the House as to how far the country, which, after all, is the master of this House, or ought to be, has really authorised this legislation, and how far it knows what this legislation is to be. I submit to the House that the only possible way by which the country can be made to understand exactly what powers it is conceding to the Parliament to be set up in Dublin is by the Bill enumerating precisely, in black and white, what those powers are. Then the country will understand. The right hon. Gentleman said something about the law of marriage in Canada. I want to know is the law of marriage to be given in charge of the Irish Parliament simply because there is no mention of it in this Bill?


It is not.


Does the country understand that questions like marriage and divorce may pass from the control of the Imperial Parliament into, the hands of the Irish Parliament?


We do not propose that they should.


That ought to be distinctly stated in the Bill. The country should know exactly what questions will be transferred to the control of the Irish Parliament. The hon. Member opposite said that one practical reason in favour of the Bill as against the Amendment was that Imperial matters were few and simple, while local matters were numerous and complex. I assert, with a good deal of confidence, that exactly the opposite is the truth. I believe really that local affairs are infinitely more simple, much fewer, and much more easily enumerated than are matters of Imperial concern. We have been accustomed to measuring the powers delegated to subordinate assemblies, such as county councils, in this country, and there has never been any difficulty in setting out what are the local affairs that these assemblies may deal with. Similarly I do not think there ought to be the smallest difficulty in enumerating local affairs with which the Irish Parliament should deal. So far from thinking it a disadvantage, as apparently the hon. Member does, that, from time to time, legislation might be demanded for extending those powers, I think that would be a very ordinary, natural, and reasonable course. This is experimental legislation, and in such legislation one has to proceed from little to more. We are doing that in other directions, when we are bringing certain trades under the Compensation Act and submitting them to certain regulations, as, if we find the endeavour successful, we then extend the operation of regulations over a wider field.

Why in the same way should we not, if you are going to give those powers to Ireland at all, give certain limited and restricted powers covering certain well-defined local affairs; and if other matters crop up which the Irish Parliament wishes to obtain control of, and if this House should think it reasonable to extend those powers, why should that not be done from time to time by future legislation? I am assuming that Members on both sides are equally desirous to maintain the supremacy of this Parliament. Hon. Members opposite profess to do so. It is a very easy thing to extend the powers which this Parliament may give to a subordinate assembly, but, on the other hand, it is very difficult, if not impossible, to restrict the powers or take away the powers which you have once given. There are bound to be, as I think the hon. Member himself pointed out, a vast number of unthought-of matters which will crop up from time to time, and which have not been provided for and have not been thought of by the Government or the draftsman, and who can tell whether as time goes on those unanticipated matters will prove to be local matters or Imperial matters? There must be, I suppose, at all events, a very large field which would be doubtful and on the border line, and possibly capable of two interpretations, either as local or as Imperial affairs. If we are to remain the supreme and Imperial Parliament, should not Imperialism have the benefit of the doubt? Ought we not to take care that all those matters which may be described as local or as Imperial are, at all events in the first instance, retained within the jurisdiction of this Imperial Parliament?

The hon. Member (Mr. Lees Smith) spoke about the possibility of litigation, and I think the right hon. Gentleman did the same. My belief is that the possibilities of litigation will be infinitely greater under the provisions of the Bill than they would be if the scheme of the Amendment were adopted. After all it is a question, and will be a question, very largely of onus of proof. As far as I understand it, any defendant in any subordinate Court in Ireland, after the passing of this Bill, will be enabled, when he thinks that it will help his case, to take the point that the Statute, whatever that Statute may be, under which it is sought to infringe his rights or to impose penalties upon him, is ultra vires so far as the Irish Parliament is concerned. Surely in such a case wherever there is, or may be, a conflict of law, ought the onus of proof not to lie rather upon those who contend that the local legislature has not acted ultra vires, rather than upon the representatives of the Imperial Parliament calling upon them to show that the particular matter was within the exception set out in this Bill. We all know, and I think it has come out in various speeches which we have heard, that the real reason why the Government refuse this Amendment and tied themselves down to the scheme of the Bill in spite of all the precedents, in spite of their own action, as my right hon. Friend has pointed out, is that they have got their orders from below the Gangway. They know perfectly well that their Bill would not be accepted below the Gangway if they had acted otherwise. We had a proof of that from my hon. Friend the Member for the Scotland Division of Liverpool (Mr. T. P. O'Connor), who took care to get up when my hon. Friend the Member for Kingston (Mr. Cave) was speaking and tried to repudiate the idea that when he was in Canada he had minimised the demand of the Irish party in this matter, and tried to get out of the undoubted fact.


What I pointed out was not that I was charged with minimising, but that my statements were incorrectly stated.


I accept entirely the statement of my hon. Friend, and I will not pursue the matter further. I would like to quote a few words which were spoken on a previous occasion by the Gentleman who is now Vice-President of the Department of Agriculture.


Oh, no.


Yes, I intend to quote them. I entirely appreciate and I entirely sympathise with the motives of my hon. Friend behind me which would prompt him to leave the right hon. Gentleman alone.


They are not worth it.


At any rate this is what the right hon. Gentleman said:— What was the real argument against this principle? One argument used by the Prime Minister seemed to preclude all debate on the matter. The right hon. Gentleman stated with the greatest clearness that the Irish Members would not go one inch of the way with the Government it they adopted the plan of delegation. That was the effective argument on the Ministerial side of the House An hon. Member on the Liberal side of the House remarked:— Quite right, too. That shocked the right hon. Gentleman, who exclaimed:— Quite right, too! That was a nice confession for a Liberal to make. He had always thought there was a British view of the question as well as an Irish one, and that Irishmen must not ask more than Great Britain was willing to concede. If the method proposed in the Bill were adopted for the reasons given by the Prime Minister, that the Irish Members would not move one step of the way if delegation were attempted, then the Irish Members were the real leaders of the Liberal party, though they did not sit on the Treasury Bench, and these were the men who dictated to the Government what they should vote for and what they should not vote for. That was a fine position for the great. Liberal party, that they should be mere hewers of wood and drawers of water for the Irish Nationalists.


What was the date of that?

Mr. T. W. RUSSELL (Vice-President of the Department of Agriculture, Ireland)

What would you do without my speeches?


I think we could very well do without the right hon. Gentleman and his speeches. I can quite imagine it is very unpleasant for the right hon. Gentleman to be reminded of them. At all events, I congratulate him on having become a hewer of wood and drawer of water for the Gentleman whom he so heartily scorned a few years ago, and who, I have no doubt, returned his scorn. There was one other word which the right hon. Gentleman said in those days which I should like to quote:— Under the system of reservation (that is the system now in this Bill which he supports and his name is. I believe, on the back of it) all kinds of difficulties would arise which under the principle of delegation they would be free from. I suppose that those difficulties have entirely disappeared in view of the right hon. Gentleman's place and pay, but they remain just as real as they did when the right hon. Gentleman was able to speak his mind before he had corrupted it by influences to which I will not allude. There remain difficulties to-day, and we believe that the difficulties which he spoke of will be found in the principle of the Bill as distinguished from the principle of the Amendment. I hope that all my hon. Friends on this side of the House will give a warm support to the Amendment and not the least for the reasons which the right hon. Gentleman gave a few years ago.


The hon. Member who has just spoken gave us the treat we receive from that side of the House. He alluded to the speech of the First Lord of the Admiralty and then he gave us a quotation from my right hon. Friend the Vice-President of the Board of Agriculture. I notice that that quotation afforded the House the only amusement it had during his somewhat dreary speech—[Hon. MEMBERS: "Withdraw"]—and the opinion which my right hon. Friend then expressed excited the only cheers which the hon. Member got from his own party. I would appeal to hon. Members opposite, as we are working under strict limitations of time, and seeing that both those regions have been thoroughly worked out, to leave them alone for the rest of the Debate, and let us grapple at close quarters with this Amendment. The hon. Member stated in one part of his speech, "Let us leave precedents." I am all the more willing to do so because of the excellent speech made by my hon. Friend the Member for Northampton (Mr. Lees Smith), who dealt with the question of precedents. We do not agree with the interpretation on precedents offered from the other side. We think that the precedent here is the concession of power by this House to the Parliament of Canada, and it got the residuary powers. The Parliaments of South Africa and Australia afterwards got the residuary powers. I am content to leave that matter there and to grapple closely with the Amendment. What is it? The Amendment is that instead of proceeding by the plan of the Bill, that this House should draw up a list of the subjects which the Irish Parliament may legislate about, and that it should deal with those and with nothing else. Instead of that the Bill brings out a long list of points which Ireland will not touch and is not to touch, and in reference to which it preserves the full rights of this House to legislate. Surely every fault the Irish Parliament commits is thoroughly guarded against in the system proposed under the Bill. I therefore am able to give my whole-hearted support— [Hon. Members: "Hear, hear."] Perhaps hon. Members will wait for the end of the sentence. I am able to give the most wholehearted support to the answer given by my right hon. Friend, but for reasons quite different from those which he gave.

The reason that I give for not accepting this Amendment is this: that it would be quite impossible for this House, or for that matter for this country, to make up a list of the things which it may be necessary for Ireland to touch and deal with in order that Ireland may live. No Englishman understands the dark problems that Ireland would have to solve if she is to emerge from the state of, I may almost say, ruin and decay in which she is. I hold that opinion, and I am sure hon. Members will allow me to express it. If Ireland is to solve those questions no Englishman can tell her how to do it. What is England? What is Great Britain? Great Britain is one of the richest countries in the world entirely dependent on a commercial system which is founded on mines, manufactures, and largely on exchange. What is Ireland? Ireland is a country absolutely dependent on commerce, founded exclusively on her agriculture. There is not an idea common to Englishmen which is not different from the ideas which naturally spring up in the minds of Irishmen. [Hon. Members: "Hear, hear."] Surely you will allow me to express my views. In industry, exchange, and commerce, no country is less adapted by nature to be bound by British ideas than Ireland, but recollect there are countries in the world that have to deal with the very problems that will face Ireland. There is Denmark and there is Holland. Contrast the system on which Denmark and Holland have become rich with the British system, and then you will see what a mighty difference there is between the two. Their Statute Books bristle with laws intended to assist agriculture in a hundred ways and to improve and develop their countries, quite different from anything ever produced by this House. The greatest, or one of the greatest, men that this House has ever produced, Mr. Gladstone, tried to solve this question, but felt that he could not do it. He served an apprenticeship to the Irish question which, in my opinion, no other Englishman will be able to serve, and he in his two Bills pursued the system adopted in the present measure. If the thing could be done, this Amendment would be well drawn. It puts on paper a few matters that might be dealt with without question by Ireland. The first is education. But there immediately jumps up another Member, who suggests that it should be limited to elementary and secondary education. So that hon. Members opposite would not allow the Irish Parliament to deal freely even with education. How has education been treated by this Parliament, which has dealt with it for 110 years? The state of Irish education all through that period is a disgrace, to the British Parliament. The second subject in the Amendment is agriculture—"to the extent and subject to the conditions to be defined by the Parliament of the United Kingdom." So that even agriculture could not be left to the Irish Parliament.

Everything has to be qualified. I challenge hon. Gentlemen opposite to mention any great national subject which they would be willing in a whole-hearted, generous manner to hand over to Ireland. [Several Hon. Members: "Hear, hear."] If that is so, why bring forward Amendments like the one under discussion, which you pretend to treat seriously, but which are purely wasting time? Another subject in the Amendment deals with local works of a certain character, but excludes harbours and railways. What has this all-wise Parliament done in regard to those matters? For 100 years it has been throwing money into the sea for Irish harbours, and what is the result? If you go to Ireland you land in a very fine harbour at Kingstown. Why is there a magnificent harbour there? Because there is no trade. If you go to any place where there is trade or where they are trying to develop trade, you will find practically no harbour at all [An HON. MEMBER: "Belfast."] At Belfast it has been a constant struggle. Will any hon. Member opposite defend the Irish Board of Works, which is not a Board at all, but merely a branch of the British Treasury, and which has been pouring the taxpayers' money into the sea for 100 years? Yet hon. Members opposite will not permit the Parliament in Ireland to build their own harbours or to dredge their own rivers. Then with regard to railways. The question has been considered by four or five Committees and Commissions, and your advisers have always said, "Give the railways to Ireland." Even the "Times" newspaper says "Give Ireland the railways." Yet this nasty, narrow-minded, impossible Amendment will not leave to Ireland the railways. I have said enough to show that the Amendment and the spirit in which it is drawn are alike almost impossible to be treated seriously, and I am sure everybody on this side will support the Government in the Lobby.


I regard this Amendment as one of the most important on the Paper, and I believe that if the Committee voted by ballot it would be carried by a large majority. Before the House adjourned in August we passed Clause 1, thereby deciding that Ireland should have a Parliament. During the Recess we have heard that this Parliament may be but the precursor of many other Parliaments. We have heard also that Ulster will not have this settlement at all. But we have to consider possibilities and probabilities. As one whose interests are bound up in the South of Ireland I have scrutinised this Amendment very closely. When listening to the able speech in which the hon. Member for Wells (Mr. Sandys) moved the Amendment, it almost seemed to me that the hon. Member had borrowed the proposal from the Chief Secretary's Bill of 1907. The Amendment proposes that the Irish Parliament shall have control over some eight specific subjects. The Council Bill of 1907 proposed that Ireland should be entrusted with the management of some eight departments. By a coincidence the eight departments and subjects are almost the same; but there the resemblance ends. In introducing his Bill in 1907 the Chief Secretary said:— Certainly no body of men unless they were wholly bereft of their senses would consent to take over these eight departments at that figure. To do so would be to plunge into a sea of trouble without the faintest prospect of doing any real good work either for Ireland or for themselves. He went on to say that it was proposed therefore that the Irish Council should be given £650,000 a year of British money, in order that they might do some good for themselves and for Ireland. The words were hardly out of his mouth when the hon. Member for Waterford (Mr. J. Redmond) said that £650,000 would be wholly inadequate. He spoke of arterial drainage, to make a good job of which would require £200,000,000. He referred to the need of afforestation, and then dealt with primary education, which alone would want £100,000 a year. He enumerated also other subjects in support of his statement that £650,000 would be absolutely inadequate. With regard to education, hon. Members will remember that only a short time ago the Irish National Board of Education issued an earnest appeal in regard to the inadequacy of the money allotted under this scheme. For building schools alone they asked for nearly a million pounds. I freely admit that this Amendment is skilfully drawn and would provide a possible settlement. It sets out the powers suitable for a local assembly in any rational federal scheme. But a subsidy far greater than £650,000 will be required if we in the South of Ireland are not to be plunged into a sea of financial trouble. Members from Scotland and Wales ought to vote for this Amendment from the federalist point of view, and from the point of view of economy— for the sake of their own pockets and the pockets of their constituents. On the other hand, I do not know that any Irish Member, at any rate from the South, ought to go into the Lobby in its support, as it would inflict a great charge on Ireland, which certainly we in the South and Southwest would find it hard to meet. If the 250,000 loyalists in the three southern provinces of Ireland had any representation in this House, I do not believe that those representatives would support this Amendment. I have no right to represent them. I represent an English Constituency, and I have to look after the interests of my Constituents first. It is because I believe that it is to their interests that this Amendment should be carried that I shall support it; but I shall do so with a heavy heart. I hope that the hon. Member for Kilkenny (Mr. P. O'Brien) and the Government Whips will see to it that their forces do not go into the Lobby in support of the Amendment. I do not want this proposal to be carried. I want it to be defeated. I support it simply as a solution from the Englishman's point of view.

The ATTORNEY-GENERAL (Sir Rufus Isaacs)

This Amendment has now received, I may say, a very considerable amount of consideration. [HON. MEMBERS: "No."] Yes, it has. Hon. Members may think there should be still more consideration given. All I say is there has been already a considerable amount of consideration given to it. We had discussion in July, and again now. There are two points of criticism which have run through the whole of this Debate. One is what I may call criticism on the drafting of the Bill. Hon. Members are: some in favour of a form of delegation, and others in favour of positive enumeration instead of our form of reservation. I do not propose to travel into the details of the various arguments used in reference to this, because I think it must be quite clear, whatever one may choose to do, whether you adopt the form which we have adopted in this Bill or whether you adopt the form suggested by hon. Members and by the Mover of this Amendment in his interesting speech, there would still be objections. In drafting of this character and in the preparation of your scheme on paper there must always be, whatever form you take, objections either on the one side or on the other. What we have, done is that we have considered the matter in all its bearings. In this we have had the advantage—and it is a very considerable advantage—of the experience of 1886 and of 1893, and all that has happened since. There have been new precedents formed since those years; new men have considered the question; there has also been, of course, a great deal of new criticism.


But the same old Nationalist party!


Very likely; that does not alter the fact that there is still new criticism, and that you have to consider whether it is, or is not, better to adopt the scheme we have adopted. We have come to the conclusion that that is a better way. Even if it were right to say that all the precedents were against us— though I deny that entirely—it is not worth while discussing the matter at greater length, because I think there is no exact parallel. No one suggests that there is. You are dealing with a different state of things to those in Australia, Canada, and South Africa. You can get a good deal of knowledge from the experience of those countries, but in the result you have to fit in what you deduce from those Acts of Parliament and from the working of those Acts in order to adjust them to that particular scheme which we have now before the House. You have to take into account the geographical proximity of Ireland, the financial relations which exist, and the fact that we are giving a subordinate Parliament with safeguards which, at any rate, we have put in with extreme care, and you cannot find, so far as I know, any exact parallel. Therefore, precedents really do not count. It is not very much use trying slavishly to adhere to precedents which do not fit a particular case. I am not myself impressed with arguments as to the drafting. The view I have formed in reference to it is that it is far better, if you wish to avoid friction, if you wish to avoid litigation in the Courts, to adopt our system rather than the other. I do not think anyone will suggest there has been as much friction anywhere as there has been between the Dominion Parliament of Canada and the Provincial Legislatures. Nobody knows that better than the right hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for the Dublin University, and all those who are familiar with what happens in our Privy Council. Therefore we take the view that the course we have adopted, and that we are asking this House to take, is the better course to-carry out what undoubtedly is our ideals; that is, the creation of a subordinate Parliament. That is what we intend by the Bill, and that is what we think we are doing.

The right hon. Gentleman the Member for Dublin University adopts another form of criticism. "Not only," he says, "do we differ vitally from you in principle, but," he continues, "the object of doing this and effect of doing this in the way that you are proposing is that, in truth, while you are talking about giving local self-government and some devolution, what you are doing is to create a Parliament." He went on to say that it would be a Parliament recognising nationality, and independent nationality. I agree with him that what we are doing is to create a Parliament, a subordinate Parliament. No one could dispute that who reads the Bill. It may be perfectly true, according to his view, that there may be some people in Ireland who have other ideals. What we know is that what has been demanded is what we are going to give, and that is a subordinate Parliament. It does seem really an extraordinary idea on the part of the right hon.

Gentleman, that because we have recognised, and do recognise that there is an Irish nationality, that therefore we must necessarily recognise independence for that nationality. Of course we do nothing of the kind. Not only do we not do it, but we take the greatest care to protect the independence of this Imperial Parliament by the reservations we have made. No one will dispute that the reservations are of an Imperial character; that they do preserve to this Parliament matters which are properly Imperial. It may be that hon. Members think there should be additions. There are three days preserved altogether for additions. I do submit that in what we are doing and what we have done, we are following really the best course. I submit that the whole question underlying this discussion, is hot in truth a matter of principle between us; it is: how are you to carry out in the best way what the Government intends. We have taken one view of the matter, and the hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Kingston and others, have taken another. What we submit is that the view we take is on the whole right, that it is the least inconvenient way of dealing with the subject, and it best carries out the intentions which have been expressed again and again by the Government.


The right hon. Gentleman has just stated that the Government in this Bill reserve Imperial matters to this Parliament. I will only deal for an instant with that portion of the Debate and with that portion of the right hon. Gentleman's speech. I would like to ask him this question: Whether he considers giving to Ireland control of postal affairs, the right to revise the revenue, giving to the country its own Custom Houses and the right to send to this Parliament a delegation from the Irish Parliament to deal with finance when the financial Resolutions come up before this Imperial Parliament, is reserving to this Imperial Parliament the whole of Imperial matters? I think really the right hon. Gentleman is afflicted with a good deal of the confusion which has afflicted his party from the beginning of the discussion on this Bill. Let me carry this point a little further. The hon. Gentleman the Member for Northampton (Mr. Lees Smith) really did make himself quite clear this afternoon as to what he meant when he supported this Home Rule Bill, and when he told us also what the Government meant by it. The Government means, said the hon. Member for Northampton, to provide Ireland with a Parliament like that which exists in the Transvaal—he called it South Africa. He said that the Government intended to frame a new Constitution for Ireland, and to give to Ireland as much a Parliament as the Transvaal possesses by the Act of 1906. He spoke also of the Liberal party, and he said that, too, was what they intended.


What I said was that the granting of local self-government in both cases were examples of the principles of liberty. I did not say that the details of the schemes were the same.


I listened to the hon. Member very closely. Are we to understand that he did not say that the Government and the Liberal party intends to give to Ireland a government like that of the Transvaal, or like that of Natal before 1906?


No, I never said it.

6.0 P.M.


I do not understand then what the hon. Member was driving at—what ho meant by "emancipation." If this Parliament means to do what the light hon. Gentleman the Chief Secretary says—that is, to have complete control by concurrent legislation, with the right to intervene and pass legislation over the heads of the Irish Parliament on any given subject—where is the emancipation? Does the hon. Gentleman really contend that that kind of emancipation suggested by the Chief Secretary, to pass an Act in this Parliament which will abrogate an Act passed by the Irish Parliament, is the kind of emancipation which was given to the Transvaal? Does the hon. Gentleman really suggest that if the Transvaal passes an Act dealing with agriculture, we will say, or marriage, or licensing, that this Parliament has a right to intervene and pass legislation which will abrogate the Act passed by the Transvaal Government? Then what does the hon. Member mean by "emancipation"? His comparison breaks down absolutely. The Attorney-General in his brief speech said that they had both schemes before them—that is, the scheme of the reservation of Imperial powers and Imperial matters and the scheme of delegation of local matters, and that they decided upon the scheme of reservation upon Imperial matters. Neither one thing nor the other has been done. The scheme is not one of the delegation of powers nor of the reservation of Imperial Powers—it is a combination of both. You reserve to the Imperial Parliament certain specified Imperial matters which you have not given to the Irish Legislature. But you are giving to the Irish Parliament matters which are Imperial and remain Imperial, and, therefore, the scheme presented by the Government is not one which represents any known precedent or which they can defend by reference to the principle of reservation or delegation. It is a hotchpotch; it is a mixture, as we on this side of the House believe, and as a great many people outside believe, and as a great many people in the party opposite believe. It is a scheme which will provide infinitely greater difficulties than have ever been experienced in the granting of local government to any portion of the Empire.

The hon. Member for the Scotland Division of Liverpool (Mr. T. P. O'Connor) said this afternoon, when he was challenged concerning speeches he made in Canada, that he did not tell the Canadians that Ireland wanted Dominion government, in spite of the fact that his speech was read to the House this afternoon. I say this, very confidently, that if he had gone to the Canadian people and told them that he proposed to give the same kind of government as was given to Canada he would have had no support at all. The Canadian people and all the oversea people believe this—I think I am correct in saying it—that Ireland has no local government, and that Ireland ought to have some local government, and that what this Government intends to do is to give Ireland local government. What they understand by local government is the kind of government that exists in Victoria and Saskatchewan, or in Queensland, or Natal at the present time, not Natal as it was.


Would you give that?


I was just going to say, when the hon. Gentleman anticipated me, that Ireland has to-day local government without an Executive almost as great as the proposals which are embodied in this Amendment. I know there is no Executive, but there is no Irish Local Government. The powers which are given to Ireland by this Amendment are similar to those which are now given to Cape Colony, the Transvaal, and the Orange River Colony. The hon. Member for Northampton, in his interesting deliveries, seems to imagine that the Government which was given to Natal and Cape Colony by the Union Government since the Act of Union in 1908 were governments, of considerable powers. The power given them is a very small one. The powers in this Amendment are similar, and we intend that they should be small if we have our way in regard to this Amendment, at any rate. The hon. Member spoke very appreciatively of the government given to the Transvaal, so much so that I would like to ask him this question: Why was it that the Transvaal, being given practically sovereign government—independent government—and why was it that the Orange River Colony also, which was given practically independent government, turned round, and within three years gave up the powers that they possessed to a central Government, which would control that independence which the Transvaal and the Orange River Colony and Natal had individually? They voluntarily yielded up these powers, so that in South Africa you have got jealous individual governments yielding up to a central Government their original individual powers. That is exactly the position today in the United Kingdom. Ireland has local government. Ireland yielded up her powers under the Act of Union. [Hon. MEMBER: "Oh!"] There is a Union Government, with local government, and with local government which has practically the same effect and legislation as if the Amendment which my hon. Friend proposes was carried and applied to Ireland; the only difference would be the addition of an Executive.

We are opposing this Bill because we believe that the Union Government for this country is the best kind of government which can be applied, and when I speak of this country, I mean the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. South Africa thought the same thing; that a Union Government was the best style of government they could get. The founders of the federation in Canada believed that a Union Government was the best kind of government that could be given, and fought for it, and desired that Canada should have one great central Government. That was not carried, as I think wisely. In view of the great diversity of the Dominions, it was wise that there should be a central Government, with local legislatures, dealing with matters in distant parts of a great territory with a certain amount of constitutional independence; but when federation was achieved originally by the four provinces each gave up exactly the same as Natal, as Cape Colony and the Orange River Colony, their original independent powers. I hope the Chief Secretary will pardon me if I seemed rude in interrupting him this afternoon, but I merely wanted to understand why he gave such powers to the draftsman of this Bill. I asked whether the draftsman was to regulate the policy of the Government. I did not mean that as an impertinence, what I did mean was this, that when the Government came to frame this Bill there instructions to the draftsman would naturally be to do a certain thing, and it was perfectly natural that the Government should choose between different methods. That the Government chose neither method, neither one or other of the methods that has been understood in the granting and development of constitutional Government throughout the Empire. They chose a scheme of their own which this Amendment tries, by presenting a simpler and better form of Government, to amend. The powers they have granted by this Bill are so extensive that these dark questions to which the hon. Member for West Islington alluded, would be multiplied as we believe to an extraordinary degree. The experience of our individual Colonies and Oversea Dependencies have been this: that yon never can tell, when you grant powers of local government, how questions will arise which will cut across the sovereign authority, and therefore, they thought it well to define the questions very clearly so as to minimise the number of instances of that kind which might occur. Here it seems to me, reserving for ourselves concurrent legislation and the supreme authority, as we say we do, you will find that these questions to which I refer will arise; which will cut across our Imperial interests in a very unexpected manner. But you define your Imperial interests in the Bill, and you give authority regarding all these other questions which may arise to the Irish Parliament. With these reservations, of course, you say that this Parliament is sovereign and that the Irish Parliament is subordinate.

The Parliament of the Dominion of Canada is subordinate; the Australian Parliament is subordinate; but when it comes to abrogating or vetoing the acts of any one of these great Oversea Dominions difficulties of an unparalleled kind occur, and more than once the relations between our Oversea Dominions and this country have been so strained that it seemed as if, as in the case of Australia in 1878, a disruption, final and complete, would occur. It is to avoid just such difficulties as that, just such crises as that, that we believe, if you are going to have Home Rule at all, a Home Rule Legislature with these definitely and arbitrarily defined powers, similar to those now granted to the Legislatures of South Africa, would provide not only safety but would provide adequate opportunities to the ambitions of Irish Nationalists and those in Ireland who believe that an Irish Executive would create a new heaven and a new earth in Ireland. We do not believe it at all. We do not desire to give Home Rule, but if Home Rule is given then we believe that the only reasonable alternative to the dangerous scheme presented by the Government is this which is presented by my hon. Friend, and we on this side of the House only support this Amendment because we want, at any rate, to register our views as to what, if Home Rule were going to be given, is the only possible kind of Home Rule that can be given if Ireland were unanimous upon the question. Ireland is not unanimous.

A very large minority in Ireland object to Home Rule at all, and the House knows perfectly well that when we press this Amendment or any such Amendment it is merely to show the weakness and the unsoundness of the Government Bill. If the effect of the Amendment is to destroy the Bill I should like to know how Bills are to be destroyed unless you prove step by step your case, which can only be proved by presenting alternatives that will expose the weakness of the original Clauses of the scheme? We hope, therefore, to destroy the Bill by showing the weakness and unsoundness of it and the absurdities of it to the people of this country, and by that means creating a public opinion which will in the end compel the present Government either to resign or withdraw their Bill. But if they do neither, then we believe that the work we are doing here, that the alternatives we are presenting which expose the weakness of the Bill, will ultimately convince the people of this country that the path which the Government has entered upon is a dangerous path, not only for the United Kingdom, but for the Empire at large.


With regard to the question whether this Bill creates only a subordinate Parliament in Ireland, one has only got to look at the contents of this measure to see that enormous powers are being conferred under the words "power to make laws for the peace, order, and good government of Ireland." Amongst other things that would mean that the Irish Parliament would have power to abolish trial by jury in a way that might possibly be injurious to a section of the population of the country. Do hon. Members imagine that the Parliament of the United Kingdom could ever undertake to interfere with the operation of laws passed by the Irish Parliament? The Secretary for Foreign Affairs said in this House that interference must of necessity be very rare, if at all. The Parliament of the Dominion of Canada is subordinate because this House has power to legislate over its head and could repeal its Constitution, and in the true sense of the word it is subordinate. In that case we have supremacy, although it is not expressed in the British North America Act. The statement in the first Clause of this Bill that the Imperial Parliament is to retain its supremacy is nothing more than mere window-dressing, because it adds nothing to the power of this Parliament and takes nothing away. It is a mere sham placed in the Act to give the general public an impression that in some mysterious way this Parliament can intervene.

I think it may be taken for granted that if this Parliament confers upon the Irish Parliament powers to legislate in regard to civil rights and property, and to make laws "for the peace, order, and good government of Ireland," it will be of very rare occurrence that this Parliament will have an opportunity of interfering. Though nominally the Irish Parliament is a subordinate Parliament it will practically be supreme, just as the Parliaments of the Dominion of Canada, Australia, and South Africa, though nominally subordinate, are in reality supreme Parliaments on all the subjects delegated to them, because on no occasion do we interfere. The Attorney-General said it was difficult to find a parallel for the present case, and in that he is quite right. We do not find an analogous case with reference to our own Dominions or any foreign country. Where can you find a parallel case for the contents of this Bill. Can you find it in any Legislature in our great Colonies? Can you find any parallel in which power to make laws "for the peace, order, and good government" of the country is conferred upon the Colonies and at the same time allows them representation in this House to the extent of forty or fifty Members? There is no precedent for that, nor is there any precedent whatever for conferring the extraordinary power of entrusting the administration of the Post Office to a subordinate Parliament in a way that is to be done here. Then, again, the powers with regard to the judiciary are very large, and it is a very serious question whether that power should be entrusted to them. In Canada and Australia the central Government nominate the judges for the provinces of the Dominion and Commonwealth respectively, but that precedent is not followed here, because the Irish Executive is to have power to nominate the judges to administer justice in the country.

It has been pointed out that in some of our Dominions they only accepted a federal status as a compromise. It is perfectly true that Sir John MacDonald said in Canada, before the adoption of federation, that he preferred a legislative union of all the provinces in Canada in which they should all be represented in one Parliament and under one Government, and he only gave way on the score that the province of Quebec could not be induced to come into the federation on that basis. He yielded to the counsels of his great colleague, Sir George Cartier. He agreed to a provincial Government as well as the central Government as a compromise in order to ensure confederation. The Attorney-General addressed himself to the point as to whether the powers to be granted to the Irish Parliament should in general be exclusive of certain subjects, or whether they should be only in respect of enumerated subjects, and he pointed out that some had approved one system and some the other. Some had said, "How are you going to specify what subjects shall be the exclusive subjects of legislation? How are you going to enumerate them and put them in a category that will be recognised by Legislatures?" That experiment has been tried in several of our great Dominions, notably in the Dominion of Canada, and there has been no difficulty in formulating the lists that should form the subject of provincial legislation. The Solicitor-General said, in July:— Define it as clearly as you like, distribute the powers as fairly ns you may, when you come to the narrow edges of the distribution of power you will find the frontier is very narrow indeed. That is unquestionably so, but the general distribution of powers could be made so distinct that it is not difficult to interpret them. It is said that in this case they are not enumerating the powers, but they are in reality specifying the greatest of all—that is, "power to make laws for the peace, order, and good government of Ireland." I do not attach supreme importance to the list given in this Amendment, but I argue the point from the standpoint of the Solicitor-General, that it is a matter of principle as to whether you should have such a power or whether you should have specially enumerated powers. I suppose this Amendment is made for the purpose of testing two questions of principle, and not to dogmatically bind the House to any particular enumeration that is given in this Amendment. The enumeration of Powers made here is clearly not sufficient. I may mention two or three respects in which they are not analogous to the powers granted to the provinces in Canada. For example, this enumeration in the Amendment does not give power of direct taxation in order to raise revenue for the carrying on of the business of the country; it does not confer borrowing powers upon the country; it does not provide for the licensing powers, and clearly in any delegation of powers these would have to be added in order that the country might carry on its business in a proper way, as the Canadian provinces and the Australian States do.

One hon. Member said that Ireland is existing in a state of ruin and decay. I think a much higher authority is to be found in the Roman Catholic Bishop of Killaloe, who stated, in December last:— That Ireland was proceeding along the high road of prosperity by leaps and bounds. If that is so, what necessity is there for venturing on a legislative experiment of this character? No doubt the speech made in America by the hon. and learned Member for Waterford left on the minds of those who heard it the impression that what Ireland desires is the right to govern the country, and to legislate in respect of its own local affairs, and having left that impression in Canada and elsewhere, the people of that country naturally say, "Why should they not so legislate?" They say why should they not legislate in regard to their own local affairs; but when you come to examine the local affairs which are to be entrusted to the Canadian provinces you will find they are limited, whereas the affairs that you propose to entrust to the Government of Ireland under this Bill are very large powers, and not merely the local powers conferring upon the legislatures of the Canadian provinces. The power is "to make laws for the peace, order and good government" of the country with a few reservations. The Solicitor-General said in July that this Bill conferred powers to legislate only in regard to local affairs; but I may point out that that is not the language of the Bill which is as follows:— The Irish Parliament shall have power to make laws for the peace, order, and good government of Ireland with the following limitations, namely, that they shall not have power to make laws except in respect of matters exclusively relating to Ireland or some part thereof. There is no statement there about local powers or local matters; but it says that anything that may relate exclusively to Ireland or some part thereof. I venture to say that if this Bill becomes an Act with those words in it, under judicial interpretation that will be placed upon them, it will be held that they confer a much wider meaning than merely local affairs, and that they include affairs that relate to Ireland as a whole, and not merely local affairs relating to any part of Ireland. For these reasons and subject to these limitations, I shall support the Amendment.


I should like to point out that the Debate has entirely defeated the end that those who support the Amendment have in view. This problem of the enumerated exemptions is an ancient problem which is as old as the problem of the chicken and the egg. If I had had any difficulty in coming to a decision on the subject, nothing could have convinced me more of the wisdom of the Government plan than the arguments which have been brought forward from the other side of the House. There has not been a single speech made on the other side that has not enforced the wisdom of the Government policy as compared with the policy embodied in the Amendment. The hon. Baronet the Member for Gravesend (Sir G. Parker) said they wanted to destroy the Bill, and that this Amendment had only been produced in order to show the weakness of the Bill. It shows its strength. He proved, as others have proved, that the Government's proposal is the only one which would attain the object in view. The argument of the hon. Member who introduced the Amendment, always a good and persuasive speaker, was that the powers of what he called the residuary Government, which in the case of the Amendment would be the British Government, and in the case of the Bill would be the Irish Government, tended to increase. That seems to me just the recommendation of this proposal. I would like that the Irish Government, when it is set up, should gradually increase its powers. The hon. Member opposite (Mr. Macmaster) expressed alarm that the Irish Parliament should have the powers named in the Bill. What is he afraid of? Why should they not have those powers? That which he is afraid of is the very thing which recommends the Bill to me.

Take another argument advanced by the hon. Member for one of the Orange constituencies. He said, and so did the right hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Dublin University (Sir E. Carson), that the reason the Government proposed this method, instead of the other was, that they knew perfectly well the Irish people would not take the Bill with the Amendment in. That is surely the strongest argument possible for adopting the plan of the Bill. Are we not trying to please our Irish supporters? Is there any secret about that? Is there anything to create laughter in that? Is not the whole problem the quarrel which Irishmen have had with England? Is it not because for 100 years we have been unable to govern Ireland that an attempt is being made to give Ireland Home Rule? Is not the very fact that Ireland will not take the other plan, but will take this plan, the strongest possible argument for the plan adopted? The hon. Member said friction would be set up between the supreme Parliament and the subordinate Government, and he asked, "Why set up this Government?" Surely he forgets the object of the Bill is to get rid of friction! I dare say friction will arise, but it will be very little compared with what there has been during the past century. We have always had to impose upon Ireland special laws, because under the laws of this Kingdom we have not been able to keep order, peace, and good government in Ireland. Because we are trying to get rid of a state of things in which we have had to suppress newspapers, proclaim public meetings, and imprison people for their political belief, and because we are trying to establish harmony and good will between this country and her sister nation, we are taunted with setting up a Government which is going to separate their interests from our own. The more they are separated, in my judgment, the better. The hon. Member spoke of South Africa as not being a comparison, because it has now become only a sentimental tie. What better could you desire than that? Why should we want to interfere with South African affairs, and why should we want to interfere in Ireland? Why are not the Irish people perfectly able to control their own affairs, and why should we not put an end to the friction and bad feeling which has existed so long between them and us by allowing them to do so?

Captain TRYON

The hon. Member who has just sat down is not in agreement with the Bill. He appears to be anxious for a Bill on the lines of the South African Constitution, but I do not think the Irish people would care for the financial provisions of that Bill. The hon. Member for West Islington (Mr. Lough), speaking of this particular Amendment, described it as nasty, as narrow, and as impossible. It may perhaps interest him to know this Amendment is taken, with only trifling verbal Amendments, from the South African Constitution, about which hon. Members opposite speak with so much enthusiasm—ait all events upon the platform. When we are told that enumeration is impossible, I would point out, firstly, that this Bill does enumerate, and, secondly, that the South African Bill enumerates the powers given to the smaller authority. Therefore in either case you have to enumerate, and it is not for the Government and the party which praises the arrangement in South Africa to declare it is impossible to enumerate for Ireland the powers which are successfully enumerated in the case of the South African provinces. The hon. Member for Northampton (Mr. Lees Smith) gave us a somewhat irrelevant dissertation upon the great difference he found between liberty and Conservatism. When we are allowed free discussion in this House of this Bill, and when the electors of this country are given a free vote on this Bill, then, perhaps, we shall be prepared to listen to lectures from the hon. Member.

Hon. Members, especially on the platform, have spoken as though they were travelling in this Bill along the paths which our self-governing Dominions are treading. They are travelling upon the same path, I admit, but it is in an opposite direction. In the eighteenth century the Americans made for the United States an arrangement such as the present Government proposes for the twentieth century. In the nineteenth century Canada saw the mistakes and dangers of the American arrangement, and decided that powers not specifically enumerated necessarily belonged to the central power, and they did that because they believed that was a better arrangement. Passing on to the present century, we find that in South Africa the plan we suggest is adopted, and, moreover, the central power is given so much authority that it is rather a case of unification than of some federal plan. In other words, going through the history of these self-governing communities the whole tendency has been towards the idea we suggest and away from the proposals of the present Government. Apparently, some people's idea of progress is rapid movement in the wrong direction.

With regard to the question of friction, I should like to allude to what happened in the United States. It has already been mentioned, but not, I think, in detail. The question of slavery was not reserved; it was not mentioned. Therefore, under the arrangement of the American Constitution, the question of slavery was one which was held to be within the province of the States to decide. When this unexpected question arose for legislation the central authority had not power to deal with it. The States in the South considered it was within their right to deal with it themselves, and the greatest possible friction occurred between the. Southern States and the central authority because they had in America the plan the Government propose between us and Ireland. In other words, the removal of slavery was made far more difficult by an arrangement such as the Government is now proposing, and civil war was partly due, I believe, to the very same kind of arrangement as the Government are now endeavouring to perpetuate. It is not merely a question as between us and Ireland. It is a question of what is going to happen to all the various Parliaments which are going to be scattered about all over the country some day, because the foundation you are laying is presumably the foundation on which all these various Parliaments are going to be built up. It is of immense importance that questions which are at present unforeseen should not be dealt with under this Bill. If you carry out the provisions of the Bill, as it now stands, anything which you have not thought of is a power you will have given away to the local authority. It will be far better before we frame our whole scheme that we should reserve to the central authority anything which has not been foreseen and not enumerated. The main point I wish to emphasise is of enormous importance. It is the necessity of providing that the unforeseen, the things you have forgotten, the things it is impossible to anticipate, should be kept for the central authority to be dealt with as they arise.


I am sorry the hon. Gentleman, the Member for Salford (Sir W. Byles) before he sat down did not take the trouble to explain to us what bearing the problem of the chicken and the egg had upon the passage of this Bill. If it had been the problem of the chicken and the addled egg then we should have seen and appreciated it more. The hon. Gentleman said his party was doing their best to please the Irish Members, and he asked how they could do it. I will tell him. In the first place and mainly, by preventing the people of England having the opportunity of pronouncing any verdict on this Bill at all, and certainly I think he had them with him when he said the more we separate Ireland from England the better for both. The Attorney-General complained to the Committee in an aggrieved tone that Ave had spent some three or four hours in discussing an Amendment which is itself a fundamental law of the first magnitude. It is an organic Statute standing on the Paper at this moment, and one which in the case of South Africa was not only arrived at after considerable discussion here, but after a long convention in South Africa, mainly concerned in discussing the very details which are now before the Committee. As it was in South Africa, so it was elsewhere. Mr. Bryce, in his text-book, says the great Convention of Philadelphia, in 1787, spent most of its time in discussing the distribution of powers and functions between the United States Congress to be created and the State Legislatures. That discussion took months, and it was on the very subject of this Amendment that is now before the Committee. In the case of the Dominion of Canada, Sir John Macdonald not only had a series of conferences on the other side of the Atlantic, but he came over here with other Canadians for the purpose of discussing in this country the matters now before the Committee. In the case of the Commonwealth, for twenty years there were a series of conventions held for the purpose of deciding the principle of method and distribution. All the precedents point one way, and there is no doubt that they point in favour of the Amendment, and not against it.

The hon. Member for Northampton took some advantage of this Committee by bringing in Mr. Keith's book and quoting from it, as if it decided the point against my hon. and gallant Friend. I have a grievance here, because I went to seek that book in the Library for the purpose of showing a point the other way. Mr. Keith points out that the South African Constitution is the last word and model of Colonial legislation for the drafting of a Colonial Constitution. I will ask the hon. Gentleman if he will venture to tell the Committee that, though much friction on different points has arisen in the case of Canada as between the Dominion and the provincial Parliaments, those disputes can be compared for a moment in magnitude and bitterness with those which affected the United States, and which seem likely to affect the Commonwealth of Australia. In the case of the Dominion of Canada, the principal dispute was with regard to the question of education in the province of Manitoba, and that was settled without the use of force, and without anything taking place of the nature of that conflict which is constantly occurring between the State authorities of the United States and the Presidential will. There is no comparison, and if you turn back to the pages of recent history I do not hesitate to affirm, indeed I challenge any hon. Member to contradict, that, where you have had delegation instead of reservation, where you have had powers and duties expressly conferred by legislation instead of the residuary powers being left to the local Government or to the smaller Government, as in this case, there has been much less trouble and much more harmony in the working of the constitutional arrangement. I do not think he, or any other student, would venture to contradict me when I say that the Government has taken the course it has and is opposing the Amendment mainly because it gives an opportunity for those who favour the Bill, and especially for hon. Members from Ireland, to boast about the national character of the Parliament that is now being created. It is not a reality, it is a sham, introduced in order to give an opportunity for vainglorious boasting about the creation or restoration of the Irish Parliament.

The Chief Secretary made a statement this afternoon which I think we should remember; it was in answer to an interruption I made myself. He said what we were doing now is quite different to the distribution of powers between central and local authorities, because we are retaining concurrent rights of legislation. I asked the question, "In the exercise?" He replied, "Yes, in the exercise, as well as in point of law." If we are to exercise the concurrent right of legislation, how can there be any relief of the congestion of business in this House? It destroys wholly one side of the fabric or argument which is being used in support of the Bill. It has been said there will be relief given to the House because all matters of local government will be transferred, and thus we shall get rid of the pressure of Irish business. But if, as the Irish Secretary admitted, there is to be in practice concurrence of legislation, not only will there be hopeless confusion, but friction is ensured from the very first moment. Of all the strange arguments used against the Amendment the strangest was raised by the right hon. Member for West Islington (Mr. Lough). He opposed it because of the ruin and degradation in which Ireland now finds herself. He claimed to speak as an Irishman, but I do not gather that he has refreshed the memories of his boyhood by recent experience. We know very well, and indeed are glad to recognise, that it is of London he knows most and that there he has done his best. But let me point out that when he talks of the ruin and degradation which Ireland now suffers, he runs counter to what has been stated by the right hon. Gentleman the Vice-President of the Board of Agriculture in Ireland (Mr. T. W. Russell) and counter also to the acknowledged facts that, during the last ten or fifteen years, the deposits in savings banks in Ireland have nearly trebled, the number of accounts has nearly doubled, and the trade of Ireland has advanced 40 per cent. When a Privy Councillor, speaking in support of the Government, says the argument against the Amendment is the ruin and degradation in which Ireland now is, I venture to say the facts are in support of the Amendment.

This Bill is avowedly introduced as the first of a series of measures leading to federation within the United Kingdom. If that is so to reject the Amendment is to oppose the right lines upon which any federation must proceed. It is not probable in any of the proposals for drafting local autonomy to Scotland or Wales or ourselves the exact lines of this Bill will be followed. But to reject the Amendment is to run counter to the principles on which the federal arrangement is proposed. Wherever it has been a question of distributing instead of collecting sovereign powers, then it is quite clear it should be done by express enactment and by following the exact precedent of the South African Constitution. I hope hon. Members opposite, if we reject this Amendment and if we go in for a system, condemned by experience and history, such as the Government is attempting to introduce, will remember that we shall be setting by contradiction in terms and practice a bar to any further adoption of federal government. I cannot understand a Government which asks us to look upon this as a first step running directly counter to the lessons of history and experience, and the plain dictates of reason. This Amendment ought to be supported on its own merits. It has everything to justify it, and I trust that those who are going to vote for it will be able to reflect with pride that they have at least digested what we ought to learn from the experience of the English speaking races throughout the world.

Colonel GREIG

I only wish to address a very few words to the House, and I will take as the test of efficiency or deficiency the speech of the hon. Member who has just spoken. If we take the point of view of Englishmen or Scotchmen and regard this Bill as the first step of a federal system, what would be the point of interest to us in the Bill. It would not be the details to be confided to the Irish Parliament concerning Irish matters, but we as Englishmen, or Scotchmen, or Welshmen, would feel interest in those matters which the Imperial Parliament will retain for itself. On the hypothesis of the confiding of local matters to Ireland there would be local matters for Scotland and local matters for England, and, therefore, all we desire to know is how much is going to be retained for the Imperial Parliament. That is the principle of the Bill. The experience of past years to which the hon. Member referred, has shown us a wav in which we can perfectly well indicate what are Imperial matters as against local matters. The enumeration in this Bill is the result of experience, and that is the reason why we are approaching it from the point of view of one of the other units. We desire to see in this Bill the enumeration of those subjects which the Imperial Parliament is going to retain.

I would like to ask the hon. Member opposite how this enumeration proposed by the Amendment would form a precedent for Scotland. Take the questions named. Education, agriculture, the establishment, maintenance and management of hospitals and charitable institutions, municipal institutions, local works and undertakings, roads and bridges, markets and pounds—we have no pounds in Scotland—fish and game preservation, and so on. But what about the marriage laws? It is true that in the case of Ireland it would be quite right to retain under the control in the Imperial Parliament the marriage laws, but there are no special questions which apply to Scotland. But would it be suggested in framing a Bill for Scotland that that country should not retain its marriage laws? I accept the principle that this Bill does contain a recognition of nationality, but it does not contain a recognition of independent nationality. How are you going to satisfy the Scotch unless you treat them on the ground of nationality? Their laws, their religion, and their land laws are different from those which obtain in Ireland. I believe it was the Noble Lord the Member for Oxford who not long ago said that the English are not a nation. That is a matter he must settle for himself, but this federal matter is going to be settled on a national basis, not of independent nationality, but of a nationality which follows from individuality, but which at the same time is a component unit of the United Kingdom. I say that this Bill adopts a correct method, because it tells everyone what are the subjects that the Imperial Parliament will retain for itself—the Crown, the Navy, the Army, and the Territorial Forces, treaties which involve our foreign policy, dignities, titles, and honours, trade with any place out of Ireland, lighthouses, and so forth, matters which experience has shown can be treated Imperially, and which it is to the interest of all parts of the United Kingdom should be so treated. Whether there are any special reasons in this particular Amendment for its application to Ireland I do not know, but there is one item which perhaps, in view of recent events, commends itself to hon. Members opposite, and that is:— The imposition of punishment by fine, penalty, or imprisonment for enforcing any law made by the Irish Parliament in relation to any matter coming within any of the classes of subjects enumerated in this Clause.

7.0 P.M.


I should like to have learned from the hon. and gallant Member who has just sat down whether the recognition of nationality in a Bill of this kind imports an application of that principle to Scotland?

Colonel GREIG

I did not develop that part of my subject, but it is quite clear to everyone that if you came to apply the Bill to Scotland, there are many points in which the Scottish Bill would differ from the one for Ireland. I could indicate half a dozen points, but I will only indicate one—the question of finance. At the present time Ireland is yielding less than we pay her, while Scotland is paying a great deal more than you pay us.


There is some consolation in the last statement of the hon. Member, because I was under the impression that we poor Englishmen were going to dole out a couple of millions to Ireland and also to Scotland, and probably more to Wales. I very much regret that the Government in refusing this Amendment have shown themselves unwilling to deal with tile main principles upon which it is based. According to the Attorney-General, it is nothing but a matter of drafting. He has weighed the thing carefully, and has considered whether it is better to do it by the one method or the other, and, in order to avoid litigation and to make the thing simple, he has decided to proceed by the way of giving general powers to Ireland. The Chief Secretary advanced a most remarkable argument. Although, apparently, he is capable of enumerating the powers which might be reserved to the English Parliament, he said he is quite incapable of enumerating the powers which might be assigned to an Irish Parliament. It is not for mo to deny the capacity of the Chief Secretary. But the argument was carried further by the right hon. Gentleman behind me (Mr. Lough). That right hon. Gentleman put forward the thesis that Irishmen are in their nature entirely different from Englishmen, and so different are they that it is quite impossible for any Englishman to enumerate the powers which should be given to an Irish Parliament. It appears that an Irishman not only understands Irishmen, but he understands Englishmen as well, for we are to have forty of those Gentlemen coming over here to decide what shall be done for England. As a matter of fact, this difficulty has been entirely got over, because these powers have been enumerated already, and by no less a person than the Leader of the Irish party, who produced an article the other day in "Maclure's Magazine," which set out, in definite language, what powers ought to be given to an Irish Parliament. Surely the Leader of the Irish party may be accepted as a pretty good authority, and his knowledge and capacity in this way may supply the deficiencies of the Chief Secretary.

I contend, as has been admitted by all constitutional authorities, that the federal system is a weaker system of government than a direct unitary system, and that we ought to depart as little as possible from the unitary system. I admit there maybe no precedents that we ought to follow accurately, but tendencies we ought to follow, and we ought to be most cautious, having regard to the experience of the last fifty years, in regard to the general tendency of federal unions. Let the Committee consider the difficulties into which the Government has been thrust by their decision. They have decided to reserve certain powers, and to give these wide powers to the Irish Parliament. If they are to maintain any sort of control over the Irish Government, they must keep, in theory at least, concurrent powers of legislation for the British Parliament. That is about the worst possible system of dealing with a matter of this kind. Consider what will happen. You are to have two Parliaments, dealing with the same subject-matter, in the same country. Irishmen are the most law-abiding people on the face of the earth—at least they say so. Consider the position of an Irishman who finds that he has to obey, on the same subject, two sets of laws. What can he do? I hear somebody say he will not obey either. I think he will probably obey the law which is going to be enforced. Being a prudent, as well as a law-abiding man, he will obey the law which is enforced and not that which is not enforced. The law of the British Parliament will not be enforced. It is almost inconceivable that it should be, because the Executive who have to enforce it are the people who passed the very measure against which that law is passed. That is one of the most ludicrous and topsy-turvy systems of enforcing the law of the English Parliament. If you enforce it at all—and the only value of a safeguard is that you can enforce it sometimes—the very cases where you may wish to enforce it will be the ones where you cannot enforce it, because of the friction which has arisen.

The right hon. Gentleman says that if you are going to alter your system you must have a division of powers. I think it is far better, in any federal system, to split up the powers between the central and the local government, and, if you like, to give specific powers to the local government, because you attempt to do something to arrive at finality. But in this case you multiply the elements of friction as far as possible, because the range of concurrent legislation covers the whole field of legislation, and not a limited field. It is possible to have concurrent powers for a more limited field of legislation. I am interested in this as an English Member. I very much regret that some of the authoritative Members of the Government are not here to answer the questions which have been asked as to whether this is the form and model to be served out to England as well. We have had no intimation at all on that point. We have heard talk about Irish nationality and Scottish nationality, and sneering references have been made to English nationality. We have heard of one Member of the Government, who was driven out of an English seat, who is going to revenge himself by cutting England up into half a dozen different Parliaments, no doubt in order that England may not have due weight in the councils of this country. The Chief Secretary poured scorn on a very sensible suggestion that in a matter of this kind we might proceed by giving certain powers at first, and then increasing them if they were properly used. The right hon. Gentleman said we should not get finality in a scheme of that kind. Is there any human being who has read this Bill who will suggest that there can be any degree of finality in a measure of this kind? We are ready to talk about the solution of political questions. Political questions never do arrive at solutions. There is, in this Bill, a multiplication of every sort of conceivable kind of friction that might exist between two adjacent peoples. There seems to be some doubt on the part of right hon. Gentlemen opposite as to what they intend. I see the hon. Member for the Scotland Division of Liverpool (Mr. T. P. O'Connor) in his place. He went through Canada. I wish he would rise in his place—


May I ask the hon. Member to be good enough not to turn his back on the Chair?


I apologise, Sir, but I was so anxious to face the hon. Member for the Scotland Division that I turned in his direction. While addressing you, may I, without discourtesy, appeal to the hon. Member to tell us what he really did say in Canada, and whether the interpretation put upon what he said by the hon. and learned Member for Kingston (Mr. Cave) was accurate? The Government on this occasion have only produced the flimsy reason against this Amendment that it is a drafting question, and that their system of drafting is more simple. I deeply regret that on a matter of this kind they should not have spoken quite clearly and have told us that it is not that they have weighed the matter one way or the other, and not because it is a drafting matter, but because they have received their orders, and must do it, that they have produced the Bill as it is.


I desire to point out one matter and one precedent which seems to afford a complete answer to the hon. and gallant Gentleman opposite (Colonel Greig). The hon. Member referred to this Bill in connection with its application to Scotland. Fortunately, we have a Government of Scotland Bill. I have here a copy of the Bill, which has upon the back of it the names of twelve Scottish Members sitting opposite. It is brought forward not only by the more humble Members of the Scottish party, but it has upon its back the name of the leader of the Scottish party, the Member for Clackmannan (Mr. Eugene Wason), and the name of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Kirkcaldy Burghs (Sir H. Dalziel). These Members, in supporting the Government, ought to try to carry out the suggestions they put forward as to this principle being applied to the rest of the United Kingdom. They have produced this Bill. What principle have they adopted but the principle of this Amendment?


It is a combination of both.


I have the Bill in my hand, and what hon. Gentlemen opposite have been saying is that it is impossible to have a specific enumeration. They have enumerated here twenty-five powers which the Scottish Parliament is to have. I quite agree that they are not quite the same as the powers under this Amendment, but we are now discussing the question of principle—whether it is right to enumerate powers or whether it is possible to enumerate powers. I do not suggest that quite the same powers should be inserted here, because I observe that the first power which they are going to give in the Scottish Parliament is the "establishment and tenure of executive and administrative offices and the appointment and payment of executive and administrative officers." I do not know whether that is put first as being the most important function of the Scottish Parliament, but it is really here a question of principle, and in principle they have adopted the principle of enumerating. I have them here. There is local government and municipal institutions, public health, criminal law, the administration of justice, bankruptcy, police, prisons, and I may remind the hon. and gallant Gentleman (Colonel Greig) that it includes marriage and divorce.

Colonel GREIG

I would call the hon. and learned Gentleman's attention to the fact that my name is not on the back of the Bill.


I do not think I said the hon. and gallant Gentleman's name was on the Bill; I said the names of twelve Scottish Members were on the Bill, and I was wondering how they were going to reconcile the attitude they are taking up now, that this is wholly inconsistent with giving a national Parliament to Ireland, with the fact that when they are dealing with their own proposal for Scotland they are themselves adopting the very principle of this Amendment. I wonder how they are going to vote in the Division Lobby? There is another reason why it appears to me that votes in the Division Lobby must necessarily go one way, because otherwise, supposing you accept the principle of this Amendment, what becomes of your time-table? I should like to take the ruling of the Chair on that point. Assuming that the Amendment were carried by a Division at about half-past seven, should we have any opportunity of discussing what the specific powers are to be of the Irish Parliament?


The hon. and learned Gentleman is asking me a hypothetical question. When the case arises, I will give him an answer.


I think I am entitled to infer that if we carried the principle of this Amendment, all future discussion of what the powers of the Irish Parliament were to be would be absolutely barred. That shows that this time-table is drawn on the footing that this Amendment must be negatived. It is drawn so that it is impossible for the Amendment to be carried, and I think the right hon. Gentleman (Sir E. Carson), in the powerful speech which he addressed to the House, showed that this was one of the most vital questions affecting the whole Bill. Surely it shows what a farce discussion is under such a guillotine Resolution if it is so drafted that it is impossible to go on with the discussion unless such an important Amendment as this is negatived.


The hon. and learned Gentleman is very uncertain of the attitude of Scotch Members in view of an experiment in legislation which several of them have already made in the shape of the Government of Scotland Bill. He has stated that in that Bill an attempt was made to enumerate the powers to be conferred upon the Scottish Legislature, but he has omitted to state that that Bill combines both the method of delegation and the method of reservation. In the Clause which he has quoted the powers delegated are enumerated, and in the succeeding Clause the powers reserved are also enumerated, and practically the identical powers which are reserved in the Bill before the House, so that there is really no dilemma in which Scottish Members need be placed. Having committed themselves to both principles they can, with an easy mind, support the course which is recommended by the Government.


I notice that on the Memorandum in the front of this Bill are these words:—"By the scheme of the Bill the subjects delegated to the Scotch Parliament are specifically enumerated and the Scotch Parliament have no power to make laws on any other subject."


I think the hon. and learned Gentleman might have saved himself the trouble of referring to the Memorandum, because, as a lawyer, he knows that the only correct source to go to for the provisions of the Bill is the text of the Bill. He has quoted Clause 9 but he has omitted to quote Clause 10, which states that the Scottish Parliament shall not make any laws relating to the following matters or any of them:—"(1) The status or dignity of the Crown," and so on, enumerating exactly the powers which are reserved under the Government of Ireland Bill; so that his interruption fails to put us who have supported this Bill into a dilemma. I have listened to every speech which has been made on both sides of the House in this discussion, and mainly in the light of the statement made by the hon. Gentleman (Sir G. Parker) that this discussion was intended to influence public opinion against the Bill; because apart from the speeches of the hon. and learned Gentleman (Mr. Cave) and the right hon. Gentleman (Sir E. Carson) it is singularly ill-calculated to have that effect. The right hon. Gentleman resented the imputation that had the Government adopted the course of delegating powers expressly instead of reserving them the Opposition would have opposed an Amendment advocating the opposite course. But I think the arguments which we have heard and the course which they have adopted on Clause 1 are a very good reason for believing that they would have adopted that coarse. We all remember what happened in regard to the declaration of the supremacy of the Imperial Parliament. That declaration was omitted in the Bill of 1893, and they proposed its inclusion then, and the Government accepted the Amendment including it. In the present Bill the declaration of the Imperial supremacy has been included, and they met that inclusion by an Amendment for its rejection. I have no doubt that the country will be impressed by that analogy and by the recollection of what they did on that occasion, and so they will treat the argument which has been adduced now. The right hon. Gentleman said that the question at issue was one of principle, and that if the methods adopted in the Bill were pursued it was a method which tended to national independence; whereas the method which they advocated was consistent with devolution and local government. It is interesting to find this newborn enthusiasm for local government and devolution on the part of the right hon. Gentleman. We all remember that when the Local Government Act of 1898 was before the House he described it as a betrayal of Unionism in Ireland on the part of a Unionist Government.

But this question is merely one of procedure. Different methods of procedure have been adopted in different federal constitutions. In South Africa and Canada the method of express enumeration has been adopted. In the United States of America and in Australia the method of reservation has been adopted, or, at least, the method of reservation to the local assembly. In these circumstances it is impossible to say that either the one method or the other is inconsistent with the federal system. As a matter of fact, each local legislature has selected that method which was best adapted to local needs and local circumstances. The awful example of the United States has played a large part in this Debate, mainly in relation to the Civil War in the United States. We are told that as a result of the methods adopted in the American Constitution, the United States of America were plunged into civil war on the question of slavery. But what are the facts? When the American Constitution was framed the framers, with their eyes open and deliberately, omitted to say anything about slavery in the Constitution because they knew they would never have had a union at all if they had mentioned it, so that the question of the omission of slavery in the American Constitution is one which is really due to the special circumstances of America, and it cannot be quoted as an analogy in relation to any other federal Constitution which has ever existed. It certainly has no relation to the federal constitution upon which we are now engaged, because it is as the first step in the building if such a federal Constitution that many of us who represent Scottish constituencies are supporting this measure for the better government of Ireland. We believe that, as between the two methods, that which has been adopted by the Government and that which the Opposition advocate, the sole question is one of convenience and one of expediency. There is no question of principle involved whatever, and no framers of federal Constitutions in the past have ever treated it as a matter of principle. Those who framed the Federal Constitution of Australia did not treat it as a question of principle; those who framed the South African Constitution did not so treat it, nor did those in America. It is because, I think, the Government have made out a strong and unanswerable case on this Amendment that the course which they have adopted is that which is most appropriate, not only for the special case of Ireland, but for the further development of the federal scheme in relation to the rest of the United Kingdom, that we who represent Scotland will give them our most active support.

It being Half-past Seven of the clock, the Chairman, pursuant to the Order of the House of this day, proceeded to put

forthwith the Question on the Motion already proposed from the Chair.

Question put, "That the words 'for the,' stand part of the Question."

The Committee divided: Ayes, 329; Noes, 225.

Division No. 251.] AYES. [7.30 p.m.
Abraham, William (Dublin, Harbour) Duffy, William J. Jones, Rt. Hon. Sir D. Brynmor (Sw'nsea)
Abraham, Rt. Hon. William (Rhondda) Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness) Jones, Edgar R. (Merthyr Tydvil)
Acland, Francis Dyke Duncan, J. Hastings (York, Otley) Jones, H. Haydn (Merioneth)
Adamson, William Edwards, Clement (Glamorgan, E.) Jones, J. Towyn (Carmarthen, East
Addison, Dr. Christopher Edwards, Sir Francis (Radnor) Jones, William (Carnarvonshire)
Agar-Robartes, Hon. T. C. R. Esmonde, Dr. John (Tipperary, N.) Jones, W. S. Glyn. (T. H'mts, Stepney)
Agnew, Sir George William Esmonde, Sir Thomas (Wexford, N.) Jowett, Frederick William
Ainsworth, John Stirling Essex, Richard Walter Joyce, Michael
Allen, Arthur A. (Dumbarton) Esslemont, George Birnie Keating, Matthew
Allen, Rt. Hon. Charles P. (Stroud) Falconer, James Kellaway, Frederick George
Armitage, Robert Farrell, James Patrick Kelly, Edward
Arnold, Sydney Ferens, Rt. Hon. Thomas Robinson Kennedy, Vincent Paul
Balfour, Sir Robert (Lanark) Ffrench, Peter Kilbride, Denis
Baring, Sir Godfrey (Barnstaple) Field, William King, Joseph
Barlow, Sir John Emmott (Somerset) Fiennes, Hon. Eustace Edward Lamb, Ernest Henry
Barnes, G. N. Fitzgibbon, John Lambert, Richard (Wilts, Cricklade)
Barton, William Flavin, Michael Joseph Lansbury, George
Beale, Sir William Phipson France, Gerald Ashburner Lardner, James Carrige Rushe
Beauchamp, Sir Edward Furness, Stephen Law, Hugh A. (Donegal, W.)
Beck, Arthur Cecil Gelder, Sir W. A. Levy, Sir Maurice
Benn, W. (T. H'mts., St. George) George, Rt. Hon. D. Lloyd Lewis, John Herbert
Bethell, Sir John Henry Gilhooly, James Logan, John William
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Gill, Alfred Henry Lough, Rt. Hon. Thomas
Black, Arthur W. Ginnell, Laurence Low, Sir Frederick (Norwich)
Boland, John Plus Gladstone, W. G. C. Lundon, T.
Booth, Frederick Handel Glanville, Harold James Lyell, Charles Henry
Bowerman, Charles W. Goddard, Sir Daniel Ford Lynch, Arthur Alfred
Boyle, Daniel (Mayo, North) Greenwood, Granville G. (Peterborough) Macdonald, J. R. (Leicester)
Brace, William Greenwood, Hamar (Sunderland) Macdonald, J. M. (Falkirk Burghs)
Brady, Patrick Joseph Greig, Colonel James William MacGhee, Richard
Brocklehurst, William B. Grey, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward Macnamara, Rt. Hon, Dr. T. J.
Brunner, John F. L. Griffith, Ellis Jones MacNeill, John G. S. (Donegal, South)
Bryce, John Annan Guest, Major Hon. C. H. C. (Pembroke) Macpherson, James Ian
Buckmaster, Stanley O. Guest, Hon. Frederick E. (Dorset, E.) MacVeagh, Jeremiah
Burke, E. Haviland- Guiney, Patrick M'Callum, Sir John M.
Burns, Rt. Hon. John Gwynn, Stephen Lucius (Galway) M'Curdy, Charles Albert
Burt, Rt. Hon, Thomas Hackett, John M'Kean, John
Buxton, Noel (Norfolk, North) Hall, F. (Yorks Normanton) McKenna, Rt. Hon. Reginald
Buxton, Rt. Hon. S. C. (Poplar) Hancock, John George M'Laren, Hon. H. D. (Leics.)
Byles, Sir William Pollard Harcourt, Rt. Hon. Lewis (Rossendale) M'Micking, Major Gilbert
Carr-Gomm, H. W. Harcourt, Robert V. (Montrose) Manfield, Harry
Cawley, Sir Frederick (Prestwich) Harmsworth, Cecil (Luton, Beds.) Markham, Sir Arthur Basil
Cawley, H. T. (Lancs., Heywood) Harmsworth, R. L. (Caithness-shire) Marks, Sir George Croydon
Chancellor, Henry George Harvey, T. E. (Leeds, Welt) Marshall, Arthur Harold
Chapple, Dr. William Allen Harvey, W. E. (Derbyshire, N. E.) Masterman, Rt. Hon. C. F. G.
Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston S. Haslam, James (Derbyshire) Meagher, Michael
Clancy, John Joseph Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth) Meehan, Francis E. (Leitrim, N.)
Clough, William Havelock-Allan, sir Henry Meehan, Patrick A. (Queen's CM
Clynes, John R. Hayden, John Patrick Menzies, Sir Walter
Collins, Stephen (Lambeth) Hay ward, Evan Millar, James Duncan
Compton-Rickett, Rt. Hon. Sir J. Hazleton, Richard Molloy, Michael
Condon, Thomas Joseph Healy, Maurice (Cork) Molteno, Percy Alport
Cornwall, Sir Edwin A. Healy, Timothy Michael (Cork, N. E.) Money, L. G. Chiozza
Cotton, William Francis Helme, Sir Norval Watson Mooney, John J.
Cowan, William Henry Hemmerde, Edward George Morgan, George Hay
Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) Henderson, Arthur (Durham) Morison, Hector
Crawshay-Williams, Eliot Henderson, J. M. (Aberdeen, W.) Morton, Alpheus Cleophas
Crean, Eugene Henry, Sir Charles Muldoon, John
Crooks, William Herbert, Col. Sir Ivor (Mon., S.) Munro, Robert
Crumley, Patrick Higham, John Sharp Munro-Ferguson, Rt. Hon. R. C.
Cullinan, John Hinds, John Murray, Capt. Hon. Arthur C.
Dalziel, Rt. Hon. Sir J. H. (Kirkcaldy) Hobhouse, Rt. Hon. Charles E. H. Nannetti, Joseph P.
Davies, Ellis William (Eifion) Hogge, James Myles Needham, Christopher T.
Davies, Timothy (Lincs., Louth) Holmes, Daniel Turner Neilson, Francis
Davies, Sir W. Howell (Bristol, S.) Holt, Richard Durning Nolan, Joseph
Davies, M. Vaughan- (Cardiganshire) Howard, Hon. Geoffrey Norman, Sir Henry
Dawes, James Arthur Hudson, Walter Norton, Captain Cecil William
Delany, William Hughes, Spencer Leigh Nugent, Sir Walter Richard
Denman, Hon. Richard Douglas Isaacs, Rt. Hon. Sir Rufus Nuttall, Harry
Dickinson, W. H. Jardine, Sir John (Roxburghshire) O'Brien, Patrick (Klikenny)
Doris, William John, Edward Thomas O'Brien, William (Cork)
O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.) Richardson, Thomas (Whitehaven) Toulmin, Sir George
O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool) Roberts, C. H. (Lincoln) Trevelyan, Charles Philips
O'Doherty, Philip Roberts, George (Norwich) Ure, Rt. Hon. Alexander
O'Donnell, Thomas Roberts, Sir J. H. (Denbighs.) Verney, Sir Harry
O'Dowd, John Robertson, Sir G. Scott (Bradford) Wadsworth, John
Ogden, Fred Robertson, John M. (Tyneside) Walsh, J. (Cork, South)
O'Grady, James Robinson, Sidney Walsh, Stephen (Lancs., Ince)
O'Kelly, Edward P. (Wicklow, W.) Roch, Waiter F. (Pembroke) Walters, Sir John Tudor
O'Kelly, James (Roscommon, N.) Roche, Augustine (Louth) Walton, Sir Joseph
O'Malley, William Roe, Sir Thomas Ward, John (Stoke-upon-Trent)
O'Neill, Dr. Charles (Armagh, S.) Rose, Sir Charles Day Ward, W. Dudley (Southampton)
O'Shaughnessy, P. J. Rowlands James Wardle, G. J.
O'Shee, James John Runciman Rt. Hon. Walter Waring, Waiter
O'Sullivan, Timothy Russell Rt. Hon. Thomas W. Warner, Sir Thomas Courtenay
Outhwaite, R. L. Samuel, Rt. Hon. H. L. (Cleveland) Wason, Rt. Hon. E. (Clackmannan)
Palmer, Godfrey Mark Samuel, J. (Stockton-on-Tees) Wason, John Cathcart (Orkney)
Pearce, Robert (Staffs, Leek) Samuel, Sir Stuart M. (Whitechapel) Watt, Henry A.
Pearce, William (Limehouse) Scanlan, Thomas Webb, H.
Pearson, Hon. Weetman H. M. Schwann, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles E. Wedgwood, Josiah C.
Pease, Rt. Hon. Joseph A. (Rotherham) Scott, A. MacCallum (Glas., Bridgeton) White, J. Dundas (Glasgow, Tradeston)
Phillips, John (Longford, S.) Seely, Rt. Hon. Colonel J. E. B. White, Sir Luke (Yorks, E. R.)
Pirie, Duncan V. Sheehan, Daniel Daniel White, Patrick (Meath, North)
Ponsonby, Arthur A. W. H. Sheehy, David Whitehouse, John Howard
Power, Patrick Joseph Sherwell, Arthur James Whyte, Alexander F. (Perth)
Price, C. E. (Edinburgh, Central) Shortt, Edward Wiles, Thomas
Price, Sir Robert J. (Norfolk, E.) Simon, Sir John Allsebrook Wilkie, Alexander
Priestley, Sir Arthur (Grantham) Smith, Albert (Lancs., Clitheroe) Williams, John (Glamorgan)
Primrose, Hon. Neil James Smith, H. B. Lees (Northampton) Williams, Penry (Middlesbrough)
Pringle, William M. R. Smyth, Thomas F. (Leitrim, S.) Williamson, Sir Archibald
Radford, G. H. Snowden, Philip Wilson, Hon. G. G. (Hull, W.)
Raffan, Peter Wilson Soames, Arthur Wellesley Wilson, John (Durham, Mid)
Raphael, Sir Herbert Henry Stanley, Albert (Staffs., N. W.) Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)
Rea, Rt. Hon. Russell (South Shields) Sutherland, John E. Winfrey, Richard
Rea, Walter Russell (Scarborough) Sutton, John E. Wood, Rt. Hon. T. McKinnon (Glas.)
Reddy, Michael Taylor, John W. (Durham) Young, Samuel (Cavan, East)
Redmond, John E. (Waterford) Taylor, Theodore C. (Radcliffe) Young, William (Perth, East)
Redmond, William Archer (Tyrone, E.) Tennant, Harold John
Kendall, Atheistan Thomas, James Henry TELLERS FOR THE AYES.£Mr. Illingworth and Mr. Gulland.
Richards, Thomas Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton)
Richardson, Albion (Peckham) Thorne, William (West Ham)
Agg-Gardner, James Tynte Cautley, Henry Strother Gardner, Ernest
Amery, L. C. M. S. Cave, George Gastrell, Major W. Houghton
Anson, Rt. Hon. Sir William R. Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Goldman, Charles Sydney
Ashley, Wilfrid W. Cecil, Lord R. (Herts, Hitchin) Goldsmith, Frank
Astor, Waldorf Chaloner, Col. R. G. W. Gordon, John (Londonderry, South)
Bagot, Lieut.-Colonel J. Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. J. A. (Worc'r.) Gordon, Hon. John Edward (Brighton)
Baird, John Lawrence Chambers, James Goulding, Edward Alfred
Balcarres, Lord Chaplin, Rt. Hon. Henry Grant, J. A.
Baldwin, Stanley Clive, Captain Percy Archer Greene, Walter Raymond
Banbury, Sir Frederick George Clyde, James Avon Gretton, John
Banner, John S. Harmood. Coates, Major Sir Edward Feetham Guinness, Hon. Rupert (Essex, S. E.)
Baring, Maj. Hon. Guy V. (Winchester) Collings, Rt. Hon. J. (Birmingham) Gwynne, R. S. (Sussex, Eastbourne)
Barlow, Montague (Salford, South) Cooper, Richard Ashmole Haddock, George Bahr
Barnston, Harry Cory, Sir Clifford John Hall, D. B. (Isle of Wight)
Barrie, H. T. Courthope, George Loyd Hall, Fred (Dulwich)
Bathurst, Hon. Allen B. (Glous., E.) Craig, Charles Curtis (Antrim, S.) Hall, Marshall (E. Toxteth)
Bathurst, Charles (Wilts, Wilton) Craig, Captain James (Down, E.) Hambro, Angus Valdemar
Beach, Hon. Michael Hugh Hicks Craig, Norman (Kent, Thanet) Hamilton, Lord C. J. (Kensington, s.)
Beckett, Hon. Gervase Craik, Sir Henry Hamilton, Marquess of (Londonderry)
Benn, Arthur Shirley (Plymouth) Crichton-Stuart, Lord Ninian Harris, Henry Percy
Bennett-Goldney, Francis Croft, Henry Page Harrison-Broadley, H. B.
Bentinck, Lord Henry Cavendish- Dalziel, Davison (Brixton) Helmsley, Viscount
Beresford, Lord Charles Denniss, E. R. B. Henderson, Major H. (Berkshire)
Bigland, Alfred Dickson, Rt. Hon. C. S. Herbert, Hon. A. (Somerset, S.)
Boles, Lieut.-Col. Dennis Fortescue Dixon, Charles Harvey Hewins, William Albert Samuel
Boscawen, Sir Arthur S. T. Griffith- Doughty, Sir George Hill, Sir Clement L.
Boyle, W. Lewis (Norfolk, Mid) Du Cros, Arthur Philip Hills, John Waller
Boyton, James Duke, Henry Edward Hill-Wood, Samuel
Brassey, H. Leonard Campbell Eyres-Monsell, B. M. Hoare, Samuel John Gurney
Bridgeman, William Clive Faber, George D. (Clapham) Hohler, Gerald Fitzroy
Bull, Sir William James Falle, Bertram Godfray Hope, Harry (Bute)
Burgoyne, Alan Hughes Fell, Arthur Hope, James Fitzalan (Sheffield)
Burn, Col. C. R. Fetherstonhaugh, Godfrey Hope, Major J. A. (Midlothian)
Butcher, John George Finlay, Rt. Hon. Sir Robert Home, Wm. E. (Surrey, Guildford)
Campbell, Capt. Duncan F. (Ayr, N.) Fisher, Rt. Hon. W. Hayes Horner, Andrew Long
Campbell, Rt. Hon. J. (Dublin Univ.) Fitzroy, Hon. Edward A. Houston, Robert Paterson
Campion, W. R. Flannery, Sir J. Fortescue Hume-Williams, William Ellis
Carlile, Sir Edward Hildred Fleming, Valentine Hunter, Sir Charles Rodk.
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward H. Fletcher, John Samuel Ingleby, Holcombe
Castlereagh, Viscount Forster, Henry William Jardine, Ernest (Somerset, East)
Cator, John Foster, Philip Staveley Jessel, Captain H. M.
Joynson-Hicks, William Orde-Powlett, Hon. W. G. A. Strauss, Arthur (Paddington, North)
Kebty-Fletcher, J. R. Ormsby-Gore, Hon. William Swift, Rigby
Kerr-Smiley, Peter Kerr Paget, Almeric Hugh Sykes, Alan John (Ches., Knutsford)
Kerry, Earl of Parker, Sir Gilbert (Gravesend) Sykes, Mark (Hull, Central)
Kimber, Sir Henry Parkes, Ebenezer Talbot, Lord Edmund
Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement Pease, Herbert Pike (Darlington) Terrell, George (Wilts, N. W.)
Knight, Captain Eric Ayshford Peel, Capt. R. F. (Woodbridge) Thomson, W. Mitchell- (Down, N.)
Kyffin-Taylor, G. Peel, Hon. W. R. W. (Taunton) Thompson, Robert (Belfast, North)
Lane-Fox, G. R. Perkins, Walter Frank Thynne, Lord Alexander
Larmor, Sir J. Pollock, Ernest Murray Tobin, Alfred Aspinall
Law, Rt. Hon. A. Bonar (Bootie) Pryce-Jones, Colonel E. Tryon, Captain George Clement
Lawson, Hon. H. (T. H'mts., Mile End) Quilter, Sir William Eley C. Tullibardine, Marquess of
Locker-Lampson, G. (Salisbury) Rawlinson, John Frederick Peel Valentia, Viscount
Lockwood, Rt. Hon. Lt.-Col. A. R. Rawson, Col. Richard H. Walker, Col. William Hall
Lonsdale, Sir John Brownlee Rees, Sir J. D. Walrond, Hon. Lionel
Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. A. (Hanover Sq.) Remnant, James Farquharson Ward, A. S. (Herts, Watford)
Lyttelton, Hon. J. C. (Droitwich) Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Ecclesall) Warde, Colonel C. E. (Kent, Mid)
MacCaw, Wm. J. MacGeagh Rolleston, Sir John Wheler, Granville C. H.
Mackinder, Halford J. Ronaldshay, Earl of White, Major G. D. (Lancs., Southport)
Macmaster, Donald Royds, Edmund Williams Col. R. (Dorset, W.)
McNeill, Ronald (Kent, St. Augustine's) Rutherford, John (Lancs., Darwen) Willoughby, Major Hon, Claud
Magnus, Sir Philip Rutherford, Watson (L'pool, W. Derby) Wilson, A. Stanley (Yorks, E. R.)
Malcolm, Ian Salter, Arthur Clavell Winterton, Earl
Mason, James F. (Windsor) Samuel, Sir Harry (Norwood) Wolmer, Viscount
Mildmay, Francis Bingham Sanders, Robert A. Wood, Hon. E. F. L. (Yorks, Ripon)
Mills, Hon. Charles Thomas Sanderson, Lancelot Wood, John (Stalybridge)
Moore, William Sassoon, Sir Philip Worthington-Evans, L.
Morrison-Bell, Capt. E. F. (Ashburton) Scott, Leslie (Liverpool, Exchange) Wortley, Rt. Hon. C. B. Stuart-
Mount, William Arthur Smith, Rt. Hon. F. E. (L'p'l, Walton) Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George
Neville, Reginald J. N. Smith, Harold (Warrington) Yate, Col. G. E.
Newman, John R. P. Spear, Sir John Ward Yerburgh, Robert A.
Newton, Harry Kottingham Stanley, Hon. G. F. (Preston) Younger, Sir George
Nicholson, William G. (Petersfield) Starkey, John Ralph
Nield, Herbert Steel-Maitland, A. D. TELLERS FOR THE NOES.£Mr. Sandys and Mr. Cassel.
O'Neill, Hon. A. E. B. (Antrim, Mid) Stewart, Gershom

Question, "That the word 'Trade' stand part of the Question," put, and agreed to.


I beg to move, in paragraph 7, to leave out the words "Trade with any place out of Ireland (except so far as trade may be affected by the exercise of the powers of taxation given to the Irish Parliament, or by the regulation of importation for the sole purpose of preventing contagious disease); quarantine; or navigation, including," and to insert instead thereof the words, "The regulations of quarantine, navigation, and."

I think this is a most moderate Amendment, and as I wish to restrict it in every way in order to make it acceptable to the Committee, I altered the form from that which first appeared on the Paper. The second form of the Amendment was really not at all clear, and I now move it in the form which I have indicated. My object is to suggest that as this restriction is drawn in the Bill it is a little too wide. It absolutely excludes the Irish Parliament from having any control whatever over trade. The Irish Parliament could not do anything on behalf of trade in Great Britain, foreign countries, or any of the Colonies. I would like to persuade the Chief Secretary to modify the proposal in order to meet my objection. This Amendment has an interesting history. It was moved in 1893 in practically the same form by Mr. Courtney, who was then a prominent member of the Unionist party, and it was supported by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for West Birmingham (Mr. J. Chamberlain), Mr. Goschen, and all the hon. Members above the Gangway opposite. There was a most charming speech from Mr. Gladstone, who said to these Gentlemen, as it were, that their motive was impure, and that they wanted to wreck the Bill, but if they had come forward in an argumentative and Parliamentary way they might really have persuaded him to accept the Amendment. That is why I am trying to persuade the Committee now to accept in some form the Amendment which I am bringing forward. Mr. Gladstone said, in objecting to it on behalf of the Government, unless my right hon. Friend (Mr. Courtney)— I call particular attention to the word "unless"— had said now I will show you from my knowledge and from my reason that this is a power so beneficial to Ireland and so essential to her that we cannot possibly withhold it, he could not have accepted the Amendment. Not having done so, he did not accept it. What they failed to do on that historic occasion I hope to do now. I hope to show in Mr. Gladstone's own words from my knowledge and reason that this is a power so beneficial to Ireland that it will be granted. In refusing the Amedment Mr. Gladstone based himself on the fact that Mr. Parnell had agreed to its refusal. I will not build very much on that, because Mr. Parnell in those days had a terrible battle, and my hon. Friends from Ireland had to take what they could get. [An Hon. MEMBER: "Mr. Parnell was dead then."] Mr. Gladstone was referring to 1886. He pointed out that Mr. Parnell had accepted the Amendment in 1886, and he went on to say, with regard to the Irish Members allowing this restriction to appear in the Bill, he considered this a very large concession on the part of Ireland, a far larger concession than what we might have demanded. That was an important admission. Then he went on to explain the arguments why he rejected the Amendment, and I think that my proposal is free from every one of the difficulties which Mr. Gladstone raised. He said that this House could not abandon all control over navigation and over merchant shipping, and he gave two or three interesting cases. He referred to the case of the federal cruiser which went to Australia and took in more coal than it was entitled to, coal which was regarded as munitions of war, with the result that this country had to pay a very large sum, and he urged this case to show the necessity for this House maintaining a certain control over navigation and merchant shipping. He went on to say that the question of the treatment of foreign sailors in Irish ports rendered it impossible to accept the whole Amendment.

I will be content with half or a quarter of it. I will be content with any little concession that I can get from my right hon. Friend. Let me put it to hon. Gentlemen opposite that if they spent their time trying to get constructive and useful Amendments they might, find the Government very agreeable. Mr. Gladstone then said that the United Kingdom was one vast trade whole, and that the trade of Ireland had not any different case from the general trade of the Kingdom. Those were Mr. Gladstone's points. I do not ask that the control of merchant shipping or navigation should be given over to the Irish Parliament, and, though my drafting I am sure is very faulty, I would be quite willing to accept any words which, the Government would choose to put in to secure to this Parliament the full right to lay down regulations for merchant ships in Irish ports. What I want is to withdraw the bar against Irish trade which they have imposed on the whole Parliament. The great thing which hon. Gentlemen opposite Cite with regard to Ireland is the perfectly revolu- tionary change which has taken place in that country since 1893. In 1893 and 1886, when the two first Bills came in, the great author of the Bills with all his knowledge had really no exact information on many important points with regard to Ireland. The result was that he was unable to answer the difficulties that were brought up against the Bill, and on this great question of trade with all his knowledge he had practically no information whatever. A great change has taken place since then. A Royal Commission was appointed to inquire into Irish trade, to some extent in connection with the financial relations; but the best information which it could get was of a most vague character. That went on until 1904, when a great event, took place with regard to the commerce of Ireland, which was revolutionary in its importance, and must have attracted the attention of every thinking man in this Parliament.

Previous to 1901 the general idea about Ireland in this country was exactly the idea that Giraldus Cambrensis formed when he landed in Ireland in the year 1172. When he came back he said, "Ireland is a great grazing country." That is what this Parliament thought Ireland was. They treated Ireland as if it had no interest apart from cattle rearing, which is the most dilatory and crudest form of agriculture. I hope that my right hon. Friends will not be annoyed with me if I suggest that that is the idea that pervaded their minds when they put these words into the Bill, barring the Parliament from dealing with anything with regard to Irish trade. In 1904, under a Conservative Government, an order was given that money should be spent and information acquired about Irish trade. After a long delay we got a most extraordinary book, which has been issued every year since then, a book which has got every fault. with regard to accuracy and trade statistics, and is yet a most astounding book, because it shows that instead of Ireland being a country with no external commerce Ireland has really a larger commerce per head of the inhabitants than the island of Great Britain—an immense commerce. I will not quote the first report, because the book was brought out under such difficulties that it was five or six years before a reasonably correct aspect of Irish trade was presented.

The last book we have deals with the year 1910. It comes out very late, in addition to having every other fault; but better late than never. In the year 1910 Ireland, with its little population of four and a quarter millions, had an external trade of £130,000,000, or £29 per head of the inhabitants, whereas the external trade of Great Britain is only £22 per head of the inhabitants; the external trade of France only £13, and that of Germany only £12. So the whole idea of Parliament was revolutionised, and it was perceived in that year that it was a country not excluded from commerce with neighbouring or foreign countries, but a country doing a very large trade and whose interests must depend entirely on how that commerce was carried on. I can easily imagine the difficulty into which hon. Gentlemen opposite may think they have plunged me by quoting those figures, and that they will say Ireland must be a great and prosperous country since it does such a large trade. That does not follow at all, because the larger trade the country or individual does, if it is not profitable, the worse off the individual and the country. If Ireland is obliged to conduct its huge trade on most unprofitable conditions, instead of being a help to Ireland, it may be a great injury. [An HON. MEMBER: "What is your Amendment?"] I am not going to propose any large Amendment. I am only saying that the Parliament cannot be shut out from making any effort for the improvement of Irish trade.


A tariff?

8.0 P.M.


When you are doing anything in this House you have got to address one line of argument to these benches and another to those, and another to the Government Bench You are between the devil and the deep sea. In 1893 it was assumed that if the Amendment was carried it would give Ireland the right to set up a tariff, and Mr. Gladstone perhaps rejected it on that ground, though the grave words I have quoted do not prove it. I wanted to disclaim that absolutely. There is nothing about tariff or connected with tariff or protection or bounties that can be dragged into this Amendment by any ingenuity whatever. The protection against tariff is embodied in the Bill, and I am absolutely a Free Trader, and entirely in agreement with my hen. Friend behind me. I do not care how strongly the bar against tariff is made. The Bill contains a Clause which prevents Ireland putting on any duty on any article which is not subject to duty in this country. It prevents any protection to any produce of Ireland in another Clause, and therefore it is absolutely barred in that way, and I do not want anything connected with tariff in any shape or form. Then perhaps I shall be asked the reason for my Amendment. The reason that many things can be done with regard to trade quite apart from tariff. You can get information with regard to trade. The greatest revolution accomplished in Ireland in the interval between 1893 and the present arose out of the inquiries of the Recess Committee, a Committee which was sent over to examine agriculture in the countries of Europe, especially Denmark, that were making progress. They presented a report that led to the Department of Agriculture being set up and gave Ireland assistance in the organisation and improvement of its agricultural wealth. What was done then would be out of the power of the Irish Parliament when set up, if my Amendment is not accepted. I want the Parliament not to be debarred from sending a commission, say, to Denmark or Holland or some other agricultural country, to inquire information with regard to agriculture. Another point is that Irish produce comes in great quantities to Great Britain, where it gets no preference. On the contrary, I can show that Irish produce is treated worse than any similar produce coming from any competing country. The reason of this is that the people of other countries send people to see whether the produce which is sent over to our markets is suitable, and, if it is not suitable, to see what is wrong. In Denmark—and it may astonish the House when I tell them of this—a number is put on every egg that is sent to this country. By that means they can trace the egg to the hen that laid it. [HON. MEMBERS: "Hear, hear."] I thought I should amuse the House; there is plenty of fun in this subject; it is most interesting. Take Danish bacon, which is a tremendous import into this country. Anyone in this country retailing Danish bacon who complains of its quality will find that the Consul or somebody representing Denmark will come at any expense to his shop to find out whether the complaint is legitimate or not, and to report the matter in Denmark. In short, there is in all agricultural countries a system by which to maintain the quality of the food, and it is a high question of agricultural importance. I suggest to my right hon. and learned Friend that some means might be devised by which liberty would be given to Ireland to safeguard Irish commerce so that she may develop it abroad. Take another article—linen, which is a great export from Ireland.

It is well known that in other countries inferior linen is being sold as Irish linen. Why should the Irish Parliament not be allowed to send a representative to ascertain whether fraud is being perpetrated, and whether linen, which was not Irish linen, was being sold as real Irish linen. Then there is lace, which is made in Ireland by peasants who are very poor and very badly paid in many parts of that country. If Irish lace were sold on its own merits it would become a great source of wealth to the Irish people. Yet these beautiful specimens of lace are imitated by machine-made articles, which are sold in other countries as Irish lace, nobody knowing the difference between one and the other, so that mistrust is caused with regard to Irish manufactures. The most important example of all in this country is with regard to Irish butter. If anybody asks, "Do you keep Irish butter?" the shopman would say, "Oh, no; Irish butter is not fit to use." Of course, there are immense quantities of splendid Irish butter sold, but the name is changed into that of the butter of Denmark) and Denmark gets the credit for everything good that comes from Ireland, which is hardly allowed any fair play with regard to its products.

I can assure my hon. Friend that I do not want to exclude any restriction for preventing the possibility of Protection or a tariff in any shape or form, or bounties, or anything else of that kind, from being dragged in; I only want Ireland to be allowed to see why it is that with such vast resources as nature has blessed her with, her people should be so poor. The best food produced in any country can be produced in Ireland in abundance, and there is nothing done in Denmark or in any country that could not be done in Ireland. The reason I believe that Ireland is in such a miserable and abandoned condition with regard to these products is because this House has failed to do its duty with regard to that country. Why has the population of Ireland declined between 1901 and 1911 by 6 per cent.? This decline is going on, and there is miserable poverty in many parts of the country. What chance will there be for Ireland, I ask the Government, if she is not allowed to look after her commerce in the way of which I have spoken? At present they are trying a little export trade in potatoes to America, and why should she not be allowed to see that the potatoes are the proper sort? I hope the right hon. and learned Gentleman will give some consideration to this Amendment with a view to seeing whether something cannot be done in the direction which I suggest. I beg to move the Amendment.


The new form of the right hon. Gentleman's Amendment will not quite do for the reason that he proposes to leave out certain words, "quarantine," "navigation," and then to put them back again. I think the same thing could be obtained by taking the Amendment as it is on the Order Paper, and leaving out from the beginning to the word "quarantine." The hon. Member could then move a consequential Amendment.


I would like to ask whether an Amendment which stands in the name of my hon. Friend behind me will be prejudiced by the Amendment of the right hon. Gentleman?


The effect of the Amendment which I am just going to put, if the right hon. Gentleman succeeds, would be that all the words would go.

Question proposed, "That the word trade stand part of the Question."


I should like to offer some further considerations on this subject. The right hon. Gentleman opposite (Mr. Lough) will allow me to correct him in one matter. The Report of 1911 as to imports and exports was published within the last fortnight, so that the right hon. Gentleman was under a misapprehension as to there not being later information. What we desire to see under the Home Rule Bill as regards the external trade of Ireland is that we shall not be in a worse position than we are at present. The Irish Department of Agriculture has an office in London, and it is entitled to inspect margarine which is being put forward as Irish butter To a certain extent she is enabled to do something for the external trade of Ireland in this country. In the same "way, of course, at foreign exhibitions the Irish Department of Agriculture have sent exhibits. At the St. Louis Exhibition in America they arranged for the exhibition of Irish goods. Consequently, what we are desirous of seeing is that under the Home Rule Bill Ireland's powers in regard to these and similar matters shall not be less adequate than at present. There are other matters which I hope the Government will take into consideration. As the right hon. Gentleman has just pointed out, Ireland has been at a great disadvantage in following up the frauds which have been practised upon her good name, not merely in England, but other countries of the world. We have done the best we could within our powers. For example, we were able to register the national trade mark, which is now being applied to all the principal products of Ireland. I should hope, in that respect at any rate, we shall be enabled to see our trade mark registered in different parts of the world; in other words, we should not be entirely excluded from the right to look after our trade interests in different parts of the world, while at the same time in no way claiming to get any thing in the nature of consular or diplomatic representations. Those subjects are entirely barred, and I make no suggestion that they should be infringed. But so far as external commerce is concerned, we should at least have the power, in a modified form, to look after our interests in different countries. I hope the right hon. Gentleman in charge of the Bill, if he cannot see his way to accept the Amendment in the form in which it has been introduced, will consider the advisability of introducing other words to safeguard the interests of Ireland in regard to its external commerce.


The two speeches which have just been made certainly raise a matter, which those who wish well to this Bill, will desire to have considered in a fair and friendly way. My right hon Friend who moved the Amendment, frankly said that this was a difficult matter, and indeed it must be quite clear to the Committee that it would never do to accept the Amendment as it has been proposed for the purpose of raising the point, because that would involve cutting clean out of the Bill three or four lines which certainly some who are friends of the Bill think are valuable. It is not disputed that this Bill, when carried in a practical shape into law, will not confer on the Parliament of Ireland power to set up a tariff. It is not disputed by the hon. Member who has just sat down, that it would go beyond the intentions of those who take an interest in this subject, to so modify the language of the Bill as to make even conceivable, that consular or similar representation outside Ireland, should be one of the things which the Irish Government should seek to set up. The hon. Gentleman repudiated that idea fairly enough. That only shows that the cases which he has in his mind, though they are very important cases, are not really anything like as wide as would be supposed from the proposal to admit those words en bloc. Therefore what occurs to us is this: We shall consider, and consider in the most friendly way, whether there is a case of special exemption which could be introduced into the framework of this Bill, while we preserve the general restricting and excluding powers those words give. I am bound to say I think the anxiety of my hon. Friends is a little exaggerated. I doubt very much whether all the matters which they have mentioned, matters about which they feel concerned, can be said to be excluded. I doubt it very much. I see that the right hon. and learned Gentleman opposite (Mr. J. H. M. Campbell) takes that view. Dealing as we all should wish, candidly in this matter, let us not proceed on a false assumption. I should be very glad to consider with the Attorney-General and others who are applying their minds to this Bill whether there is an exceptional case, because I am sure here is a matter which is free from all partisan feeling. The last thing anybody would desire, if I may assume after this Bill comes into operation and peaceful operation, as we hope and believe it will, the last thing we should desire would be to damage or belittle the beneficial operation of organisations now in Ireland that take an interest in Irish industries and agriculture. I feel, and we all feel, that there is great force in the contention of the right hon. Gentleman who moved the Amendment that it is not enough to leave the internal agricultural industry free to work out its own future in the Irish Parliament, but that its interests in countries outside Ireland should not suffer by the grant of Home Rule. We desire to see, consistent with the scheme of this Bill, that nothing would be done to prevent an agricultural commission or an inspector of Irish foodstuffs from pursuing their beneficial influence upon the agriculture and industries of Ireland. I am sure the Committee will see that that is an object everybody will sympathise with, and that really is not secured by the Amendment which has been moved, and which, I understand, is moved to enable the right hon. Gentleman to put his criticisms and raise the difficulty. I hope he will be content with the assurance I give him in perfect goodwill, that we will be very glad to consider the special case he mentions and see if it is desirable to include it by means of a special exception.


We are fortunate in having this Amendment moved by the right hon. Gentleman who has submitted it. I have an Amendment on the Paper of a more drastic character, proposing to omit the entire Sub-section. I fear the Government will in the result be as disappointed as we are if it adopts the idea of the Solicitor-General, namely, that the complaint which the Amendment repreents applies only to a few articles of commerce. That is not the case at all. The proposal in the Bill to keep Irish commerce in future under the same exclusive and absolute British control which has undoubtedly destroyed it in the past amounts to a deliberate proposal to prevent Ireland from ever reviving her trade. So far as anyone reading the Bill can find out, it cannot possibly have any other intention; it is, in fact, a proposal that we shall have no trade in future, and shall not even have the power to revive our trade. What an extraordinary idea of the full self-government promised to Ireland by the Prime Minister! Of all the restrictive provisions in this Bill the proposal to reserve trade will be rightly regarded by all people, and especially by commercial people of all lands, as the greatest curtailment of self-government, and the most inconsistent with the pretensions of the Bill, and the most inconsistent, I may add, with the Free Trade principles of the Government. It is the most unjust, embarrassing and humiliating, and the most certain either to break down the renaissance of Irish power, or to cause the breakdown of the whole Constitution of which it is to form a part. To pass the Sub-section in its present condition would be to enact a glaring injustice, so obvious and humiliating that it really could not be expected to work after the Irish Government had been set up. It would be to implant a thing inherently unsound in the heart of a scheme which we all wish to be permanent and lasting. [An HON. MEMBER: "Not all."] It would be overriding the advice of your own Finance Committee, with which every friend of Ireland agrees, that on this occasion as few things as possible should be left over for adjustment.

The learned Solicitor-General assumes on behalf of the Government, I have no doubt seriously, an air of great anxiety about the future of Ireland. He cannot possibly, nor can any Member of the Government possibly, be more anxious about the future of Ireland, and the fate and character of this Bill in the future, than the Members from Ireland who are directly concerned. For the sake of candour I hope no one will suggest that the Sub-section is not intended to restrain Irish trade, but only to restrain the Irish Parliament from dealing with Irish trade. That is the same thing and the whole thing. That proposal can be supported only by the shallow remark hinted by the Solicitor-General that Irish trade will in future have all the advantages of British trade, because it will be conducted under the same laws. The obvious answer to that remark is that it is under those same laws Irish commerce has died, and the destructive effect of successive British Parliaments on Irish commerce as well as on other Irish departments is a large part of the case for Home Rule and for this Bill. Admitting, for the sake of argument, that you are all as well disposed towards Ireland as yon wish to be considered, it would leave still standing two arguments fatal to this Sub-section, namely, first, that alien control can never be a substitute for native control; and, secondly, that commercial laws suitable for your own flourishing commerce are for that very reason unsuited and inapplicable for the revival of an extinct commerce.

Highly developed as British commerce is, and highly developed as are the laws relating thereto, you still find it necessary at brief intervals to pass elaborate Acts relating to commerce. Hardly a Session is allowed to pass without some commercial legislation being put on the Statute Book—legislation of a kind for which Ireland has unfortunately no use. The revival of Irish trade is essential to Ireland, and is quite a different subject, requiring different treatment, legislative and administrative, from the English. The question is, Who ought to deal with the subject—Ireland, who understands it, and to whom it belongs, or England, who is busy enough with its own affairs? This British Parliament has not seriously considered what it means to undertake the special legislation required for the revival of Irish trade after a Parliament has been set up in Ireland to deal with Irish affairs. Here at Westminster Parliament will be otherwise occupied, and will not be prepared to spend its time dealing with the multifarious details of legislation and administration which a vigorous revival of Irish trade would require. It is inconceivable that the people in Ireland, interested for and against any particular proposal relating to Irish trade, should, instead of looking to the Parliament in Dublin, look to the Parliament at Westminster, which cannot possibly care about their affairs since it will not be concerned; whilst the Parliament in Dublin, which will be gravely concerned, will by this Sub-section be rendered powerless to take any effective action. This British Parliament does not seriously intend to undertake work of that kind, and what it does in this Sub-section is to prevent the Irish Parliament from undertaking it either.

As the Mover of the Amendment has said, every Irish supporter of this Bill is anxious to provide whatever safeguards may be thought necessary in the matter of tariff or no tariff for the convenience of British commercial laws, until they are superseded to some extent by laws passed by the Irish Parliament suitable for the Irish situation. Subject to those limitations, the Irish Parliament should be empowered by legislation and administration to give whatever support or encouragement it thinks necessary to Irish trade and for the benefit of Ireland. If the Government do not accede to that reasonable proposal it will be interesting to know the real reason, seeing that we are only demanding control over our own local trade without any interference whatever with the general British laws as to tariff or no tariff that will continue to apply to Ireland. This Sub-section is so inconsistent with Home Rule and with the case for the Bill that every argument for the Bill is in effect an argument against the Sub-section. Another consideration which renders argument for the Amendment unnecessary, is the sentiment expressed by the Solicitor-General, that no detriment to Ireland is contemplated. That is very good; but here is the place to show it. To cripple Ireland and to tie her hands with reference to trade within her own shores, is a strange way of showing friendship and sympathy. There is no nation in the world, least of all the British nation, which would be content to have its trade and commerce subjected in all its details to the will of any other nation under the run. Only superior force could induce any people to submit to such an arrangement. A proposal of this kind, so manifestly unfair to the subject-country, and one which from its unjust nature must depend I upon force to sustain it, is not at all so durable as the Amendment proposed by the right hon. Gentleman or some such Amendment commanding the sympathy of the people affected, who understand what they want, and who want nothing whatever that is unjust to any other people.


I am very sorry indeed that we have not heard anything on this matter from gentlemen connected with trade in the North of Ireland. There is some anxiety on their part in regard to the spirit in which questions of trade will be dealt with in the Irish Parliament so far as Ulster is concerned, and protestations on that subject have not been received in the spirit in which they were offered. Therefore, when it is well known that the object we have in view is the prosperity of our country—a country inhabited by Protestants and Catholics, by farmers and artisans as well as by manufacturers, I am somewhat surprised that no word with regard to the Amendment before the Committee has fallen from those who are captains of industry in Ulster, representing the great mercantile interests there. I must confess I find this matter extremely difficult to deal with, and I should be slow for any captious or critical object to undertake to say anything which might be supposed to reflect on the bona fides of the Ministry who have proposed this measure. I dislike the Clause in its present form. I think the Clause goes entirely too far, at the same time I should find the greatest difficulty in framing apt words to meet the situation which I know the Government have in their minds, which at the same time would defend and shield them from unjust attacks by opponents, while at the same time extending to Ireland some reasonable liberty in dealing with this very intricate and difficult subject. My right hon. Friend, the Member for Islington, who has on many occasions, as a North of Ireland Protestant, shown his kindly interest in the affairs of his fellow countrymen in all parts of Ireland, in his speech, for the second time to-night, has dealt with this subject in a way which commends itself to a very large extent to my mind. He has naturally, with his agricultural experience, touched upon the products which spring directly from the earth or the products directly sustained by the earth. Words introduced after the word "trade" simply limiting it to trade in manufactured articles has an invidious appearance from many points of view. Though it has an invidious appearance, at the same time it is an extension, or it is the prevention of extension to agriculture of the limitations and restrictions of the Bill. It looks ill, but in reality it is an enlargement. By extending the scope of the phrase it really limits restriction. I think any draftsman can see that that is so.

There are two small matters which will affect us in the county of Cork. I think I might refer to them here as showing what will happen. I will first take the industry of mackerel and then that of herring. Does anyone say that any American duty on herring, which is largely Scottish, that is to say the duty imposed in America upon herring, should be something three times less than the duty upon mackerel, which, to a very large extent, is a South of Ireland industry? I have asked the question in times past, and have suggested that representations should' be made by Mr. Bryce, in his position as Ambassador at Washington, in order to at least put the mackerel industry on the same level as the herring industry. Perhaps you cannot expect the British Ambassador in America to interest himself in mackerel when there are great questions like that of the Panama Canal and other questions affecting Canada to deal with. But it is absurd to suggest that here is a whole coast line of country absolutely excluded from engaging in trade with America, since the herring is a somewhat volatile animal, and sometimes deserts the coast for twenty or thirty years, while the mackerel is a standing dish. Once you get a tariff in America it is difficult to remove. It might be easier in this country, especially to get a bad tariff removed. It would vanish like icicles in a Turkish bath. But in America, where you have the log-rolling system, and one side goes to the rescue of another, it is very difficult indeed to get a tariff, however absurd, removed.

Take potatoes. Apart from the States of Maine and Pennsylvania, I think, the country cannot produce potatoes at a profit. When these States do produce them, the yield per acre is absolutely insignificant as compared with the Irish yield of potatoes per acre. One acre of Irish potato land is worth twenty acres of American potato land, outside, of course, the States of Maine and Pennsylvania. In the interest of these two States there is a huge tariff on potatoes, which amounts in actual money to a tax of something like £30 per acre on Irish land. Would it not be extraordinary if we did not think in regard to these products, whether they be agricultural or oceanic—if I may use the expression—that we should have the right, when we were not infringing upon any British industry, to make representations to any State. There is another suggestion that I should like to make for the Amendment of this Clause. I think the words, "any place out of Ireland," are entirely too wide. I would suggest, and I do not suggest this either as a counsel of perfection, I say it with regret, if you want to impose restrictions upon us, the words should be "any foreign country." Within the ambit of the Empire—and we know by the speech of the Postmaster-General on Friday what we did not know before, that the Empire is one on which the sun never sets—we should have the right, as regards all the Colonies, as to which you can have no just apprehension of jealousy, to make representations, namely, with Australia, Canada—where we have a great many friends—South Africa, or anywhere else. Where British interests are affected, British subjects inter so should have a right of communication. I do not say that involves the ideal or meets all the views to which I should like to give expression, but it is some hint for Amendment. I shall not take up the time of the Committee further, but end by again fervently thanking the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Islington for the kindly interest which he continues to take in his unfortunate country.


The hon. and learned Member has expressed surprise that no Member for Ulster, no captain of industry as he was pleased to say or anyone representing the captains of industry in the North of Ireland has taken part in the Debate on this Amendment. I think the hon. and learned Member knows perfectly well the reason we have not done so. Our position with regard to this question is perfectly well known to the House and to the hon. and learned Member. The position we have taken up not only with regard to this Amendment but with regard to the whole of the Bill is this: that Belfast, a great and progressive city, has prospered perhaps more than any other city in the United Kingdom under the Union. Therefore, we see no reason in the world why we should give up the prosperity and success we have for a problematical condition of affairs which might ensue if Home Rule were granted. The right hon. Gentleman opposite (Mr. Lough) spoke about the extinct industries of Ireland. I ask the right hon. Gentleman to pay a visit to Belfast and see if industries are extinct in that city. I can assure him that Belfast for many years past has been an extremely prosperous city as would be proved to him if he took the trouble to look up the statistics and trade returns recently published, and the people would be very foolish indeed if for one moment they agreed to exchange that conditions of affairs for the problematical state of things that might ensue under Home Rule. We claim all along that any ills from which Ireland may suffer are not due to the Union, and until it is proved to the contrary we hold to that fact. Under precisely the same conditions or under conditions perhaps not so favourable as obtain in the South and West of Ireland, we have made the North of Ireland prosperous.

No one can seriously contend that the want of prosperity—and I am glad to say the absence of prosperity is less now than it was ten years ago—that the want of prosperity in any part of Ireland is due to the Union. It is due to nothing of the sort. A great part of it is due to agitation. But whether that is so or not the fact remains that under precisely similar conditions as obtain in the rest of Ireland we have made the North of Ireland prosperous and happy, and there is no reason why hon. Members from Ireland below the Gangway should not do the same. Why, therefore, give up that satisfactory condition of affairs which we know for a condition that we do not know. Any man who made money would be very foolish if he gave it to a friend of whom he had not a very high opinion because such a person came to him and said, "Give me your money; I will invest it for you to great advantage and increase your riches." That is exactly the position with us. In matters of trade and commerce we have not a particularly high opinion of our Southern fellow countrymen, and I maintain we would be very foolish if we were to trust our prosperity and comparative wealth in the North of Ireland to the safety of those gentlemen in the South. I am perfectly sure if hon. Gentlemen opposite found themselves in a similar position they would say precisely the same. Our position in regard to this Amendment is exactly the same as our position with regard to the whole Bill. We contend that if we acquiesced in the Bill and allowed Home Rule to take root, it would mean no end of ruin to our industries and trades, or at least that it would mean a great arrestation in our progress and would end in our ruin. Most of us in the North of Ireland are Tariff Reformers, but we prefer Free Trade under the British flag than the most complete Tariff Reform that ever was under Home Rule. Now, with regard to this Amendment. We object to giving away anything, and we object to give away the words in the Bill. The Bill as drafted provides that "Trade with any place out of Ireland," etc. We think it would be a most damaging thing if these words take effect, but we think it would be a thousand times more damaging if these words were left out, and therefore our attitude towards this Amendment is the same as our attitude to the whole Bill. Our object is to remain part of the United Kingdom, and anything that tends to drive us out of that position we will strongly oppose.


If the Committee will allow me, I would like to thank hon. Members for the support they have given to the few remarks I made in moving the Amendment, and I will now ask leave to withdraw it. I have got a very sympathetic answer from the right hon. Gentleman the Solicitor-General. He said that the point the Amendment raised could not be suddenly dealt with. I have enough experience to know I could not presume to draft an Amendment in a matter like this which I would ask the Government to accept in the very form in which I drew it. I put the case in a very moderate way, by suggesting that if anything could be given to meet the spirit of the Amendment I should be satisfied. I think the Solicitor-General has met me fairly. He has promised to consider the case made, and I think he will be encouraged to do that from the fact that I have received support from Members of the Committee in all parts of the House, including even the grudging support of the hon. Member who has just sat down. I thank the hon. Member for Kerry (Mr. Boland), who takes a great and able interest in these matters, for his sympathetic remarks, and I especially thank my hon. and learned Friend the Member for North-East Cork (Mr. T. M. Healy), for the far too flattering allusions which he made to me. I thank the hon. Gentleman who has just sat down, although he took up the usual sort of die-in-the-last-ditch attitude.


I never mentioned anything about it.


It is the sort of thing we have often heard before, but he said he did not like the words in the Bill in the form in which they stood.


I said I did not like the words, in the same way as I do not like any single word in the whole Bill.


I do not want to make another speech; I desire to thank the Government for the way in which they received the Amendment, and if the Committee will allow me, I ask leave now to withdraw it.


I expected that that was what would happen. It is the usual farce. The right hon. Gentleman who moved the Amendment received the thanks of two independent Members from the Nationalist Benches below the Gangway. They realised from their point of view, being genuine Home Rulers, that this Amendment would enlarge the powers of the Irish Parliament, but they were premature in thanking the right hon. Gentleman, because the hon. and learned Member for Waterford (Mr. John Redmond) then came into the House, and as soon as he appeared the hon. Members who thanked the right hon. Gentleman in such eloquent terms knew that it would be awkward if the Amendment was pressed to a Division, and so the right hon. Gentleman, with his thanks in his pocket, now asks leave to withdraw the Amendment so that the Nationalist Members will not be put in the invidious position of supporting the Government and voting against an Amendment which would extend the powers of the Irish Parliament.


Is the hon. and learned Member going to vote for it?


I will deal with my own action in two minutes, but I want to point out how very inconvenient it would be if it appeared in the Nationalist Press tomorrow that hon. Members for Cork and Kerry had been advocating an Amendment for the renewal of restrictions from the Irish Parliament in foreign trade, and that the hon. and learned Member for Waterford had to vote against it. I hope there will be a vote. They will no doubt thank the right hon. Gentleman opposite for saving them from a most invidious position, but does it not show how hollow the whole performance is? I do not want to say anything offensive to the right hon. Member opposite, but really when I hear these laudations of his performances, and when I heard him yesterday denouncing an hon. Member for being a little dull, I should like to tell him my mind, because I never hear him speak without thinking I am in the Sahara. Time after time the hon. Member misrepresents the feelings of those he professes to belong to, namely, the Protestant minority in Ireland. He took good care to shake the dust off his feet in reference to Ireland, and practically he has not a stick in Ireland, for the whole of his money is invested on this side of the Channel. [An HON. MEMBER: "What about Carson?"]


I do not quite see the relevancy of the hon. Member's remarks.


Those who understand the position of the right hon. Member, I think, can see the force of what I say. In the first place, the hon. Member will not embarrass the Government; and, secondly, he will not embarrass the hon. and learned Member for Waterford, and he has got his thanks from them both. I hope the Committee will not allow this Amendment to be withdrawn. The hon. and learned Member for Cork (Mr. T. M. Healy) asked what are my own views in regard to this Amendment. I may say that in the North of Ireland we have made up our minds to ignore all legislation which may be passed by a Parliament in Dublin. I should not be surprised if a Dublin Parliament tried to cripple our trade in the North of Ireland, because they hate us; but I defy them to do it. We have a far superior force to them, and why should I bother my head about that matter. Personally, I think it is a fraud on the time of the House that this Amendment should have been proposed, but as it has been proposed I think it should go to a Division. I shall try to force a Division upon it, but as to the actual result we do not care two pins. The hon. and learned Member for Cork said that none of the Ulster Members have spoken on this Amendment, but why should we speak on a thing which does not carry any moral sanction and which we do not intend to obey. I will not vote at all on the Amendment, or I will vote whichever way will do the Government the most harm.

Sir J. D. REES

Here we find the House of Commons working upon a timetable, and no time is allowed in regard to a matter which affects English Members just as much as Irish Members, and yet a right hon. Gentleman opposite, "willing to wound and yet afraid to strike" at the Government, gets up and takes up our precious time and consumes it in speeches in which compliments are exchanged on either side, and when much of the little time available has been spent the right hon. Gentleman says, "Now I should like to withdraw my Amendment."

9.0 P.M.


The Committee has already refused the request of the right hon. Gentleman to withdraw his Amendment.


Has that question been decided?


Immediately there is any objection on the part of any hon. Member the question falls to the ground.


Will any further remark on this Amendment be in order now?


Yes, but perhaps the hon. Member will not discuss the question of the withdrawal of the Amendment.

Sir J. D. REES

I submit it is rather hard that an English Member cannot spend two minutes upon this Amendment on either side.


I am asking the hon Member to address the Committee on the Amendment.

Sir J. D. REES

I confess I was not aware that I had transgressed your ruling. I heard with the utmost amazement the hon. and learned Member for Cork state that in America a log-rolling system prevailed, as if he did not know that that was the chief characteristic of politics in this House. The position of hon. Members on this side of the House is that this Bill itself is the outward and visible sign of an inward and by no means spiritual log-rolling. The hon. Member argued in the concrete with a considerable knowledge of the circumstances of Ireland, and he referred to the protection given to American potatoes by the tariff in Maine and elsewhere. That only shows that in America they know how to look after their own and we do not. At present Ireland is enjoying no little protection in the United Kingdom. The Irish labourer is protected from the Insurance Tax as an agricultural labourer, although it has to be paid by every English agricultural labourer. The Irish taxpayer is exempted from many of the so-called benefits of the Insurance Act. I did not quite understand what the hon. and learned Member said in regard to his contrast between herring and mackerel. He said that mackerel was a standing dish. I think the herring dish is a standing dish for thousands. I saw little force in that argument. Although this Bill may pass this House it will never become the law of what will continue to be the United Kingdom. But if it is going to pass it is infinitely better that it should pass as drafted by the Government rather than as amended by the right hon. Gentleman opposite. The right hon. Gentleman spoke of extinct industries, but they are a mere bagatelle to those industries which have flourished in Ireland under the Union, and the same relations exist between the hand-loom industry in England and the great cotton industry of the present day. The progress of Ireland has been entirely due to the Union, as chiefly illustrated in those parts of Ireland which still desire to maintain the Union. The hon. and learned Member for Cork said he learned from the Postmaster-General that the sun never sets on the British Empire. The only comment I have to make upon that subject—I will not say it with reference to the Postmaster-General, who I believe is one of the ablest officials of the Government—is that if the Government continues long to rule the Bitish Empire the sun will very soon set on a very great deal of it.

Captain CRAIG

The hon. Member who moved the Amendment has apparently thought better of it, and some of the arguments against it may not have been presented to the Committee. We have to consider what the personnel of the Dublin Parliament will probably be, and whether the sources from which Members are likely to be drawn will provide the class of person properly fitted to control the foreign trade of Ireland. When it is borne in mind that nearly the whole of the Irish party are drawn from the more or less agricultural part of Ireland, where very little foreign trade comes into question, it is only too evident that the whole of the great business community of the North of Ireland would under the Amendment come under the control of those who would have no knowledge whatever of world-wide trading, and who have had no training of any kind to fit them for taking over such powers as are proposed. Anyone who contrasts the trade of Belfast with, that of any other port in Ireland must immediately recognise the fact that from the Northern capital proceeds all that goes to make Ireland prosperous so far as the great manufacturing industries are concerned. If the slightest mistake were made in dealing with the trade of Ireland with Germany, America, Russia, or France, the linen industry, which is the greatest industry we have in the North of Ireland, might be imperilled. Is there a single Nationalist Member who understands anything about the linen industry? Not a single one. Those hon. Members who have already expressed their intention of voting for this Amendment must bear in mind it is not by isolating Ireland that the prosperity of Ireland is to be increased, but rather by throwing in our lot with the other component parts of the United Kingdom, treating the exports as a whole and having one common system for dealing with the imports that come from abroad. I do not think any argument that could be advanced would convince anyone in the North of Ireland that it would be a good thing for the prosperity of that part of the country if the control of our imports and exports was taken away from a strong Board under the United Kingdom and handed over to some President of an Irish Board of Trade, to be selected from the builders of new Tipperary or those who drive cattle in the South and the West.

This proposal would also, in my opinion, lead to great complications in the case of quarantine. Differences between the Irish and English Board lately have shown that it would have been far better to have had one Board covering the whole country, so that officials working under one master would have been able to deal with the situation, which affected both England and Scotland equally with Ireland. Instead of that, owing to the distrust which has evidently grown up in regard to the right hon. Gentleman who controls the Irish Department, exactly the same trouble has already been experienced within recent days that would be the invariable experience if we were to separate the trade of the two countries, including this question of quarantine. Undoubtedly the Irish Board might place restrictions on the importation of cattle from abroad, whereas the English market might allow cattle coining from abroad in order to secure a better supply of beef. The Irish Board might alter their quarantine laws to such an extent that they might clash with the English laws and cause perpetual trouble to the two countries. Taking the whole matter into consideration, it would be the greatest mistake to divorce the trade of the two countries in the way suggested. Apparently, the hon. Member has discovered on reflection that it would be an error or he would not have withdrawn his Amendment. I recommend Radicals on the other side of the House, before they waste the few minutes given to us on this Bill, to consult, first and foremost, the hon. and learned Member for Waterford (Mr. John Redmond) as to whether he is likely to allow the Amendment to go to a Division or not, instead of coming down to the House, discussing an Amendment and then when he comes into the House and puts his thumb up or down, according to the arranged signal, eating their words and withdrawing their Amendment. As far as I am concerned, I shall stick to my original intention and vote against the Government on this or any other matter which is put forward.

The POSTMASTER-GENERAL (Mr. Herbert Samuel)

The hon. Member who has just spoken has been arguing at length against the provision in the Bill which deals with the importation of animals. The next Amendment also deals with the same subject. Will it be in order to discuss this a second time?


May I point out, with reference to the claim which the right hon. Gentleman has made, that the casual reference of my hon. and gallant Friend to quarantine debars the next Amendment from being moved, that the proper course, with all respect to the Chair, if there had been anything wrong in mentioning quarantine, would have been to draw my hon. and gallant Friend's attention to the fact that it was not included in the Amendment?


The remarks of the hon. and gallant Member were quite of a casual nature. He only just strayed over the border.


I beg to move, in Sub-section (7), after the words "Irish Parliament," to leave out the words "or by the regulation of importation for the sole purpose of preventing contagious disease."

My hon. and gallant Friend the Member for East Down, in speaking to the last Amendment, pirated my perquisite in a small way, but I will do my best to emphasise what he said and to some extent to enlarge upon it. In the first place, I must comment on the fact that this particular Clause as it stands, and particularly the sentence to which we object, is so badly drafted that I am inclined to think, when it comes to a question of interpretation as between the Irish Executive and the English Government, assuming that there is any friction between the two, it will be extremely difficult to say what is the exact extent to which powers are thereby given to the former. In the first Sub-section of Clause 2 it is expressly stated that the Irish Parliament shall have powers to make laws with the following limitation, "that they shall not have power to make laws…except in respect of matters exclusively relating to Ireland." If there is one matter above all others that cannot be described as one exclusively relating to Ireland, it is the regulations and the restrictions imposed under the Contagious Diseases (Animals) Acts in relation to the livestock trade or industry common to the two countries. May I take this opportunity of saying at once that, in my opinion, the interests of Great Britain and Ireland are absolutely identical in the matter of this industry. Agriculture is, and I believe will remain, in both countries nationally the most important industry, and that branch of it which is most profitable, and is likely to be increasingly profitable in the future, is its livestock department.

There are two important Acts which deal with the contagious diseases of animals, both of them having equal application to the two islands. One of them is the Diseases of Animals Act, 1894, one provision of which is that the Department of Agriculture in each country may prohibit the landing of livestock from abroad, even for the purposes of slaughter, from any country from which contagion or infection may be imported. The other, and the most important for our present purposes, is the Diseases of Animals Act, 1896, which, in effect, prohibits the importation of any stock from any foreign country whatever into this country except by the licence of the Department for the purposes of exhibition. That applies almost exclusively to animals passed into the Zoological Gardens. An eminent Member of the Government, the Paymaster-General, Lord Stracie, who at one time represented the Board of Agriculture in this House, has been emphasising the fact that the whole of the recent troubles between Ireland and Great Britain are due to a lack of uniformity of administration and to the lack of a single Department which can act in respect of contagious diseases in both countries promptly and uniformly. Most people in both countries will, I think admit that if it is desirable to have uniform administration, it is much more necessary to have uniform legislation upon which such administration is based. That is the whole purport and effect of my Amendment. There is one other very important consideration which we in this country have to bear in mind, and which, in my opinion, Ireland will in the future—


May I ask whether this speech is in order? If the hon. Gentleman succeeds in his Motion he will leave to the Irish Parliament power to make varying Clauses, whereas, as the Clause is now drafted, it takes that power from the Irish Parliament and leaves the law in the three Kingdoms on this subject alike. The hon. Member's speech is conceived with a view to a very opposite state of things to that which is proposed by the Clause, and I therefore ask whether it is in order?


I am sorry that I have to differ from so eminent a jurist and interpreter of the law as the hon. and learned Member for Cork, but I would like, if I may, to explain to him that this is an exception to an exception, and that fact brings this particular class of trade within the purview of the business of an Irish Parliament.


I thought the hon. Member was moving much wider words.


I wish to omit the words, "or by the regulation of importation for the sole purpose of preventing contagious disease." If the Clause stands as to-day, with this exception, the Irish Parliament will have the power to make laws so far as trade, whatever this means, may be affected by the regulation of importation for the sole purpose of preventing contagious disease. It is a fearful rigmarole, but I think it is perfectly apparent that it is desired by the exception to leave the control of contagious diseases in the hands of the Irish Parliament as well as the Irish Executive. I was just about to point out the very great detriment to the trade in live stock in this country, and as I believe to an increasing extent to that in Ireland, that such an exception as that would inflict upon our export trade, which is the most important agricultural trade, steadily increasing, both in volume and value, and which represents to-day one of the most valuable parts of the whole of our export trade. There is absolutely nothing which has done more to revive and develop this trade in Great Britain, as well as in Ireland, than the confidence which people in South America, in the United States and in South Africa all feel in consequence of our having uniform legislation relating to the contagious diseases of animals, and uniform, firm and prompt administration, restrictions and regulations under the existing Acts. It will be a serious blow both to Irish agriculture and to British agriculture if we cease to have uniformity of legislation as regards contagious diseases of animals. I should like to remind the Committee and my Irish agricultural Friends below the Gangway that in the year 1883, when the existing Diseases of Animals Acts had not been passed, foot-and-mouth disease was very seriously prevalent in twenty counties in Ireland, and up to the eleventh hour the Irish policy was to try and cure the disease. Not only did they try to cure the disease, but in the process of, in their opinion, stamping out the disease, or endeavouring at any rate to lessen the disease, they actually deliberately communicated the disease from affected animals to sound animals. That was the policy, which was eventually abandoned after a devastation of Ireland by foot-and-mouth disease and the loss of many hundred thousands of pounds. That policy has not been revived.


It was the policy of Dublin Castle. It was not the policy of the Department.


I am an Englishman and cannot distinguish between the policy of Dublin Castle and the Department. That policy is being advocated in different parts of Ireland as a policy which might be revived if foot-and-mouth disease again seriously developed. In other words, it is the policy of allowing foot-and-mouth disease to take its course, rather than to take the course of stamping it out by slaughter coupled with compensation. Suggestions have been made to me from many parts of Ireland, from leading agriculturists, that it might be desirable to revive that policy. It is sufficient to mention that to show that there may be serious differences of opinion in Ireland and Great Britain as to the best means of eradicating this seriously contagious disease. The fact that such a public opinion might exist in Ireland indicates also that a Contagious Diseases of Animals Act maybe passed there of a totally different character from the Contagious Diseases of Animals Act in this country, or that the existing Acts may be repealed so far as they affect Ireland. I cannot conceive anything more serious for the-livestock of both countries and for the reputation of our livestock industry abroad than if the Irish Parliament were given these powers, and, having got them, used them in that way.


I may tell the hon. Member that during the last three months I have received the most cordial co-operation from agriculturists in Ireland in attempting to stamp out this disease.


I can assure the right hon. Gentleman that I am only too-delighted to hear that that is the case; but it does not in the least detract from the illustration I have given to show that there may be strong and increasing local opinion in Ireland which may run contrary to the accepted views of our Department in this country, and of our Government, which makes laws for this country; and if such a situation were to arise it would be a serious thing for the livestock trade in both countries.


I desire to support this Amendment. I think the Committee will admit that the case presented for it is a strong one. The first fact to which I wish to draw the attention of the Government, and which I shall be glad to have explained, is that these words, so far as I have been able to discover, are found in neither the 1886 Bill nor the 1893 Bill. I should like to know for what reason they have been inserted in this Bill. In regard to the words themselves it may be asked what is the objection to words which merely give power to the Irish Parliament for what is admittedly a good and desirable object, namely, the prevention of a disease. With regard to that only this requires to be said: that if you give powers to be used well, you must run the chance of their being used badly. If I may illustrate what I mean by a simple illustration. I should say that if anybody wishes to protect their house, on the whole I think a bad watchdog is worse than none. A bad watchdog encourages the master of the house to go to sleep and to trust his fortunes to the care of the bad watchdog, but if he has no watchdog he is more or less sure of the work being done. That would be the result if these words remain in. I do not think it is necessary to emphasise the extreme importance of what these words are designed to prevent, which we think they will fail to prevent, and which we wish to prevent by more efficient means, that is, so far as human skill can, to make it impossible, for disease to be imported into Ireland, and through Ireland into England, by the lax administration of these laws.

Everybody knows, for it has been much in the minds of all of us during the last month or two, how close is the identity of interest in this matter between English and Irish agriculturists. England and Ireland, especially at certain seasons of the year, are really mutually inter-dependent; they are respectively the outlet and the supply for their respective needs, there fore what affects one most directly affects the other. I do not think there is any need to labour that point, because it is universally admitted, and I only mention it to emphasise the importance of exercising care in dealing with this question. Really, the question is, on whom will lie the ultimate responsibility for the administration of these Acts? Those who oppose the Amendment will tell us that at the present moment we have divided administration, and that therefore the same things, under this Bill, will only be changed in words from what actually exists to-day. That argument is fallacious, for this reason, that although you have two-fold administration at the present moment— the Irish Board and the Board in London —yet it is only a Departmental duplicity, and each of these Departmental heads is alike a Member of the one Government and responsible to the same House of Commons, so that Ave in this House are always able to arraign the administration of the one or the other, and by that means we secure at the present time instead of a Departmental duplicity a real unity of administration, and that will be removed from us if the Irish Parliament is given these powers. In the last two or three months we have seen the difficulty which may arise from Departmental friction. We have heard rumours, well or ill founded, of friction between the Irish Board and the English Board. What may be very serious departmentally is surely ten times more serious if it becomes friction between Governments, and that is what would be the result, I think, if these words were allowed to stand.

Lastly, we are constantly told that the Bill which we are now engaged upon is to be the model on which the other Governments, when we have a full federal system, are to be based. Are you prepared to base your federal system in this respect upon what you now propose to-do? Are you prepared, that is to say, to-establish the same powers, when you give Home Rule to Scotland and to Wales, as you now propose to do under these words, to Ireland? Only last year we had an illustration of what might happen in that respect. It was proposed by the Government to give these very powers to the Scottish Board, and that proposal was deleted out of the Bill in the House of Lords, I believe, to the satisfaction of a-great many Members of the Government who knew how keenly the agricultural communities generally feel on the question of uniformity of administration. Surely what we were not prepared to-insist upon for Scotland last year, and what a great many Members of the Government in their hearts dislike, it would be unwise to do for Ireland where events have shown us the results may be far more serious than they are likely to-be in the case of Scotland and England. I know, and I should think a great many Gentlemen on that side of the House know, that on this subject grave apprehensions are at this moment entertained by the agricultural community. They would be entertained to a larger extent if the agricultural community had the time afforded them to understand the provisions of this Bill that we are asked to discuss in such haste. If the Government wish for more support for their Home Rule proposals, and if they wish to win for their side more agricultural support than they have at present, they would be well advised to accept the Amendment.


Not only does this Amendment deal with the importation of contagious disease so-far as cattle are concerned, but it may also be taken into consideration in relation to a matter which, in the minds of some of us, is far more dangerous, and that is the importation of fodder from foreign countries, to Ireland. There are diseases which come with fodder, such as anthrax, which are not only dangerous to the animals themselves, but dangerous to man, and there are other diseases which come with fodder which may be imported unless this Amendment is carried, which, in the event of their getting into Ireland, it will be extremely difficult to prevent spreading into England and into Scotland. There would be the greatest difficulty in having anything like proper control over this matter if the illuminating spectacle is seen of the President of the Board of Agriculture in England haggling and bickering across the Channel with the gentleman, whoever he may be, who will hold the same position under the Irish Government. It is difficult at the moment perhaps to forecast what the proposals of that gentleman may be, but, from the knowledge we already have, probably the hon. Member (Mr. Ginnell) has a certain amount of knowledge of the movements of cattle which might suit him for the position. When we take into consideration the manner in which the right hon. Gentleman (Mr. Runciman) was harassed and driven, first by the farmers in Ireland on the cattle question, and then by the hon. Member (Mr. Devlin), in a speech which had wide notoriety in Ireland, and then by the hon. and learned Gentleman (Mr. John Redmond), when we realise that when in England he was able to be brow-beaten and driven in that manner from Ireland, and was forced to change his tactics and was forced into an absolute corner, on the whole question, how much more so will the gentleman in his relative position in Ireland be forced into a quandary and into trouble by his own people? I can only add, as a matter of illustration, the state of affairs in Scotland at present. Scotland, which has had no outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease, has got at present thirty-one different local authorities, every one of them attempting to deal with the Diseases of Animals Act. It is a matter entirely of the taking away from one control of this disease. Last week or the week before it was impossible in Scotland to have sheep moved from one county to another, even where there had been no importation from any proscribed area for over three weeks. What state of affairs are you going to have between Ireland and England under this Bill if that is the state between Scotland and England at present? I can only urge that the Committee should accept this Amend- ment, and that the dangers and difficulties which are bound to take place if the Amendment is not accepted may be saved to the country.


I am greatly afraid that hon. Gentlemen above the Gangway have not considered the effect of the Amendment which they have moved. Their arguments are not germane at all to it. What is it that the Bill proposes in its present form? It simply proposes to give the Irish Parliament power to deal with the trade only in so far as that trade would regulate the importation of animals or of matter for the sole purpose of preventing contagious disease. It has nothing in the wide world to say to the existing situation as between England and Ireland. England, except an odd pedigree bull or prize ram, or something of that kind, sends nothing into Ireland. Nothing in the Bill touches the twenty millions of cattle which are sent into England, and leave that question absolutely as it was. You send us—I have not the statistics by me, but let us suppose you send us —£50,000, or £100,000, of cattle during the year. [An HON. MEMBER: "More."] Well, it may be. I cannot say for the moment what the exact figure is. All it enables us to do, if infected matter—the very foreign straw which has been referred to is being sent into Ireland—is to deal with the infected matter and no more, and yet hon. Gentlemen speak as if it were a question that enabled us to send infected cattle from Ireland into England. That is the sense I gather from the speeches which have been made. Does any hon. Gentleman imagine for a moment, when the Irish farmer is anxious to get prize cattle, prize stallions, for the purpose of improving the trade, that there is any danger to any interest in allowing the Irish local legislature to take protection against disease? That is what is solemnly contended by hon. Gentlemen above the Gangway, taking a wholly false view of the case.

I am entirely in sympathy with what the Noble Lord said. If my opinion is of any value, all the recent outbreak in Ireland— not a very serious outbreak,' but whatever it may be—is due to the importation of those foreign articles, straw and hay, which the Noble Lord condemned, and yet, forsooth, while foreign straw and hay, and perhaps wool and other articles of that kind, were being sent into Ireland, and we were watching the ports, we were to come over here, where perhaps there was no such danger, while disease was being spread in our country. You are arguing as if this was something in favour of disease. It is to prevent disease in the country. You are arguing as if you wanted Free Trade and disease. The whole Amendment of the hon. Gentleman is misconceived, and therefore I do think that in this matter especially England owes us some little debt. Formerly, at all events, we had the advantage of selling the garrison food stuffs. Take the Curragh of Kildare. Where does it get its supplies? Hay from France, beef from the Argentine, flour from America, mutton from New Zealand, and chicken from the Lord knows where — [An HON. MEMBER: "Siberia."]—bacon from Denmark, and eggs from China, and remember, many of the articles, like eggs or some of the chilled stuffs, are packed, it may be, in deleterious matter—in disease bringing matter—and it is that very question of trade upon which we are alone allowed to legislate. It is that which the hon. Gentleman above the Gangway himself believes as a non-Free Trader. I think this is a matter which is not to be dealt with merely by the question of £ s. d. I think there are higher national interests at stake far beyond any mere temporary gain to anybody. I do respectfully say that the Government in this matter are acting wisely, temperately, and justly, and not acting in the sense which hon. Gentlemen above the Gangway contend.


It is not my hon. Friends behind me, but the hon. Member for Cork (Mr. T. M. Healy) who has misconceived the Amendment altogether. He speaks of it as if it applied to the present situation. It leaves the present situation absolutely untouched, unless and until this Bill becomes law, which I think will only be at a very distant date. If the hon. Gentleman below the Gangway were correct, I should be the first person to agree with him, because this proposal would deprive Ireland of its existing powers for preserving itself from dangers and difficulties with regard to disease, without putting anything else in their place. On that point I may have a word or two more to say. When I first looked at this Amendment I own that occurred to me, and as I listened to the discussion upon it in connection with this Home Rule Bill I said to myself, how hopeless it would have been for Ireland if she had either been separated from England or had taken her place among the nations of the world as a nation herself, as I have heard hon. Gentlemen below the Gangway proclaim in this House to be one of their aspirations. Even supposing that Ulster had been able to hold her own—I believe she always will do, and will remain still united to this country by Parliament and by everything else in the world—even supposing that there will be changes in other parts of the country—which I do not believe will occur—how hopeless would have been her position if all we are told, and which I believe to be true, about the improvement of the Irish cattle trade, because she would have been absolutely ruined. She would have been treated inevitably after her separation, or after Home Rule, or anything of that character, as a foreign country. In all human probability the most rigid restrictions would have been placed against the importation of cattle from Ireland, precisely in the same way as they are now placed against the importation of cattle from other countries, wherever they may be, with regard to which we are not absolutely certain, so far as it is humanly possible to be certain, that we are safe from danger of any sort or kind. The days of Ireland's great trouble, which no one knows better than I do, and under which she has suffered, are approaching their end. I hope I may be right in my anticipations, but even if the county councils of England exercise their powers to protect themselves against fresh incursions of foot-and-mouth disease no one will blame them because we do not know what they are suffering in some of the counties of England.

10.0 P.M.

Take, for instance, the case of Northumberland which has already passed such a resolution. There the loss has been enormous. I am not going to answer the question whether it is owing to any lax ad ministration in Ireland or not. There remains the fact that the position we have to deal with is that this incursion of foot-and-mouh disease beyond all doubt came from Ireland. [HON. MEMBER: "No."] I am afraid that we must agree to differ. That has been absolutely proved and is acknowledged I think by many people in Ireland. My hon. Friend behind me is perfectly right that this Bill leaves to the Irish Parliament the power of making regulations for preventing the importation of cattle disease. The object which my hon. Friend has in view is to secure some means of uniformity of treatment for England, Ireland and Scotland in all cases of these dangerous cattle diseases from which up to a short time ago we hoped we had been altogether secure. There is a great deal to be said for this object of my hon. Friend. Not so very long ago a Bill was introduced into the Upper House of Parliament with what always appeared to me to be a particularly foolish Clause in which it was sought to establish dual control of England and Scotland to cope with those diseases. Happily in the interests of those who are closely connected with cattle and whose fortunes are invested in animals of that kind, the President of the Board of Agriculture retired and under the control of his successor that proposition disappeared and has never been heard of since. But if it is right that there should be uniformity of treatment for England and Scotland it is equally right if it can be achieved, to have general uniformity of treatment in this respect for the whole United Kingdom. I do not mean to say for a moment that if it rested with me I should abolish the Irish Department and substitute the English Board of Agriculture for it. I should retain the Irish Department manned by an Irish staff as it is now, but subject to this, that in the last resort, especially in the case of a serious outbreak, it should be subject to the guidance and control of the English Board of Agriculture. This is a question deserving most careful consideration, entirely apart from its arising on an Amendment to the Bill now before the House. I say so because I have just as much sympathy for our fellow agriculturists in Ireland as for those who are suffering from the same cause in England. I know that some of us have been accused of being engaged in a conspiracy against the interests of Ireland. Nothing could be further from our views, and I conscientiously believe that in submitting these considerations to the House of Commons I am speaking quite as much in the interests of Ireland as I have endeavoured to speak in the interests of Great Britain.


The right hon. Gentleman, with his long Parliamentary experience, seldom speaks in this House without throwing valuable light on the subject under discussion. That has been so this evening, for he has shown quite clearly that if this Amendment were passed, and these words were cut out of the Bill, still the Irish Government would have power to administer the Acts dealing with the importation of foreign cattle and could make such regulations as they chose. In that case what becomes of all the speeches to which we have listened, speeches from the hon. Member who moved this Amendment and those who followed him who urged in the strongest terms that it was essential that we should have—


What I intended to put before the House was that supposing this Amendment was carried it would, of course, rest with the Government to fill up whatever gaps were necessary to enable the due conduct of affairs to be carried out. My view undoubtedly is whatever is done should be done, in case there were ever outbreaks of disease, subject to the guidance and control of the English Department, and it would be for the Government, if it were carried, to do whatever was-necessary to give effect to it.


The right hon. Gentleman would not merely leave the status quo, but would deprive Irish Ministers even of the powers which they now possess. That is what the right hon. Gentleman says. Now that it is proposed to leave these matters in the hands of the Irish Minister, he would give him less powers than he has to-day.


I said as distinctly as possible that if it rested with me I should not send an English Board of Agriculture to Ireland, and I should leave the Irish Department as it is, manned by an Irish staff as at the present time, but that, in the last resort, in the case of a great outbreak, the Irish action should be subject to the control, advice, and guidance of the English Department.


I leave it to hon. Members who have heard the right hon. Gentleman to consider the workability and practicability of such a scheme as that. We are here to deal now with the desirability of avoiding friction between the Departments of the two countries. In regard to the administration of these Acts, during the recent unhappy outbreak of disease in Ireland and Great Britain, if there had been during the last few months no Irish Minister in a position directly to administer these regulations in Ireland, and to represent the interests of the Irish farmers from the Irish point of view, the position of the President of the Board of Agriculture of Great Britain would have been almost intolerable, and the friction would have been so great that no single Minister, directly responsible for the administration of these act, not only in Great Britain, but in every part of Ireland, would have been able to carry on. I agree that we are discussing a matter of very great importance, but is it really seriously contended that an Irish Parliament largely representative as it naturally would be, of Irish agricultural interests, would be unduly tender to the importation of foreign cattle and foreign fodder.

I could quite understand the contention that the Irish Parliament could not really be trusted to insist with sufficient vigour and efficiency on the regulations in regard to Irish farmers in Ireland, and that they might be unduly tender to them in connection with diseases among their own cattle, but to suggest, with regard to cattle coming from the Argentine or any other portion of the world—and this is the point dealt with by this Amendment, the question of cattle and food materials imported from abroad—that the Parliament of an agricultural country would be so unduly tender to foreign interests seems to me, indeed, a most astounding argument, and I suggest, rather in the nature of something opposite to that spirit of protection which always exists in an agricultural country, and which would rather strain the regulations to take action in order to secure the exclusion of cattle when diseased. The right hon. Gentleman said it was impossible to answer for Great Britain being able to protect herself against these diseases. Surely Great Britain would be able to protect herself, oven if the Irish Parliament had these powers. If the suggestion is that we must take steps to prevent the importation of disease from foreign countries viâ Ireland, there would have to be a double exclusion, first the Irish excluding cattle; and secondly, the British necessarily excluding Irish cattle if Irish cattle were likely to be infected. The whole case is greatly affected by the geographical fact that Great Britain is one island and Ireland another—a fact on which the President of the Board of Agriculture lately dwelt with emphasis amid the cheers of hon. Members opposite. It was pointed out that because Ireland is an island it was practically necessary to take steps which might not necessarily be drawn in precisely the same form in regard to cattle coming from other parts of Great Britain.

The hon. Member for Wilton said that if we passed this legislation for Ireland, when we created subordinate assemblies for other portions of the United Kingdom we should be obliged to make a similar provision for them. That does not follow at all. We have said again and again that while no doubt the general line of future legislation will probably follow the plan of this Bill, we do not for one moment say that on questions of detail it will do so, where the circumstances differ, as they do clearly differ with regard to England, Scotland and Wales, from the circumstances of Ireland. The hon. Member asked why we departed from the Bill of 1893, which include no such provisions as we are including now. The hon. Member's argument really went against himself. It is true that the Bill of 1893 did not contain this provision, but when it was going through the House of Commons it was found to be necessary and desirable that it should be included and this particular provision is in the same words as that which was inserted by the House of Commons in the Bill of 1893. Let me point out to the House that it was a Conservative Government in 1899 which created the Irish Department of Agriculture, and conferred upon it the very powers which are now in question. Does the hon. Member really suggest that we should leave it the power of administration in this matter, while denying any power of amending the laws to be administered?


You aggravate the danger of lack of uniformity in administration by lack of uniformity in legislation.


The important thing is the administration.


Does the right hon. Gentleman mean that at every stage of this Bill administrative and legislative power should go together?


That is a very wide and sweeping question, which I shall be very ready to debate at the proper time. If the right hon. Gentleman desires me to lay down a proposition in a word which is applicable to every Clause and every line of this Bill, I must respectfully decline to do so. What I say is that it appears to me to be a proposition certainly not calculated to avoid friction, to leave in the hands of the Irish Minister the power to make Resolutions under the existing Act, and the power to enforce those regulations—to leave them that, and at the same time deny to the Irish Parlia- ment to whom the Minister will be responsible the right of amending any particular law which Irish experience might in their opinion prove to be necessary. If the powers are to be left at all they must be powers of administration as well as of legislation. Therefore the proposition now made is to leave to the Irish authority the very powers which were conferred upon the Irish authority by the Act of 1899, to protect Irish flocks and herds from the importation of foreign disease, which was passed by the Conservative administration of which the right hon. Gentleman who has just spoken was a very distinguished Member.


It has been left to the Postmaster-General to suggest that the object of this Amendment is to prevent the importation of cattle from the Argentine into Ireland. The right hon. Gentleman represents a more or less agricultural district, and therefore should know more of the conditions of agriculture in Ireland. Nothing so absurd has been suggested. The object of moving this Amendment is that we do not want to see the present uniform system of legislation abandoned. A short time ago the House will remember there was a suggestion conveyed throughout the country that the Irish Department had been responsible for a considerable slackness in dealing with the question of cattle disease. That was very largely disproved. Under the present condition of affairs if that had been proved we should have been able to arraign the right hon. Gentleman in his place in this House, and to bring him to justice and drive him out of office if he deserved it. That is a condition of affairs which will no longer exist, and the want of uniformity and legislation will not secure the same confidence which British agriculturists have now of Irish administration being kept up to the level of English administration by the fact of Irish administration being represented in this House. The point I particularly want to make is that I think the Irish Members are rather ill-advised in this matter. Hero I may tell them something which they do not know about the feeling amongst English agriculturists. I do not pretend to tell them anything about their own country which they do not know, but I can about England, because they have not realised it. There is at this moment a very great feeling of unrest among English agriculturists as to the danger of foot-and-mouth and other diseases coming over from Ireland.

There is a general feeling that the administration in Ireland has not been so anxious to meet this question as it might. Rightly or wrongly, that feeling exists. There is a grave danger, if the agriculturists in this country find that the administration is not uniform, that there may be a very largely increased demand for the admission of Canadian store cattle, a demand which is already voiced by a considerable section of agriculturists in Great Britain. That is a point which Irish Members ought to watch. If under the provisions of this Bill you make the Irish Parliament entirely responsible for these matters, then you will increase the danger that there may be this panic amongst English agriculturists, and the demand for the importation of Canadian stock to England may be perfectly irresistible in this country. I very much prefer to be able to maintain our stock of store cattle from Ireland. We would far rather deal in the home market. That, however, is the danger they have got to look to, and it will certainly be a danger if this Amendment is not adopted. I hope that the House will realise that this Amendment is seriously moved. The objections suggested by the Postmaster-General certainly have no foundation, in fact, in the minds of those who moved. The idea of hon. Gentlemen who support this Amendment is to secure thorough confidence amongst British agriculturists in the good administration of the Irish Department owing to the fact that by having the Minister responsible in this House he can be arraigned, and we have some means of dealing with him and of securing uniformity, and that really good administration of these laws is kept up.


I am glad to see that the Postmaster-General recognised that this is really an important matter. I regret that there is such a short time to discuss it. I regret also the heat the right hon. Gentleman imported into the reply he made. [HON. MEMBER: "No, no."] It seems to me that this question has got nothing whatever to do with administration. We are simply dealing with legislation. The Clause is very clumsily drafted, but I will endeavour to paraphrase what its effect is. It is that an Irish Parliament shall have the power to make laws so far as her trade may be affected by importation for the purpose of preventing contagious diseases. Anybody who has been closely in touch with the great loss which has been caused to agriculturists lately in this country by foot-and-mouth disease must be aware of the importance of this subject. It is obvious that those who are interested in agriculture in Ireland and those who are interested in England do not see eye to eye about this question.

What we on this side of the House say is, that if you give the Parliament in Ireland power to make different laws from those which are in force in this country with regard to this important question, you will have that friction intensified. For instance, some people hold that foot-and-mouth disease is brought into this country to a very large extent by the importation of skins and hides. These skins and hides are carried in railway trucks, which are afterwards used for carrying fodder or cattle, and by that means the disease is disseminated thoughout the country. Supposing the British Parliament made up its mind to pass a law in regard to the importation of skins, and the Irish Parliament refused to pass a similar law; what would be the state of affairs? You would never stamp out foot-and-mouth disease in the United Kingdom. As long as that trade could go on unrestricted in Ireland, you would run the risk of having this dreadful disease imported into this country. Take a similar case with regard to fodder or even cattle; the same argument applies. Therefore this Amendment is being pressed. When you find that there is friction in the matter of administration, it is all the more important that the cattle trade in Ireland and England shall be governed by the same laws. I submit that this Amendment is worth the consideration of the Government, and it cannot possibly do any injury to the people of Ireland.


An argument against this proposal to grant Home Rule is the impossibility that Members find in understanding what is meant by the actual writing of the Bill. If there is this confusion amongst people who have had some experience of trying to understand Acts of Parliament as drafted, what confusion will there be amongst those who have not had that experience? This Clause, as I understand it, is an exception, that trade with any place out of Ireland shall not be left in the hands of the Parliament in Dublin—except certain things. If we go into those exceptions to an exception, we find that one of the proposed exceptions is that the regulation of importation for the sole purpose of preventing contagious disease shall be in the hands of the Irish Parliament. Imagine the Parliament in Dublin passing certain regulations against the importation of fodder from Great Britain, and the farmers of this country getting exceedingly irate. What would be more natural than that the agriculturists interested should retaliate on the Irish Parliament, and say, "If you will not take our fodder we will not take your store cattle." Let Irish Members remember that there is no market in the world except Great Britain for their store cattle. The unity of interest between the two countries is closer than they think. If once this friction reaches a high point—and it is quite possible that it may—the breeders of cattle and parties interested in industry in Ireland will realise what a good customer Great Britain has been to them. You cannot send live store cattle to France, Germany, or the United States I There is no market but this in which you can sell store cattle, I want you to realise that, and that you must not endeavour to obtain powers from us which are certain to produce friction. The whole interest of the Home Rule Bill is this: while in the past twenty-five years everything has been-done, even by bringing on to the Front Bench a representative of agriculture in Ireland and England so that we might have free intercourse and discussion and friendly overtures the one with the other, when one is in Dublin and the other is in London friction that is not realised now will arise. That is only one item in the whole of a great list.

I beg of you to realise that in your endeavour to obtain powers of all kinds you are absolutely, certainly laying up for yourselves friction and enmity, whereas you have friendship from us today and a desire to make everything that is in Ireland go. We are willing to lend you money. [HON. MEMBER: "Hear, hear."] Hon. Members cheer at the idea of being borrowers, but I do not know but what there is a reasonable and a right place between borrowers and lenders. I do not think it is a matter to be jeered at. [HON. MEMBER: "No."] Not only have we lent you money, but we have given it with a full heart. In the centuries gone by we have not always acted together, nor have we on this side of the Channel acted with that liberality and that fairness perhaps that might have been, but we have desired during the last thirty years to make this good. Now by your demanding these powers in this Bill you are going to undo that friendly feeling which has existed between the Anglo-Saxon race and the Irish race since 1893. We have endeavoured in all our constituencies to preach to the utmost to our friends the importance of giving everything to Ireland that she can possibly rightfully claim to be hers, but you cannot claim rightfully a change in your laws in regard to these matters. You cannot claim that when England passes a law in regard to contagious diseases relative to animals that you can have the right to refuse to work that law in Ireland—a law which we may think necessary for the whole of the United Kingdom. By pressing this matter you are absolutely certain to create great friction, and I ask the Front Bench on the other side that they will allow this Amendment to pass.

Captain CLIVE

In the very short moment left I only wish to add my voice to that of my hon. Friend who has just spoken. I do think that the best chance of getting proper attention in this matter is to have it in one hand. I think the British Isles should be under one management in this respect, so that we may have a ring fence around us to protect ourselves against the importation of disease from abroad, and that we may act in sympathy within these islands. The very worst thing for England is to be without sympathy towards Ireland in

these matters. If we could only have England and Ireland controlled from one centre, as England and Scotland fortunately still remain under one control, then sympathetic administration, if the disease breaks out, will make the burden as little onerous as possible. I think it is in the interest both of Englishmen and Irishmen that this Amendment of my hon. Friend should be carried. I do not think it affects the question of Home Rule at all.

It being Half-past Ten of the clock, the Chairman proceeded, pursuant to the Order of the House of 14th October to put forthwith the Question necessary to dispose of the business to be concluded at this day's sitting.

Question put, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Question."


(seated and covered): On a point of Order. I desire to ask you, Mr. Whitley, is it in order to put the Question when the clock was one minute past the half-hour, the time laid down in the Closure Resolution for putting the Question?


I allowed the hon. Member who was speaking to proceed until I heard the clock strike.


The clock does not strike.

The Committee divided: Ayes, 327; Noes, 223.

Division No. 252.] AYES. [10.30 p.m.
Abraham, William (Dublin, Harbour) Bryce, John Annan Davies, Timothy (Lincs., Louth)
Abraham, Rt. Hon. William (Rhondda) Buckmaster, Stanley O. Davies, M. Vaughan- (Cardiganshire)
Acland, Francis Dyke Burke, E. Haviland. Dawes, James Arthur
Adamson, William Burns, Rt. Hon. John Delany, William
Addison, Dr. Christopher Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Denman, Hon. Richard Douglas
Agar-Robartes, Hon. T. C. R. Buxton, Noel (Norfolk, N.) Dickinson, W. H.
Agnew, Sir George William Buxton, Rt. Hon. S. C. (Poplar) Doris, William
Ainsworth, John Stirling Byles, Sir William Pollard Duffy, William J.
Allen, Arthur A. (Dumbarton) Carr-Gomm, H. W. Duncan, c. (Barrow-in-Furness)
Allen, Rt. Hon. Charles P. (Stroud) Cawley, Sir Frederick (Prestwich) Duncan, J. Hastings (Yorks, Otley)
Armitage, Robert Cawley, H. T. (Lancs., Heywood) Edwards, Clement (Glamorgan, E.)
Arnold, Sydney Chancellor, Henry George Edwards, Sir Francis (Radnor)
Balfour, Sir Robert (Lanark) Chapple, Dr. William Allen Esmonde, Dr. John (Tipperary, N.)
Baring, Sir Godfrey (Barnstaple) Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston S. Esmonde, Sir Thomas (Wexford, N.)
Barlow, Sir John Emmott (Somerset) Clancy, John Joseph Essex, Richard Walter
Barnes, George N. Clough, William Esslemont, George Birnie
Barran, Sir John N. (Hawick) Clynes, John R. Falconer, James
Barton, W. Collins, Godfrey P. (Greenock) Farrell, James Patrick
Beale, Sir William Phipson Collins, Stephen (Lambeth) Ferens, Rt. Hon. Thomas Robinson
Beauchamp, Sir Edward Compton-Rickett, Rt. Hon. Sir J. Ffrench, Peter
Beck, Arthur Cecil Condon, Thomas Joseph Field, William
Benn, W. (T. H'mts., St. George) Cornwall, Sir Edwin A. Fiennes, Hon. Eustace Edward
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Cotton, William Francis Fitzgibbon, John
Black, Arthur W. Cowan, William Henry Flavin, Michael Joseph
Boland, John Pius Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) France, Gerald Ashburner
Booth, Frederick Handel Crawshay-Williams, Eliot Furness, Stephen
Bowerman, Charles W. Crean, Eugene Gelder, Sir W. A.
Boyle, Daniel (Mayo, North) Crooks, William George, Rt. Hon. D Lloyd
Brace, William Crumley, Patrick Gilhooly, James
Brady, Patrick Joseph Cullinan, John Gill, Alfred Henry
Brocklehurst, William B. Dalziel, Rt. Hon. sir J. H. (Kirkcaldy) Ginnell, Laurence
Brunner, John F. L. Davies, Ellis William (Eifion) Gladstone, W. G. C.
Glanville, Harold James Macpherson, James Ian Richardson, Thomas (Whitehaven)
Goddard, Sir Daniel Ford MacVeagh, Jeremiah Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)
Greenwood, Glanville, G. (Peterborough) M'Callum, Sir John M. Roberts, George H. (Norwich)
Greenwood, Hamar (Sunderland) M'Curdy, Charles Albert Roberts, Sir J. H. (Denbighs.)
Greig, Colonel James William M'Kean, John Robertson, Sir G. Scott (Bradford)
Grey, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward McKenna, Rt. Hon. Reginald Robertson, John M. (Tyneside)
Griffith, Ellis Jones M'Laren, Hon. H. D, (Leics.) Robinson, Sidney
Guest, Major Hon. C. H. C. (Pembroke) Manfield, Harry Roch, Walter F. (Pembroke)
Guest, Hon. Frederick E. (Dorset, E.) Markham, Sir Arthur Basil Roche, Augustine (Louth)
Guiney, Patrick Marks, Sir George Croydon Roe, Sir Thomas
Gwynn, Stephen Lucius (Galway) Marshall, Arthur Harold Rose, Sir Charles Day
Hackett, John Masterman, Rt. Hon. C. F. G. Rowlands, James
Hall, Frederick (Normanton) Meagher, Michael Runciman, Rt. Hon. Walter
Hancock, J. G. Meehan, Francis E. (Leitrim, N.) Russell, Rt. Hon. Thomas W.
Harcourt, Rt. Hon. L. (Rossendale) Meehan, Patrick A. (Queen's Co.) Samuel, Rt. Hon. H. L. (Cleveland)
Harcourt, Robert V. (Montrose) Menzies, Sir Walter Samuel, J. (Stockton-on-Tees)
Harmsworth, Cecil (Luton, Beds) Millar, James Duncan Samuel, Sir Stuart M. (Whitechapel)
Harmsworth, R. L. (Caithness-shire) Molloy, Michael Scanlan, Thomas
Harvey, T. E. (Leeds, West) Molteno, Percy Alport Schwann, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles E.
Harvey, W. E. (Derbyshire, N.E.) Money, L. G. Chiozza Scott, A. MacCallum (Glas., Bridgeton)
Haslam, James (Derbyshire) Mooney, John J. Seely, Col. Rt. Hon. J. E. B.
Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth) Morgan, George Hay Sheehan, Daniel Daniel
Havelock-Allan, Sir Henry Morison, Hector Sheehy, David
Hayden, John Patrick Morton, Alpheus Cleophas Sherwell, Arthur James
Hayward, Evan Muldoon, John Shortt, Edward
Hazleton, Richard Munro, Robert Simon, Sir John Allsebrook
Healy, Maurice (Cork) Munro-Ferguson, Rt. Hon. R. C. Smith, Albert (Lancs., Clitheroe)
Healy, Timothy Michael (Cork, N.E.) Murray, Capt. Hon. Arthur C. Smith, H. B. L. (Northampton)
Helme, Sir Norval Watson Nannetti, Joseph P. Smyth, Thomas F. (Leitrim, S.)
Hemmerde, Edward George Needham, Christopher T. Snowden, Philip
Henderson, Arthur (Durham) Neilson, Francis Soames, Arthur Wellesley
Henderson, J. M. (Aberdeen, W.) Nolan, Joseph Stanley, Albert (Staffs., N.W.)
Herbert, Col. Sir Ivor (Mon. S.) Norman, Sir Henry Sutherland, J. E.
Higham, Join Sharp Norton, Captain Cecil William Sutton, John E.
Minds, John Nugent, Sir Walter Richard Taylor, John W. (Durham)
Hobhouse, Rt. Hon. Charles E. H. Nuttall, Harry Taylor, T. C. (Radcliffe)
Hogge, James Myles O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny) Tennant, Harold John
Holmes, Daniel Turner O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.) Thomas, James Henry
Holt, Richard Durning O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool) Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton)
Howard, Hon. Geoffrey O'Doherty, Philip Thorne, William (West Ham)
Hudson, Walter O'Donnell, Thomas Toulmin, Sir George
Hughes, Spencer Leigh O'Dowd, John Trevelyan, Charles Philips
Isaacs, Rt. Hon. Sir Rufus Ogden, Fred Ure, Rt. Hon. Alexander
Jardine, Sir John (Roxburghshire) O'Grady, James Verney, Sir H.
John, Edward Thomas O'Kelly, Edward P. (Wicklow, W.) Wadsworth, John
Jones, Rt. Hon. Sir D. Brynmor (Sw'nsea) O'Kelly, James (Roscommon, N.) Walsh, Stephen (Lancs., Ince)
Jones, Edgar R. (Merthyr Tydvil) O'Malley, William Walters, Sir John Tudor
Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth) O'Neill, Dr. Charles (Armagh, S.) Walton, Sir Joseph
Jones, J. Towyn (Carmarthen, East) O'Shaughnessy, P. J. Ward, John (Stoke-upon-Trent)
Jones, Leif Stratten (Notts, Rushcliffe) O'Shee, James John Ward, W. Dudley (Southampton)
Jones, William (Carnarvonshire) O'Sullivan, Timothy Wardle, G. J.
Jones, W. S. Glyn- (Stepney) Outhwaite, R. L. Warner, Sir Thomas Courtenay
Jowett, Frederick William Palmer, Godfrey Mark Wason, Rt. Hon. E. (Clackmannan)
Joyce, Michael Pearce, Robert (Staffs, Leek) Wason, John Cathcart (Orkney)
Keating, Matthew Pearce, William (Limehouse) Watt, Henry A.
Kellaway, Frederick George Pearson, Hon. Weetman H. M. Webb, H.
Kelly, Edward Pease, Rt. Hon. Joseph A. (Rotherham) Wedgwood, Josiah C.
Kennedy, Vincent Paul Phillips, John (Longford, S.) White, J. Dundas (Glasgow, Tradeston)
Kilbride, Denis Pirie, Duncan V. White, Sir Luke (Yorks, E.R.)
'King, Joseph Pollard, Sir George H. White, Patrick (Meath, North)
Lamb, Ernest Henry Ponsonby, Arthur A. W. H. Whitehouse, John Howard
Lambert, Richard (Wilts, Cricklade) Power, Patrick Joseph Whyte, Alexander F. (Perth)
Lansbury, George Price, C. E. (Edinburgh, Central) Wiles, Thomas
Lardner, James Carrige Rushe Price, Sir Robert J. (Norfolk, E.) Wilkie, Alexander
Law, Hugh A. (Donegal, W.) Priestley, Sir Arthur (Grantham) Williams, John (Glamorgan)
Levy, Sir Maurice Primrose, Hon. Neil James Williams, Penry (Middlesbrough)
Lewis, John Herbert Pringle, William M. R. Williamson, Sir Archibald
Logan, John William Radford, George Heynes Wilson, Hon. G. G. (Hull, W.)
Lough, Rt. Hon. Thomas Rattan, Peter Wilson Wilson, John (Durham, Mid)
Low, Sir Frederick (Norwich) Raphael, Sir Herbert Henry Wilson, Rt. Hon. J. W. (Worcs., N.)
Lundon, T. Rea, Rt. Hon. Russell (South Shields) Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)
Lyell, Charles Henry Rea, Walter Russell (Scarborough) Winfrey, Richard
Lynch, A. A. Reddy, Michael Wood, Rt. Hon. T. McKinnon (Glas.)
Macdonald, J. Ramsay (Leicester) Redmond, John E. (Waterford) Young, Samuel (Cavan, East)
Macdonald, J. M. (Falkirk Burghs) Redmond, William Archer (Tyrone, E.) Young, William (Perth, East)
McGhee, Richard Rendall, Athelstan
Macnamara, Rt. Hon. Dr. T. J. Richards, Thomas TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—Mr. Illingworth and Mr. Gulland.
MacNeill, John G. S. (Donegal, South) [ Richardson, Albion (Peckham)
Agg-Gardner, James Tynte Ashley, W. W. Baird, John Lawrence
Amery, L. C. M. S. Astor, Waldorf Baker, Sir Randolf L. (Dorset, N.)
Anson, Rt. Hon. Sir William R. Bagot, Lieut.-Colonel J. Balcarres, Lord
Baldwin, Stanley Gastrell, Major W. Houghton Nield, Herbert
Banbury, Sir Frederick George Goldman, C. S. Norton-Griffiths, J. (Wednesbury)
Banner, John S. Harmood. Gordon, John (Londonderry, South) O'Neill, Hon. A. E. B. (Antrim, Mid)
Baring, Maj. Hon. Guy V. (Winchester) Gordon, Hon. John Edward (Brighton) Orde-Powlett, Hon. W. G. A.
Barlow, Montague (Salford, South) Goulding, Edward Alfred Ormsby-Gore, Hon. William
Barnston, Harry Grant, J. A. Paget, Almeric Hugh
Barrie, H. T. Greene, Walter Raymond Parker, Sir Gilbert (Gravesend)
Bathurst, Hon. Allen B. (Glouc, E.) Gretton, John Parkes, Ebenezer
Beach, Hon Michael Hugh Hicks Guinness, Hon. Rupert (Essex, S.E.) Pease, Herbert pike (Darlington)
Beckett, Hon. Gervase Gwynne, R. S. (Sussex, Eastbourne) Peel, Capt. R. F. (Woodbridge)
Benn, Arthur Shirley (Plymouth) Haddock, George Bahr Peel, Hon. W. R. W. (Taunton)
Bennett-Goldney, Francis Hall, D. B. (Isle of Wight) Pollock, Ernest Murray
Bentinck, Lord H. Cavendish- Hall, Fred (Dulwich) Pryce-Jones, Colonel E.
Beresford, Lord Charles Hambro, Angus Valdemar Quilter, Sir W. E. C.
Bigland, Alfred Hamilton, Lord C. J. (Kensington) Rawlinson, John Frederick Peel
Boles, Lieut.-Col. Dennis Fortescue Hamilton, Marquess of (Londonderry) Rawson, Col. Richard H.
Boscawen, Sir Arthur S. T. Griffith- Harris, Henry Percy Rees, Sir J. D.
Boyle, W. L. (Norfolk, Mid) Harrison, Broadley, H. B. Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Ecclesall)
Boyton, James Helmsley, Viscount Rolleston, Sir John
Brassey, H. Leonard Campbell Henderson, Major H. (Berkshire) Ronaldshay, Earl of
Bridgeman, William Clive Herbert, Hon. A. (Somerset, S.) Royds, Edmund
Bull, Sir William James Hewins, William Albert Samuel Rutherford, John (Lancs., Darwen)
Burgoyne, Alan Hughes Hill, Sir Clement L. Rutherford, Watson (L'pool, W. Derby)
Burn, Colonel C. R. Hills, John Waller Salter, Arthur Clavell
Butcher, John George Hill-wood, Samuel Samuel, Sir Harry (Norwood)
Campbell, Capt. Duncan F, (Ayr, N.) Hoare, Samuel John Gurney Sanders, Robert Arthur
Campbell, Rt. Hon. J. (Dublin Univ.) Hohler, Gerald Fitzroy Sanderson, Lancelot
Campion, W. R. Hope, Harry (Bute) Sandys, G. J.
Carlile, Sir Edward Hildred Hope, James Fitzalan (Sheffield) Sassoon, Sir Philip
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward H. Hope, Major J. A. (Midlothian) Scott, Leslie (Liverpool, Exchange)
Cassel, Felix Home, Wm. E. (Surrey, Guildford) Smith, Rt. Hon. F. E. (L'p'l, Walton)
Castlereagh, Viscount Horner, A. L. Smith, Harold (Warrington)
Cator, John Houston, Robert Paterson Spear, Sir John Ward
Cautley, Henry Strother Hume-Williams, William Ellis Stanley, Hon. G. F. (Preston)
Cave, George Hunter, Sir Charles R. Starkey, John Ralph
Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Ingleby, Holcombe Steel-Maitland, A. D,
Cecil, Lord R. (Herts, Hitchin) Jardine, Ernest (Somerset, East) Stewart, Gershom
Chaloner, Col. R. G. W. Jessel, Captain Herbert M. Strauss, Arthur (Paddington, North)
Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. J. A. (Worc'r.) Joynson-Hicks, William Swift, Rigby
Chambers, James Kebty-Fletcher, J. R. Sykes, Alan John (Ches., Knutsford)
Chaplin, Rt. Hon, Henry Kerr-Smiley, Peter Kerr Sykes, Mark (Hull, Central)
Clive, Captain Percy Archer Kerry, Earl of Talbot, Lord Edmund
Clyde, James Avon Keswick, Henry Terrell, George (Wilts, N.W.)
Coates, Major Sir Edward Feetham Kimber, Sir Henry Terrell, Henry (Gloucester)
Ceilings, Rt. Hon. J. (Birmingham) Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement Thompson, Robert (Belfast, North)
Cooper, Richard Ashmole Knight, Captain Eric Ayshford Thomson, W. Mitchell- (Down, N.>
Cory, Sir Clifford John Kyffin-Taylor, G. Thynne, Lord Alexander
Courthope, George Loyd Lane-Fox, G. R. Tobin, Alfred Aspinall
Craig, Charles Curtis (Antrim, S.) Larmor, Sir J. Tryon, Capt. George Clement
Craig, Captain James (Down, E.) Law, Rt. Hon. A. Bonar (Bootle) Tullibardine, Marquess of
Craig, Norman (Kent, Thanet) Lawson, Hon. H. (T. H'mts., Mile End) Valentia, Viscount
Craik, Sir Henry Locker-Lampson, G. (Salisbury) Walker, Col. William Hall
Crichton-Stuart, Lord Ninian Lockwood, Rt. Hon. Lt.-Col. A. R. Walrond, Hon. Lionel
Cripps, Sir Charles Alfred Lonsdale, Sir John Brownlee Ward, Arnold (Herts, Watford)
Croft, Henry Page Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. A. (St. Geo. Han. S., Warde, Col. C. E. (Kent, Mid.)
Denniss, E. R. B. Lyttelton, Hon. J. C. (Droitwich) Wheler, Granville C. H.
Dickson, Rt. Hon. C. Scott MacCaw, Wm. J. MacGeagh White, Major G. D. (Lancs., Southport)
Doughty, Sir George Mackinder, Halford J. Williams, Col. R. (Dorset, W.)
Du Cros, Arthur Philip Macmaster, Donald Willoughby, Major Hon. Claud
Duke, Henry Edward M'Neill, Ronald (Kent, St. Augustine's Wilson, A. Stanley (Yorks, E. R.)
Eyres-Monsell, B. M. Magnus, Sir Philip Winterton, Earl
Faber, George D. (Clapham) Malcolm, Ian Wolmer, Viscount
Fade, Bertram Godfray Mason, James F. (Windsor) Wood, John (Stalybridge)
Fell, Arthur Mildmay, Francis Bingham Worthington-Evans, L.
Fetherstonhaugh, Godfrey Mills, Hon. Charles Thomas Wortley, Rt. Hon. C. B. Stuart.
Finlay, Rt. Hon. Sir Robert Moore, William Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George
Fisher, Rt. Hon. W. Hayes Morrison-Bell, Capt. E. F. (Ashburton) Yate, Col. C. E.
Fitzroy, Hon. Edward A. Mount, William Arthur Yerburgh, Robert A.
Fleming, Valentine Neville, Reginald J. N. Younger, Sir George
Fletcher, John Samuel Newman, John R. P.
Forster, Henry William Newton, Harry Kottingham TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—Mr.
Foster, Philip Staveley Nicholson, William G. (Petersfield) C. Bathurst and Mr. E. Wood.
Gardner, Ernest

Committee report Progress; to sit again to-morrow (Wednesday).