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such affairs; make warlike preparations proportioned to those made by the neighbouring states; distribute the forces by sea and land, in such manner as he shall deem expedient, and regulate the direction of them in case of war.
III. In the case of hostilities impending or commenced, of an ally to be supported, of a right to be as. serted by force of arms, it shall be incumbent on the king to notify, without delay, such circumstance to the legislative body, to make known the causes and the motives and to ask for the necessary supplies: and should the necessity of such notification arise during the recess of the legislative body, that body shall be immediatety reassembled.
IV. If upon such notification, the legislative body deem, that the hostilities commenced by a criminal aggression on the part of ministry, or of some other agent of the executive, the author of such aggression shall be impeached as guilty of treason against the nation; the national assembly declaring, to that end that the French nation renounces conquest, of what kind soever it be, and that it will never employ its force against the liberty of any state.
V. If in the case of the said notification the legislative body refuse the necessary supplies, and manifest its disapprobation of the war, it shall be incumbent on the king to take such measures, immediately as may prevent, or put a stop to all hostilities, the ministers remaining responsible for delay.s.
VI. The formulary of the declaration of war, and of the treaties of peace, shall be, on the part of the king of the French, and in the name of the nation.
VII. In the case of an impending war, the legislative body shall extend its session into the customary intervals of recess, and may continue to sit, without any recess, as long as the war. shall endure.
VIII. During the whole course of the war, it shall be lawful for the legislative body to request the executive power to negotiate a peace, and, in case the king shall head the army in person, the legislative body shall have the right of assembling such a num
ber of the national guards, and in such place, as it shall deem expedient.
IX. At the moment when the war shall cease, the legislative body shall fix the space of time, within which the troops extraordinary shall be disbanded and the army reduced to the permanent establishment; the pay of the said troops shall be continued no longer than to that fixed time, after which, should the troops extraordinary remain still embodied, the minister shall be responsible, and be impeached as guilty of treason against the nation. To this end it shall be incumbent on the committee of constitution to consider forthwith of the mode of ministerial responsibility:
X. It belongs to the king to conclude and sign all treaties of peace, of alliance, and of commerce with foreign powers, and such other conventions as he shall deem consistent with the welfare of the state; but the said treaties and conventions shall become effective, only so far as they shall have been ratified by the legislative body.
MR. PITT'S SPEECH
IN DEFENCE OF CERTAIN GRANTS OF MONEY TO THE AL
LIES WITHOUT THE AUTHORITY OF PARLIAMENT. DELIVERED IN THE HOUSE OF COMMONS, DECEMBER 14, 1796,
MR. PITT, as chancellor of the exchequer, in making his annual statement to the house, took the opportunity to acknowledge, that he had advanced to the allies during the preceding session of parliament and its subsequent recess, divers sums of money, to the amount of 1,200,0001.
This measure of the minister afforded too favourable an occasion of attack, not to be seized by an opposition ever the most vigilant and alert.
Mr. Fox, therefore, moved, “ that his majesty's ministers having authorized and directed, at different times, without the consent, and during the sitting of parliament, the issue of various sums of money, for the service of his imperial majesty, and also for the service of the army under the prince of Conde, have acted contrary to their duty, and to that trust reposed in them, and have therefore violated the constitutional privileges of this house."
The minister, in the following speech delivered in his defence, displays great powers of eloquence, and uncommon ingenuity in the application of precedents to his case.
The sense, however, of the house manifesting itself against the constitutionality of the measure, though disposed to sanction it on the grounds of expediency, one of the friends of ministry prudently proposed, which was ultimately carried by a large majority, as an amendment to Mr. Fox's motion, “that advancing the several sums of money in the account then before the house, for the service of his im. perial majesty, though not to be drawn into precedent but upon occasions of special necessity, was a justifiable exercise, under the circumstances of the case, of the discretion vested in his majesty's ministers by the vote of credit."
WHEN I consider, sir, the nature of the motion which is this day brought forward by the right honourable gentleman against his majesty's ministers, and the serious charge which it involves, I must regard myself as particularly implicated in that charge, as possessing a particular share of responsibility in the conduct of that measure which is censured as a violation of the constitution, and a breach of the privileges of this house. I have, however, in the discussion of this question every thing to expect from the candour and justice of the house. An imputation of a most serious kind has been advanced against his majesty's ministers; but it is necessary that all which may be offered on both sides should be fairly heard, before any decision can take place. It is requisite that gentlemen should be in full possession of every important fact that can be adduced, before they hasten to a conclusion which necessarily involves in it, matter of such weight and magnitude. The house should clearly know the general principles on which it is to decide; it should know the grounds on which the theory of this part of the constitution is erected; it should also know what the particular instances are in point of practice that militate in a certain degree against the general principles. I say, sir, when these