was a preliminary question, whe- ingham Palace, when Her Majesty ther, looking to the duration of informed then that, Lord Stanley the present Parliament and to the not being then prepared to form situation of the country, it was de- an Administration, she had emsirable to introduce such a Bill powered Lord John Russell to enduring this session; and they had deavour to reconstruct one, and all concurred in thinking it should suggested that they should meet be deferred and matured until the his Lordship in an amicable spirit next. He had been perfectly --& command which they had most satisfied with the general working cheerfully obeyed. With reference of the Reform Act; but he thought to the three leading points to if the number of persons enjoying which Lord John Russell had rethe franchise could be increased ferred, on the tirst, the free trade without danger to our representa- policy, there could be no ditierence tive system, that system would be between them; neither could there placed upon a wider and safer be any difference on principle as to basis. With regard to the nature the extension of the sutirage—a of the measure, however, the question which he (Sir James) was greatest caution should be used. not unwilling to entertain, with the He should dread any change which reservation that he could consent would deprive the House of Com- to no extension which be did not mons of those conservative ele- believe consistent with the mainments that ought to belong to it, tenance of the existing form of and he believed that a House of Government. In respect to the Commons representing merely remaining point, he was bound to numbers would jar with the other say that, with all the modifications branches of the Legislature, and promised by Lord J. Russell, he not conform to the spirit of the could not reconcile it to bimself to constitution.

be an assenting party to the meaMr. Disraeli explained what he sure before the House. The promeant to say on the former day. porsed moditications would leave He happened to see Lord Stanley the Bill for all pru tical purposes immediately before the House met, utterly inoperative, while it would and he authorized him to contra- be ngarded as penal and offensive, dict any statement that he was not and as opposed to the policy of the prepared to form a Government; last twenty years. Lord Aberdeen, but there was no intention on his with whom he had never communipart to be peremptory in words or cated upon this subject unul be discourtrous in manner.

had asked his opinion on the first Sir James Graham, who was day of the session, entirely concalled for by several Members, curred with him. I'pon this point, said, that as the House seemed to therefore, the difficulty in the way expect some explanation from him, of a junction between them and though he had no official cha- Lord J. Russell was insuperable. racter, he should not withhold As that poble Lord, though he one in the present critual position had offered to modify this Bill, reof atlairs. On the evening of the fused to abandon it, this was a 22nd instint, Lord Aberdeen and cardinal otjertion, a fatal impedihe received the commands of Her ment to a junction; und in the Majesty to wait upon ber at Buck present excited state of feeling in the country, it presented an impe- more likely to follow him than Sir diment equally insuperable to the J. Graham. formation of a Government by After some remarks from Colonel Lord Aberdeen himself. To en- Sibthorp, Mr. P. Howard, Mr. deavour to conduct an Administra- Spooner, Mr. Wyld, Mr. Wakley, tion upon the principle of not legis- and Mr. Bankes, the House adlating upon this subject, in the journed. present state of the country, would On the 3rd March, the ultimate involve Great Britain and Ireland adjustment of the Ministerial crisis in an angry struggle. He knew was announced in both Houses that this ground was an unpopular of Parliament. The Marquis one, but he was convinced of its of Lansdowne thus narrated the soundness and policy.

transaction : Mr. Hume had listened to the “My Lords, I may as well, beexplanation of Sir J. Graham with fore I move the adjournment of satisfaction, but had heard that of the House, discharge my duty by Lord J. Russell with deep regret, acquainting your Lordships, that showing upon what ground the in the circumstances of the preimpediment to a strong Adminis- sent moment, and after the failure tration rested -- the determination of three successive schemes for of the noble Lord to persevere in the construction of a new Adan impolitic Bill.

ministration, Her Majesty, after Sir R. Inglis justified the deter- duly reflecting upon the situation mination of the noble Lord. The in which she was placed by that Papal aggression was such an auda- failure, has been pleased to call city as in the worst times had not upon those of her Ministers who proceeded from the Church and had been recently in office to reCourt of Rome. The people of sume those offices, and to endeaGreat Britain would not be satis. vour, at least, to carry ou the Gofied with a less measure. The vernment of the country. My great complaint was that it did Lords, that step upon the part of not meet the real grievance. Her Majesty was not taken without

Mr. J. O'Connell appealed to full and due deliberation ; and I English statesmen, whether they have the authority of Her Majesty did not now think it time to do to state, that having during the justice to Ireland ?

time she was so pausing had reMr. Osborne thought the coun- course to the advice and opinion of try had been reduced to a very hu- a noble and illustrious Duke, the miliating condition, handed about most distinguished member of this between two or three noble Lords, House-and who is now sitting at without any attempt to form a your Lordships' table -- both his Government upon great and liberal advice and his opinion were in principles.

conformity with that step. Under Mr. Newdegate observed that these circumstances, I have to in. the explanations they had heard form your Lordships, that Her had elucidated many points. How. Majesty's late Ministers have ever he might be opposed to the thought that they had no alterpolicy of Lord J. Russell

, upon native but to undertake the task one important point he should be thus, of necessity almost, devolving upon them. Having made which would in the end be plunged that statement, I may be permitted into the contest with the grievous to add, what I am sure your Lord. disadvantage of being hampered ships will readily believe, that no by fatal admissions and faintperson laments more deeply than hearted acquiescence. I do the existence of those ditler- Lord Brougham having preences of opinion which, it is ob- sented several petitions from various vious to your Lordships, and is places in Ireland against the Ecclewell known to the public and the siastical Titles Bill, observed that world, have prevented the con- those petitions lavished on that struction of a new, a stronger, and Bill all the expressions of reprobaa more effective Administration. tion which it was possible to If there were one wish that I employ: he could not be expected could entertain as an individual to go along with them in those more strongly than another, or if expressions, and would at present there were one thing which it express no opinion on the Bill; would give me more satisfaction but nothing he had yet heard had than any other, either in or out shaken his opinion. Just on acof office, by any effort of mine to count of the statement made by contribute to effect, it would be his noble Friend with reference to to put an end to those difficulties the establishment of a strong Gowhich have proved obstacles to the vernment, and just on account of construction of that which is most what they had been told of the feeldesirable for the interests of the ings of the people of Ireland and country--a strong and effective Scotland, he implored Her Majesty's Administration."

Government to pause before they The Duke of Argyll made some rejected the advice not to proceed observations respecung the Pupal w legi-late, at least at present, on aggression, and the bearing of the this subject, but to be satistied late Ministerial negotiations on with a resolution of both Houses that question. The noble Duke of Parliament. That course would observed, that under the particular be attended with two inestimable circumstances-looking to the high advantages. It would postpone principle and the incorruptible for the present that religious agitafaith exhibited in the attempts ton, the worst of all agitations, which had been made to form a which was tearing society to pieces Ministry—there was reason to re- on both sides of the (luunnel, joice at the failure. He rejoiced though in opposite directions; it that no Government han been would postpone, at least, if it did formed in England on the basis not altogether allay it. It would of passing over in total silence an avoid the constant renewal of that act that had been proved to be an agitation and acerbity of feeling aggression against the public law that at present too mu h-he might of Europe, and against the spirit, if say, two fatalls--prevailed on both not the letter, of the muniupal law sides of the Channel ; and it would of England, and above all, an atford time for inquiry, which in aggression which, if passed over, his opinion was urgently needed on would infalibly lead to further this subject. encroachments on this country, The Earl of Aberdeen corrected

the Duke of Argyll's misapprehen- which have been spread on this

. sion that he had advised that the subject to say that it appears aggression should be passed over perfectly clear that Lord Stanley without any notice; on the con- had full power and opportunity to trary, he particularly mentioned, form a Government, and that no in the few words he addressed to request he thought it reasonable to their Lordships the other night, make was denied him in the prothat he thought it might properly gress of his negotiations. I stated engage the attention of Her Ma- on Friday last, that Her Majesty jesty's Government, and even the had been pleased to send for the attention of Parliament; and in Duke of Wellington, in order to saying so, he referred to the view learn his opinion on the present he had expressed to Lord Stanley state of affairs. The Queen saw before the meeting of Parliament, the Duke of Wellington on Saturthat in his opinion the proper mode day, and late yesterday evening of dealing with this subject was Her Majesty received a written precisely that which had been re- communication from his Grace. I commended by Lord Brougham, had the honour of an audience of namely, by resolution on the part the Queen this morning; and Her of both Houses of Parliament Majesty having received the opicarried to the foot of the Throne; nion of the Duke of Wellington, but that he did not think it was a that, in the present state of affairs, fit subject for legislation. He was the best course Her Majesty could much mistaken if the experience pursue was to invite her former of their Lordships and the other Ministers to resume office, Her House of Parliament did not con- Majesty was pleased to desire that vince them of the difficulty of her former Ministers should relegislation on this subject. The sume their offices accordingly. noble Lord at the head of the After what has occurred — after Government had already proposed the failure of the repeated attempts to alter the Bill very materially; which have been made to form a and Lord Aberdeen believed that, Government, as has been stated as further advances were made in to the House-I and my colleagues the prosecution of the measure, it thought that we could not perform would be found, as in all cases of our duty to Her Majesty and the the kind, that greater difficulties country otherwise than by acceptwould daily arise.

ing the offer which Her Majesty In the House of Commons on the had been pleased to make. Having same evening, Lord John Russell entered so fully the other day into spoke as follows:

the subjects which have recently “Since I last addressed the formed matter of debate, I will House, the public has been put in only say now, that I trust the possession of a statement made by House will allow us an adjournLord Stanley with respect to his ment for a few days before proceed

a attempts to form a Government, ing with matters of public debate; and the reasons why those attempts by which means we shall have an were not successful. It is not my opportunity of considering the intention to make any comment various measures we purpose introon those reasons; but I feel it ducing, and the state of public right-especially after the rumours business generally. I purpose proceeding with the Ecclesiastical sumption Bill be postponed to the Titles Assumption Bill on the 7th 7th of March." instant; and my right hon. Friend Some observations were made in the Secretary of State for the Home the course of a desultory disDepartment, on moving the second cussion that followed respecting reading of that Bill, will state what the position of the Government amendments and alterations it is and the Ecclesiastical Titles Bill. intended to make in it when it Some of the Irish Members, Mr. shall go into Committee. I there. Keogh, Mr. Moore, and Mr. Reyfore propose that the second read- nolds, threatened that measure ing of the Bill shall be fixed for with a protracted and vigorous the 7th of March, with the inten- opposition. Lord John Manners tion of taking it as the first order assured Lord John Russell that of the day. Before, however, pro- his policy would encounter no ceeding with the orders of that day, factious or unnecessary opposiI will state the course which the tion from his friends the ProtecGovernment mean to pursue with tionist party. But he added, that respect to other business before if no relief were proposed for the the House-as far, at least, as fir- agricultural distress, the Member ing the time at which it shall be for Bucks, Mr. Disraeli, would brought under consideration. On probably ask the opinion of the that occasion I will answer the House on some measure for its question put to me the other day, mitigation. Mr. Wakley thought which I was not then in a position the pledge that there should be to answer, as to the time at which no factious or unnecessary oppowe shall proceed with the Budget. sition from the Protectionists, conI shall be prepared to state the sidering the decapitated state of day on which the Budget will come that party, was not worth much. on, and the course which we are He extolled, however, in very high prepared to pursue on that sub- terms, the candour and manliness ject. I now move that the order of Lord Stanley's conduct in the of the day for the second reading recent crisis. of the Ecclesiastical Titles As

« ForrigeFortsett »