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with respect to the Roman Catholics, are has been made of a member or members not in themselves either oppressive or un- to serve in parliament, in the first class. just; and that they continue to be no less Such as complain of double returns, in the indispensably requisite than heretofore, second. Such as complain of the election for the maintenance and security of the or return of members returned to serve for Church establishment, against those whose two or more places, in the third. Such as principles, when carried into effect, have complain of returns only, in the fourth; ever been found incompatible with true and the residue of the said Petitions, in the Christian toleration, and subversive of fifth class. And the names of the places civil and religious liberty; and that, in to which such Petitions (contained in the stating this their humble opinion, the pe- first class, if more than one) shall relate, titioners cannot but recollect, that the shall, in the first place, be written on sesafeguards of which they deprecate the veral pieces of paper of an equal size ; removal have been proved by long expe- and the same pieces of paper shall be then rience to be necessary, that they were rolled up, and put by the clerk into a box established by our ancestors at a period or glass, and then publicly drawn by the when our laws and liberties were fixed on clerk; and the said Petitions shall be read a solid basis, and the crown of these domi- in the order in which the said names shall nions was limited, by the Act of Settle: be drawn, and then the like method shall ment, 'to the Protestant succession; and be observed with respect to the several praying, that the House will, in its wis. Petitions contained in the second, third, dom, continue to preserve those safeguards fourth, and fifth classes, respectively." which, under Divine Providence, have And it appearing, by the return book, been the firm support of our national con- that there were no cases falling within the 'stitution in Church and State, and of the first and second classes; Resolved, " That title of our revered monarch, and his this House will not, before the adjournaugust family, to the throne of this United ment of the House for the recess at Kingdom.”
Christmas, take into consideration any of And the said Petitions were ordered to the Petitions presented, complaining of lie upon the table.
undue elections or returns of members to
serve in parliament." RESOLUTIONS RELATING TO PRIVATE Bills.) Lord Castlereagh moved, That SHAFTESBURY ELECTION-PETITION OF the Standing Order of this House, of the MR. WETHERELL, &c.] A Petition of 18th day of June 1811, “That all Pe. Charles Wetberell, of Lincoln's Inn, esq. titions for Private Bills be presented within and Edward Kerrison, esq. and also of fourteen days' after the first Friday in the John Cooper, of the borough of Shaftesnext and every future session of parliao bury, ironmonger, and William Swyer, of menn," might be read; and the same the same place, banker, was delivered in, being read; Resolved-1. That this House and read; setting forth, will not receive any Petition for Private « That, at the last election of burgesses Bills after the 18th instant. 2. That no to serve for the said borough in parlia. Private Bill be read the first time after the ment, held on the 7th of October last, the 8th of March. 3. That this House will petitioners Charles Wetherell and Edward not receive any Report of such Private Kerrison, together witb Richard Baleman Bill after the 10th of May.
Robson, esq. and Hudson Gurney, esq.
were candidates to be elected; and the RESOLUTION RESPECTING CLASSING AND petitioners John Cooper and William READING ELECTION PETITIONS.) A Pe- Swyer had a right to vote at such electition, complaining of an undue election tion; and that the petitioners Charles and return, being offered to be presented; Wetherell and Edward Kerrison had the
Resolved, " That whenever several Pe- majority of legal votes at such election, titions, complaining of undue elections or and ought to have been returned duly returns of members to serve in parlia- elected to serve in parliament for the said ment, shall at the same time be offered to borough; and that many legal votes tenbe presented, Mr. Speaker shall direct dered for the said petitioners were resuch' Petitions to be all of them delivered jected ; and a great number of persons, at the table, where they shall be classed, not legally entitled to vote, were admitted and read in the following order, viz. to vote at the said election for the said Such Petitions as complain that no return R. B. Robson and H. Gurney; and sundry votes unduly entered for them; by which whoever they might be, a great influence means they obtained a colourable majority over the debates of the House. He hoped, over the petitioners C. Wetherell and E. however, that members would still insist Kerrison, and have been unduly returned on the right they enjoyed in good old to serve for the said borough ; and that, times, namely, that of making motions at the election aforesaid, certain voters whenever they thought proper, and with. were bribed to give their voices in favour out notice too. He, for one, would alof the said R. B. Robson and H. Gurney; ways claim that undoubted right, and aland the said R. B. Robson and H. Gurney ways exercise it according to his discrewere guilty of divers acts of bribery and tion. treating, by themselves and agents, ai such Lord Milion also protested against it as election, and gave, and promised to give, contrary to the usage of parliament, and by themselves, and agents on their behalf, as tending to cramp the proceedings of the rewards, provision, meat, drink and enter House. tainment, to persons having voice at such The motion was then carried, election, in order to be elected to serve for the said borough in parliament; and by PRINCE Regent's Speech ON OPENING such, and other undue and unlawful prac. THE SEssion.) On the question that the tices, procured themselves to be returned | Report of the Address, in answer to the as aforesaid; and praying, that the House Prince Regent's Speech on opening the will be pleased to take the premises into session, be brought up, consideration, and to declare the peti- Mr. Creevey rose and observed, that tioners C. Wetherell and E. Kerrison duly more time ought to be allowed for the conelected, and that they ought to have been sideration of the many important topics returned for the said borough, or to give touched on in the Prince Regent's Speech, the petitioners such other relief as shall and especially the three wars in which we seem fit.”
were engaged, the policy of which he was Ordered to be taken into consideration not yet prepared to approve. The Speech upon the 9th of February next.
contained an omission, which was also,
in his view of the subject, very important. RESOLUTION RESPECTING ORDERS AND The Prince Regent had expressed his reliNotices.] Lord Castlereagh, pursuant to ance, that the House of Commons would notice, moved to revive the regulations furnish the supplies, but without at all adwhich had been adopted last session, reverting to the perilous state of our finances specting the Orders of the Day entered in and commerce. That this was an unusual the book, and the Notices for Motions. and ill-advised proceeding, he referred to His lordship observed, that the business of some former Addresses to prove. Did the House had been much facilitated by set the ministers know nothing of the state of ting apart two days in the week, in which the finances, had they withheld all knowthe Orders of the Day should have the pre- ledge of our commercial distresses from cedency of motions, without, however, de. the Prince Regent, or did they deny the priving any hon. member of the right of existence of such distresses? The House, calling the attention of the House to any he thought, would be better employed in subject he might think proper. The noble inquiring into the financial state of the Jord moved in consequence, “ That in this country than in voting the proposed Adpresent session of parliament all Orders of dress; for it had been acknowledged by the Day, set down in the Order Book for the right hon. the Chancellor of the ExMondays and Fridays, shall be disposed chequer, and by a right hon. gentleman of before the House will proceed upon any of great financial knowledge, who unformotions of which Notices shall be entered tunately was not now a member of the in the Order Book.”
House, (Mr. Tierney), that the present Mr. Whitbread observed, that this mo- system could not be persevered in, and as tion was couched in the same terms as a remedy the Chancellor of the Eschethat against which he had contended last quer's nostrum was, a tax on capital !session. He did not mean, in consequence, How, in the present state of things, could to renew in the present instance the argu- they think of pledging themselves to the ments he had used on that occasion ; but support of the war in the peninsula, on he would renew bis protest against a novel its present scale? What he knew was, that measure, whicb, while it produced no our expences last year were 121 millions ; manner of advantage, gave the ministers, that notwithstanding the resolutions of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, which de- followed the operations of lord Wellingclared the paper money to be equal in ton, from the taking of that town. It was value to gold, the public annuitants had true, he had been compelled to retire from been robbed of one ihird of their incomes, before Burgos, and to evacuate Madrid, and that, not for the benefit of the public, but it was absurd to expect constant sucbut for the benefit of the Bank Company; cess in war; and he was sorry to observe, and then the effect of this system must be, that on all occasions, we were too prone the annihilation of all stock-holders. to be exalted or depressed beyond measure, These were his reasons for opposing the by success, or partial failures. The fact present Address.—The hon. member, after was, that the campaign so much blamed, having adverted to the parliamentary had driven the French from a great part farce attending the opening of parliament of the western provinces of Spain, had —wo well-dressed gentlemen coming forced them to evacuate the south, and to down to the House with speeches in their raise the siege of Cadiz, the capture of pockets; well-written essays or themes which they considered as of such imporproposed by ministers-concluded by tance in a military point of view, that moving as an amendment, that the Report they sat two years and a half before that be brought up this day s'ennight. place, regardless of every other advan
Mr. Fremantle further impressed upon tage they might have obtained by conthe House the necessity of inquiring into centrating their troops.-As to America, the present state of the public expenditure, he would venture to assert, that, as in ibe before the Report at the bar was agreed to. first instance no means were neglected of As to the general subject of the royal preserving peace, so it would appear that Speech, he was decidedly of opinion, that no exertions had been wanting to proseour prospects at the present moment were cute the war when it was found inevitable. not nearly so bright as at the commence- Mr. Rose said, he wished to correct a ment of the last session of parliament. mistake of the hon. gentleman who had The war in which we had injudiciously moved the amendment-a mistake which plunged ourselves with America, was in no had occasioned much misconception out degree counterbalanced by the peace that of doors. His right hon. friend, ihe Chan. had been concluded with Russia. With cellor of the Exchequer, had never proposregard to the peninsula, he was persuaded ed a tax on capital, and from all the atienthat, by the battle of Salamanca we had tion which he himself had given to the gained nothing but glory, and that the subject, he was convinced, that such a tax freedom of Spain was no nearer in its ac. was altogether impracticable.
A right complishment than when the marquis of reverend prelate (the bishop of Llandaff) Wellington was posted at Torres Vedras. had indeed written a pamphlet on the At the same time that he disapproved of subject some years ago, but still, after the the Address, be acknowledged that he most mature consideration, he remained could not vote for the Amendment that satisfied of the impossibility and impractis had been last night offered to supersede it, cability of such a tax. and which recommended propositions for Mr. Stuart Wortley deprecated the idea peace to the Prince Regent. 'He thought of making the miseries of the people the such a proposition coming from the House, grounds of suing for peace, as it would dewould inevitably defeat its own object, base the nation, raise the demands of the and lower the country in the eyes of the enemy, and abandon all the fruits of the enemy.
struggle in which so much money and so Mr. Robinson was surprised that the much treasure had been lavished. Havkon. gentleman who had just sat down, ing said thus much, be trusted, on the could bave advanced that the late cam- other hand, that ministers would pay due paign in the peninsula had left our affairs regard to the real sufferings of the people, in that quarter in a worse situation. This and not let any opportunity escape by gross error, into which many other ho- which they might procure a peace consisnourable gentlemen had fallen, arose from tent with the honour, safety, and interests their considering the campaign as begin of the country. ning at the battle of Salamanca, whereas, Lord Milion earnestly called upon the in fact, it bad begun at the taking of House lo reflect upon the ruinous tenCiudad Rodrigo; and this was the only dency of prosecuting the war with Amefair point of view in which it could be rica. He believed that the two governconsidered. The hon. gentleman then ments were decidedly hostile, while the
two nations were as decidedly pacific. | ately demand an abandonment of our He lamented to see the person at the head system of blockade, and a renunciation of the government guided so implicitly of the right of search. Could the noble by his enmity to the United States. This lord find any way to negociate with Amemight be a bold assertion, but he was rica without abandoning our rights; or not afraid to declare what he sincerely was be prepared to say that we ought to thought.
abandon them? With regard to the conMr. Stephen warmly resisted the state- cessions made to America by ministers, it ment of the noble lord, that there was any was a point on which he differed from irritation in the illustrious person at the them. The hon. and learned gentleman bead of the government towards the Ame- then entered into a detailed discussion of can people. The Speech delivered only. the Orders in Council and our blockade yesterday, contradicted the assertion, for system, and observed, that to exaggerated it breathed only a spirit of amity and con- statements of civil war and revolution ciliation.
among our manufacturers, might be attriLord Millon explained, that he had buted the concessions to America-and, been misunderstood; he had no sucb al- to those concessions, the present war, A lusion as the hon. and learned gentleman heavy responsibility attached to the real had imputed to him.
authors of this unnatural war between two Mr. Stephen resumed; he was satisfied countries united in origin, in language, that he had been mistaken, and that the and in manners, and who were, besides, noble lord did not mean what he had er. the only countries in the world where roneously attributed to him. He would civil liberty existed: but he saw no pros- not enter into minote points, but he would pect of any peace consistent even with . assert in opposition to the noble lord, that our existence, since the measure of Amean equal spirit of irritation did not prevail rican demands was determined by the in the two governments ; on the contrary, unjust and unlimited aggressions of a friendly disposition had ever been dis. France. played by the government of Great Bri- Mr. Wilberforce deprecated any intentain. The statement of our wrongs was tion on the part of the House to call on not intended to irritate, but to conciliate the ministers to pledge themselves to seek by conviction. For his own part, however peace, as such conduct would defeat the much he might be interested in the dis-object it professed to have in view. It cussion of the question of America, he would perhaps create a popular cry in entertained no personal feeling of irrita- the country for peace, and raise the detion, but the Orders in Council he had mand of those with whom we should have defended with his tongue and his pen- to negociate. He did not doubt that the and he could appeal to authorities across ministers participated in the wishes of the the Atlantic, for testimonies of his mo- people, as they regarded peace; there apderate and respectful language towards peared no disinclination on the part of gothe government of America. Had the vernment to negociate, and as our pros. noble lord forgotten the language used to pects on the continent were now some. Mr. Erskine, when he, bearing conces- what better than heretofore, he hoped sions to them, was received with taunts, those prospects would not be blasted by instead of the terms of amity and conci- any premature solicitations on the part of liation ? Had he forgotten the treatment the House. He knew of but one instance of Mr. Jackson, who was driven from the of a petition to the king to make peace, country without being permitted to wait being carried in that House, and in that for the instructions of his government instance it had been productive of more The noble lord must have a short memory, evil than good. if he did not recollect that the govern- Mr. Ponsonby, although he generally -ment of America had declared, that they coincided with his hon, friend who was expected the treaty of Utrecht should be the mover of the present amendment, yet considered the maritime law of nations differed from him on this occasion. By a law that would render the navy of Eng- receiving the report, the House by no Jand useless, except to guard her own means adopted the opinions contained in - coast. When, by a fatal event, it became the Address; it was, therefore, unneces- probable that the Orders in Council would sary, to postpone its consideration : the be rescinded, did not America abandon Address was a natural consequence of the that ground of complaint, and immedi- Speech, and resembled a mere common
place letter, in which were a great num- one, then by another; at length up started ber of words of course, ending with the late Treasurer of the Navy, (Mr. Rose) have the honour to be, Sir, with the whom he might denominate ihe patriarch highest respect, your devoted humble of the Treasury Bench, and who chose to servant,” when, in fact, the writer felt disclaim all idea of a tax on capital, which none of that respect and devotion of be threw upon a right reverend bishop, which he talked. To debate the Address, many hundred miles off. If it really was paragraph by paragraph, would take up the natural child of the right reverend preihe whole of the session. Many of the late, he thought it very hard to throw it topics treated of in the Address, would at his door, under such circumstances. require mature deliberation; and as to The hon. gentleman then proceeded to de. the Spanish war, he thought it would be tail the occurrences of his political life, best discussed when the Chancellor of the and repelled the attack made on him by Exchequer should come to the House for Mr. Stephen, whom he designated as the supplies.
author and supporter of the Orders in Lord Castlereagh agreed entirely with Council-he who eulogised them while the last speaker, but wished to correct a living, and lamented them when dead. statement made by an hon. and learned He stated, in reply to Mr. Wilberforce, gentleman, that the government of this that the petition for peace carried in that country had at any period conceded the House, was at the close of the American right of the Americans to insist on the re- war, when the, distressed manufacturers peal of the Orders in Council.
burst the doors of the House, and by a reMr. Whitbread wished to say a few cital of their distresses obtained the petis words in reply to what had fallen from the tion. Mr. Burke was then the eloquent hon. and learned member opposite, and but unsuccessful advocate of peace deaf also from the late member for Yorkshire, was the parliament !-deaf were the miwho had honoured him with the appella. nisters! --deaf was the prince !-that war, tion of friend. The hon. and learned so obstinately persevered in, ended in the gentleman opposite had informed them, independence of America, and its consethat a day would be appointed for consi. quences were now visiting us. He denied dering the American question; and as the that he was (as he had been characterised) hon. and learned gentleman had returned a man who wished to drag bis country to to that House unchanged, he would ven- the feet of France, and asserted, that he ture to predict that it would not be a short bad ever acted on principle, and during the day. The hon. and learned gentleman had whole course of the war had been the contold them, that he had employed his pen sistent advocate of peace. The hon. gen. and tongue in support of the Orders in tleman next adverted to the Amendment Council : bis pen he had employed before which he had proposed on the preceding he entered parliament, and no doubt that evening, and which, he contended, had pen had gained him his seat; and that he been misunderstood ; as it did not call on had used his tongue subsequently to his the Prince Regent to enter into an immebeing in parliament, the House could diate negociation for peace; but to cause abundantly testify. It appeared singular, an enquiry to be made as to the feelings however, that the hon. and learned gen- of the enemy on that point. He then tleman, who spoke on every subject, stated, in allusion to what fell from Mr. should have been silent the day that his Ponsonby on the preceding evening, the darling offspring, the Orders in Council, various occasions on which the subject of breathed their last; but so it was. He had negociations with France had been before heard that the marquis of Wellington had the House, and the conduct he bad puronce been employed to prevent a certain sued. Although he had delivered his opiright hon. doctor (Duigenan) from speak nion on those occasions, he never had, heing; and as he had observed a noble lord | fore last night, submitted any specific proseated by the hon. and learned gentleman position on the question. But now, when during the debate to which he alluded, he he saw an opportunity occur most favourhad no doubt that his employment was able for this country, and when he saw no precisely similar to that of the noble mar. manifestation in the speech from the quis. He had been very anxious to hear throne, of a desire to seize that opportuthe right hon. the Chancellor of the Ex nity, he conceived it right that parliament chequer; but as often as he had attempted should interfere. They must all recollect, to rise, he bad been prevented, first by that the speeches from the throne during