17 MAY 1884, Page 1


THE debate of Monday and Tuesday on the Vote of Censure involved in Sir Michael Hicks-Beach's motion was remark- able among recent debates for three things,—it began as ar- ranged; no one spoke without something to say ; and the division was taken at the time previously fixed. Though not marked by speeches of the very first-class, it was, as a whole, a creditable debate, and the House throughout was attentive and excited. On Monday great efforts were made to form a Cave, and it was believed during Tuesday afternoon that the Whig abstentions would reduce the majority to five or six, but that the Parriellits vote would raise it to about 40. When the division came, how- ever, it was found that the Parnellites had spread the report on purpose, and voted "solid," to the number of 32, for the Tories. The numbers were therefore 303 to 275, leaving a majority for the Government of only 28. There were only three pairs, but 56 abstentions, of which eight were Conservative. 36 Liberal, and 12 Home-ruler. The Liberal abstainers were almost entirely Whigs and County Members, though Mr. Forster and Mr. Storey both represent large boroughs. No Conservative voted against the motion, but six so-called Liberals voted for it— Messrs. Cowen, Guest, and Laing, the Hon. C. W. Fitzwilliam, Sir E. Watkin, and Sir T. Sinclair. At the close of the previous Vote of Censure on February 20th, the majority for the Government was 49; but though the Parnellites voted with the Tories on that occasion, they were only 30. The reduction in the majority, therefore, apart from the Parnellite action, was from 47 to 28,--a loss of 19.