Mr. Macpherson, the Chief Secretary for Ireland, moved the second
reading of the Home Rule Bill in the House of Commons on Monday. He recalled Mr. Asquith's pledge in 1914 that the Home Rule Act of that year should not be enforced until another Act had been passed dealing with Protestant Ulster. The Nationalists, he said, had assented to that pledge. Ulster was not to be coerced, nor could the secession of Ireland be tolerated. Mr. Macpherson laid stress on the opportunity which the proposed Council of Ireland would afford the North and the South of coming together, if they wished to do so. He stated incidentally that the Government would introduce a separate Bill giving effect to the Irish Convention's proposal for completing the Land Purchase scheme. Ireland's contribution to Imperial charges would be £18,000,000 for two years, as compared with £600,000,000 from Great Britain. Ireland, that is, would pay only £4 2s. per head, against 13s. 8d. per head for Great Britain.