25 MARCH 1882, Page 1

Monday's debate on the Closure was commenced by Mr. Raikes,

the Conservative ex-Chairman of Committees. Mr. Raikes, however, instead of communicating to the House his own experience, delivered a speech full of party animosity, one which would, no doubt, have been a hit, were Mr. Raikes possessed of the necessary oratorical gifts as regards manner and style, which he is not. He cited Mr. Gladstone's own obstructive policy during the discussion of the Divorce Act, to show that Mr. Gladstone had set the example which be was now going to prevent other men from following. He taunted him with having spoken, during his fifty years of Parliamentary life, more than any two other Members together, and descanted on the irony of fate, which had now compelled such an orator as Mr. Gladstone to try and stop the mouths of over-prolific speakers. We see no irony of fate in the matter. What irony is there in its being the duty of the one Member to whom the House has been for fifty years so eager to listen, because it always found guidance ill his words, to propose that the House should not be compelled to waste its time on barren speeches in which it finds no guidance at all P Mr. Raikes twitted Lord Hartington also with having declared at Nelson that be wanted the Closure, in order to carry party measures which it might otherwise prove impossible to pilot through their Parliamentary difficulties.