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impracticable, from the prodigious increase of business in each. The some objection lay to others. Never had the public service required more labour, and never indeed had more been exerted by the respective incumbents in every office. The abolition of patent place?, another subject of complaint, could not be always affected with equity; but still they wore in a gradual course of being abolished. Respecting the system os barracks, so much reprobated; the old plan allowed them for twenty thousand men, to which the new one had, for "considerations well sounded, added others for fifteen thouland more. The difficulty of a speedy adjustment os accounts, in time of ■war, was too well known to enlarge upon; but the ascertainment of all public expenees occupied the attention of ministers to the fullest extent which their magnitude would permit, and they had not the least apprehension of being found defective in their accounts. With regard to the bank, the power Vested in it was clearly independent us ministers, and the assistance it afforded to government was entirely optional. To the other observations of the marquis he made such replies as he thought justificatory of ministerial measures, and concluded by afl'erling, that when impartially reviewed, they would meet with Certain approbation.
These answers, to the marquis of Tansdowne, were, by the earl os 1 auderdale, represented as fallacious and unfounded. The immense amount of the debls, which ministry left unfunded, (hewed their ill■management and want ofeconomy: the discount given occasionally on exchequer-note* was equally dis
creditable and alarming: the accounts relating to the barracks were confused and erroneous; and the reasons assigned ibr other measures were vague and unsatisfactory.
The difference between the pecuniary situation of this country, in 1783 and that in 179.5, was circumstantially investigated by lord Aukland, in order to prove the superiority of our finances at the preleiit day. The revenue was then two millions below the peace establishment, amounting to fifteen millions, but was now actually three millions four hundred thousand pounds above that establishment; and, by adding the two millions then deficient, was in reaiity five millions above it.
The lord chancellor, earl Spencer, and lord Hawksbury, opposed the motion, and it was farther supported by lord Moira, and l»rd Guildford, who gave the house notice of his intention to move an inquiry into the slate of the nation. The marquis of Lansdowne's motion was rejected by one hundred and four votes against twelve.
The report ot the committee of supply upon the resolution, for granting a subsidy of two hundred thousand pounds to the king of Sardinia, was presented to the houle of commons on the third of May, when it was observed, by Mr. Fox, that circumstances were no longer the fame respecting that prince, as when that subsidy was first voted. He was then to act against France with the coalition; but it was now understood that he was about to forsake if, and to make a peace with the enemy. If such were the case, it was proper to know whether he thought himself at liberty to act in this manner, or whether indeed he were able to act otherwise, and minister* nisters had acceded to his desire for a separate peace.
Mr. Pitt asserted, that lately the Ling of Sardinia, in circumstances of great difficulty, had consented to 3 luspenlion of arms with the French, provided it were in conjunction with the emperor, but on no other terms: the emperor not consenting, the armistice did not take place. The French had, in the mean time, offered him peace, if he would make a cession of their acquisitions in his country, and an alliance with them, but he had refused their offers.
It was observed, by Mr. Francis, that the motives of action with that prince would originate in the pressures he was in. His situation required him to consult the necessity os his affairs, rather than the magnuiimity of his disposition; exclusively of which, history had long shewn, that no dependance could he placed on the stability of the princes of the house of Savoy. Mr. Pitt however being farther pressed nponthis subject, put an end to it bv declining to reply.
Three days after this discussion Mr. Grey brought several heavy i targe* againstministers, and moved them to be sufficient grounds of impeachment. They had, he said, violated the act of appropriation, the main pillar os the pecuniary privileges of parliament, by diverting the grants, of money to other purpuses than those for which they were voted, anil they had endeawiired to screen themselves by spurious accounts. He then detailed tW particulars in proof of his actuation, adding, that if the necessities »f the times had compelled them to have recourse to such me-'!bod» ser procuring money, they
ought, without disguising the fact, to have applied to parliament for indemnity. The house os commons had, he said, been notoriously fault.}' in not setting limits to the extraordinaries during the American war; and the committee appointed to examine and digest the public accounts had particularly pointed out the ruinous consequences of such negligence. Mr. Pitt had censured it himself with peculiar severity, but had nevertheless been more guilty than any of his predecessors in the ministry. So determined was the house to put a stop to these infractions ofits rights, that it passed, in 1784-, a resolution, that should parliament be dissolved before the act of appropriation had passed, to misapply the money granted should be reputed a high misdemeanour. An act had also been passed under the present minister, to obviate the bad consequences of balances remaining witli the paymaster-gene* ral, and to provide for the constant pay of the army; but this act had been notoriously infringed; the paymaster having actually in his hands a balance of eighty-three thousand pounds. Mr. Grey, after mentioning other instances of misapplication, adverted to the dispositionpaper, a species of voucher first used in the prodigal reign of Charles II. and established at the revolution, as an authentic document, to inform parliament in what manner the supplies they had granted had been expended. This paper be considered as a mere deception; its contents represented the sums voted by parliament, as ilsued and applied conformably to its intent, which was contrary to truth. This he might be told was only a form; but the practice was in fact directly opposite [Ft] to to the regulations enacted fey the legislature, jn Order to.preserve' to itself the power over,the national purse; against-the attempts of.(ministers to dilpose of the nation's moBey at their own discretion. On thele various premises Mr. Grey founded no less than fifteen resolutions, the last, of which summing-up the purport ot the whole, stated, ". that, in the instances mentioned, the king's ministers had-been guilty of presenting seise accounts, calculated to mislead the judgement of the house, of a flagrant violation of various acts of parliament, and. of a gross misapplication of the public money." ■ .■•:,;.■• -_;; . - --,-;<-r..; The reply, made by Mr-Pitt-, stated, that though ministers were bound faithfully to.appropriale the public money to the purpofes ■ spocifieri, yet theie were a multiplicity of cases wherein that ruse could not strictly be observed. Services,.of the most critical importance, and the molt imperious necessity, often compelled them to deviate from: the letter of the act of appropriation:: but was that, or; was any other, act to stand in the way of material services ,due to the nation % those who were entrusted with its safety and preservation? These.deviations were founded on wise precedents, and sanctioned as just, by long and repeated experience. Extraordinaries were the inevitable attendants of war, especially, such an one at the present, which requiring unprecedented exertions, justified unprecedented methods of conducting it. Mr. Pitt adduced a number of sects to prove that he had acted conformably to the practice authorised in former wars. The very act of ap'propriation, he said, evjaced.-. the propriety of extraordinaries, by 8
making good several millions expended under that head; and on objection was ever made to the principle itself. He vindicated, with great acutenefs, the different parts of his conduct in the administration of the finances, and argued with great ability against the defects and misconduct imputed to him.
The speech of Mr. Pitt was answered by Mr. Fox, who enforced and enlarged upon the arguments that had been urged by Mr. Grey. Mr. Steele replied in justification of Mr. Pitt's maxims and measures, and closed the debate by moving the previous question, which was carried by two hundred and nine to thirty-eight.
The tenth of May was remarkable for a motion made in each house against the continuation of the war, and for offering terms of peace. That in the house of lords was made bv the earl of Guildsord; *hat- in the house of commons by -Air. Fox. The fame arguments, -with little variation, were used by both speakers, that had so often been urged in the preceding attempt* of this nature, and met of course with much the fame anlwers. The only matter of novelty was, the construction put on Mr. Wickham's commission, to inform Mr. Barthelemy, the French minister at Basle, of the disposition on the part os this country, to enter into a negociation for peace, and that minister's reply to the British agent. Opposition treated the application -of the former as far from calculated to conciliate the French, while ministry asserted that it Whs fully sufficient to i induce them to treat, had they been sincerely, disposed to -.meeLiUs. on.eqnttabse terms. ...This particular constituted the principal
object object of debate, and exercised the abilities of both ministry and opposition: but alter a long and anioia'ed contest, the motion was nentired in the house of lords, by one !. inured and ten against ten; and, in the house of commons, by two hundred and sixteen against fortytwo.
A repetition took place on the Ctnr.e dnv in the houle of lords, ofthe discussion upon the state of the revenue, the taxes, the imports and exports, and the ot'ier financial circumsunces of the nation at the close of the American war, and at the present period. The earl of Moira combated the positions of lord Aukland in the preceding debate, and the latter exerted himself to maintain them. Numerous and intricate were the calculations on both sides. Lord Lauderriale zealously supported the earl of Moira, and entered into a grenl variety of particulars to prove the justness of his researches and computations: herein he was seconded by the marquis of Lansdowne, and opposed by lords Coventry and Hawkelbury, who took much pains to represent the statements of lord Moira as erroneous.
The fame subject was resumed, on the thirteenth, by lord Lauderdale, who displaye ! great financial knowledge in his arrangement of the matter of debate. His supporters were the marquis of Lanldowne and the earl of Moira; and his opponents, lords Grenville, Hawkelbury, and Aukland. The inferences from the arguments and statements produced by the respective parties were contradictory in the extreme; the one representing the situation of this country as replete with the most arduous difficul
ties, and almost verging to nsin; and the other describing it as full of opulence and resources of every denomination, and able, with proper management, to encounter and surmount every obstacle, and to flourisli with more lustre than ever.
Such were the most material transactions of parliament during this session. An attempt was made, bv Mr. Wilberforce, to enforce the decision ofthe house, that the abolition ofthe slave-trade should take place on the first day of the year 1796, bat his motion was negativfd by a majority of lour, and his subsequent endeavours to regulate the slave-carrying trade, by the proportion of tonnage, was ion ibr want of numbers to constitute a house.
A bill for the relies of indigent curates passed in their favour, aster some opposition in the commons, on account of its originating in the houle of lords. But a petition from the quakers to be relieved from imprisonment Ibr non-payment of tythes, and for uliowing their affirmation to be evidence in criminal as well as civil cafes was rejected by the lord', after parsing the commons. The humane effort made Uy lord Moira, in favour of persons confined lor debt, met with no better success.
The leliion closed, on the nineteenth of May, w>th the custoWarty speech from the throne. It iiilot'med the houle- ofthe intention to dissolve the present, and to call a new parliament. The happiest e'secVs, it said, had been experienced from, the provisions made for repressing sedition and civil tumult, and ibr restraining the progrels of pritifMples subversive os all established government.
The commons were thanked, in a more particular manner, for the liberal supplies they had granted, to meet the exigencies of the war. Peculiar notice was taken of the increasing resources, by which the country was enabled to support thegreat expences it required. The nature of the system introduced into
.France had, the speech said, afforded to that country, in tl>e midst of
^ its calamities, the means of exertion, beyond the exertion of any former time; but, under the pressure of the new and unprecedented difficulties, arising from such a contest,
^the British constitution had, by the counsels and conduct of parliament,
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