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contrary to the approbation of the House of Commons was unconstitutional. The King certainly, as chief executive magistrate, has a right to chuse his own Ministers, (unless under disqualifications ascertained by law) for performing any branch of the executive duties. The House of Commons have a right to impeach, on the ground of malversation in office, any of the Ministers, but not to prescribe to him in his choice of a Minister. Notwithstanding the remonstrances of the House of Cominons Pitt continued in office. Although the majority was against him in the house, it was very evident that it was for him in the nation. His Majesty seeing that the opinion of the House of Commons continued contrary to his own, and conceiving it to be contrary to that of his people, determined to put it in the power of the people to manifest their approbation or disapprobation of their present representatives. By dissolving Parliament, he virtually asked this question, ' DID YOUR LATE REPRESENTATIVES SPEAK YOUR SENSE OR NOT? If they did, you will re-elect them ; if not, you will elect
others. Being asked this question respecting their late representatives, the greater part of the people answered ' NO.' A very
considerable majority of members friendly to Pitt was returned.
The new Parliament met the 18th of May, 1734. The first business which exercised the talents of Burke was a motion for preventing a scrutiny into the election of his friend Fox, at the instance of Sir Cecil Wray. Fox, on this occasion, displayed a minute, accurate, and profound knowledge of law, which astonished the most eminent professional men on both sides. This motion was negatived, and the scrutiny proceeded.
June 14th, Burke made a motion for a representation to the King, the general object of which was to vindicate the conduct of Opposition, and to censure that of Administration. It dwelt particularly on the rectitude and expediency of the late East-India bill, and on the dreadful consequences it affirmed likely to ensue from the dissolution of Parliament. Although Burke's speech op this occasion contained very great ingenuity, yet the main arguments were necessarily a repetition of what had been frequently urged before. The motion was negatived without a division.
Several bills were proposed by Pitt respecting India affairs, preparatory to his great plan for managing India. His bill was nearly the same as that which had been re-, jected by the preceding Parliament. Its principal opponents were Mr. Francis, Mr. Eden, and Fox. Burke did not enter much into its merits. It proceeded on a principle different from that of Fox,—that the affairs of the Company were not in a desperate state; that the Company were fully competent to the management of their commercial con
It proposed that the dominion of the territorial possessions should be placed under the controul of the Executive Government; and that a Board should be instituted for this purpose, to consist of the Ministers
for the time being. He considered this plan as the most efficient for the prevention of the oppression of the Company's servants in India, and for the preservation and improvement of our political interests in that country; and that, on the whole, it would re-, medy the evil, without the confiscation of property, or the disfranchisement of a great corporate body. Fox represented it as a half measure, and ineflicient as to its professed object, and that it increased to an enormous degree the influence of the Crown that the Commissioners proposed by his bill could only be removed upon an address from Parliament ; that his plan was open sponsible; that the Board of Controul, by Pitt's bill, depended entirely on the Crown, and that any or all of its members might be removed, if they should contradict the mandates of the advisers of the Crown ; that the negative of the Board of Controul to those appointments, left nominally to the Directors, made that Board really the Directors. Fox affirmed that openness marked every
part of his own bill, but that Pitt's was a dark delusive scheme to take away by sap the claims of the Company.
A very common observation concerning the East India bill of Mr. Pitt is, that it did circuitously what Mr. Fox’s bill proposed to do directly. They must be very superficial reasoners who do not see the following material difference. The nominees projected by Mr. Fox would have possessed an influence that would have secured him and his friends in power, even though the confidence of the King and country should be withdrawn : the plan of Mr. Pitt would not give either to him or his friends an influence which would have secured him in
if the confidence of the King or country were withdrawn. By Mr. Fox's plan there might be a Minister who held his place by a new and unconstitutional tenure: Mr. Pitt's did not admit the possibility of such a tenure. The appointments by Mr. Pitt's bill were to be held during pleasure, agreeably