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lith Disienters have less influence under a British conftitution than French Roman Catholics.
We are senlible there is such a thing as occasional conformity, but then it is a conformity to the ivorship and usages of the English church, which the members of the Gallican church do not so much as pretend to, and, consistently with their own principles, they must think it damnable; whereas inoderate Diflenters think it a matter of indifference, — But how does the fact really stand ?
In one of our late Reviews*, we had an opportunity of confidering this blessed distinction between the Gallican and popish Roman Catholics, when their differences rose fo high, that Mr. Dupin, and the heads of the foriner, encouraged a wellmeaning archbishop of Canterbury, to listen to terms of accommodation between the English and the Gallican churches. --Bit what was the consequcnce ? When the good prelate attempted to shake the papal authority, the main pillar of the Gallicán church, the doctors of the Sorbonne trembled at the danger of the undertaking, and betrayed the whole correrpondence to the church of Rome.
The best friends to religious tolerancy in this kingdom we are persuaded must think, that a proposition for a comprehenfion of this kind is premature at present, especially in an ifland newly annexed to the British monarchy. It is an affront to common sense to talk of tlie loyalty of a Roman Ca. tholic Gallican church, and that too without a test, to a protestant English government.-We have been the more explicit on this head, as we imagine that we can discern some faint hankering of this kind, fome national predilections, in the course of this dispute. Lord Taafie, and other writers, whose works we have reviewed with the greatest indulgence, may persuade a minister that a moderate Irill or French Roman Ca. tholic may be a good subject to this government. But if that convi&ion does not remain within a minister's own breast, and should it be carried into other acts of government, it is hard to say what the consequences may be to the public tranquillity, especially during the present state of parties in this country, To conclude, we cannot help thinking, though entirely unconnected with, and unknown to, any person concerned in this controversy, that Mr. M-Ihas acted as a wise, cautious Protestant governor ought to have donc in bis situation ; and that the disputes and heats in Grenada had their rise, not from him or his triends, but their opponents, whose conduct has been indefensible.
* &ce Vol. xxviii. p. 246.
XI, A XI. A Letter 10 Samuel Johnson, LL. D. 8vo. Pr. 15. Almon. THIS political syllabub has been foaming for some days in
the front of our News Papers, and as the former answer to the pamphlet it attacks, is quite futile and declamatory, we have given this the more attentive reading. We laboured, however, through almost nineteen pages, (and the pamphlet "contains but fifty-four) before we came to the shadow of an argument.
* You, Sir, laid down, says this author to his antagonist, as “ uncontrovertibly certain, that the commons never intended to leave electors the liberty of returning them an expelled member, because they always require one to be chosen in the room of him that is expelled ;” and you, it seems, cannot fee with what propriety a man can be 'recholen in his own room.
This, Sir, is your determination in form. Unfortunately for you, the law is not less explicit. There is nothing alleged in your pamphlet that should prevent me from recurring to the strongest possible case, that of a member expelled by ait of parliament, on his acceptance of a place of profit. What en. sues ? A fresh writ issues ; ANOTHER MEMBER is required in the room of him that is expelled; the same PERSON is almost always returned; the commons acknowledge the terms of their requisition to have been complied with : and the person so returned is constantly admitted as ANOTHER MEMBER, in his own room.
" The requisition in the writ is not directed to be altered in this case. Yet what says the statute, sufficiently apprised of the full force of that requisition? “ such person shall be capable of being again eleited.
• If the writ, fill unrepealed, nay, perhaps, necessarily existing in the full force of unalterable law, stands in direct oppofifition to the statute ; the former insisting on a different person -from him wlio is permitted by the latter ; we are serioully reduced to a Itate of motionless equipoise, and the law in this case becomes felo de fe. But the laws of England never appear absurd, unless in the expositions of a commentator of Navilh principles.'
The immediate effect of the expulsion is a political anni. hilation. A subsequent return is not of the nature of a po. litical resurrection. It has no reference to a former delegation; it sends the member, as a new existence, unconscious, unaccountable for former parliamentary delinquencies; his politi. cal identity is destroyed; he is become, in the eye of common fense, in the establithed idea of parliament, in the express lao. guage of the law, to all intents and purposes, ANOTHER MEMBER,'
The fallacies contained in the above passage are so con. temptible and childish in this stage of the dispute, that for the sake of our own credit we have transcribed them literally, We are to observe in answer, that there is a great difference between a disqualification upon accepting a place, and an expulsion, in whatever light it is considered. The former is vojuntary, the latter involuntary. The former implies no cri. minality, the latter does. The former is announced only by a motion for a new writ, and the latter by a folemn sentence, The former supposes the member in his political capacity not to be the same who was elected. The latter fupposes him to be the fame, but his disqualification is personal. The disqualification of the former is removed by re-election, that of the latter cannot be removed but by the same authority that in. flicted it. Had Mr. Wilkes accepted of a place, he must have been disqualified, but as he was guilty of an offence, he was expelled. The law which disqualified him, would have re-qua, lified him, if we may use the expression ; but the power which expelled him, we apprehend, could not have re-adınitted him during its existence, without assuming self-creative rights, which must have been more dangerous to the constitution than any the house of commons pretends to.
The plain question is as follows. All disqualifying acts are made in favour of the electors. When a man accepts a place, after his return, he is not considered by the house as the same member whom the elcctors chose ; and therefore, to give the latter fair play, the house tells them, by sending down a new wsit, you elected and sent us up M. but since his admission to his seat, he is become P. and, though the fame person, yet he is not the same member; but we leave it to yourselves either to choose another, or to re-qualify him as P. for the fame feat he enjoyed as M' This is the plain and simple pro, cers, and often practised in the fame session. We shall not take up the reader's time in proving how different this case is from that of expulsion.
But it seems, continues our author, the commons never intended to leave electors tbe liberty of returning them an expelled member.
* In the free ages of Greece or Rome, the wretch who thould have uttered such a treason against the supremacy of the people would inftantly have been overwhelmed with stones, or hurried to the precipice.
• Do you conceive the full force of the word consTITUENT? It has the same relation to the house of commons as Creator to creature.'
This is mere raving, unless the author could prove, that the constitution of Greece and Rome and that of Great Britain are the same, But indeed this writer, and others on the same fide of the question, are so totally unacquainted with the latter, that they are incapable of forming a question upon the subject. The expulsion of a member for Middlesex has no relation to the people of England. These are already represented, and the whole of that representation forms the house of commons, who are in no degree legally accountable to the people, and all the lawyers in England may be challenged to prove that they are. • THE RIGHTS OF THE PEOPLE, says this author, are not what the commons have ceded to them, but what they have reserved to themselves; the privileges of the commons are not what they have an indefensible pretension to by arbitrary and discretionary claims but what THE PEOPLE, for their own benefit, have allowed them.
These affertions are pregnant with nonsense, and must be considered as such by every reasonable man, unless the author can produce the deed in which the rights the people have referved to themselves is engrossed.
Dr. Johnson had said that if the house cannot punish their member, he may attack with impunity the rights of the people and the title of the king.'
Our author's reply is, that the absolute power of the house over their members, is, for the present, adınitted. But a member of parliament is a political being; the punishment, therefore, of his political delinquencies, inflicted by the political body to which he belongs, cannot extend beyond his po-litical existence.
• To estimate the merits of the members of the community at large, for the purpose of deciding upon the pretensions of candidates, is too mornentous a concern to be confided to any body of delegates whatsoever. The cognisance of such matters must come before the higher tribunal of the collective body; an assembly, whose free choice enters eflentially, and by a real political neceffity, into the idea of a legal parliament."
Though this author seems to be fond of the word political, it is very plain that he does not understand the meaning of the term. The house of commons did not sentence Mr. Wilkes to be either hanged, whipped, or pilloried, nor did they extend his punishment beyond his political existence ; they only put a period to it with a negative of his being reinvested with it dur. ing their political existence.
We must here, once for all, observe that both sides of the question, without, as well as within doors, in speaking as well as in writing, have very absurdly lugged in the word punihmens,
which has nothing to do in this controversy. The duty of a member of parliament is a service, to which he is compellabie, by his constituents : so that his expulsion is no more than a dismission from that service. .
The rest of this pamphlet is merely declamatory, personal, and abusive, without being at all applicable to the subject.
MONTHLY CATALOGU E. 12. Serious Refle Etions upon some late important Determinations in a certain Asembly. Addressed to a late Premier. 8vo. Is. Evans. JEVER was the art of castle-building carried to such a
height as it has been since his present majesty's accession to the throne, especially under the late minister, His grace, it is true, has been accused of being inaccellible and uncommunicable. Every days news-papers, and pamphlets, and this publication among others, prove him to be the most easy, affable being existing. Whoever has a mind to talk with him, or abuse him, need only to take hold of pen, ink, and paper, and imagination direally introduces him to his grace, to whom he communicates his mandates; whether didactic, alles, gorical, satirical, or political, matters not. He holds his grace by the ear, and pinches it for as many hours and minutes as he pleases. This writer is a grave serious castle-builder, and talks to the premier, as he calls him, upon two points, the doétrine of calling forth the military for the most trifling causes in aid of the civil power, and the other, in support of privileges in the h-of c--s, in direct opposition to the bitherio conceived fundamental rights of the people.
The author's reasoning would be very forcible and conclufive, did it not labour under one small misfortune, that it is defiitute of truth, and is founded, from beginning to end, uport what the antients knew by the name of pansod, a necessary tool in castle building. No man of candour and common sente will venture to say, that the military has been called forth for the most trifiing causes; and the privileges of the house of commons have been ascertained and established after the moit solenin debates that, perhaps, ever happened in both houses of the British parliament, 13. Obfervations on several Axts of Parliament, passed in the Fourih,
Sixth, and Seventh years of his present Majesly's Reign. Published by the Merchants of Boston. Svo, Pr. 1s. Kearlly.
The author of those observations, to have given his readers · fair play, ought to have printed the acts complained of verba