Dáil Éireann


































[323] Do cromadh ar obair an lae ar 3.15 p.m. Bhí an Ceann Comhairle, Micheál O h-Aodha, sa Chathaoir.


The PRESIDENT:  If I might intervene for a moment in connection with a question put to me last week by Deputy Darrell Figgis, Member for County Dublin:—

“To ask the President of the Dáil what Commissions and Committees have been appointed by the Executive; to state the terms of reference for each Commission or Committee; to state the persons appointed to serve on each Committee, with the Chairman of each Commission or Committee. Further, to ask the Chairman when it is his intention to move for the confirmation of such appointments by Dáil Eireann.”

There were 4 Commissions appointed: one was the Property Compensation Committee set up by agreement between the Provisional Government and the British Government, better known as the Shaw Commission; (2) the Irish Railways Commission; (3) the Postal Commission, (4) the Civic Guard Commission. There was also Departmental `Cost of Living' Committee which is not strictly a Commission. Strictly speaking, also No. 3, the Postal Commission, was not a Commission in the same sense. No. 4, the Civic Guard Commission, is not a Commission either in the sense in which, I think, the question was put down. The Terms of Reference of the Property Commission, set up by agreement between the British Government and the Irish Provisional Government are set out in two pages of printed matter. If the Dáil desires it I will read out the Terms of Reference.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Could not they be circulated to the Dáil?

[324]The PRESIDENT:  They could be circulated, if so desired.

The PRESIDENT:  The Terms of Reference are:—

(a) The Financial position and earning powers of the several Railway Undertakings, including those in receipt of Baronial Guarantees.

(b) The best means consolidating or otherwise working the different Railways in the future, and of providing the Rolling Stock and other equipment used on the Railways.

(c) The remuneration and conditions of employment of the salaried and wages staff and arrangements for the future settlement of questions relating to such matters.

(d) Any other matters affecting the working and administration of the railways upon which in the opinion of the Commission it is expedient to Report in the interests of the proprietors of the Railway Companies, the employés and the public.”

The others are inter-departmental, and it might be well that I should read them out:—

“That an Independent Commission of Five Members be set up to enquire into the Wages and Salaries, Organisation of Work, and Conditions generally in the Post Office, and to report what alterations, if any, are desirable.

“That in the cases of the principal classes of Post Office servants, and of such of the other classes as the Commission may think necessary, the first task of the Commission shall be to determine whether the present basic wage can bear the recent cut, this to be determined by the 15th May, 1922, and that the Commission shall be empowered to recommend, in the cases of classes where the cut is regarded as not being justified, an increase of the basic wage as from the 1st March, without prejudice of the general findings.

“That the Commission shall then consider the general question of Wages and Salaries, Organisation of Work, and Conditions generally.

[325]“That the Commission shall have the right to determine what subjects may properly be regarded as coming under the terms of reference, and what evidence is admissible.

“That three be the quorum, of which one must be a nominee of the Irish Labour Party.

“The Commissioners to be:—

“Mr. JAMES G. DOUGLAS, Chairman.


“Mr. H. J. FRIEL,

“Nominated by the Provisional Government.

“Mr. L.J. DUFFY (Distributive Workers),

“Mr. T.J. O'CONNELL (Irish Teachers)

“Nominated by the Irish Labour Party.”

We, the Irish Provisional Government, hereby nominate and appoint Kevin R. O'Shiel, Barrister-at-Law, and Michael MacAuliffe, Ministry of Labour, to be Commissioners and to constitute a Commission to investigate and report to the Provisional Government as to the breaches of discipline and acts of insubordination alleged to have been committed recently by, and the complaints made on the part of, members of the Civic Guard; and to enquire into and report on the origin and causes of the same; and to report to the Provisional Government what (if any) disciplinary or other action should be taken and punishments awarded in respect of such matter if proven; and to make such recommendations as they may think fit for the future government and discipline of the Civic Guard, with power to settle the procedure of the said Commission, and with power to summon and hear all such witnesses as may appear to them proper or expedient.


This 12th day of July, 1922.


Chairman of the Provisional Government.


Acting Secretary to the Provisional Government.

[326] Mr. BEWLEY, Ministry of Finance;

Mr. FITZPATRICK, Ministry of Economic Affairs;

Mr. HOOPER, Ministry of Agriculture;

Mr. LYON, Ministry of Labour;

are hereby appointed a Committee:

1. To determine the relative cost of living in Ireland as a whole for the months of March and June, 1922, as compared with the cost of living in July 1914, on such a basis as will show the average increase in the cost of maintaining the same standard of living for a family dependent on wage-earnings.

2. To advise on the considerations affecting decision as to whether the cost of living figures so determined should be published, and, if so, what form publication should take.

3. To advise as to whether a cost of living figure should hereafter be determined periodically by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, and, if so, at what intervals.

The Committee should endeavour to complete its calculations under paragraphs of this reference not latter than July 15th next.

I should also say that, in addition to the terms of reference included in the question, the Ministry for Home Affairs has been instructed to get the figure for September. The other information the Deputy inquired for I am having compiled, and I shall be able to produce it within a couple of days.

PADRAIG MAC GAMHNA:  To ask the Minister for Local Government whether an application has been made by the Carlow County Council for a special grant to relieve the great unemployment which exists in the county; whether similar applications have been made by other County Councils, and if so, with what results.

[327]MlNISTER for LOCAL GOVERNMENT (Mr. E. Blythe):  Representations have been made by the Carlow County Council that a special Government Grant should be made available, and similar applications have been made by other County Councils. Excepting the Grant of £275,000 assigned in March, last the Government has not been in a position to make any other distribution of special Grants for unemployment.

PADRAIG MAC GAMHNA:  May I take it then there is no sum allocated for this purpose?

Mr. BLYTHE:  Not beyond what has been already granted.

The PRESIDENT:  If I might intervene for a moment, in order to explain, a sum of £100,000 was voted by the Dáil to relieve distress mainly on the Western and Southern seaboards. It is possible that the Deputy may have concluded that Carlow should have got some of that, but that particular sum was earmarked for places where distress was likely to occasion famine. It was not for the relief of distress generally.

SEAN BUITLEIR:  To ask the Minister for Local Government if he will state the total amount of withheld grants due to the Waterford County Council up to 31st March, 1922, and when they will be paid.

Mr. BLYTHE:  The amount of withheld grants payable to Waterford County Council up to the 31st March, 1922, was £28,314 2s. 6d. A negotiable receipt for this amount was issued on the 13th inst. in favour of the Treasurer of the County Council.

SEAN BUITLEIR:  To ask the Minister for Local Government if any funds are available for County Councils, for relief of unemployment, and if so, what amount is available for Waterford County Council.

Mr. BLYTHE:  The Minister for Local Government has no funds at his disposal available for payment to County Councils in relief of unemployment. A sum of £275,000 was made available in March last by the Minister of Finance, and was distributed to the various County Councils [328] on foot of approved schemes. Questions relative to grants for relief of unemployment should be addressed to the Minister of Finance. Of that sum of £275,000 the proportion allocated to Waterford County Council was £8,250.

PADRAIG MAC GAMHNA:  To ask the Postmaster-General whether his attention has been called to the suspension of Padraig O Catháin, of Carlow Town Post Office; if so, whether he will state what was his offence and by whom was the suspension carried out, and whether it is a fact that the officer responsible acts in turn as a postal official and as a military officer; and whether the fact that the suspended employee acted as Director of Elections on behalf of the Labour Candidate for the constituency of Carlow and Kilkenny was in any way responsible for his suspension; also, whether many similar suspensions have taken place, and, if so, how many, and on what charges, and whether they will be given an opportunity to answer the charges if any, which have led to their suspension.

POSTMASTER-GENERAL (Mr. J.J. Walsh):  This officer was suspended from duty for misappropriation of official cash, by an officer of the Post Office Investigation Department, acting under my I authority. The Post Office solicitor is at present considering evidence in the case with a view to a prosecution in the courts. I was not aware until the Deputy mentioned it that this officer had taken any part in politics at the recent election.

PADRAIG MAC GAMHNA:  May I ask as a supplementary question whether the gentleman who suspended Mr. O'Kane has, in the first instance, asked him to put down in writing whether he had any association with the Irregulars, and Mr. O'Kane having given an answer and that not having been deemed satisfactory by the gentleman who carried out his suspension whether he put a further question, whether he had any connection with the Irregulars or not, and Mr. O'Kane having replied “No,” not having got him on that point, he then paid attention to some work which Mr. O'Kane was performing at the time, making up accounts, and when a few shillings was found short, not having deemed that sufficient to make a case out of, he then enquired into another case of its kind [329] which had occurred previously. If I be in order I wish to say that I should like to put down a special question in connection with that, since I have a written signed statement by Mr. O'Kane to that effect. I think the question might be dealt with more satisfactorily by a statement than by merely asking a question.

Mr. WALSH:  I agree that a general statement of that kind is not advisable. I think it would be better if the facts were put down.

SEOIRSE GABHAIN UI DHUBHTHAIGH:  To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs what decision the Government has reached in reference to the urgent question of Ireland's application for membership of the League of Nations.

MINISTER for FOREIGN AFFAIRS (Mr. D. Fitzgerald):  The Government has decided not to make application for admission to the League of Nations at present.

Mr. GAVAN DUFFY:  Will the Minister give us reason?

Mr. FITZGERALD:  I refer you to the Constitution of the League of Nations.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  The matter is on the Orders of the Day for debate.

Mr. GAVAN DUFFY:  Arising out of that I see it is on the Agenda, but it has lost its place. I desire to draw your attention to that fact because it seems to me that when a Member having a Motion down on any one day puts off that Motion out of consideration for the Government, and by consent, I think, Sir, that that motion should keep its place. I would further like to have your assurance that that motion will be the first of the private motions on the list. I think it is wrongly printed.

Mr. FITZGERALD:  I wish to point out that the Government did not ask the Deputy to withdraw his Motion the other day. I presume he withdrew it for his own convenience, and not the Government's.

Mr. BLYTHE:  I wonder would you allow me to say, before we enter on any other business, that I have given notice that I will to-morrow move the Franchise Resolution about which I spoke a couple [330] of days ago in regard to the compilation of the new Register. The Resolution is somewhat long and I won't read it, but in order that Members who may wish to do so may have an opportunity of studying it I have a certain number of typewritten copies.

Mr. GAVAN DUFFY:  May I ask your decision, Mr. Chairman, on he point I raised. By consent I agreed to postpone the Motion, and I submit in ordinary fairness——

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  It should take precedence of Motions by other private Members.


AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  That can be done.

Mr. T. JOHNSON:  As regards the point raised by the Minister for Local Government is it satisfactory to you and to the Dáil that one day's notice— rather less than one day's notice—should be given of a very important resolution such as that indicated?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  It will be impossible in future when the Standing Orders proposed to-day will be adopted. Under the old Standing Orders it is impossible to insist upon further notice. I agree that more notice should be given.

Mr. T.J. O'CONNELL:  On a point of order. What is to become of a question if the Minister to whom it is addressed is not present?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  A written answer could be given, and afterwards included in the official report.

Mr. T.J. O'CONNELL:  That would satisfy me with reference to question 7.

Mr. WM. DAVIN:  That would prevent a Member from raising a supplementary question.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  It would. A supplementary question could be put down again, of course.

Mr. WM. DAVIN:  So far as question No. 6 is concerned I would prefer that it should be postponed.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  And put on for to-morrow.

Mr. DAY:  I wish to as the same with regard to question 4.

[331]Mr. CATHAL O'SHANNON:  On a point of information, Mr. Chairman, are we to take it that the Motion on the Franchise mentioned by the Minister for Local Government is to take precedence of all other business on to-morrow's Orders?

[332]Mr. BLYTHE:  Yes.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  A Deputy is present, Mr. D. Vaughan, who has not yet signed the roll. I would ask him to come forward and sign the roll.

Deputy D. Vaughan signed the roll.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  The next business is the report of the Committee of Standing Orders, and as I acted as Chairman of the Committee I will read the report. It is as follows:—


(Report of Committee on Standing Orders.)

Do ceapadh an Coiste see do réir an rúin seo leanas do cuireadh i bhfeidhm ag an nDáil ar an 11adh Meadhon Foghmhair, 1922:— This Committee was appointed by resolution of the Dáil adopted on the 11th September, 1922, in the following terms:—
(a) “Go gceapfar Teachtaí P.O. hAodba, P. Béaslaí, L. de Róiste, S.O. Faoileacháin, L. O. Briain, R. Mac Fheorais, agus S.O Ruanaidh agus go bhfuilid anso ceaptha mar Choiste den Dáil chun Buan-Orduithe d'ollmhú a stiúróidh obair na Dála agus go mbeidh tuarasgabháil uatha ag an nDáil fé cheann trí lá. (a) “That Deputies P. Hughes, P. Beaslai, L. de Róiste, J. B. Whelehan, W. O'Brien, R. Corish and J. Rooney be and are hereby appointed to be a Committee of the Dáil to prepare Draft Standing Orders to regulate the business of the Dáil and to report to the Dáil within three days.
(b) Go mbeidh Ceann Comhairle na Dála mar Cheann Comhairle ar an gCoiste.” (b) That the Chairman of the Dáil be Chairman of the Committee.”
Do réir an rúin seo do tháinig an Coiste le chéile cheithre uaire agus do shocruighdar d'aonghuth na Buan-Orduithe a ghabhann leis seo do mhola don Dáil. In pursuance of this resolution the Committee met four times and unanimously decided to recommend the attached Draft Standing Orders to the Dáil.

[333] The following are the Standing Orders submitted by the Committee:—

1. No Minister or Director of a Department may act as Ceann Comhairle or Leas-Cheann Comhairle.

2. The term of office of the Ceann Comhairle and of the Leas-Cheann Comhairle shall be that of the Dáil, provided that the Dáil may at any time, by special resolution, remove either the Ceann Comhairle or the Leas-Cheann Comhairle.

3. In the case of the absence of the Ceann Comhairle and the Leas-Cheann Comhairle, the Dáil may appoint a Teachta to act as Ceann Comhairle for the time being.

4. Every Teachta, on attending a Session of Dáil Eireann for the first time, shall present himself to the Ceann Comhairle, and shall, upon being called upon by the Ceann Comhairle during the Session of the Dáil, publicly sign the roll, and shall thereupon become entitled to sit and vote.

5. All proceedings of Dáil Eireann shall be conducted through the medium of the Irish or English language.

6. All orders and official documents shall be issued in the Irish and English languages.

7. The Ceann Comhairle shall publish, at least three clear days before the opening of each ordinary Session of the Dáil, a notice which shall state the place, date and hour of opening the Session. If the Dáil be summoned for an earlier date than that fixed for the prorogation or adjournment, the summons shall also state the reason for such earlier Session.

8. For the transaction of business in Dáil Eireann the presence of at least twenty Teachta shall be necessary.

9. If, at any stage in a Sitting of Dáil Eireann, any Teachta calls the attention of the Ceann Comhaire to the fact that there are less than twenty Teachta present, [334] the Ceann Comhairle, should he be satisfied on a count that there is not a quorum, shall adjourn the Sitting until a time thereupon named by him.

10. While Dáil Eireann is in Session it shall meet at half-past two o'clock punctually on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays of each week, unless the Dáil shall otherwise order. At seven o'clock the Ceann Comhairle shall adjourn the Dail without question put, unless the Dail shall otherwise resolve.

11. Every sitting of Dáil Eireann shall be governed by a printed Agenda, which shall be prepared by the Ceann Comhairle. The business shall be dealt with in order as printed, except when consideration of the Agenda shall be suspended in accordance with the provisions furnished elsewhere in these Standing Orders. The President of the Ministry shall have power to determine the order in which Government business shall appear on the paper.

12. All Motions and Amendments to be put on the Agenda for any day shall be handed to the Clerk, in writing, signed by a Teachta, not later than 11 a.m. on the preceding day.

13. The Agenda for each day shall be posted to the Dublin address of each Member so as to arrive by the first post on the morning of that day. It shall contain the text of all questions to be asked of Ministers and of all Motions to be proposed (save such as these Standing Orders elsewhere allow to be proposed without notice). It shall also contain the text of all Amendments, whether to Motions or Bills, intended to be proposed in the Dáil or in the Dáil sitting in Committee.

14. The Ceann Comhairle may, at the request of a Teachta, suspend consideration of the Agenda for the discussion of an urgent matter of national importance. Provided that the Ceann Comhairle is of opinion that the matter is urgent and of sufficient national importance. And provided, further, that on a show of hands the request has the support of not less than twelve Teachta. Such requests can only be made at the end of Questions, and before the Dáil shall have [335] entered upon the other business of the day.

15. If leave be given to suspend consideration of the Agenda for the discussion of an urgent matter of national importance, such matter shall stand over until 5.30 o'clock on the same day, when it shall come before the Dáil on a Motion for the adjournment of the Dáil till the next day an which it would ordinarily have met.

16. Questions must be handed in writing to the Clerk not later than 10 a.m. on the second preceding day before that on which they are to be asked, but no question shall be handed in on a Saturday or Sunday. Provided that questions relating to matters of urgent public importance may, by permission of the Ceann Comhairle, be asked on private notice to a Minister.

17. Questions addressed to a Minister must relate to public affairs connected with his Department or to matters of administration for which the Ministry is officially responsible.

18. The Ceann Comhairle shall examine every question, in order to ensure that its purpose is to elucidate matters of fact or matters, of policy, that it shall be as brief as possible, and that it shall contain no argument or personal imputation upon a member. The Ceann Comhairle may amend any question to secure its compliance with the Standing Orders. Should the Member responsible for the question, object to such amendment he may withdraw the question.

19. All questions shall be taken directly the Dáil shall sit before the Dáil shall enter upon any other business.

20. If any question be not reached by 3 o'clock, the Minister to whom it is addressed shall cause an answer to be provided in the Official Report of the Dáil, unless the Teachta responsible for the question, has signified his desire to postpone the question.

21. Any Teachta who does not desire an oral answer to his question may distinguish it by an asterisk, in which case the Minister to whom it is addressed shall cause an answer to be provided in the Official Report of the Dáil.

22. A question may be asked by the Teachta in whose name it stands, or if [336] he is absent when the question is called, by any other Teachta at his request, in writing. Questions shall be put by each Teachta by rising in his place and indicating the number of the question on the Agenda.

23. Supplementary Questions may only be put for the further elucidation of the information requested, and shall be subject to the ruling of the Ceann Comhairle, both as to relevance and as to number, and shall be asked only by the Teachta putting the original question.

24. Questions addressed to a Teachta of the Dáil, not a Minister, must relate to same Dáil motion, or other matter in connection with the Dáil for which the Teachta is responsible.

25. A Teachta desiring to speak shall rise in his place. If more than one Teachta shall rise at the same time the Ceann Comhairle shall call upon one of them. Teachtaí shall address the Ceann Comhairle.

26. When the Ceann Comhairle addresses the Dáil from the Chair any Teachta who may be in possession shall resume his seat.

27. No Teachta Is entitled to speak twice upon the same question, except to close a debate upon the original motion of which he was the proposer; but a Teachta is not precluded from speaking on an amendment by reason, of having spoken upon the original motion or upon any other amendment.

28. A motion shall not be debated until it has been seconded.

29. Every amendment must be relevant to the question on which it is proposed, and must be directed to omitting, adding, or substituting words. No amendment shall be accepted by the Ceann Comhairle which is equivalent to a direct negative.

30. When a question has been put by the Ceann Comhairle no further debate thereon shall be allowed before voting.

31. A Teachta who persists in irrelevance or repetition in debate and who, in the opinion of the Ceann Comhairle, is speaking for the purpose of obstructing the business of the Dáil may be directed by the Ceann Comhairle to discontinue his speech after the attention of the Dáil has been called to his conduct.

[337] 32. A Teachta who persists in obstructing the business of the Dáil in a disorderly manner may be required by the Ceann Comhairle to withdraw from the Dáil for the remainder of the sitting. If the disorder be of an aggravated character the period of suspension shall be such as the Dáil shall determine on a motion proposed by the President of the Ministry, or, if the President of the Ministry be absent, by whomever shall at the time be acting in his place.

33. Teachtaí so withdrawn or suspended from attendance in the Dáil shall take no part in full meeting of the Dáil, but for the period of suspension determined by the Dáil they may continue to act on any committees of the Dáil of which they may be members.

34. The Ceann Comhairle has authority to suppress disorder and to enforce prompt obedience to his ruling, and be may call upon officers of the Guard to preserve the liberties of Debate and the privileges of the Dáil.

35. After a Ministerial motion has been discussed half an hour a Minister may move “that the motion, be now put” or “that the amendment be now put” and the motion “that the motion be now put” or “that the amendment be now put” shall be put forthwith and decided without amendment, unless it appears to the Ceann Comhairle that the motion is an infringement of the rights of a minority, or an abuse of the Rules of the Dáil. On motions other than Ministerial Motions, any Teachta may move the closure of the Debate.

36. If, when the motion “that the motion be now put” is carried, an amendment to the original motion is before the Dáil, this amendment shall be put, and if carried shall immediately be put as a substantive motion. Provided always that, if there are amendments on the Agenda in addition to the one in respect of which the debate is closured, and if such additional amendments deal with distinct matters contained in the original motion, then the original motion shall not be put as a whole until after such additional amendments have been disposed of.

37. When a Bill is being considered in Committee of the whole Dáil, or is to be so considered, the Dáil may, by resolution on the motion of a Minister, specify the time which shall be given to the consideration [338] of any clause or group of clauses, and when the time so allotted shall have expired, if such clause or group of clauses have not already been voted on, the Ceann Comhairle shall, without motion or discussion, put to the Dáil the amendment under discussion and any other amendment which he deems of special importance and likely to be passed, and shall thereupon put the clause or clauses concerned to the Dáil. If the time allotted to any clause or group of clauses shall expire at 7 p.m., the Dáil shall continue to sit for the purpose of taking the necessary votes.

38. When any question is to be put to the Dáil, the Ceann Comhairle shall arise and announce that “the question is that,” thereupon reading or stating the question, requiring that as many as are of the opinion shall say “Tá,” and as many as are of contrary opinion shall say “Níl.” He shall judge from the answers to his questions and declare which side in his judgment is in the majority. If the declaration of the Ceann Comhairle as to his decision on a question be challenged, he shall order the Dáil to divide. The Clerk of the Dáil shall then call the roll of Teachtaí, who shall reply “Tá” or “Níl,” as the case may be. The Clerk shall then hand a Division Paper stating the result to the Ceann Comhairle, who shall announce the numbers to the Dáil and declare the result of the division. In giving their votes Teachtaí shall attend in their places, and rise when recording their vote.

39. Questions in the Dáil shall be determined by a majority of the votes of the Teachtaí present other than the Ceann Comhairle or Presiding Teachta, who shall have and exercise a casting vote in the case of an equality of votes.

40. The rules governing debate in the Dáil sitting in Committee, and in Committees of the Dáil shall, save as elsewhere provided, be those governing the proceedings of the Dáil. In cases of grave disorder or obstruction on Committees a member may be suspended, but this may only be done by the Dáil to whom report shall be made.

[339] 41. In addition to the Committees consisting of the whole of the Dáil, the Dáil may appoint Special Committees upon motions appearing on the Agenda. Such motion shall, save as otherwise provided in these Standing Orders, specifically state the terms of reference to the Committee, define the powers devolved upon them, nominate the members, to act upon them, state the quorum in each case, and, if necessary, fix a date upon which they shall report back to the Dáil.

42. Committees shall, as far as possible, be representative of all parties of opinion in the Dáil.

43. Bills not considered by the Dáil sitting in Committee may be referred to Committees appointed from time to time for that purpose.

44. The Dáil may discharge any members of Committees in case of nonattendance and appoint other members in substitution for them.

45. Visitors may be introduced by Teachtaí to such places as may be reserved for them by the Ceann Comhairle, and authorised representatives of the Press may be present at Sittings of the Dáil and Special Committees.

46. In case of special emergency any Teachta may move that all visitors and Press representatives be excluded from the Dáil, aud this shall be done by direction of the Ceann Comhairle with the assent of a majority of the Teachtaí present.

47. Officers of the Dáil shall include a Clerk and a Captain of the Guard.

48. The Clerk shall be responsible to the Ceann Comhairle for all secretarial business arising in connection with the Dáil, and shall keep records of its proceedings.

49. The Captain of the Guard shall discharge the following duties:—

(a) He shall admit and exclude strangers from Debates, and shall preserve order and decorum amongst them while present.

(b) He shall take into custody persons irregularly admitted to the Dáil, and persons guilty of disorderly conduct, [340] and shall cause the removal of persons who have been directed to withdraw.

(c) He shall control the members of the Guard, and shall carry out such orders as may be given him by the Ceann Comhairle.

(d) He shall be responsible to the Ceann Comhairle for the internal safety of the buildings of the Dáil, and for this purpose shall supervise the lighting and other apparatus, and shall take all other steps necessary for this purpose.

50. A report of all Proceedings and Debates of the Dáil shall be issued under the supervision of the Ceann Comhairle.

51. A copy of the Proceedings an Debates of the Dáil, as well as every other paper, document and publication of the Dáil, shall be sent to every Teachta.

52. Arrangements shall be made by which the reports of the Proceedings and Debates of each day shall be available for the second ensuing day.

53. The Agenda for Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays shall be confined to Questions and Ministerial business. The Agenda for each Friday may contain one resolution or Bill proposed by a private Teachta of the Dáil. Such resolution or Bill shall be selected by ballot by the Ceann Comhairle from amongst the notices from private Tachtaí reaching the Clerk of the Dáil on the preceding Wednesday before 11 a.m.

54. On every Friday the Dáil shall proceed with Ministerial business on the Agenda until 5 o'clock p.m., when the private Teachta's motion or Bill (if any) on the Agenda shall be taken up. If such motion be not passed or if leave to introduce such Bill be not given before 7 p.m. it shall be considerd to have been rejected.

55. In case of a Bill, should leave to introduce be given, it shall be printed and circulated and shall come up for its second reading when a member who proposes to move it shall have his notice drawn in the ballot.

[341] 56. Should a Private Teachta's Bill pass its second reading it shall without question put be referred to a Committee, which shall meet within ten days of such reading. Provided that should a Private Teachta's Bill not be voted on when before the Dáil for second reading it shall not be considered to be rejected but shall be the first business after five o'clock on the following Friday, when it shall be voted on without discussion.

57. Any question for decision by the Dáil shall be brought before it by the introduction of a simple resolution or the introduction of a Bill.

58. The matters that may be dealt with by resolution shall include Standing Orders, adjournments, suspension of Teachtai, appointment of Committees, appointment or removal of the Ceann Comhairle or other officers, questions, of procedure generally, expressions of condolence, censure, thanks and opinion, and any other matters which by law the Dáil may decide by simple resolutions.

59. The matters which shall be dealt with by Bills shall include all legislation and the raising of loans and revenues and the appropriation of moneys.

60. When a Bill is to be introduced into the Dáil a copy shall be handed to the Clerk of the Dáil, and its title, and a short description of its purpose, prepared by the proposers and accepted by the Ceann Comhairle, shall appear on the Agenda. The Teachta giving notice shall move for leave to introduce the Bill. This motion may be debated but no amendment shall be moved. If leave to introduce the Bill is granted such Bill shall be printed and sent to all Teachtaí.


61. When a Bill has been so introduced and circulated, notice of motion shall be given for its second reading. Amendments may be moved on the Second Reading Debate but the Ceann Comhairle shall select for submission to the Dáil not more than three proposed amendments which will test the feeling of the Dáil in regard to the General Principle of the Bill. The other proposed amendments he shall not allow to be moved on the motion for a Second Reading unless so directed by the Dáil. So soon as a [342] Bill shall have been circulated a Teachta may hand to the Clerk notice of any amendments he wishes to propose. Such amendments shall be put in order by the Ceann Comhairle, those which he selects for submission to the Dáil being first, and shall be printed on the Agenda for the day on which the Second Reading is to be proposed.


62. A Bill which has passed its Second Reading shall be referred to a Committee for detailed consideration or shall be so considered by the Dáil, sitting in Committee. In the Committee stage a Bill must be voted on clause by clause, and not as a whole. Any clause may be amended or deleted in Committee and new clauses may be inserted.

63. When a Bill shall have passed its Second Reading the Dáil shall without notice or debate decide whether it shall be referred to the Dáil sitting in Committe or to a special Committee. If it be referred to a Special Committee the Dáil shall decide without debate the number of Teachtaí who shall serve upon such Committee, shall appoint their Chairman, and decide what number shall constitute a quorum.

64. In the case of a Bill referred to a Special Committee, notice of all proposed amendments must be handed in to the Clerk of the Dáil within three day's. Notice may be given by any Teachta, but only members of the Committee may move amendments. All proposed amendments shall be arranged in order and printed and circulated to the Dáil.

65. When a Bill is to be considered by the Dáil sitting in Committee, proposed amendments shall be notified in due time and shall be arranged by the Ceann Comhairle in proper order and shall appear on the Agenda of the Dáil on those days on which the Dáil in Committee is to consider the clauses to which the amendments refer.

66. The Dáil shall go into Committee without question put whenever it reaches business on the Agenda which requires to be considered in Committee. When the Dáil is in Committee business may not be stopped if less than a quorum is present, save when a vote is to be taken.

67. When a Bill is being considered in Committee the motion to be made in respect of each clause shall be that the [343] clause shall stand part of the Bill Amendments to the clause may then be moved. When any clause is moved a Teachta may move as an amendment that a new clause be inserted before it in the Bill. This amendment shall be taken first, and, if passed, the new clause proposed shall become the subject of the motion. The original motion shall not be extinguished, by the passage of such an amendment, but shall only be postponed.

68. A Committee in considering a Bill may at any time adjourn, but Motions to adjourn deemed by the Ceann Comhairle to be obstructive shall not be accepted. The Dáil sitting in Committee may adjourn consideration of a Bill and take up other business on the Agenda for the day. But dilatory or obstructive Motions to adjourn shall not be accepted. The consideration of the preamble of a Bill in Committee may be deferred until the clauses have been considered.

69. When the last clause and preamble (if any) of a Bill shall have been considered in Committee, the Bill shall at once be returned to the Dáil


70. When a Bill has been returned from a Special Committee or from the Dáil sitting in Committee, notice shall be given of a Motion to receive the Bill for final consideration. In the fourth stage debate amendments may be moved, including amendments by the proposers of the Bill. If the Dáil desires it may refer the Bill back to the Committee or to the Dáil siting in Committee with an instruction that specified clauses be reconsidered.

71. After the Dáil has received a Bill from Committee, and such Bill has passed the fourth stage debate, it shall be put forward for final consideration.

72. When a Bill shall come forward for final consideration it shall be moved “that the Bill do now pass.” and no amendments of the Bill shall be permitted save such as are of a purely verbal character, and of which due notice shall have been given.

73. The following Motions may be made without notice:—

(a) A Motion to adjourn in accordance with Standing Orders 14 and 15.

[344](b) A Motion to suspend a Member from the service of the House or from a Committee.

(c) A Vote of Condolence moved by the President or a Member of the Ministry acting in his place.

(d) A Motion fixing the number and quorum and appointing the Chairman of a Special Committee to consider Bill which has passed its Second Reading, and for nominating the Members of such Committee.

(e) A Motion made in the absence the Ceann Comhairle and Leas-Cheann Comhairle that a Teachta shall preside. Such a Motion shall not be debated.

(f) A Motion by permission of Ceann Comhairle that the Dáil adjourn for a period not exceeding two hours.

(g) A Motion that the Dáil continue to sit later than 7 p.m. Such a Motion shall be made only by a Minister, and shall not be debated.

(h) A Motion under Rule 65, which shall be decided without debate, to allow the moving of additional amendments.

74. A Motion for the appropriation or expenditure of money may be moved only by a Minister.

75. A Motion proposed but not voted on at any sitting shall be taken up and decided on at the next sitting of the Dáil.

76. Business on the Agenda for any day which has not been reached may, without notice, be taken up next day after Questions and dealt with or further postponed; but if not taken up next day, shall again be put on the Agenda.

77. Resignation of a Teachta from the Dáil shall be mad in writing to the Ceann Comhairle.

Mr. THOS. JOHNSON:  There were certain drafts distributed on Saturday and certain others today. There is difference on the front page, and I should like to know, Mr. Chairman, if there is any difference in the substance of the draft?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  The difference in the front page was due to inadvertence by which the name of Deputy Cole was omitted. It was sent on to the printers to [345] have that remedied, but there is no difference in the body of the draft. I now call on Deputy Whelehan to move the Motion standing in his name.

Mr. J.B. WHELEHAN:  I beg to move:

“That the draft Standing Orders submitted by the Committee on Standing Orders be adopted.”

There are some clerical errors in the draft report submitted and a few of these will certainly require amendment if they are to be of real practical use. It should be borne in mind by the House that the time at the disposal of the Committee, to get through nearly 80 Standing Orders was very limited because we had to report to the House within three days. I might point out that Standing Order 12 requires amendment and the Committee has an amendment available. In Standing Order 16 a clerical error occurred. The words “10 a.m.” should read 11 a.m. Before Standing Order 25 the heading “Rules of Debate” has been omitted by the printer. Before Standing Order 35 the heading “Closure of Debate” has been omitted, and above Standing Order 57 there should be the heading “Bills and Resolutions.” In Standing Order 63 the sentence, “If it be referred to a Special Committee the Dáil shall decide without debate the number of Teachtaí who shall serve upon such Committee, shall appoint their Chairman and decide what number shall constitute a quorum,” should be omitted. Before Standing Order 72 there should be the heading “Fifth Stage.” There is general agreement also by the Members of the Committee on Standing Orders that the half hour appearing as the opening hour should be altered to the hour and that the opening 2.30 should be altered to 3 o'clock, and that the closing at which debate should stand automatically adjourned should be 7.30 and not 7 o'clock. It is hoped that all these errors will be rectified in the next copies of the Standing Orders available.

Mr. THOS. JOHNSON:  May we have some information as to when these Standing Orders in their amended form are likely to be circulated, and when they will come up for discussion.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Is Deputy Whelehan moving the actual draft [346] or suggesting that the amendment should go into the draft and that the Standing-Orders should then come again before the House?

Mr. WHELEHAN:  I am moving the adoption of the report.

Mr. CORISH:  I don't see any provision for taking division.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Yes, it is in Standing Order No. 38.

Mr. THOS. JOHNSON:  I wish to know, Mr. Chairman, whether we are now receiving the report or whether we are engaged in the passing of the Standing Orders. The report has only been circulated and the mover of this motion I has indicated some amendments that will be necessary.

Mr. COLE:  I take it that Deputy Whelehan is not moving any formal amendments to the report but he is moving that a number of printer's errors should be put right. There are two or three headings omitted from the printed report which were in the written, report.

CATHAL O'SHANNON:  A change of hour is not a printer's error surely.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  The proper thing is to move an adoption of the Orders as they stand, and then when they are seconded amendments could be seconded.

Mr. J.J. BURKE:  I beg to second the motion for the adoption of the Standing Orders.

Mr. THOS. JOHNSON:  What is the procedure now?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  The Committee who drew up the Standing Orders represented the whole Dáil, and were unanimous in their conclusions, and it was hoped that the Standing Orders that were adopted by them would be, in substance, accepted by the Dáil. If we were to debate the Standing Orders clause by clause and take amendments upon the different clauses it would occupy a very long time.

Professor WM. MAGENNIS:  Would it not be more business-like if we were allowed time to read these Standing Orders and to consider them. If they came up to-morrow for consideration we would be in a better position to discuss them than now.

[347]AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  My point is that the Committee were unanimous, and we have practically no Standing Orders at the present time for the conduct of our business. For instance the Standing Orders of the old Dáil did not provide for many contingencies that have already arisen, and it was hoped that these Orders would be adopted and later on if it were found necessary they could be further amended.

CATHAL O'SHANNON:  While some Deputies were lucky enough to get copies of these Orders on Saturday last, some others did not get any, and it seems a rather big job to be asked to adopt and swallow these Orders before we have had time to read them.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  The Committee was appointed to represent the whole Dáil, and to make recommendations which it was assumed would be adopted.

CATHAL O'SHANNON:  Is it not the right of the Dáil to discuss reports of Committees before adopting them?


CATHAL O'SHANNON:  We have not to swallow every recommendation of the Committee?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Certainly not. The Standing Orders can be taken now.

Mr. GAVAN DUFFY:  I hope it will be understood that the effect of the Standing Orders will not be to rule out Motions already on the Paper. The effect would certainly be that, if provision is not made against it.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Yes; there should be an interim period within which they would not apply.

Mr. GAVAN DUFFY:  Will the same apply to questions?

The PRESIDENT:  Yes, and to amendments of the Standing Orders.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Yes, we could take the clauses under the various heads now. We could begin with the first three clauses.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  I do not want to break in at this point, but I wish [348] to suggest that, apart from the changes suggested, and going through them in sequence, there might be also a debate rather anterior to that and on the general principles underlying them, as distinct from the principle underlying each Standing Order. I think that is a subject for debate. In respect of all Bills and Motions discussed before the Dáil there should be a general principles discussion as well as a discussion on clause by clause.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Do you suggest it should be taken in the form of a Bill, and discussed clause by clause?

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  It would be well if it were done. It would serve a useful purpose in debate, and it might show that the changes suggested by one Deputy were consequential upon another.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  We have the Motion that the Standing Orders be adopted.

The PRESIDENT:  If you leave that Motion in suspension, and take the Standing Orders in groups—for instance, take the first three moved and seconded.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Deputy Figgis suggests there should be a general discussion first.

Mr. MILROY:  There is a definite. Motion before the Dáil—that is, that the Standing Orders and necessary corrections be adopted—that is, the corrections arising out of printers' errors. I think that was the business before the Dáil, and not the question of moving them clause by clause.

Mr. JOHNSON:  I think there are a considerable number of amendments required to the Standing Orders as presented; it may take quite a considerable time to discuss these various proposals to be submitted. It would facilitate businesa if having distributed these draft Orders Members were invited to submit amendments for consideration to the Committee, who would bring forward a later report as it might shorten discussion on a later occasion.

Mr. BLYTHE:  It seems to me the best way would be to consider these, and, having made some alterations, the Dáil should consider the adoption of them. New Standing Orders or Amendments of [349] Standing Orders could, be made at any time at one or two days' notice. We could then give a day or a portion of a day, and have these proposed Amendments considered. I think if we were to fro on any oilier basis except adopting these Standing Orders as they strand it would take too long a time to get them through.

Mr. GAVAN DUFFY:  If you take them now you will have them forever; there will be no opportunity for further amendments.

Mr. COLE:  I suggest that without adopting Standing Orders we proceed under the Standing Orders you have until a day be fixed, and that meanwhile Deputy Johnsons suggestion be adopted—that any private member could send in any proposed amendment to the Committee. The Committee could report to the Dáil again, and simply in order to get through we proceed according to that until the Standing Orders are finally adopted.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  I think the difficulty is there are practically no Standing Orders at the moment. We require some Standing Orders, but at the same time the Committee which have drafted these could bring forward another draft, but th difficulty of getting on with the business in the interim is very great.

Professor WM. MAGENNIS:  But should not members have an opportunity of reading them? I received mine only a minute ago. Others received theirs on Saturday.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  It was due to the difficulty of the Postal strike.

Mr. GOREY:  I think the best thing you can do is to scrap them all, and put another Committee on with Mr. Johnson, Mr. Magennis and others. Why not adopt the Standing Orders?

Mr. GAVAN DUFFY:  Luckily for us they were not appointed plenipotentiaries.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Two suggestions have been made, and if they could be put together I think they would solve the problem. One is that the Committee should further consider the Standing Orders and the amendments [350] that might be handed in by any Deputy, and the other is, that we should proceed under the Standing Orders up to a definite time. Objection is made to that that under these Standing Orders there is little time for private business. I suggest that the Government would be in a very difficult position if they tried to stop private business. I take it the Government will give a day for the amendment of Standing Orders at a future date if required.

Mr. JOHNSON:  May I ask what is the real difficulty about conducting business under the old Standing Orders for two or three days?

Mr. HUGHES:  What is the good of wasting all this time over it?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  One difficulty is this—there is no provision in the old Standing Orders for the introduction of a Bill in the Dáil.

Mr. JOHNSON:  There is no reason why it could not be introduced by a Minister as a Ministerial Motion. It is a much more important thing than Deputies Hughes and Gorey seem to think. These Standing Orders are going to rule and govern the proceedings in the Dáil for a Session at least, and they should not be passed over without consideration.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Could we consider the portion that relates to the passage of Bills, and see would that be satisfactory?

Mr. BLYTHE:  It would not be satisfactory.

Mr. MILROY:  If we could get assurances from the Government that they would afford an opportunity of discussing these matters at a later date I think it would meet the demands of he gentlemen opposite. Now it is perfectly obvious that when we are proceeding to the discussion of the Constitution Bill we will require Standing Orders much more amplified than the bare outline on which we have proceeded up to the present. I thought it was an accepted arrangement that this Committee representative of all parties was set up in order that the real points in discussion might be settled by a unanimous recommendation. It certainly seems to be a reasonable request by the Members of [351] the Dáil that we proceed with these Standing Orders in order to get ahead with the business, and that the Government should give an assurance that a date would be set apart for the consideration of the amendments. The main thing is to get ahead with the amendments. What Deputy Corish has suggested would enable us to get ahead, otherwise we would be held up for another week.

Mr. JOHNSON:  As far as I can see, there is no provision made in these Standing Orders for the amendment of the Standing Orders.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  I think there is, in No. 5, p. 58.

Mr. W. COLE:  To put things m order, I move that we proceed under these Standing Orders for the present, and that any amendment that anybody wishes to move to them be sent to you to be discussed by the Committee to-morrow and Wednesday, and that the same Committee report on the final draft to the Dáil by Friday or Saturday. I move that amendment so that we can get on.

Mr. JOHNSON:  Will the Deputy agree to make his Motion that these Standing Orders now submitted apply for three days? If he makes it in that form it will be easier of adoption.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  There should be some definite limit laid down. The amendment made will settle it if the Dáil agrees on the time under which you work these Standing Orders now before us.

CATHAL O'SHANNON:  Would Mr. Cole agree to the adoption of these Standing Orders for three days?

Mr. E. BLYTHE :  I think it would be more desirable to say a week.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  The Committee will meet to-morrow morning, and, even if they agree on a draft, that could not be printed and be in the hands of the Members until Wednesday morning. They would require time before they adopted the second draft of the Standing Orders, so that it will be difficult to take the limit of three days.

Mr. T. JOHNSON:  Say one week.

[352]Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  We could keep on adopting them from week to week until they got into their final state. We want Standing Orders for temporary purposes. There are certain Standing Orders here which I hold are a stultification of this body as a free Assembly.

Mr. GAVAN DUFFY:  I think these might be passed by consent, and. that the proposer ought to leave out Article 53, which is most contentious. It is not necessary at present; we could all agree if that were left out. That is a proposal which puts all private Members out into darkness, so that I think we might as well not come here at all. I think that Article ought to be omitted from the proposition.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  The Motion is that the draft Standing Orders be adopted until Friday next, and that meanwhile any amendments desired by the Deputies should be submitted up to Wednesday, the Committee to report to the Dáil not later than Friday. I would suggest that Monday would be put in there, and that the Committee would, through me, agree to let Deputies have a draft by Friday. I think that is an important thing, and would really meet the objections that have been raised. The matter could then come up for discussion on Monday.

Mr. W. COLE:  Agreed.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  read the amendment: “That the draft Standing Orders be adopted until Monday, the 25th. Amendments should be submitted to the Committee riot later than Wednesday, the 20th, and the Committee to report to the Dáil not later than Monday, the 25th.”

Mr. HUGHES:  I second the amendment.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  Before that put in, may I ask that one line be added to it, or, if not added, let it be a general understanding that a Member who desires to move an Amendment shall go before the Committee and explain what he desires.

Mr. HUGHES:  Does that mean that the whole Dáil can go in and make speeches?

[353]AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  It does, I take it. We will have to be clear about this. Let the Amendments be submitted in writing to the Standing Orders Committee.

Professor MAGENNIS:  It is understood that this is not the only method by which an Amendment can be secured, that is, without prejudice to. any right to move an Amendment at the sitting.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Certainly. That right will not be removed. Amendment put and carried.

Mr. COLE:  Would you mind putting that as a substantive Motion?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  There is one Amendment I would like to suggest from the point of view of the Ceann Comhairle and the Members themselves. The Standing Orders provide that Deputies will receive Orders of the Day by the first post, if there is any on the day of the debate. Now, Standing Order 12 makes that impossible, and I think it will be the sense of the Committee that it should read in the same way as Standing Order 16. If we are only to receive one day's notice of a Motion, it will be impossible for us to circulate to the Deputies the Orders of the Day, because of the difficulties of getting things printed.

Mr. COLE:  On a point of Order. Would you mind putting that Amendment as a Substantive Motion. It is the business before the Dáil, and I submit any other point does not arise.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Yes, but we have adopted Standing, Orders that we cannot carry out.

Motion made and question put: “That the draft Standing Orders be amended until Monday, the 25th inst., and that, meanwhile any Amendment desired shall be submitted to the Committee not later than Wednesday, September 20th, and that the Committee report to the Dáil not later than Monday, 25th.”


AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Bille urn Bunreacht Shaorstáit Eireann—Bille chun Bunreacht do Shaorstat Eireann d'achtú chun an Connradh idir Shasana agus Eire do sighnigheadh i Lundain ar [354] an 6adh lá de Mhí na Nodlag, 1921, to thabhaurt chun criche.

“Constitution of Saorstat Eireann Bill —Bill to enact a Constitution for Saorstat Eireann for implementing the Treaty between Great Britain and Ireland, signed at London on the 6th day of December, 1921.”

The PRESIDENT:  I presume at this, the first stage under Section 60 of the Standing Orders, that this is a Bill to be introduced to the Dáil, and a copy handed to the Clerk. It is really leave to introduce the Bill. Copies of the Bill, or at least of the Constitution, have already been circulated, as well as some other information which was requested. In asking leave to introduce the Constitution in the form of a Bill, I should say that the Constitution is really in three compartments—in three divisions—as the sections are mixed and intermixed, and there are, first of all, the sections or articles of the Constitution which are vital to the Treaty or Articles of Agreement which have been entered into with the British Government. There are, secondly, those articles which concern the Agreement entered into by the late President and the late Commander-in-Chief, on the one hand, and those who represent what are described as the Southern Unionists. And the third part would refer to recommendations that have been put up, in connection with the Constitution, by the Grovemment, which are not vital to the instrument itself, so that the Dáil would have a perfectly free hand with regard to these precise Articles. Now, these articles will be explained when we reach the stage at which the discussion on the Constitution will take place, and I Have asked, with the sanction of the Cabinet, that the Minister for Home Affairs shall take charge of this Constitution in putting it through the Dáil. These articles are vital to the Agreement that has been arrived at after a considerable amount of discussion with the English signatories to the Treaty and our representatives on the other side. They may not represent all that Members might wish, but they do represent the maximum that our representatives were able to secure at that time, and, I should say, now. And it will be found that, if compared with the Constitutions of the other members of the Commonwealth, they are equal to the [355] best of them, and combine all the best elements that are represented in any of these Constitutions. That is as far as that part of the Constitution is concerned. The next part is a question of honour which affects the Government, and I should say the Party which supports the Government, having been made in much the same way as the Articles of Agreement with the British Government that is, the Agreement entered into with the representatives of the Southern Unionists on the one hand and Mr. Griffith on the other—mainly Mr. Griffith, although I believe the Minister for Home Affairs was also associated with him.

It should be mentioned first that the adoption of the principle of Proportional Representation in the elections for the Dáil was one of the matters offered in the Draft Constitution itself as originally prepared, for the purpose of giving effect to President-Griffith's Undertaking in his published statement on the subject. It is therefore a special safeguard for the representation of minorities, in what is known or called Proportional Representation. That is not mentioned in the Letters of Agreement, but I intend to submit it for the sanction of the Dáil. The heads are as follows:—“(1) The Senate to consist of 60 members, of whom two are to be selected by the National University of Ireland and two by the Dublin University. If the Six Counties remain in the Free State there would also be two members added from the University of Belfast. (2) The remaining 56 members of the Senate to be elected from a Panel consisting of three times he number of members to be elected, of whom two-thirds are to be nominated by the Dáil and one-third by the Senate, in each case voting according to principles of Proportional Representation; and also of persons who have at any time been members of the Senate and indicate their desire to be included on the Panel. (3) The Electorate for the Senate to be persons of thirty years and upwards. (4) The period between the first presentation of a Bill to the Senate and the date upon which it shall be deemed to be passed, whether the Senate agree or not, to be 270 days, as provided by Article 37 of the Draft. (5) Power to be given to three-fifths of the members of the Senate to require a referendum during the 90 day period [356] mentioned in Article 46, without a petition as there provided, that is to say, A three-fifths majority of the Senate in Session and voting may call for a referendum, or, in the alternative, the petition there mentioned to remain. (6) Provision to be made for joint debate of the two Houses in case of disagreement, but not for joint voting (see end of Article 37). This provision, not be applied to a money bill. (7) Decision on a referendum to be final, without further delay. Voting at the referendum, to be by ballot. (8) The question whether any particular Bill is or is not Money Bill to be certified by the Speaker of the Dáil, subject to appeal to a Committee of Privileges drawn equally from both Houses presided over by a Judge of the Supreme Court who shall have a casting vote, but no other vote.” That is to say of the twenty-eight Members who are nominated, fourteen will draw lots and fourteen successful Members will have twelve years of office, and the other fourteen will have six years of office. Of the elected Members the first fourteen elected will have nine years term of office and the last fourteen elected three years term of office. That would be for the first Senate only. The nominated Members will be nominated by the President in the manner calculated to represent minorities of interest not represented adequately in the Dáil, and such nominations to be made on the advice of the following bodies:—

Chambers of Commerce,

College of Physicians and oUege of Surgeons,

Benchers of King's Inns and Incorporated Law Society, and

The Corporations of Dublin and Cork.

The stipulation as to consultation not to be embodied in the Constitution but to be contained in an undertaking to be embodied in a resolution of the new Parliament. The text of the resolution to be submitted to the new Government was agreed between President Arthur Griffith, the Southern Unionists and the British Government and will be properly submitted when that portion of the Constitution is dealt with.

10. A matter which gave rise to considerable difference of opinion and was ultimately after much debate agreed to, was that the constituency for the election of Senators should be the Saorstat taken [357] as a whole, that is the entire country was to be the constituency.

11. It was also agreed that the entire term of office of a Senator should be twelve years and that no person should be eligible for election who had not reached the age of 35 years.

12. The clauses in which these various headings of agreement are set out were. first settled by the Law Officer on behalf of the Provisional Government and by Sir F. Greer and Sir F. Liddell on behalf of the British Government and the Southern Unionists and the texts were submitted at a conference and agreed to as they are now contained in the draft Constitution. All these matters are the subject of deliberate agreement between the Irish Government representatives and the representatives of Southern Unionists and the British Government; and the Irish Government is accordingly bound to pass all these provisions as Government provisions.

It is a matter of honour with us and with those supporting us. Now I can if it should be so desired circulate that memorandum amongst the Members so that there should be an understanding of the position—(I have already explained it to some)—so as to leave no doubt on Members' minds as regards our position. We are committed absolutely in honour to this agreement, which was made, as far as we are concerned, speaking on behalf of the Government, by the late President Griffith and accepted by the Government of the day. As regards the other matters, which concern, let us say, the Constitution of the Executive and the internal business of the Constitution—that is the internal business of the country generally—they are entirely for the Dáil, and the Government propose to leave them to the consideration of the Dáil. They will be explained better perhaps when we consider the Constitution. Now I have in accordance with the Standing Orders, moved that leave be given for the introduction of the Constitution.

MINISTER for HOME AFFAIRS (Mr. Kevin O'Higgins):  I beg formally to second the President's motion for leave of the Dáil to introduce a Bill to give effect to the Constitution, as agreed upon between the representatives of the Provisional Government and the British Government. I had myself a certain amount to do with the negotiations [358] consequential on the Treaty, and with the late President Griffith I met representatives of the British Government. I have intimate personal knowledge of the situation that had to be faced and of the very considerable difficulties and embarrassments that arose by reason of the situation existing here. The Constitution is one which I hold to be a strict but-fair interpretation of the Treaty. Had circumstances here been other than what they were, I do believe that we could have got a more pleasantly worded Constitution; but I do not boheve that in any important point of substance we could have got a better Constitution than we in fact have got. It was our duty— it was the duty of those who went to represent the Provisional Government and the Irish people-to see that the broadest possible Constitution, within the limits of the Treaty, was secured. I think we have got that. I think it was the duty of the Irish representatives to hug the safety line; to walk as it were the cliff's edge while being very careful not to hurl their country over that cliff's edge. And I know that the cliff's edge was walked and I know that the safety line was hugged. I know that there will be many in this Dáil to say that they died soft with the British; that we brought home a Constitution dictated by the British. There are many who will raise little finessing points to show as it were that the men who went representing the Provisional Government and representing Ireland to sit down at a table to work out the interpretation of that Treaty were not sufficiently insistent on their country's rights. Well, while we expect that kind of criticism, while we resign ourselves to the inevitable with the best grace we can muster, we do expect that this Dáil collectively will realise that the men who went to England were not out to cheat their country out of one jot or tittle of her rights, and perhaps they will say too that the men who went to England were not personally of the type that would be at all likely to do that. Every time we crossed to England to negotiate points consequential on the Treaty, things happened here that were meant to be mines under our feet. There was never a time we sat down at the table with the British that wires did not come pouring in of soldiers shot in College Green, or raids across the Six-county border or some such incidents that were [359] not calculated to smooth our path and create a better atmosphere. It was in that kind of atmosphere that we had to negotiate the Constitution. Above all it was in the atmosphere following on the Pact, which conditions here made necessary, or which some people considered that conditions here made necessary, that the Constitution had to be worked out, and fought out, across the table. And while I say that, and stress that, it is with no apologetic note that we introduce this Constitution. We introduce it as something that we are prepared to stand for, something which we believe holds great possibilities for our country, something, too, that we consider, as I have said, a strict but fair interpretation of the Treaty. Later you will hear the other side—for the moment we have the floor—and you will hear from many quarters criticism going to show how much better other people could have done than the men who went. That may or may not be the case. We at any rate as a Government are standing over certain parts of this Constitution, which we believe to be vital to the settlement effected on the 6th December last, and if the Dáil rejects these portions of the Constitution, we will be very glad indeed to hand over to other people, who, perhaps, will do better. In considering this Constitution as a whole, very frequent reference will be made to the Clause of the Treaty which reads: “That the law and practice and constitutional usage governing the relations of the Crown with the Government and Parliament of Canada, shall be those governing its relations with the Government and Parliament of the Irish Free State.” And you come up against the fact that that peculiar thing known as the British Constitution, which is not a written Constitution, is largely a bundle of fictions, largely a collection of things which have a theoretical existence and which have not an existence in fact, and it is only when, and if, that is thoroughly grasped that one can read in cold blood, and without any particular tremor, some things that are set out here in this Constitution of the Irish Free State. Article I states: “The Irish Free State (Saorstat Eireann) is a co-equal member of the community of Nations forming the British Commonwealth of Nations.” That is to say that the administration of Ireland, the making and moulding and amending of its laws, the shaping of its [360] destiny, is as much in the hands of the Irish people as those matters with regard to England are in the hands of the English people. That is something which we hold. is worth cherishing. That is the thing-we are fighting for—that the Irish people may be the sovereign authority here a really as the people of England are the sovereign authority in England, or the people of Canada are the sovereign authority in Canada; that the will of the people may rule; that at any time the people may change the law or change their administration; that in reality they. are the supreme authority in the land. Back through the ages we have had a. traditional ouilook on law and government which no reasonable man expects to change in five, or seven, or even ten years. That attitude of protest, that attitude of negation, that attitude sometimes of sheer wantonness, and waywardness, and destructiveness, which is very evident at the moment, has been to a large extent a traditional attitude on the part of the Irish people. The early Governments of Ireland—the first Government, and the second, and the third, and the fourth-while keeping a firm, cool grip on the land, will have always to bear in mind that fact. It will take time, it will take actual examination of this Constitution in working, to convince the people that they are, in fact, the authority here. The Constitation is, after all, the mechanics of government, and the people will have to see these mechanics at work before they alter that traditional outlook of theirs, and before they grasp the real fact that the Constitution puts them definitely m the saddle in Ireland. There are things in this Constitution which we would wish out of it, just as there were things in the Treaty which we would have otherwise, if we had our way; but we had to look beyond these things to the really precious thing that is embodied in the Constitution, and that is the real freedom that it contains, the real control it gives the Irish people to live their own lives and develop their own civilisation. We did not drive the British out of the country; we were not able, and there was no great prospect that we ever would be able. Many would have liked to do with the British what we read that Brian Boru did with the Danes, not far from here. But we did not do it. We were not able to do it. If we had been able to do it, the things that are in the Treaty [361] and that are in the Constitution, that many here find irksome, would not be there. And we felt that only by doing that could 100 per cent. of our war programme be attained. And so we took less than 100 per cent. of our war programme, and we abandoned something of those inscriptions which were written on our battle standards. and we abandoned them for the sake of the Irish Nation, the living Irish Nation, and the Irish Nation of the future. No man abandoned them lightly, and no man abandoned them without pain. But they were abandoned because to our minds, at any rate, it seemed the best thing to do for the Irish people in the circumstances that had arisen. Not with any note of apology, not on the defensive, but with the desire to explain fully to all here the circumstances in which this Constitution was moulded, we come before this Dáil. I am convinced that there are not any Members in this Dáil who, confronted with the set of circumstances which the moulders of this Constitution were confronted with, would not have done the thing which we have done. We will go through it clause by clause; much of it is an open matter for the Dáil; much of it will be dealt with with the whips off, and no party divisions; but certain parts of it, as the President has explained, must be regarded as matter on which the Government stands or falls. If the Government falls we will give every support to OUT successors in any efforts they may make to attain better.

Mr. THOMAS JOHNSON:  Mr. Chairman, it was not very easy to follow the speeches that have been made, because the proposal is, I gather, simply to ask leave to bring in a Bill to implement the Articles of Agreement for the Treaty. But inasmuch as the proposer and seconder have gone into some little detail in describing the Constitution, and consequently the Bill, it is perhaps desirable that there should be some debate OR the whole question, and some indication, at least, of the mind of the Dáil should be given. There is one matter that strikes me as worthy of consideration and that is that there is no compulsion—so far as I can read in the Treaty—for a Constitution —a written Constitution—to be established at all.

Certainly there is no compulsion that such a written Constitution as that submitted to us should be established this [362] year, and, in view of the supreme importance to the Nation of the enactment of a Constitution, it is of very doubtful wisdom that such steps should be taken at a time when the country is not able to give consideration to such a Constitution, when large numbers of people are not acquainted with the circumstances or implications of any Clause, are not acquainted with the proposals, as a matter of fact, which will bind them for a generation perhaps. It would be wiser, I suggest, to leave the enactment of a Constitution until there is something like quietude in the country, and time to consider seriously such a very important Act. I submit that it would be enough, in so far as any obligations that have been entered into, to re-enact, re-affirm, or ratify—whichever phrase you like—the Treaty itself, and let the Constitution grow out from that and thereby flatter our neighbours by following their own practice, in allowing the Constitution to develop by custom and usage. Certainly that may well be the procedure that could be adopted by this Dáil for a couple of years, because let us bear in mind—and I am reminded of this by the emphasis that has been placed on the Clause dealing with the Law, Practice and Constitutional Usage of Canada—there is some doubt as between the British Dominions and Great Britain herself as to the Constitutional powers of those Dominions. The Constitutional Practice or Constitutional Usage has not yet been formulated. It varies slightly as between one Dominion and another, and we are aware that there is a proposal afoot that there shall be a Constitutional Conference set up as between those Dominions and Great Britain, so that some clear understanding shall be arrived at as to what the Constitutional Usage permits those Dominions to adopt. What we are asked to do is, not only to set the law for Ireland, not only to establish a Constitution for Ireland, but, in effect, as it seems to me, also to formulate the Constitutional Usage of Canada, Australia, and South Africa, because what is established in these Agreements for Ireland is thereby also established for those particular Dominions, and vice versa. We are asked now to put down in writing what that Constitutional Usage is, and I submit it is very well worthy of consideration whether it is not premature to do so, and whether it is not prejudicing the movement towards the greater freedom of [363] those Dominions. Assuming that that view is not accepted by the Ministry or the majority of this Dáil, I would submit for earnest consideration as between to-day and the later stages, that those parts which the President spoke of as not being vital, and which are to be open to a general discussion and a free vote, should be taken first, and discussed on their merits, as something applicable to this country, and affecting this country alone. It probably would add to the amenities and help also those of us who are novices in this business, to accustom ourselves to the practices of a Legislative Assembly, and shall I say, a Constituent Assembly. The use of the words “Constituent Assembly” reminds me, too, that the draft, as submitted, indicates that this is a Constituent Assembly. Well, I have read any history that I have read very badly, if a Constituent Assembly is not acting on its free volition, and prescribing, as the late lamented President wrote in a letter, a Constitution for itself. We are not doing that. The Minister for Home Affairs has told us that the Constitution was agreed upon between representatives of the Provisional Government. In Saturday's issue of the Irish Time a very illuminating passage occurred in an article by Mr. Michael MacDonagh. “In `Poyning's Law,' ” he said, “only such Bills could be passed as had been submitted to the King and Council of England and approved by them before the Irish Parliament was even summoned.” That is a very interesting side light, and one would be loth to think that it is the mind of the Ministers that we should be re-establishing Poyning's Law in the practice and Constitutional Usage of Ireland. In the same article there is another passage which I would commend to the House. The Journal of the Irish House of Commons of the 17th or 18th Century, shows that “a Committee was always appointed for the purpose of comparing the Bill which came back from London with the Bill that left the House or the Council Chamber at Dublin Castle. Sometimes the Bill was found to have undergone so radical a change either at the hands of the Irish Privy Council or the English Privy Council, or both together, as to be almost unrecognisable by those who had originally drafted it, and if they could not re-shape it again to their liking they preferred to kill the maimed thing rather than have [364] it kept alive on the Statute Book.” I think it is common knowledge that that procedure is the procedure that is being adopted in regard to this Constitution. It is admitted by the Minister for Home Affairs that it was submitted to the British Government and that in consultation with them it was radically altered. After that radical alteration, it is brought before this Dáil for the Dáil to pretend to future generations that it arose out of this Dáil, of the Dáil's own initiative, when it is nothing of the sort. I take the view, and I think my view is the same as that of the vast majority of those who support us in the country. I take the view that the revolutionary effort of the last few years has fallen short of its objective, and that the Treaty was the best that could be obtained at that the time. That being the case, I think we should have dug ourselves in at that position, and made the utmost, of everything we could get under that Treaty, but I am sorry to think, a Chinn Comhairle, that the evidences show that that has not been done. The Constitution, as drafted, is not as good a thing for Ireland as the Treaty itself was. It is much less valuable for Ireland than the Treaty itself, and we are asked here to enact a Constitution which contains clauses which no assembly elected as this has been, and as its predecessors were, could enact as a voluntary effort-on their part. I make a great distinction between proposing an enactment in the form of a Constitution initiated from the Irish people or from tho Dáil, and accepting or abiding by something which has been forced by excessive power over comparative weakness of this country, What we are asked to do here is to initiate of our own volition something which the country will despise us for in another generation. It would be infinitely better, for the good name of this country, if we were to say to the British Ministers “if that is your decision, we will submit.”“If that is something which you are going to impose upon Ireland then in view of the circumstances Ireland may submit,” but to ask us to consider this as a constituent assembly enacting a Constitution for ourselves by ourselves and of our own volition, and then to go forward and speak of these things, these references to the power of the monarchy, to the power of the Privy Council, to the various positions that the King is brought [365] in in this Constitution, is something that, I am sure, in ten years' time, in five years' time, the country will regret exceedingly, and will look upon this Dáil as having failed to take advantage of the opportunities which lay at their hand. There will be, of course, many opportunities to discuss the whole question. There will be, I take it, opportunities to enlarge upon the various portions of the Constitution draft on the second reading, and I don't propose to go any further into this question, but I would ask somebody who is speaking for the Ministry at a later stage to explain how it is intended that this Bill shall become an Act of this Dáil.

Dr. P. McCARTAN:  I would like to know have we power to draw up a Constitution, or have we not? We knew nothing about this draft Constitution till it came here the other day. It was submitted to us by somebody we may know of or not know of. We were told that under the old Dáil a Committee was appointed by the Provisional Government to draw up a Constitution. They drew up a Constitution; three drafts at least were submitted to the Provisional Government. Now we have only one draft submitted to us. Where are the other drafts? Are we going to have the other drafts submitted as well as this one, or is this Mr. Churchill's draft, that we must swallow? We can change, perhaps, the number of buttons on Dick Mulcahy's coat or on the uniforms of the Civic Guard, but we cannot change a vital part of this Constitution. I other words, we are only play-acting; we have no power here at all. I said at a private meeting of the Pro-Treaty Party that the Government was committed up to the eyes to the British Government, and that they dare not put their record on the table. The British Government has got the Government here that it wants, audit is the Government that will do the bidding of Mr. Churchill. There are certain essential points in this Constitution that you must adopt. Some members were complaining the other day that it was not fair that they should vote against their consciences. They will have to vote against their consciences or else be excluded from the machine of the majority or the machine will walk over them. I am one of those who do not care a jot about the machine. I do not want a job nor I do not care whether I [366] am returned to Parliament again or not. It is a farce for us logo into this Constitution if we cannot change every line of it, and it as our duty to change every line of it if we feel inclined. To say that there are certain parts of this Constitution that we must accept is an insult to this Dáil, and I hope, that this Dáil will regard it as such.

Mr. SEAN MILROY:  I wish to speak equally as pronounced as the last speaker, but with a slightly different attitude towards this matter. Of course, we would have a different Constitution and a different Treaty if England was not where she is. In fact, we would not require the Treaty at all if England were at the bottom of the sea. But that big geographical fact that England is there is something you cannot get rid of. We accepted the Treaty as an arrangement between Great Britain and Ireland. Some of us accepted it with reluctance in some of its aspects, but we did accept it as an instrument by means of which the Irish nation could get a grip of its own country and develop the country in accordance with the ideals and interests of the Irish Nation. As the late Gommander-in-Chief said, it gave us freedom to achieve the freedom that the Nation aspires to. I do not say it was an ideal Treaty, but, as I said, if we had been able to dictate terms to England the Treaty might have been different. Everyone who voted for the Treaty and 99 out of every 100 of the Irish people realised when that the Treaty was under discussion and under process of negotiation that Ireland was not dictating terms to England but that Ireland was trying to extract the best terms she could get from England. Now I come to the question of the Constitution. I take exactly the same standpoint in regard to the Constitution as I did in regard to the Treaty. I do not Suppose there is any man in this Dáil who will deny that England is there, that she is only a few miles away from our shores, and that she has the control of the resources of an Empire. If you imagine that by ignoring that fact you eliminate her from the considerations of this Dáil, then you are simply doing the best you can to lead the people of this country into a morass. I take exactly the same view with regard to the limitation of conditions and resources in regard to the Constitution as I do in regard to the [367] Treaty. I said with reference to the Treaty that. it did give Ireland real power over its own resources. It gives Ireland not perhaps full power but power to take hold of the Nation and build it up and make it strong in order to achieve that status winch was the goal and aim and ideal of the aspirations of our people. There is not perhaps that full measure of National freedom we should all like, and it may be short of that status for the Irish Nation which we have always been desirous to see. We have got to plough along strenuously the path before us, but we will never make a start on that road unless we build on what we consider the sure ground of realising the fact that this Constitution gives the Irish Nation power over life and death within its own shores. The Minister of Home Affairs said—and I think we can attach considerable weight to his words—that this Constitution is the strict and fair interpretation of the Treaty, and by that I infer that it does give to the Irish people these powers and these rights which we considered we were gaining through the Treaty when we were considering it. I have looked through the Constitution, and these parts which are symbols of the relations between, the two countries do not in my judgment diminish in the slightest degree the effective control and power of the Irish people over the resources within the Irish Nation. There may be symbols we do not relish—symbols which if we were ten thousand, two thousand, or even one thousand miles away from England we might be able to disregard. Are we going to reject that vital power of life and death and the future of the Irish Nation rather than allow these symbols which are really nothing more than symbols to remain? Are we going to reject these vital matters in the future of the Irish Nation because of the presence of these symbols? Deputy Johnson suggested that the enactment of this Constitution should be deferred for two years. I wonder what does the Deputy mean by that. Is this another attempt to torpedo the Treaty. If he understood anything about the Treaty he knows that to defer the Constitution for two years would be one year and nine months too late. As I understand the arrangement entered into, it means that it this Constitution is not in operation on [368] the 6th December next the Treaty expires.

Dr. McCARTAN :  Give us your authority.

Mr. MILROY:  The authority I have is the authority of the Law Adviser to the Provisional Government, Mr. Hugh Kennedy, and I think he knows as much about a matter of this kind as Deputy O'Shannon, who shakes his head incredulously.

CATHAL O'SHANNON:  On a point of personal explanation. I shook my head because I have studied the Treaty, and there is nothing of the kind in the Treaty. There is, in what is called the Free State Act, which is a different thing altogether.

Mr. MILROY:  Article 79 of the draft Constitution says:—

“The passing and adoption of this Constitution by the Constituent Assembly and the British Parliament shall be announced as soon as may be, and not later than the sixth day of December, nineteen hundred and twenty-two.”

CATHAL O'SHANNON:  That is the draft Constitution and not the Treaty.

Mr. MILROY:  The Deputy is still incredulous; well, here is Article 1 of the Treaty:—

“Ireland shall have the Constitutional status in the community of Nations known as the British Empire, as the Dominion of Canada, the Commonwealth of Australia, the Dominion of New Zealand, and the Union of South Africa.”

Very well, then, by a little intellectual strain, Members who are doubtful about the accuracy of my remarks and arguments will probably realise that Ireland will not have that Constitutional status unless she has a Constitution. I want to know on what that Constitution is to be based.

Dr. McCARTAN:  On the English, is it not?

Mr. MILROY:  The English have an unwritten Constitution.

Dr. McCARTAN:  So can we.

Mr. MILROY:  I have not seen any indication of it in this Dáil; in any [369] case that is a point that other Deputies who may follow me can rebuff if they care to do so. I make this point of argument that if the Constitution is not in operation by the 6th of December the Treaty expires. If my argument is fallacious other Deputies can rebuff it. If my argument is true I want to ask Members to weigh well before they take any step that is likely to undermine this Treaty and render it nugatory. It would mean that they were again going to reduce this country into a state of chaos and place it in the military occupation of the foreigner as was the case before the Treaty between Great Britain and Ireland was arranged. I urge that point and I say it is one of very serious import and one that should have the weighty consideration of all who seriously think whether there is any value to be attached to the Treaty or not. I think there is great value to be attached to the Treaty. I held that opinion when, it as first discussed. I held that opinion when I voted for it, and I hold that opinion now when I want to see enacted an instrument which will secure for Ireland the benefits of the Treaty and enable us to get on the work of reconstruction. I was amazed on listening to Deputy Johnson, who is Chairman of the Irish Labour Party, quoting the Irish Times as an authority on Constitutional Law.

Dr. McCARTAN :  It is as good an authority as Churchill, and it is Irish anyhow.

Mr. MILROY:  I am not quoting Churchill. Deputy Johnson suggested we were engaged in a game—I do not know how exactly to frame his expression—of attempting to bamboozle the country by the pretence that we were enacting a Constitution. Different people will hold different opinions about that. I for one am not standing for this Constitution as an ideal thing, but I am standing for it because I believe it will enable the Irish Nation to get the full powers of which the Treaty speaks. That I my attitude, and I am here not to declare that the Constitution is the most ideal thing we could frame if we were unaffected by external association with a foreign State. The great fallacy which many politicians in this country and other countries fall into is that they overemphasise their arguments. Of course [370] there are exceptions to that. Now when I hear some intellectual men, like Deputy Johnson, saying, if we enact a a Constitution then in ten or five years the Irish people will despise us, I say, if that is not an example of over-emphasis of argument and exaggeration of statement I do not know what is. He says that in five or ten years the Irish people will despise us if we do not reject or else decline to enact this Constitution. I say in five or ten years the Irish people will not only despise us, but condemn us, if we do not take steps to get the Treaty into operation and give the Irish people the management of their own affairs and the entire resources of the nation. If you reject this Constitution you imperil that stage being reached. That is how I view it, and l want to see all this discussion about commas, phrases, and full stops put an end to, and all this disorder and tumult finished, and Irish people entering into such a state that every honest man will get an honest days pay for an honest day's work. I say we should get on with this Constitution such as it is, as it is a step to put us in possession of the powers of the Treaty. For that reason I support the motion to bring in this Bill.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Before calling on Deputy Figgis I wish to say it is only right that Deputies should be allowed to speak without interruption. Deputies who feel inclined to speak when other Deputies are speaking should reserve their remarks for a subsequent speech.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  I rise to support the motion that leave be given to bring in this Bill. I may say leave to introduce the Bill hardly admits of so full a discussion as it is now receiving. I desire to confine myself to meeting briefly one or two of the points which have been made, and ask the Government if they would answer a certain question which I think will prove to be of some subsequent importance. Deputy Johnson stated the reason why the Constitution should not be passed was the fact that we were a Constituent Assembly, and his argument, if I rightly interpret it, is that, being a Constituent Assembly, we must be entirely free. That is not the case. If one looks at the historical facts as one knows them in Europe to-day, we discover how far from [371] the case that is. Take the facts of the last two or three years. Poland passed and prescribed a Constitution for the Polish people. They elected what was a Constituent Assembly specially for the purpose, but that Constituent Assembly was restricted by a document known as the Treaty of Versailles. The same is true of Czecho-Slovakia and Germany. They were all bound by treaties even more than the international document that bound Ireland in respect of the Treaty passed last December. Deputy Johnson will have an opportunity of seeing that when he gets a large book on the subject which will be put before him in a few days. All Constituent Assemblies are necessarily tied by the International Treaties by which they come into being. This Assembly is coming into being by reason of a certain International Treaty, and the conditions of this International Treaty has bound our freedom to that extent. So one comes to another stage in Deputy Johnson's argument not so easy to meet, and that stage is, we are bound here as a Constituent Assembly by a good deal more than was bargained for in the International Treaty, and I believe that may be to a certain extent true. I think, as all Deputies will think, whether they fought for the Constitution or against the Constitution, it will be agreed by even Deputy, it is not exactly the instrument we would like to see. It is not as good as it could be made; there are words in it that could with advantage and dignity be dropped out of it. I believe it will be found in subsequent discussions that these words, however they seem to be, do not in fact very materially change the nature of the institutions embodied in the Constitution. These words are not nice words, but if we look past them to the actual machinery of Government we will find that the machinery itself, apart from the little adornments, is the machinery of freedom. I think it would be very much better if we were to pay more attention to perfecting that machinery, as I believe it might be perfected, than by paying an unnecessary amount of attention, to the little flags and emblems put over the machinery, but which do not form part of the machinery. We wish to get the machinery of this Constitution to the last point of perfection we can, and I think the best attention of the Dáil might be directed towards it rather than to other [372] matters which, I suggest, are not matcrial. This is the third Dáil following upon the second Dáil, and the second Dáil entered into certain contracts which are obligatory upon us and certain negotiations the effects of which are obligatory upon us, and they also made certaily mistakes which the Nation judged as mistakes of which we are also necessarily the heirs. Criticisms have been made by Members of this Dáil, by those who do not see fit to attend the proceedings, who said that certain parts of the Constitution are badges of serfdom. I beg to say that those parts of the Constitution would never have been in the Constitution if we had peace from the 1st January until now, and it is the things that they have done in this country which have brought the Constitution into its present form when it might have been in another form. But we being the third Dáil and the successors of the second Dáil are heirs of all the mistakes made by the Members of that Dáil, and of those responsibilities we cannot acquit ourselves. There are some adornments which are not peculiarly picturesque adornments, and some of them, I hope, we may be able to prune away. For these reasons, and because I believe that the substantial machinery of this Constitution is the machinery of freedom, and because this Constitution has been put before this Dáil under certain international circumstances which you have to recognise, circumstances in the first case of an International Treaty and circumstances in the second case of subsequent bargainings adopted by the Ministry of the Dáil which preceded this, bargainings with the English Ministry, the responsibilities of which we have to shoulder and acquit ourselves. I believe that this Constitution, subject to certain changes in that machinery, changes in which the President will agree in a large number of matters are not material at all to the obligations incurred in the Treaty. I welcome the assurance he gave to the Dáil that in all matters of that kind that the debate will be free of divisions taken without any whips being put on. In these matters I believe that we could improve this machinery, and I hope at a later stage to be able to make one or two suggestions for the consideration of the Dáil for that purpose. There were one or two matters discussed by certain [373] parties, and I would like the President to hear this, as it may have escaped his attention at the moment. It is this—I do not know exactly what the draft is that we are granting leave to introduce because the text of the draft itself is not in, our hands unless this printed version be the text. If it is the text I do urge upon the Ministry for consideration this point; they will be aware that the text should be the actual text of the Constitution without any sectional or chapter headings lest in subsequent litigation, these chapter headings be construed in connection with the text, a thing that has occurred in other countries and has led to a great deal of confusion. I suggest that the actual text should be given by itself and that all chapter and sectional headings be omitted and the text debated article by article. I believe that will lead to simplification in the future and avoid a great deal of confusion.

CATHAL O'SHANNON:  Ba mhaith liom cupla focal a rá i dtaobh ruda seo. 'Sé mo thuairim go mba cheart go mbeadh an Dáil saor chun an Bun-Reacht do chur i bhfeidhm. Dubhairt an Teachta Figes go raibh an sgéal céadna ag an bTólainn. Ach bhí an Thólainn ag troid gualain le gualain le na daoine a chuir Connradh Idir-Náisiúnta ar bun. Ní dubhairt an Teachta Figes an rud sin. Connradh idir-náisiúnta a bhí ann; Connradh do rinneadh idir chó-oibritheoirí. Ní Connradh idir tír mhór agus tír bheag do rinneadh. Dubhairt sé an rud céadna mar gheall ar an nGearmáin. Bhí an Ghearmáin buailte. Mo náire an Teachta! Is mór an difríocht atá idir an dá rud agus an dá bhun-reacht. Do rinne sé tagairt do Czecho-Slovakia leis, agus bhí an chuis chéadna acu-go mbeadh comhacht agus congnamh ag an dá náisiún, na Gearmáini agus ua Austrians, do throid. Ach níl sé mar sin linne, náisiún amhaín, agus ní rabhamar ag troid ar thaobh na Sasanach. Bhíomar ag troid in a n-aghaidh nuair a rinneamar an Connradh seo.

I have just been saying that there is no analogy at all between the case of Poland and Czecho-Slovakia, which Deputy Figgis referred to, and the case of Ireland. It is perfectly true that these countries, as Deputy Figgis reminded us, and also Germany, drew up, enacted, and prescribed [374] Constitutions, and although they were bound by the infamous Treaty of Versailles, that in the first case was an International Treaty. It was not a Treaty between one big State and a little State, but in the case of Germany it was the case of a State beaten to the ropes that was down in the dust, smashed almost into one thousand fragments. Ireland even yet is not smashed into one thousand fragments. There is no parallel between Poland and Germany and Ireland. If there were a parallel between the case of Poland and Ireland, then the President of Poland would have gone to Moscow to draw up certain clauses which he would have brought back and which he would explain, as the President explained to-day we must have. The President of the Polish Republic did not do anything of the kind. The Poles drew up the Constitution within the four walls of the International Treaty; they acted as a Sovereign State and a Sovereign people in enacting and prescribing their Constitution. I was sorry to hear the Minister for Foreign Affairs saying that the Ministry was not going to apply for membership to the League of Nations just now. My friends and myself have no cause at all to be proud or fond of the League of Nations. It is far from perfect, but in this particular it would have furnished a test of the status of this State of ours. It would have furnished a test of the status of the State that is going to be built up on that Constitution, and whether it is in any sense of the word, even in the sense in which the term is applied to the British Dominions, a new State or a Sovereign State. It would also have applied a test of the genuineness of the Treaty between Great Britain and Ireland, and a test of the genuineness of other things as well. I am sorry for another reason that this Constitution has been brought forward to us in this way. Unless my reading of things has been very much astray, there has been a movement amongst what I might call the most liberal and generous students of what is rather, I think, generously referred to as the British Commonwealth, to procure what is called, I believe, a Declaration of Constitutional rights. Now I am not one of those who are going to argue, as some members of the late Dáil did, on the legal authority and sovereignty of the [375] British Parliament, or Crown, or anything else. The Constitutional position might be good enough for me provided that Constitutional position was made clear and defined. It seems to me that now that there was to be an opportunity of making that Declaration of Constitutional Rights clear and explicit in this document of the draft Constitution of the Irish Free State, that opportunity has not been taken advantage of by the Committee which drafted that Constitution, or the party on the other side of the water which agreed with the Provisional Government on this draft Constitution. There must be in ordinary human relations limitations and restrictions on the acts of any Assembly, as there must be on the acts of every individual; otherwise we would have nothing but philosophical anarchism. There must be restrictions on the acts of this Assembly, but I submit the restrictions and limitations which the President and Minister for Home Affairs mentioned to-day in connection with this Constitution are a stultification of the rights of this National Assembly, and that we have no right to submit, without some kind of a protest, to these limitations. I need not go back to the incident between Deputy Milroy and myself. Deputy Milroy was not able to show that the 6th of December comes into the Treaty or the Free State Act of this Constitution. He refers to Mr. Kennedy, K.C., the Legal Adviser to the Provisional Government—a very eminent authority, no doubt, but we are the Constitutional Authority. This Dáil is the Constitutional Authority and not Mr. Hugh Kennedy or any other legal gentleman. This is the Constitutional Authority, and if it is not, better then put an end to the farce, walk out and make an end of the pretence of being the authority, the supreme authority, the sovereign authority, representative of the people's will. If it is to be a question between this Assembly and the Constitutional Authority of this Assembly and the legal eminence of any gentleman in England or Ireland, we have got a right to stand by the Constitutional Authority of the National Assembly, no matter what the pains or penalties they might inflict upon us. There has been mentioned, and we have been told, that the Constitution is necessary for the implementing of the Treaty [376] and that this particular draft Constitution is necessary for the implementing and carrying into operation of the Treaty. We have not been told why. We have not been told why some other Constitution may be a better Constitution or a worse Constitution, but on Constitution except this particular one, or rather no Constitution except the Constitution embodying certain particular clause which we are not allowed to change, is necessary for the implementing of the Treaty, and the Treaty has made no mention, I think, of a Constitution at all, much less of this Constitution. Some of us have always considered, so far as the Treaty is concerned, that there can be more than one interpretation of the Treaty. Some of us are honest enough to think that the late Provisional Government has been, to a certain extent, blameworthy, and that there can be an Irish interpretation of the Treaty, that we in Ireland should interpret that Treaty, and give it the widest possible limits. We should like that to be done, being our own interpretation of the Treaty. The British, we see, are confining it to the narrowest limits and are making it, I think, narrower than the ordinary common English interpretation, by squeezing it into this draft Constitution, minimising it.

If there is an Irish interpretation, and if that interpretation differs from the British interpretation, or if the expression of the Irish interpretation brings a clash between the Government of Great Britain and the Government of Ireland, surely there is a reasonable way out? Surely the Irish people and an Irish Assembly will not be so unreasonable as not to submit the matter to arbitration? But we might be told from the Government benches, “No such thing would be submitted to arbitration, because Great Britain would not allow it to be submitted to arbitration.” If that is the position, it is the end of the alleged generosity, of the fair and square dealing of the British Government. If the Ministry were wishful to enable the Irish State to claim arbitration on such matters as a clash between Great Britain and this State, then that opportunity, if it arose, came in an application to a body like the League of Nations. There is a provision made for arbitration by British citizens within the British Commonwealth—or British Empire, [377] as l prefer to call it. There is a vision in the Treaty itself on the arbitration question, so that the argument against arbitration on the interpretation of the Treaty does not carry us very far. Deputy Milroy has made what I might call a Treaty speech, that might have been delivered between the 6th of December and the 7th January. Now we want to have finished with all this, because we want to get down to business and get things done, and don't want to be debating and arguing the question of the Treaty all over again. But Deputy Milroy and some Ministers on the other side of the Dáil went as far as this: the throwing of bombs—intellectual, verbal bombs, if you will—at people who are outside this Dáil. We should not allow ourselves to be bullied into doing anything in this Dáil by bomb-throwing at other people outside this Dáil. Deputy Milroy and others have put it to us that by objecting to certain clauses of this Constitution, by opposing certain clauses, we are torpedoing the Treaty. If that is not the attitude of “Hit me now, and the child in my arms,” I don't know what is. We have had a good deal of talk, and I could go on for a long time talking about the Constitution, the legal position and the Constitutional position of the British Dominions, and when, I am speaking about them I think it would be well for the Dáil to know that one of the things round which the whole discussion ranges, the Constitutional position—the Constitutional status—of the Dominions, is the question of appeal to the British Privy Council. Now the Canadian Constitution, the Australian Constitution, and even, though of more recent date, the South African Constitution, were all Constitutions of the old time—if I may put it, of the time previous to the great European War. Anybody who has made any study at all of the history and events of these last few years, and particularly of British Constitutional history, knows that the whole face of things, the whole Constitutional history of the British Empire, changed between 1908-'09 and 1919; changed particularly and specially during the years of the great European War of 1914-1918. Now in this draft Constitution where the Dominions who have been claiming and who will ultimately get the abolition of the right of one of their citizens to appeal [378] to the British Privy Council, this draft Constitution could have made that secure and fast by leaving out that Article, but it didn't leave it out. It is one of the provisions which President Cosgrave, or perhaps the Minister for Home Affairs will tell us we must accept, although the sons, the grandsons, and the great-grandsons of British Colonists are claiming and demanding, practically unanimously, to have this thing done. We who are not, and never have been, British Colonists, are told that we must swallow it holus bolus. Now the whole thing could be put in a nutshell; it comes down to the thing whether this Dáil is the Sovereign Assembly or whether it is not. I do not want to quibble with words, but you must have certain words to define certain, things; you cannot, and nobody not even this Dáil, can deliberate or argue or deal with certain things unless these things are put down in definitions and unless we use words that have a common acceptation. We want to know right at the beginning what the Ministry means by “prescribing and enacting a Constitution,” an act which I say is the Sovereign act of a Sovereign Assembly. I claim that this is a Sovereign and Constitutional Assembly and Authority in Ireland, and I think the Ministers and Deputy Milroy will find that out if they make enquiries. I will quote one, and I am not, if you will notice, putting this discussion at its highest level. If I were putting it at its highest level I should put it as separatist, pure and simple, thinking only of the relations between one State and another State. But because certain things have happened, because certain acts were done, because a certain instrument was agreed to, we must bring it down from that higher level and consider it from a lower level of the relations between one State and another within the British Empire Therefore I will wind up by quoting a gentleman who, I think, is of some authority in these things. Perhaps this gentleman's statement may have some effect, if not on the Ministry—I don't think anything could have any effect on the Ministry—on some private members of this House. Now, the statement is:—“That a general declaration of Constitutional rights as described elsewhere would fully qualify the Dominions for [379] separate membership in the League as Sovereign States will become clear if we compare the status thereby secured to them with the definition of a Sovereign State given hy authorities on international law.” That shows the importance of the question which the Ministry shirked—the question of whether they could or could not apply for membership of the League of Nations at this moment. This authority quotes Halleck, and says: “By a Sovereign State is meant a community or number of persons permanently organised under a Sovereign Government of their own, and by a Sovereign Government is meant a Government, however constituted, which exercises the powers of making and enforcing the law within the community and is not itself subject to any superior Government.” That is a question which we want resolved by this Dáil in the enactment of this Constitution, whether in the enacting of this Constitution we are to act as a Sovereign Parliament or whether we are to act as an inferior to a superior Parliament. The Minister for Home Affairs said that we had got this draft Constitution.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  Before the Deputy goes any further, may I ask for he courtesy of the name of that authority he quotes?

CATHAL O'SHANNON:  The authority is Dr. E. Duncan Hall. The Minister for Home Affairs stated that by this arrangement between the Provisional Government and the British Government we had got a draft Constitution, rather we had got the Constitution. We have not got it. We have no guarantee at all that if it is passed without the alteration of a comma by this Assembly that we will get it at all as it is in this document, because it has got to go not only through the British Cabinet—it has already gone through that—it has got to go through the British Parliament. That Parliament may be the Parliament that at present is sitting—or it may be a different Parliament, and there is nobody, least of all, I am sure, the President, can assure us that even if we pass it without a single alteration that it will pass without alteration in the British Parliament. Therefore we have not got [380] it, and we are not acting as a Sovereign Assembly. In conclusion, I should like to urge upon the Government, as Deputy McCartan has, that if there are any other documents in connection with these agreements or with this draft. Constitution, whether they are drafts of other Constitutions or not, if there are any other agreements made upon or above board or behind backs with any sections of the people of Ireland or England we should have them on the Table, because the Government should put all its cards upon the Table so that we should have a fair square deal here in this Assembly, if not elsewhere.

Mr. E. BLYTHE:  I think that, some of Deputy O'Shannon's arguments rather told against the position taken up by Deputy Johnson. We have before us a Motion for leave to introduce a Bill to enact a Constitution, and it was suggested to us that there was no need at all to hurry with the enactment of a Constitution, that we might simply re-enact the Treaty and go along with that. Now it seems to me, on my reading of it, that Clause 17 of the Treaty proposes and does make it obligatory to get through the Constitution before the 6th December next. It begins: “By way of Provisional arrangement for the administration of Southern Ireland during the interval which must elapse between the date hereof and the constitution of a Parliament and Government of the Irish Free State in accordance therewith, steps shall be taken forthwith for summoning a meeting of Members of Parliament elected for Constituencies in Southerly Ireland since the passing of the Government of Ireland Act, 1920, and for constituting a Provisional Government.” ...; then it goes on to say: “But this arrangement shall not continue in force beyond the expiration of 12 months from the date hereof,” which seems to me to mean that the Provisional Government must cease to exist and operate on the 6th December, and that a Government and Parliament of the Irish Free State must come into being. It seems to me, therefore, necessary that some arrangement in the way of a Constitution must be come to before the 6th December. Again, the suggestion was that we should, as it were, use the Treaty as a Constitution. Now Clause 2 of the Treaty deals with [381] Law of Practice and Constitutional Usage of Canada, and it states that the relationship of the Crown shall be so and so, and that there should be a representative of the Crown appointed in a certain manner, and soforth. It seems to me were to attempt to carry on under the Treaty alone, and without specifically making Constitutional arrangements for Ireland, the effect would be that the Law of Canada, in so far as it would be applicable, would be the Constitution of Ireland.

Mr. THOMAS JOHNSON:  Constitutional Usage.

Mr. BLYTHE:  “The Law, Practice, and Constitutional Usage.” If we did not-make law for ourselves, it seems to me that the law of Canada applies, and that the law of Canada would be very much more disagreeable to the Members of this Dáil than the law which is proposed in the draft Constitution. There certainly you cannot separate the Law from the Practice and Constitutional Usage; you cannot hold that one cancels the other, or that you subtract one from the other and take what is left. We, I take it, in the Treaty, are bound by the precise wording. We are bound to have the law. We have got a thing greatly preferable to the law as it is in Canada; and the English, as you may see, are entitled to the Law under the Treaty, which is to their advantage; and we, on our part, are entitled to the Practice and Constitutional Usage, and I hold, therefore, it would be very undesirable, if it were possible in other ways, to rely on the Treaty, and work, as it were, under the Treaty, on some sort of a basis of an unwritten Constitution, because, I believe, that would commit us to the “Law, Practice and Constitutional Usage of Canada” without modification. There is another reason why I think it is necessary that we should go on at once with the enactment of a Constitution, apart altogether from these formal reasons, and technical reasons, and that reason seems to me to lie in the state of the country. We cannot have the Irish Free State firmly set up, we cannot bring a period to this controversy, until we have enacted the Constitution. I believe that one of the means of dealing with the state of affairs in the country, is to put the matters which we are in doubt about, in regard to the Treaty, [382] beyond doubt. I believe that it should be clear to everybody exactly what the Treaty means. I believe it should not be possible for anybody to think that by going on kicking up a row that they are going to alter what the Constitution is going to be, or that they are going to get any advantage for their side by continuing their operations against the Government. It is for the purpose of putting the political and constitutional issue beyond doubt—to close that chapter of it—that I think this is one of the ways by which the situation in the country can be solved; and I think if there were no other reasons for hurrying on with the Constitution, that would be a good and sufficient reason for doing so. Now, I do not want to take up much time dealing with the matters that Deputy O'Shannon referred to as to the Sovereignty of this Dáil, or as to this Dáil having no power, or as to this Dáil being forced to accept this, or that, or the other. When the President said certain clauses were vital, I think the Minister of Home Affairs explained the position. He said that on certain clauses in the Constitution the Government will stand or fall. The Government believe that with these clauses the fate of the Treaty is tied up, and for that reason the Government is prepared to stand or fall with these clauses. It is quite competent for this Dáil, if it so desires, to repudiate the Treaty. It is quite competent for the Dáil, if it so desires, to put out this Government and carry on with some other Government on whatever lines it cares to carry on. That is the position. The Dáil is only bound by the act of the previous Dáil, if you like to put it, in accepting the Treaty on the 7th January. This Constitution, in so far as it deals with our relations with England, is an interpretation, or an explanation, of the general terms of the Treaty. For my part I think that it is a very fair interpretation, both to us and to the British, of the Treaty. I think that it is a most foolish proceeding to be writhing about the things that are in the Constitution, when we have accepted the Treaty. I think there is nothing in the Constitution which we are not bound by the Treaty to have. I think there is nothing in the Constitution which we did not accept, in accepting the Treaty, and I think if the objections to the provisions of the [383] draft Treaty—the provisions which are objected to—if these are entirely sincere, then I think some people, both people who were in the Dáil when the Treaty was passed, and people who were outside the Dáil when the Treaty was passed but who were willing it should be passed—they have taken very little trouble indeed to understand the Treaty.

Dr. P. McCARTAN:  May I say one word? Why not submit the one that was written by the Provisional Government, and let us compare them? They dare not do that.

Mr. BLYTHE:  I would have no objection whatsoever to submitting it. In regard to that, I would just say this: Our Representatives and the Representatives of the British Signatories met together to arrive at an agreed interpretation of the Treaty, because they were only concerned with these portions of the draft Constitution which dealt with the relations between Ireland and Great Britain. They met to arrive at an agreed interpretation. Now, any agreement of that sort is arrived at, as practically all agreements are, by bargaining. When you go to bargain with a man it is always a good thing to ask more than you are prepared to accept——

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  And with a woman, too.

Dr. P. McCARTAN:  And to accept less.

Mr. BLYTHE:  Yes, as Deputy Figgis suggests, and with a woman, too. For my part, I never had any belief whatever that the British would agree to all that was in the draft that was taken over to London, and, for my part, I believe the draft went outside the terms of the Treaty, and was such as we had no right to expect would be agreed to. I agreed to it as the first draft because it left room for bargaining.

Mr. THOMAS JOHNSON:  On a point of order. Documents that are being discussed in the Dáil ought to be laid on the Table of the Dáil.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  That is just the point that is arising.

Mr. BLYTHE:  I am not referring to the document in any way. I am not giving [384] any details or anything that would call on me to lay it on the Table, as a matter of fact. Now that, I think, deals with the point that was made by Deputy Johnson, when he said that we should have dug ourselves in at the point which we had reached by the Treaty, and when he said that the Constitution was much worse than the Treaty. In my view, I think Mr. O'Higgins put it as well as it could be put, when he said it was a fair but strict interpretation of the Treaty. The phrase I would use myself would be that it was a perfectly fair interpretation of the Treaty, and in that view I am relying, as it were, on Clause 2 of the Treaty.

To anyone who will read the Canadian Constitution it is clear that the British did not insist on the whole of the law of Canada. I believe, on the other hand, if different conditions had prevailed in this country they might have been inclined to do with still less of the law than they were, but that is a matter over which we have no control. I do not think there is much point in Deputy Johnsons remark with regard to our action being prejudicial to a movement for greater freedom on the part of the Dominions. I do not think that movement could he affected, in the slightest degree, by anything we might do. I hold that now the duty of the Dáil is to do the best it can for the country. I believe that in this matter, as in other matters, the Dáil has to make its choice. It is not forced to do anything. Proposals are being submitted to it and the Dáil makes its choice. The Government has no duty in regard to the matter but to make the proposals and to make it clear, so far as it can, what is the consequence of any action that the Government may take. To my mind, the draft Constitution which has been submitted gives us the full fruits of the Treaty. Nothing has really been challenged or I think is likely to be challenged in this respect but forms or symbols. Whether they may have been avoided at one time or not is of very little consequence now. I hold that this Constitution gives us the fruit of the Treaty; that it imposes nothing on us which we did not accept in accepting the Treaty. If some of us did not realise that we were accepting those things when we accepted the Treaty that fact, [385] to my mind will, to a large extent, discount the arguments and criticisms of the Members who failed to see where they were going.

Mr. WILLIAM DAVIN:  I wish to say a word or two on the Resolution. I have not the good fortune to be a member of the Incorporated Law Society, nor have I at my disposal, as Deputy Milroy appears to have, the highest Constitutional experts of this land. However, when I was elected as a Member of this Dáil, now termed the Third Dáil, or a Constituent Assembly, or, as I read it on this document, a Provisional Parliament, I understood that one of the principal objects was that we, the Members of this Dáil or Parliament, should be allowed, without any limit being placed upon us, to draft a Constitution in accordance with the Irish interpretation of the Treaty. I find now, for the first time, and I want to make it quite clear that it is the first time, so far as I am concerned, that there are limitations. The Minister for Local Government, in effect, states that it is an agreed interpretation, an interpretation agreed on by Members of the Provisional Government with the British Government, and that we are asked now to do nothing more or less than to ratify that agreed interpretation. The Minister for Home Affairs, in seconding this Resolution, said that this was a strict but fair interpretation of the Treaty. I have read the Treaty, I will admit not very carefully, and it lays down certain stipulations in regard to the Irish Army. Naturally I expected that in the Constitution we are asked to frame, that the status of the future Irish Army would be clearly defined. Now as one Member of this Dáil, I want to see the future position of the Army clearly defined in this Constitution.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  So it is.

Mr. DAVIN:  It is not, as far as I can follow it. I am not anxious to see in the future Ireland the whole of the young people rushing to get uniforms, at the expense of the Irish people.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  May I refer the Deputy to Clause 45 of the Constitution?

Mr. DAVIN:  I will accept your word, because you have had a good deal to do [386] with this thing. I merely rose for the purpose of drawing that to the attention of the Minister for Home Affairs, because as far as I have read the Constitution it does not lay down the position of the future of the Irish Army in a way that the Irish people would like to have it defined. Now I want the people of Ireland to understand that the Members of this Dáil have now learned for the first time that we are going to enact a Constitution which is limited by certain agreements that have been come to without the people or the Members of this Dáil having been consulted. The Minister for Home Affairs said that so far as certain Clauses of the Treaty are concerned the Government stand or fall by them. I hope we will hear what those particular Clauses are before we go much further in the Debate on the Constitution. It appears to me that so far as these particular Clauses are concerned there is little use in this Dáil discussing them when the Party Whips are put on and when discussion will not help to make them better than they are as framed by Members of the Provisional Government.

MINISTER for HOME AFFAIRS (Mr. O'Higgins):  There has been criticism about Clauses that were said to be vital. We have been asked what those Clauses are, and it has been suggested that the Dáil has not a free hand in regard to this Constitution. That is not so. The Dáil has an absolutely free hand, but we also have a free hand, and we can decide what things we will take responsibility for and what things we will not take responsibility for, and knowing the position as we do, we cannot advise the Dáil to reject certain clauses in the Constitution, and if the Dail rejects them we have a free hand to decline to take further responsibility for the direction of the political affairs in this country. There is no Constitutional hybrid between a Republic and a Monarchy. Mr. De Valera had thought that he had begotten one, but nobody loved it and he abandoned it himself. What we are asking the Dáil to face is simply that fact, because we failed absolutely to win out the 100 p.c. of our programme and secure the inscriptions on our battle standards, we have had to swallow certain things which to many of us are objectionable. You [387] will find no Constitutional hybrid between a Republic and a Monarchy. It is because we faced that fact that we are standing for certain Clauses in that Constitution and telling the Dáil that they are vital to the Treaty.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  On a point of order, it is usually the custom in an Assembly of this kind that if a Bill be drawn up in detail and published before the Dáil, that leave to introduce it is presumed to be granted and it is not voted on. I think it is a good procedure and with deference I would suggest it to you as being a desirable course to adopt on this Motion.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Under the existing Standing Orders if a division is called for it must be granted.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  The Standing Orders are not veiy clear on that point. In most Assemblies of this kind when a Motion is brought forward leave should be asked to table a Bill, and it is drawn up complete in all its clauses and articles, and permission is presumed to have been granted. I think it is a good procedure. I think it would be well that leave be given aud that we then come to the conflict that will arise as to the fundamental general principle that underlies this Bill.

The Motion was put and carried.

CATHAL O'SHANNON:  On a point of order, may I ask that Members have copies of the Free State Acts or any other documents that bear on the Bill that is to be introduced to the Dáil. We have got copies of three Constitutions, but we want the Free State Agreement Act, and some others.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Copies of the Bill, copies of the Treaty, and copies of the Free State Agreement Act.

Dr. McCARTAN:  And copies of the draft Constitution—of this Government's Constitution—before Churchill and his friends made up their minds.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  There is nothing before the Dáil except the suggestion that certain facilities be afforded to the Members. I do not wish for a moment to stand between the Members and any things they may decide to have, but Deputies who have already made [388] speeches on this subject should refrain from making further speeches.

Professor WM. MAGENNIS:  The President of the Dáil was good enough to undertake on the last day, in reply to my request, to circulate copies of the Treaty, the Dominion Constitutions, and the Free State Agreement Act. Copies of the Constitution and of 3 Dominion Constitutions have been prepared. I presume it was merely the difficulties of the Post that have delayed delivery, as we have not received them yet.

Mr. D. FITZGERALD:  The Free State Agreement Act could have been bought by anybody for several months past at Eason's.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  So could the Constitution I brought out. You may announce that the Volume of Constitutions to which I referred will be in the Dáil, I believe, on Wednesday evening.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  The Volume of 20 Constitutions will be available on Wednesday, and copies will be supplied to the Deputies.

In connection with the rest of the Orders of the Day, Deputy Gavan Duffy has raised a point. I intended that his Motion should come up on Tuesday, because I understood the Government's decision was to be given on Tuesday. Therefore I omitted the Motion from the Agenda for Monday. Subsequently the Deputy himself came in and gave special notice, and it was put on at the end of the Agenda. If he wishes to have it taken up it can be put to the Dáil immediately.

Mr. GAVAN DUFFY:  It can easily be disposed of. I think as the answer was given this morning it would be more convenient that it should be discussed now.

The Dáil agreed to take the Motion:

“That it is the opinion of this Dáil that Ireland should join the League of Nations, and further that application for admission to the League should be made forthwith.”

Mr. GAVAN DUFFY:  I do not think there is likely to be much dispute about [389] the first part of the Motion. There appears to be a dispute about the second. I do not come forward as a champion of the League of Nations. I do not think that it can be said it has, as yet, justified itself. But to my mind the question as to whether the League of Nations has or has not made good in the short time since it was created is not the immediate question for us. The question for us is whether there are strong reasons to impel us to apply for admission at the present time, whatever the future of the League may be. I think I need do very little more than to read two or three of the Articles of the Covenant of the League of Nations to satisfy you that both from the point of view of National dignity and from the point of view of increasing, in every way we can, our security, we should apply for membership of the League. The portion of the first Article of the Covenant reads as follows:—“Any full self-governing State, Dominion or Colony, not named in the annex” (that means not an original member) “may become a Member of the League, if its admission is agreed to by two-thirds of the Assembly, provided that it shall give effective Guarantees of its sincere intention to observe its international obligations and shall accept such regulations as may be prescribed by the League in regard to its Military, Naval and Air Forces and armaments.” On that particular clause I have only to observe that I presume nobody will be found to contend that Ireland is not within the category described, since an Irish Government has taken over the power that the Provisional Government has to-day. I understand that the best opinion in official circles in Geneva for many months past is that Ireland would be admitted without question, and that no one could challenge her right to admission, and further than that Ireland's admission would be exceedingly welcome to the other powers. I should like to ask the Minister when he replies to give us the benefit of the information which the Irish delegate in Geneva presumably brought back when he was in Dublin the other day. I should like to ask whether he advised this, and if so, what are the weighty reasons which caused his advice to be set aside? Article 11 and Article 12 are also material as removing, so far as the League is effective in removing, Wars and threats of [390] Wars—a matter of very considerable importance to any small state in Europe. Article 11 says:—

“Any war or threat of war, whether immediately affecting any of the Members of the League or not, is hereby declared a matter of concern to the whole League, and the League shall take any action that may be deemed wise and effectual to safeguard the peace of nations. In case any such emergency should arise the Secretary-General shall, on request of any member of the League, forthwith summon a meeting of the Council.

“It is also declared to be the friendly right of each member of the League to bring to the attention of the Assembly or of the Council any circumstance whatever affecting international relations which threaten to disturb international peace or the good understanding between nations upon which peace depends.”

Article 12 says:

“The members of the League agree that if there should arise between them any dispute likely to lead to a rupture, they will submit the matter either to arbitration or to an enquiry by the Council, and they agree in no case to resort to war until three months after the award by the Arbitrator or the report of the Council.”

And Article 10 says:—

“The members of the League undertake to respect and preserve as against external aggression the territorial integrity and political independence of all members of the League. In case of any such aggression, or in case of any threat or danger of such aggression, the Council shall advise upon the means by which this obligation shall be fulfilled.”

You will remember that that Article 10 was one of the principal motives for American abstention from the League on the ground that Article 10 at that time, which was two or three years ago, guaranteed to England the possession of this country. Article 10 to-day would be a guarantee for us. The only objection I know to Ireland's admission to the League is that it might be misinterpreted by our friends in America. They put up a constitutional fight against the [391] League of Nations Covenant on the ground that it strengthened the influence of the British Empire against nations like Ireland all over the world. The argument to-day from the Irish point of view must necessarily be a different one. To-day admission to the League for Ireland would be of very great value to us, because the very fact of admission is considered in international law to be a pre-eminent test of sovereignty, and you will find such authorities as Keith and Hall, who are the two principal authorities on British Dominion status, holding that the fact of the admission of the British Dominions to the League has proved more than anything else the assertion of the sovereignty they have acquired isince- the war. Our application would be the test of the sincerity of England in this matter. Personally, I think England has observed the Treaty faithfully, save in one respect. If England were to oppose our application for admission, now her action in so doing would require very considerable explanation if she means sincerely to abide by the terms of the Treaty signed last December. I entertain this suspicion which I hope the Minister for Foreign Affairs will be able to remove that the strange decision he announced this morning must be motived by information that our admission would not be aoceptble to Downing Street. I entertain the suspicion that this is another surrender to English interests. I should be glad if that suspicion can be disabused, because if you look at it from the point of view of Irish interests, I cannot see any answer to the claim that we should make our application for membership. It is worthy of notice, I think, that this particular matter of admission to the League is one of the few things that are not governed by the Excutive Council of the League. It is one of the things which, according to the Covenant, are to be decided by the General Assembly of the League. And, in point of fact, the General Assembly can out-vote the Council; in other words, the little Powers can out-vote the Big ones. Something of the kind happened in the first Assembly of the League, when it was proposed that Albania should be admitted, and here admission was objected to by the English representative, whereupon Lord Robert Cecil, who, I think, represented South Africa upon that [392] occasion, mobilised the small States in the Assembly against his own country, and England seeing she would have been beaten in the vote in the Assembly withdrew her objection. I know, and everyone knows who has any acquaintance at all with the affairs of Geneva, that our-application would be extremely popular there, I do not say that there might not be objections raised upon some small point or other, but I am saying that inasmuch as there could not be any right of objection in the Covenant on any point of substance I have very little doubt about the success of the application, and I have no doubt of the extremely warm welcome the Irish representative would receive. And let me remind the Dáil that we were one of the ancient Nations of Christendom. Let me remind the House of the Council of Constance in 1415, when the King of England applied for admission, and was told he did not represent one of the ancient nations of Christendom, and could not be admitted. Whem he found himself in that position he said, “but I have another string to my bow, I am also King of Ireland, and in that capacity I claim the right of admission,” and in that capacity they let him in. I think it is time now when we are emerging from English bondage that we should assert our national position before the world, and here is a clear and definite opportunity of doing so. Why even if the Government looked at it from a Party point of view they should see that they would be increasing their own prestige as well as increasing the prestige of the country in the eyes of the whole world by gaining admission to the international Forum from which we were excluded so long, and it would require very strong reasons to convince me that Ireland was doing the right thing in standing aside from what was her manifest right, or thereby adding to the high repute in which this Nation is held. It is necessary for Ireland to realise that she is a Nation and a live Nation. The procedure, as the Minister for Foreign Affairs knows, is exceedingly simple. I need not go into that at the present moment. If objection is raised, and I can think of no reason for objection, by the Ministry on the ground that if we apply England would not like it, I question whether that objection is well founded; secondly, I [393] think it may be fairly obvious to the Ministry that there are high reasons of State, shall I say, without going into details, which should have made England very glad to see us in the League; and thirdly, whether England objects or not, it is our right to go in, and I feel strongly that it is the duty of the Government to see we go in, especially at a moment like the present. I therefore move this motion.

CATHAL O'SHANNON:  In seconding the motion, Mr. Chairman, I do not intend to speak at any length, because Deputy Gavan Duffy has covered the ground pretty well, and I referred, to it myself in the last debate. There are many things most of us here in this Dáil and especially my friends at my side might object to in the Covenant of the League of Nations and most of its organisation especially at its creation as the disappointed child of the allied Governments, and its inspiration which was very largely the British Government and British propaganda. But there are some things in it that make it desirable at the present moment that application should be made from Ireland. The point raised about Article 10 does, I think, at the moment stand good for us, though it stood bad for us some time ago. Most of the articles, and particularly the obligation which membership imposes upon a State, rather cuts both ways, as I think Deputy Gavan Duffy will agree, but at the same time I think it is highly desirable, because it would, undoubtedly fix the status of this State. It would be a guarantee that we had got international recognition of our State. The thing that does matter to us is the recognition, of our Statehood and our exercise at home and abroad of that Statehood. It would also test the sincerity of the British and other nations as to our Statehood, and it would make clear many things which at the moment are dark. For that reason I have pleasure in seconding Deputy Gavan Duffy's motion.

Mr. DESMOND FITZGERALD:  I beg to move as an amendment: “That it is the opinion of this Dáil that application for admission to the League of Nations should be made as and when the Govermnent find it advantageous.” The speech by Mr. Gavan Duffy was [394] whole-hearted and in very general terms, and, if I might say so, the speech of Deputy O'Shannon was rather less whole-hearted. Deputy Duffy thinks the sole objection we could have to admission to the League of Nations is that it might be misinterpreted, in America. Well, that is not our only objection at this moment. It will be remembered this question of the League of Nations split America from end to end for two years. This Government came into office eight days ago, and Deputy Duffy was Foreign Minister for eight months, and I have been Foreign Minister for eight days, and I should be prepared to accept his judgment pretty generally in these matters, but then I looked up the qualifications required for admission to the League of Nations and they read:—

“Is the Government recognised de jure or de facto and by which States?

“Does the country possess a stable Government and settled frontiers? What is its size and population?

“Is the country, self-governing?

“What has been the conduct of the country, including both Acts and assurances with regard to (a) its international obligations; (b) the prescriptions of the League as to armaments,”

It might have been a considerable help to me if I had inherited from Mr. Gavan Duffy a reply to these questions which would be suitable for us to make to the League of Nations. Mr. O'Shannon read out an opinion upon the general declanation:—

“That a general declaration of constitutional right as described in Chapter IX. would fully qualify the Dominions for separate membership in the League as Sovereign States will become clear if we compare the status thereby secured to them with the definition of a Sovereign State given by authorities on international law. `By a Sovereign State,' says Halleck, `is meant a community with a number of persons permanently organised under a Sovereign Government of their own; and by a Sovereign Government is meant a Government, however constituted, which exercises the power of making and enforcing the law within a community, and is not itself subject to any superior government.' ”

The point I would have wished Mr Duffy to make clear in the answer to [395] these questions is what exactly is the community over which we are the Sovereign Government? I am not much impressed by the fact of admission being regarded as the test of sovereignty. The test of sovereignty is: Has one actual power in one's own country? —and recognition of it is fairly unimportant compared with the exercise of it in one's own country. Mr. Gavan Duffy suspects that the refusal to join the League of Nations at this moment is due to a surrender to Downing Street. It is nothing of the sort. It is due to the fact that we recognise we are in a chrysalis stage. As soon as the Constitution is passed and we have some real stable Government—that is, a Government whose definition is absolutely clear and whose existence does not depend on the completing an arrangement which is only half completed, then, I think, it will be possible for us to make application for admission to the League of Nations. At the present moment I think it is advisable, in Mr. Gavan Duffy's phrase, “for high reasons of State,” that we should defer this application until the Constitution is passed, and we are able to state our case and our position quite clearly without any reservations to the League of Nations Assembly. I think at the present time, if I had inherited from Mr. Gavan Duffy a draft application to the League of Nations, such as would warrant their admitting us, that that draft application would either specifically or implicity contain untruths.

Mr. T. JOHNSON:  May I ask, as a matter of explanation, when will it be possible for the next application to be considered by the Council of the League of Nations?

Mr. DESMOND FITZGERALD:  Within 12 months.

Mr. GAVAN DUFFY:  Not within 12 months.

Mr. SEAN MILROY:  I want to say at the beginning, my intention——

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  Are you seconding the amendment?

Mr. SEAN MILROY:  No; I am supporting the original motion.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  I suggest that the amendment is not really in order, because, it means a direct negative.

[396]Mr. GAVAN DUFFY:  I think no one in the Dáil took the amendment as being meant seriously.

Mr. KEVIN O'HIGGINS:  I will second the amendment, and in doing so I have very little to say. I inquired casually, when Mr. Gavan Duffy was stressing the importance of entering this League so that international disputes might be settled otherwise than by the arbitrament of war, if Turkey ad Greece were members of the League. Mr. Figgis, who knows a great deal about these matters, assures me that they are, both of them. I have the feeling that this step is not one which should be taken up by a Provisional Government or Provisional Parliament. It is a grave matter of policy—a matter that split America from end to end. Mr. Duffy invites us to rush in where America fears to tread. We have one duty, and we should get on with it, and we should leave to the established Government, Saorstát Na hEireann, when and if that Government comes into existence, the decision on matters such as this. I think I read somewhere—I am not sure if it was not in the Scripture—about the eyes of the fool being on the ends of the earth.

CATHAL O'SHANNON:  In opposing the amendment, I only want to say that I am very glad indeed to find that the Ministry is like the Americans in falling into deadly fear of the British Empire Delegation in the League of Nations. Now, I do not know, perhaps Mr. Figgis does know, that Turkey is actually a member of the League.

The PRESIDENT:  Qualifying for it, I suppose.

CATHAL O'SHANNON:  Few of what are called the late enemy States are members of the League. The Minister for Foreign Affairs, at all events, should know that one of the main American reservations was the objection to the number of votes in that assembly and on the Council, to the number of representatives which the separate representations of the British Dominions would give to the British Empire Delegation. I presume, therefore, that one of the objections of the Ministry, is that although co-equal autonomous States within the British Empire, the Ministry is afraid that the Irish Delegation might sway the votes [397] of the British Empire. I do not think the amendment put forward by the Foreign Minister is intended seriously at all, except that he wants to shelve Mr. Duffy's motion. I hope the Dáil will not accept the amendment.

Dr. McCARTAN:  I think we should ask ourselves what is the League, what is its function, and how is it functioning? I think I agree with the Government for once. We could perhaps do something if we were members of the League, but I do not think we would have the courage to do them now if we were there. For instance, we might raise a rumpus about Egypt and India if we were there, but I do not think if there was any representative of the present Government in Geneva they would allow him to do so. If you did perhaps a number of Catholics would be shot in Belfast, or they would threaten the Border question in Ulster, or do something else, make some gesture, just to show we were not going to get away with it if we shouted about India or Egypt. The main purpose of membership would be for propaganda. From the beginning to the end the League is financed and owned by England. Other Nations, like France—and Mr. Duffy who has lived there knows their opinion— would like us to go in and say what they are afraid to say. They are afraid of England, and we being more or less reckless would say things they would not say for want of the moral courage to say it. If we said nasty things against French Imperialism, German Imperialism, and Japanese Imperialism, I think we might be able to do something. I think that is what Deputy Cathal O'Shannon, who belongs to the patriotic party here, means when he talks about the League of Nations.

Mr. MILROY:  I want to say that I support the motion. I said at the beginning of this Session that it was my intention to exercise independent judgment on matters which I think are not essential to the security of the administration and security of the Treaty. This is one, I think, and I do not think we can afford to regard Europe as such an insignificant little place that we can look down upon it as of no consequence to the World, that this particular country is of much more importance and exercises far greater influence on the World's destiny than the whole of Europe. That seemed to be the attitude [398] taken up by the Foreign Minister, and I think it is quite an inaccurate summary of the relative positions. I should not be so much inclined to express my opinion on this if it were not for the line of thought indicated by the Minister for Foreign Affairs. It was not so much the indication that he thought the moment inopportune, as that he thought the time would never come when any application of that kind would serve the interests of Ireland.

Mr. D. FITZGERALD:  You are wrong.

Mr. MILROY:  I am glad you say I am wrong, and to hear that Ireland can play some part in European politics, and that Europe may be some day influenced by the counsel of the Irish Nation. There may be obstacles in the way at the present moment, but it is only on the grounds that these obstacles are insurmountable that I would consider there is justification in withholding application. I believe it will be a very serious and responsible day for Ireland when she makes application to be included in the League of Nations. I am sorry that moment has not arrived, according to the declaration of the Foreign Minister, but I would like to record my opinion that it is desirable such a day should come soon, and for that reason I support Deputy Duffy's motion.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  I desire also briefly to support the motion, as I think the arguments advanced against it are really in its favour. It has been said, and it is perfectly clear, that there is a strong feeling at the present moment amongst the Nations forming the Assembly of the League of Nations that we should be there. I believe that has been the general feeling in Geneva during the past week. The only argument against our application at the present moment is that it is not a convenient time for such an application. That is a summary of the argument. We have only a very inaccurate method of discovering whether it is, or is not, an inconvenient moment, but what I myself think is—that we have arrived at such a stage that it is a favourable moment. If there were likely to be any rebuff to our application because of the circumstances in this country, and that our application later would be advisable, that would be a complete argument. The Government have at [399] their disposal a gentleman who is in this country at the moment and who has been our representative in Geneva, and I am perfectly sure if that gentleman from his knowledge in Geneva advised against the application at the moment then we will vote for the amendment and against the motion, but I think that question and the advice that gentleman has brought back from Geneva specially as we have been informed on what appeared to be semi-inspired utterances.

Mr. FITZGERALD:  You are quite wrong.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:  It was said in the Times, in the three Dublin papers, that this gentleman had come with special information on his question that we have now before us. I think it would be just as well if they informed us, because, after all, I believe it might be the fortunate moment and they [400] might argue it was not the fortunate moment. The basis of our arguments may be wholly irrelevant one side or the other. These things can only be decided by knowing what is the feeling at Geneva. This Parliament had a representative in Geneva who has come back and has in his possession information that might help this country in coming to a decision on this matter. Now that that information is now at the disposal of the Government I trust it may go one step further and be placed at the disposal of the Dáil.

Mr. THOS. JOHNSON:  I move that the question be now put.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:  The amendment reads:—“That it is the opinion of this Dáil that application for admission to the League of Nations should be made when and as the Government may find it advantageous.”

Amendment put and carried on a division, the voting being 44 for and 19 against:—



Liam T. Mac Cosgair.
Donchadh O Guaire.
Séan Ó Lideadha.
Séan O Duinníin.
Mícheál O hAonghusa.
Domhnall O Mocháin.
Séan O hAodha.
Séamus Breathnach.
Peadar Mac a' Bháird.
Deasmhumhain Mac Gearailt.
Mícheál de Duram.
Ailfrid O Broin.
Séan Mac Garaidh.
Philib Mac Cosgair.
Mícheál de Stáiness.
Seosamh Mag Craith.
Domhnall Mac Cárthaigh.
Maolmhuire Mac Eochadha.
Eamon Altún.
Liam Thrift.
Eoin Mac Néill.
Liam Mag Aonghusa.
Pádraic O Máille.
Seosamh O Faoileacháin.
Seóirse Mac Niocaill.
Seámus O Cruadhlaoich.
Criostóir Ó Broin.
Risteárd Mac Liam.
Caoimhghín O hUigín.
Tomás Mac Artúir.
Seamus O Dóláin.
Aindriú O Láimhín.
Risteárd O hÁodha.
Próinsias Mag Aonghusa.
Eamon O Dúgáin.
Peadar O hAodha.
Seámus O Murchadha.
Seosamh Mac Giolla Bhrighde.
Liam Mac Sioghaird.
Tomas O Dómhnaill.
Earnán de Blaghd.
Domhnall O Broin.
Seamus de Burca.
Mícheál O Dubhghaill.

Pádráig O Gamhna.
Uaitear Mac Cumhaill.
Sean O Maólruaidh.
Tomás de Nogla.
Riobárd O Deaghaidh.
Darghal Figes.
Tomás Mac Eoin.
Seoirse Ghábhain Ui Dhubhthaigh.
Liam O Briain.
Tomas O Conaill.
Aodh O Cúlacháin.
Séamus Eabhroid.
Liam O Daimhín.
Séan O Laidhín.
Cathal O Seanáin.
Séan Buitléir.
Dómhnall O Muirgheasa.
Risteard Mac Fheorais.
Domhnall O Ceallachain.

Amendment, as substantive motion, put and carried.

[401]AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   The Committee on Standing Orders, which was, in accordance with our decision to-day, to meet again, will meet on Wednesday morning at 11.30, in the same room as before. Now the question arises as to the further business and the points that have not yet been finished on the Orders of the Day.

Mr. THOMAS JOHNSON:   May I ask your ruling whether Standing Order No. 76 would apply to the Resolutions on the Orders of the Day, which have not yet been reached.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   That has already been answered in reply to a question by Deputy Gavan Duffy.

The PRESIDENT:   The principal business to-morrow will be the Franchise Resolution and the remaining business of to-day. On Wednesday the Constitution will have a second reading.

Professor WM. MAGENNIS:   While you are making announcements, would you be good enough to make one with regard to a matter very trivial in itself, no doubt, but which has important consequences for the private Member. It was stated here: “Copies of the Official Report will be circulated daily. No proofs of the daily reports are supplied. Corrections which Members desire to suggest for the bound volumes should be clearly marked in this report, and the copy containing the corrections forwarded to the Editor within fourteen days of the date of the debate.” When will this bound volume be available? In other words, for how long shall the Members who had the temerity to speak be under the imputation, in certain cases, of illiteracy? What opportunity will they be afforded for correcting these reports? The other night I spoke on the matter of the Postal dispute, and suggested that there should have been two estimates of the cost of living. I spoke so indistinctly that I am reported as saying: “That the cost of living is lower in the country and in the West of Ireland”—that is, in the “rest” of Ireland; and “it would occur to any administrator of sanity to consider these two classes of cases together—the case of the country worker and the case of the city worker.” Here follows a lacuna. This is the only report I have read, but [402] I suspect we could find something to complain of in some of the other reports as well. It is a very difficult House in which to be heard, especially when some of us are not masters of distinct utterance, and, consequently, no blame rests upon the official reporters; but, at the same time, it becomes a matter of anxiety for those who have no official organs in which to be reported correctly, that an early opportunity should be given for seeing the corrected report.

Professor EOlN MacNEILL:   I suggest that it is not illiteracy, but rather an excess of the opposite quality, that endangers this.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   Provision is made—as Deputy Mageinnis has just read out to us—for the correction of the copies supplied before they go into the bound volume, and the Clerk of the Dáil should have sent to him, as soon as possible, corrections or emendations which Deputies desire to make, accompanied by the Deputy's signature. It has not yet been decided, but it will be a matter for the Standing Orders Committee, to make recommendations as to the amount of matter getting into one volume.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:   Prior to being published, will they be edited? I would like to make that point clear. I was looking for a few sentences that the Minister for Home Affairs made the other day, because it gave a rather important admission from my point of view, and the whole speech had disappeared from the report.

Mr. A. BYRNE:   Might I raise small matter in connection with the reporting. I am informed here that last Friday a Member of the Press Gallery wanted to see me in connection with a few words that I said, and this Pressman was not allowed to come around to the Lobby. I think that is a matter which you ought to see to—that Members of the Press ought to be allowed, when they have their Press passes, to came into the Lobby and see a Member on any points that arise during the day. It is a matter entirely for the Ceann Comhairle.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   The real difficulty in all these matters is that we require a Committee on Privileges. I [403] spoke to the Standing Orders Committee on that matter. We require a Committee to determine privileges as to who shall or shall not enter certain places.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:   Shall we have the Minister's wise words put into the report?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   We shall eudeavour. The President was speaking about the Agenda to-morrow. It will include the Franchise Resolution, and the remainder of this Agenda which has not been got through. That will be put on to-morrow. For Wednesday it was suggested the second reading of the Constitution will be taken. In that connection Deputies should read very carefully Rule 61 in the Standing Orders adopted, so that amendments sent in will be directed at the principle of the Bill, and not at the details.

The PRESIDENT:   You are not standing for the two days' notice in that case?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   I could not stand for the two days' notice in that case, and we shall receive amendments up to 11 o'clock to-morrow.

Mr. THOMAS JOHNSON:   To deal with the principal Bill, it seems rather short notice from now until 11 o'clock to-morrow to consider the kind of amendments that ought to be put forward. I understand they will have to be carefully chosen, because yourself, Sir, will have the right to choose which is which, and only three will be allowed.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   Except the Dáil otherwise decides. They must be all printed, and the Dáil can take certain ones.

Mr. THOMAS JOHNSON:   Shall it be 11 o'clock?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   We could make it 3 o'clock at the outside, but we could not have the Agenda in the Members' hands until the Dáil begins to sit on Wednesday. I was only speaking from the point of view of having the Agenda ready for Wednesday morning.

Mr. THOMAS JOHNSON:   You will probably use the Press to publish all the amendments that are sent in for the following morning.

[404]AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   To-morrow evening I can announce the amendments sent in. I was only endeavouring to arrange it so that members could have the Agenda on Wednesday morning. I must get some time to make a selection.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:   This concerns me and others with whom I have spoken. I say, with all deference to the Standing Orders Committee, I am not able to understand Article 61 at all. Having read the rules of procedure, known as Standing Order of a good, few legislative assemblies, I would like to know how it is possible to introduce an amendment on general principles. You vote “Yea” or “Nay” on it.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   It would be quite simple, on clauses of the Constitution, to move that certain words be omitted.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:   That might be for Committee Stage.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   It might be very vital.

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:   If they are defeated on the second stage, are they further admissible?

Mr. R. CORISH:   Are you objecting to having too much scope?

Mr. DARRELL FIGGIS:   All I am saying, Sir, is this: in every other Assembly the second stage has never an amendment before it; that is always left for the third stage, and I think it a very good procedure.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   If we gave until noon to-morrow I would have time to go through the amendments. If we give until 3 o'clock I will have to be here to go through them, and they would have to be put into the order in which they will be discussed.

Mr. THOMAS JOHNSON:   Will you select all the amendments for publication?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   The three that will be discussed will be the most important for the Members to know.

[405]Mr. THOMAS JOHNSON:   This is one of the difficulties of trying to rush this business. I do not think we should be mulcted because of that.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   As far as I am concerned, if the thing is to be carried out, I do not think I could receive a resolution after 12 o'clock in the physical conditions that obtain.

Mr. E. BLYTHE:   Have not Members amendments ready for some months past?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   That may be. At any rate, the matter can be fully discussed at a Third Reading.

The PRESIDENT:   We will leave Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday for the Second Reading.

[406]AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   The Dáil will meet to-morrow at 2.30.

Mr. R. CORISH:   Is the President in a position to state that he is able to set aside a day for the discussion of civil administration?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE:   If Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday are given to the Constitution, it will have to be next week.

The PRESIDENT:   I hope to have it this day week, or on Tuesday. From seven to ten days from now I expect it.

Motion, “That the Dáil do now adjourn,” put and agreed to.

The Dáil adjourned at 7.25 p.m.