The History and Proceedings of the House of Commons: Volume 5, 1713-1714. Originally published by Chandler, London, 1742.
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By way of Supplement likewise to the Proceedings of this Parliament, we must farther take Notice, that the Motion which was made in the third Session, to tack the Occasional Conformity and Land-Tax Bills together, was introduced by Mr. Powley with a Speech, the Substance of which was as follows, viz.
That the Practice of Occasional Conformity was such a scandalous Hypocrisy, as was no way to be excused upon any Pretence whatsoever. That it was condemned even by the better Sort of Dissenters themselves. That the employing Persons of a different Religion from that established by Law had never been practised by any wise Government, and was not allowed even in Holland. That the Sacramental Test was appointed by the Wisdom of the Legislature, to preserve the established Church, not from Protestants, but Papists; which Church seems in as much Danger from the Dissenters at this Time, as it was from Papists when the Act was made. And this Law being so necessary, and having been twice refused in the House of Lords, the only way to have it pass is to tack it to a MoneyBill. It has been an ancient Practice to tack Bills that were for the Good of the Subject to the Money-Bills; it being reasonable, that while grievous Taxes are laid upon the People for Support of the Crown, the Crown should in return pass such Laws as are for the Benefit of the People. The great Necessity there is for the Money-Bill's passing, is rather an Argument for than against this Proceeding; for what Danger can there be that the Lords, who pretend to be such great Patriots, should rather lose the necessary Supplies, than pass an Act so requisite for Preservation of the Church? However, if we should suppose them so unreasonable, the Matter is not so bad; for it is only but proroguing the Parliament for a few Days, and then the Commons might pass the Land-Tax again without the Tack: And so he concluded with Moving, That the Occasional Conformity Bill might be tacked to the Land-Tax-Bill.'
Upon this, warm Debates followed, in which among those who opposed the Motion, Lord Cutts was pleased to say, 'The English Nation is now in the highest Consideration abroad, and if any Divisions should happen between the two Houses, it will cast a Damp upon the whole Confederacy, and give the French King almost as great an Advantage as we had gained over him at Blenheim.' After which, the Right Honourable Henry Boyle asked, 'Whether any wise Man would venture his whole Estate upon a Vote?' And answering himself in the Negative, added, 'And shall we now venture the Safety of all England, nay of all Europe upon this?' Mr. Secretary Hedges represented, 'That the Duke of Marlborough had lately concluded a Treaty with the King of Prussia for 8000 of his Men, to be employed towards the Relief of the Duke of Savoy, who was now in the most imminent Danger: That these Troops were actually on their March, upon a Credit of a Vote of this House, That they would make good her Majesty's Treaties; and that the obstructing the Money-Bill, which the Tacking would infallibly do, would put an immediate Stop to the March of those Troops, and thereby occasion the entire Ruin of the Duke of Savoy.' Sir John Hawles, the learned Sollicitor-General in King William's Reign, perceiving that many Members were ashamed of Mr. Bromley's Motion, exposed them by saying, 'That for his own Part, he had been against this Bill from the Beginning, but he wondered that those Gentlemen who had all along pretended the Church of England was on the Brink of Ruin, unless such a Bill should pass, did not pursue the only Method that might secure the passing of that Bill. I put it to the Conscience of those Gentlemen who are come over to us, added he, whether they were before satisfied as to the Reasonableness and Necessity of this Bill, since they now desert their own Friends: I wish they had voted on our Side two Years ago, for it would have saved us a great deal of Trouble, the greatest Part of the Nation a great deal of Uneasiness, and themselves the Confusion of abandoning their Party at a Pinch.' Sir Thomas Littleton, the late Speaker, said, 'Gentlemen, by the Tacking of this Bill, we mean to throw a Necessity upon the Lords to pass it; but suppose the Lords think fit to untack what we have taked, and to acquaint us that they are ready to pass the Money-Bill, but will consider of the other, pray whose Fault will the Nation account it to be, that the Queen's Service is retarded?' Upon the whole, this Motion was over-ruled, as may be seen Tome III. Page 375. But the Bill was carried, and afterwards rejected by the Lords, by a Majority of 71 against 50.