Léim ar aghaidh chuig an bpríomhábhar

Dáil Éireann díospóireacht -
Thursday, 7 Jun 1928

Vol. 24 No. 2


I move for leave to introduce a Bill "entitled an Act to amend the Constitution by deleting the provisions now contained therein as to the formation of a panel for the purpose of the election of members of Seanad Eireann and by providing in lieu thereof that the formation of such panel shall be regulated by law."

As the Constitution stands, every outgoing Senator and every ex-Senator has the right of nomination on the panel. The Seanad has the right to nominate one-third of the panel, and the Dáil has the right to nominate two-thirds. The panel consists of three times the number of candidates who are to be elected. Within a few years' time, if Providence is good to the outgoing Senators and ex-Senators, we might, if the present system continued to operate, have a panel of 200 names on the list. On the last occasion when an election took place 67 names were on the panel. This particular constitutional amendment proposes to have a panel regulated according to law. The intention is that 20 names should be selected by the Seanad and 20 names selected by the Dáil, and that outgoing Senators or ex-Senators will not have the right to put their names on the panel. Formerly they had that right by acquainting the President of the Executive Council, and their names automatically went on. The reason it is not considered advisable to apply that principle now is that if the Dáil or the Seanad will not support an outgoing Senator's name it is obviously useless to have his name on the panel for election. The proposal of the Committee was that a nominating college should be set up. I gave careful consideration to that matter, and it was also considered by the Executive Council. I am not satisfied that the term "nominating college" is an attractive one, but the suggestion is practicable, and, therefore, it is proposed to regulate the formation of a panel by law in the way I have indicated.

On a point of order, I am not clear about the ruling of the Chair on the other matter. Was it the ruling that because the President's statement is explanatory that he is limited in point of time?

Then it must apply to other statements which cannot be limited in point of time.

Then the only question is, it is for a Deputy to judge as to whether he is satisfied his statement is ample or not.

It is impossible to escape from the position that the Chair is the judge. There is no time limit under the Standing Orders, but the limit of a Deputy's statement must be determined in each case by the Chair.

Provided a Deputy is speaking to the point, is it not for him to judge whether he has satisfactorily explained what is in his mind or not?

Yes; but the Chair is to judge as to whether the Deputy is, in fact, speaking to the question.

Then it is a question of relevancy?

I suggest that the word "explanatory" there leaves in the original proposal an option of defining the ambit of the resolution, and if a speaker in his explanation deliberately restricts himself rigidly to conventional forms, it seems very grievously if that is so, to limit those following. Those who drafted the Standing Orders apparently had something of that kind in view, for in putting adjectival descriptions or limitations in front of the word "statement" they necessarily to some extent limited that statement. The word "explanatory" is not accidental. The word "explanatory" apparently is quite wide enough, according to the interpretation of the Chair, to cover as much explanation as the proposer desires to give. I think it is a well-ascertained principle of law——

Is the Deputy making a point of order?

Will the Deputy put the point of order?

The point of order is that we have to construe the Standing Orders to some extent as if they were laws, and that the Chair will also ordinarily construe the Standing Orders according to certain rules of law which a judge would use in interpreting the same rules.

I understand the ruling is that in relation to Standing Orders there are no conventions except the judgment of the Chair. If that is the understanding we will know where we are.

I want to express complete dissent from the view that the interpretation of Standing Orders is a matter which can be carried out only by a person acquainted with the rules for the interpretation of statutes in a court of law. I completely dissent from that.

It is a useful thing to have that on the records of the House.

It is on them already.

It means that in selecting an occupant for the Chair we are not required to put into the Chair those who have a knowledge of the law. I am dealing with a technical point. The point I am putting to you is this, that within the ordinary knowledge of laymen, as distinct from a legal knowledge, in the interpretation of the clauses of the Bill or anything of that kind, it is commonly known that where the function in one case is limited and in the other case is not limited it must have been the intention of those who did that thing to do what they have done.

Hear, hear!

I disagree entirely with the Deputy.

Deputy Little has, naturally, more respect for lawyers and the law than I have; he knows them better. The point I am putting as a point of order is that where the word "statement" occurs twice in the one sentence and in relation to two different people with two different interests, and where in the one case it is limited by the word "explanatory" and in the other case it is not limited by the word "explanatory," you must assume the intention on the part of those who framed that Standing Order was to give a much wider ambit, apparently an unlimited ambit, to the one which they have not chosen to limit. I submit as a point of order, that because of the fact that a limiting term is applied to the introducer of the motion, and that in the second case that term is excluded, we must assume it is done deliberately and, therefore, it is the intention to give to the opposer of the motion the power which is claimed by the opposer of the motion—a very much wider area of travel, investigation and argument than what might be limited to the proposer.

Is this a point of order or a speech?

As far as the word "explanatory" will appear to the proposer of a motion, he is apparently allowed to go so long as he does not too violently violate the conscience of the Chair. We assume the proposer has no conscience at all; that is the natural assumption in a case of that kind.

I am not able to decide a point of order on that basis. At any rate, the situation is that Standing Order 82 is clearly intended to limit debate on the First Stage of a Bill, and that is what is being done. The mover of the motion cannot, by restricting his statement to certain matters, impose thereby any restrictions on the speakers who follow. Those restrictions can only be imposed by the Chair. I have already decided, on the point raised by Deputy MacEntee, any point of order that there may be in the statement that Deputy Flinn has made.

On a point of order, is there any order limiting debates upon the interpretation of Standing Order 82?

On a further point of order, is it not within the distinct recollection of the Ceann Comhairle that the Committee of Procedure and Privileges drafted this Order and that the word "explanatory" means that the mover is enabled to indicate what he proposes to do and not why he does it? Is not that the real reason why the word "explanatory" was inserted?

I am ruling upon a question asked by Deputy Redmond. There is a limit to speeches with regard to the interpretation of Standing Order 82. It is within the power of the Chair to impose that limit, and the Chair is now imposing it.

Cuirim in-aghaidh cead a thabhairt an Bille seo do thabhairt isteach—an Bille atá mar uimhir a 4 ar an bpáipéur os ár gcóir. Sé sin Bille Bunreachta (Leasú Uimh. 9), 1928—Bille dá ngairmtear Acht chun an Bunreacht do leasú tré sna forálacha do scriosa amach atá anois ann i dtaobh ainm-liost do chur le chéile chun baill de Sheanad Eireann do thogha agus tré n-a shocrú ina n-ionad san go ndéanfar cur le chéile an ainm-liosta san do rialáil le dlí.

Baineann sé seo le tuarasgabháil on gCó-Choiste ar chó-Dhéanamh Sheanad Eireann. Maidir leis an díosbóireacht do bhí ar siubhal nuair a cuireadh an Rialtas ar bun ní déanfa mé tagairt ach don rud a tháinig as— Airtiogal 32 den Bhunreacht. Tá Airtiogal 32 mar leanas:

Toghfar an ceathrú cuid de bhaill Sheanaid Eireann gach trí bliana ó ainm-liost a déanfar ar chuma a luaidhtear 'na dhiaidh seo agus déanfar san ag toghachán 'na mbeidh líomatáiste údaráis Shaorstáit Eireann mar aon líomatáiste toghacháin amháin, agus is do réir Ionaduíochta Cothromúla a déanfar an toghachán.

Baineann Airtiogal 33 agus Airtiogail eile leis freisín—go hairithe Airtiogal 33:

Roimh gach toghachán do bhaill Sheanaid Eireann déanfar ainm-liost do chur le chéile 'na mbeidh:—

(a) A thrí oirid de dhaoine oiriúnacha agus atá de bhaill le togha; agus díobh san ainmneoidh Dáil Eireann dhá dtrian ag vótáil do réir Ionaduíochta Cothromúla agus Seanad Eireann trian amháin ag vótáil do réir Ionaduíochta Cothromúla; agus

(b) Pé daoine do bhí aon uair 'na mbaill de Sheanad Eireann (mar aon le baill atá i ndeire a dtéarma) a chuirfidh in úil d'Uachtarán na hArd-Chomhairle le fógra i scríbhinn gur mian leo a gcur ar an ainm-liost.

Socróidh Dáil Eireann—

An bhfuil an Teachta in ordú an t-airtiogal do léigheamh amach? Nach léor dó an uimhir do thabhairt dúinn?

Tá cead ag an Teachta é do léigheamh amach.

Caithfe mé tosnú arís.

Ní gá. Tosnuigh ar "Socróidh Dáil Eireann."

"Socróidh Dáil Eireann agus Seanad Eireann fé seach an tslí déanfar tairisgint agus togha chun ainmniúcháin, maille le aireachas speisialta do thabhairt don riachtanas atá le ionaduíocht do sholáthar do leasanna agus d'fhundúireachtaí táchtacha sa dúthaigh: Ar choiníoll go mbeidh gach tairisgint i scríbhinn agus go luaidhfear inte cáilíocht an té a tairgeofar, agus ná tairgeofar aon duine gan a chead féin. Chó luath is cuirfear an t-ainm-liost le chéile foillseofar liost ar órdú aibítre d'ainmneacha lucht an ainm-liosta mar aon le n-a gcáilíocht."

Sin é an t-airtiogal go mbaineann an scéal seo leis. Caithfe mé anois tagairt do dhéanamh do thuarasgabháil Có-choiste Dháil agus Sheanad Eireann do cló-bhuaileadh ar an 16adh Bealtaine, 1928. Ar leathanach a 4 den thuarasgabháil sin tá an moladh so:—

Isé tuairim an Chó-Choiste nách maith an rud baill do thogha chun Seanad Eireann le vóta díreach na ndaoine agus molaid go dtoghfí baill Sheanad Eireann ag baill Dháil Eireann agus Sheanad Eireann ag vótáil le chéile do réir phrionsiobal Ionadaíochta Cothromúla.

Do shocruigh an Có-Choiste ar a mhola, i gcóir toghachán chun Seanad Eireann, go ndéanfadh Coláiste Ainmniúcháin do bunófí chuige sin ainmliost d'iarrthóirí do chur le chéile ach a bheith de cheart ag Dáil Eireann agus ag Seanad Eireann ainmniúcháin do chur ar an ainmliost suas go dtí maximum áirithe—

Is dócha ná fuil aon Ghaedhilg ar "maximum" san oifig.

No in aon áit eile.

An bhfuil Gaedhilg ag an Teachta air?

An gá freagra a thabhairt ar gach ceist?

Ní féidir leat.

"An Colaiste Ainmniúcháin do bheith co-dhéanta d'ionadaithe do chomlachaisí, do chó-ghléasanna, no do chóluchtaí a bhaineann leis na nithe seo a leanas, eadhon, Talmhaíocht, Oibreachas, Oideachas, Tráchtáil, agus Feabhsú Náisiúnta. Toise a dheacracht a bhí sé, ámh, don Chó-Choiste teacht ar aon intinn i dtaobh modha shásúla chun a leithéid sin de Choláiste do chur le chéile do shocruigh an Có-Choiste gan a thuille breithnithe do dhéanamh ar mhion-choda scéime, ach a mhola go scriosfí amach na forálacha atá sa Bhunreacht i dtaobh an ainmliost do chur le chéile agus foráil do chur isteach ann go ndéanfí an t-ainmliost do chur le chéile i slí atá le socrú le gnáth-reachtúchán."

Anois, téighim go dtí uimhir a chúig.

Níl aon bhaint ag an alt sin leis an scéal so.

B'fhéidir nach bhfuil. Ach, tá Acht a bhaineas leis an gceist seo—Acht Toghacháin (Toghacháin an tSeanaid), 1925.

Níl aon ní san Acht san a bhaineas leis an gceist seo.

Tá alt a h-aon, cuir i gcás "Roimh gach toghachán Seanaid ceapfidh an tUachtarán le h-ordú lá oiriúnach mar lá deiridh ar a bhféadfidh daoine ba bhaill de Sheanad Eireann aon uair a chur in-úil do réir Airtiogal 33 den Bhunreacht gur mian leo go gcuirfí iad ar an ainm-liost d'iarrthóirí don toghachán san agus i ndeire an lae a ceapadh amhlaidh tuigfar ceapa an ainm-líosta san do bheith críochnuithe (2) Gach ordú a dhéanfidh an tUachtarán fén alt so foillseofar é san Iris Oifigiúil cho luath agus is féidir é tar éis a dhéanta.” Ní bhaineann an tAcht uilig leis an scéal so.


Is mór an truagh!

Tá buan ordú ann a bhaineas leis an obair seo: "Má cuirfar i gcoinnibh na tairisginte sin féadfaidh an Ceann Comhairle an cheist ina taobh do chur más oiriúnach leis é agus tar éis do ráiteas mínitheach ón Teachta do dhin an tairisgint agus ráiteas ó Theachta a chuirfidh i gcoinnibh na tairisginte do cheadú."

Isé atá uaim ná an dá rud do chur i gcomparáid le chéile chun go dtuigfeadh an Tigh cad é is mian leis an Uachtarán do dhéanamh leis an mBunreach. Níor thug sé míniú ceart ar an leasrún. Níor mhínigh sé conus mar a déanfar an obair feasta. Níl fhios agam ce'n fáth gur mian leis an scéim atá ann anois d'atharú. Thug an tAire Airgid árd-mhola don scéim seo nuair a bhí an cheist os cóir na Dála, Lá Samhna, 1922.

Isé atá uaim ná tuairimí an Teachta féin; ní theastuigheann uaim tuairimí daoine eile.

Níl aon tuairim aige.

B'fhéidir ná fuil tuairim agam ar chúrsaí an tSeanaid ach sílim gur mithid deire do chur leis. Tuairim bheacht chruinn isea é sin. Sílim ná fuil aon mhaith ann. Níl fhios agam an mbeidh cead agam tagairt do dhéanamh don óráid do thug an tAire Airgid uaidh.

Tá giota beag annso agus ba mhaith liom é do léigheamh.

Níl uaim ach tuairim an Teachta.

Fuair an tsean-scéim árd-mhola ón gcumann a glaodhtar "P.R." air. Cheapadar gur scéim ana-mhaith é agus ní dó liom go bhfuaireamar aon argóint in a coinne. Ní dó liom gur ceart an Seanad a bheith ann in aon chor ach ós rud é go bhfuil sé ann is dó liom go bhfuil an tsean-scéim chó maith le aon scéim eile. Ní fheicim aon tairbhe san scéim seo. Ní thuigim i gceart conus a déanfar an t-ainm-liost amach.

Caithfear Bille eile do thabhairt isteach.

Sin díreach an deacracht. Táthar ag iarraidh ceada an Bille seo do thabhairt isteach ach ní thuigimíd an scéal. Conus mar is féidir linn an cead san do thabhairt gan an Bille do thuigsint?

Caithfidh an Teachta fanúint go dtí go bhfeicfidh sé an Bille.

B'fearr liom an Bille d'fheicsint ar dtúis. Is ag caitheamh aimsire atámuid fhaid agus nach dtuigimíd an Bille.

Tá an Teachta ag cailliúint aimsire agus is mór an truagh é.

Aontuím leis an Teachta ó Ghaillimh—go bhfuilimíd ag cailliúint aimsire. Ní ceart an Bille do thabhairt isteach gan míniú. Dá dtabharfadh an tUachtarán míniú don Dáil, b'fhéidir go mbeadh Teachtaí annso do chabhróchadh leis. Ar dhóigh ar bith, táim in aghaidh cead do thabhairt an Bille seo do thabhairt isteach agus iarraim ar an Tigh gan glacadh leis an tairisgint.

Question put.
The Dáil divided: Tá, 71; Níl, 46.

  • William P. Aird.
  • Ernest Henry Alton.
  • James Walter Beckett.
  • George Cecil Bennett.
  • Ernest Blythe.
  • Séamus A. Bourke.
  • Seán Brodrick.
  • Alfred Byrne.
  • John Joseph Byrne.
  • Edmund Carey.
  • James Coburn.
  • John James Cole.
  • Mrs. Margt. Collins-O'Driscoll.
  • Martin Conlon.
  • James Fitzgerald-Kenney.
  • John Good.
  • Denis J. Gorey.
  • John J. Hassett.
  • Michael R. Heffernan.
  • Michael Joseph Hennessy.
  • Thomas Hennessy.
  • John Hennigan.
  • Mark Henry.
  • Patrick Hogan (Galway).
  • Richard Holohan.
  • Michael Jordan.
  • Patrick Michael Kelly.
  • Myles Keogh.
  • Hugh Alexander Law.
  • Patrick Leonard.
  • Finian Lynch.
  • Arthur Patrick Mathews.
  • Martin McDonogh.
  • Michael Og McFadden.
  • Patrick McGilligan.
  • Joseph W. Mongan.
  • Michael P. Connolly.
  • Bryan Ricco Cooper.
  • William T. Cosgrave.
  • Sir James Craig.
  • John Daly.
  • Michael Davis.
  • Peter de Loughrey.
  • Eugene Doherty.
  • James N. Dolan.
  • Peadar Seán Doyle.
  • Edmund John Duggan.
  • Barry M. Egan.
  • Osmond Thos. Grattan Esmonde.
  • Desmond Fitzgerald.
  • Richard Mulcahy.
  • Joseph Xavier Murphy.
  • Martin Michael Nally.
  • John Thomas Nolan.
  • Bartholomew O'Connor.
  • Timothy Joseph O'Donovan.
  • Daniel O'Leary.
  • Dermot Gun O'Mahony.
  • John J. O'Reilly.
  • Gearoid O'Sullivan.
  • John Marcus O'Sullivan.
  • William Archer Redmond.
  • Vincent Rice.
  • Martin Roddy.
  • Timothy Sheehy (West Cork).
  • William Edward Thrift.
  • Michael Tierney.
  • Daniel Vaughan.
  • Vincent Joseph White.
  • George Wolfe.
  • Jasper Travers Wolfe.
  • Joseph W. Mongan.


  • Frank Aiken.
  • Denis Allen.
  • Richard Anthony.
  • Gerald Boland.
  • Patrick Boland.
  • Daniel Bourke.
  • Seán Brady.
  • Robert Briscoe.
  • Daniel Buckley.
  • Hugh Colohan.
  • Eamon Cooney.
  • Dan. Corkery.
  • Richard Corish.
  • Martin John Corry.
  • Tadhg Crowley.
  • Thomas Derrig.
  • Eamon de Valera.
  • Frank Fahy.
  • Hugo Flinn.
  • Andrew Fogarty.
  • Seán French.
  • Patrick Hogan (Clare).
  • Samuel Holt.
  • Patrick Houlihan.
  • Michael Joseph Kennedy.
  • William R. Kent.
  • James Joseph Killane.
  • Mark Killilea.
  • Michael Kilroy.
  • Seán F. Lemass.
  • Patrick John Little.
  • Thomas McEllistrim.
  • Seán MacEntee.
  • Séamus Moore.
  • Daniel Morrissey.
  • Thomas Mullins.
  • Thomas J. O'Connell.
  • Patrick Joseph O'Dowd.
  • Seán T. O'Kelly.
  • Matthew O'Reilly.
  • Thomas O'Reilly.
  • James Ryan.
  • Martin Sexton.
  • Patrick Smith.
  • Richard Walsh.
  • Francis C. Ward.
Tellers:—Tá: Deputies Duggan and P. Doyle. Níl: Deputies G. Boland and Davin.
Second Stage ordered for Thursday, 14th June.
Motion declared carried. Leave granted.