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II. this treaty to the French, and to what inconvenienciesi —1 has subjected this nation? an answer may very justly be resused, till the minister or his apologists shall explain his conduct in the last war with Spain; and insorm us why the plate fleet was spared, our ships sacrisiced to the worms, and our Admiral and his sailors poisoned in an unhealthy climate? Why .the Spaniards in sull security laugh'd at our armaments, and triumphed in our calamities.
"The lives of Hosier and his forces are now justly to be demanded from this man; he is now to be charged with the murder of those too unhappy men, whom heexposed to misery and contagion, to pacisy, on one hand, the Britons who called out lor war, and to gratisy, on the othsr, the French, who insisted that the Spanish treasures should not be seized.
"The minister who neglects any just opportunity of promoting the power, or increasing the wealth of his country, is to be considered as an enemy to his sellow subjects; but what censure is to be passed upon him who betrays that army to a deseat, by which victory might be obtained; impoverishes the nation, whose assairs he is entrusted to transact, by those expeditions which might enrich it; who levies armies only to be exposed to pestilence, and compels them to perish in sight of their enemies, without molesting them? It cannot surely be denied, that such conduct may justly produce a censure more severe than that which is intended by this motion; and that he who has doomed thousands to the grave; who has co-operated with foreign powers against his country; who has protected its enemies, and dishonoured its arms, should be deprived not only of his honours, but his lise; that he (hould at least be stripped of those riches which he has amassed during a long series of successsul wickedness; and not barely be hindered from making new acquisitions, and increasing his wealth by multiplying his crimes.
"But no such penalties, Sir, are now requiredthose who have long stood up in«pposition to him, gave a proof by the motion, that they were not incited by personal malice; since tRey are not provoked to propose any arbitrary censure, nor have recommended what might be authorized by his own practice, an act of Attainder, or a Bill of Pains and Penalties. They desire nothing sur-ChAF.II. ther, than that the security of the nation maybe restored, v^~r-^j and the discontent of the people pacisied, by his removal 1741. from that trust which he has so long abused.
"The discontent of the people is in itself a reason for agreeing to this motion, which no rhetorical vindicator of his conduct will be able to counterbalance; for since it is necessary to the prosperity of the government, that the people should believe their interest savoured, and their liberties protected; since to imagine themselves neglected, and to be neglected in reality, must produce in them the same suspicions, and the same distrust, it is the duty of every saithsul subject whom his station qualisies, to offer advice to his Sovereign, to persuade him, for the preservation of his own honour and the affection of his subjects, to remove from his councils that man, whom they have long considered as the author of pernicious measures, and a savourer of arbitrary power."
Upon a division, the motion was negatived by 290 against 106.
A New Parliament—Mr. Pitt re-elecled—The Minister loses several Questions—Restgns, and is created Earl of Or ford—Parliament adjourns— Secret Negotiation with Mr. Pulteney—I hat affair truely slated—Lord Cobbam and his Friends excluded—the new Arrangement settled by the Earl of Or ford—Stanza of Sir Charles Hanbury Williams explained; and the condition upon which Sir Robert Walpole became Minister—Duke of ArgylTs expression to Mr. Pulteney—The Nation dissatisfied.
Chap. Th E Minister having become exceedingly unIII. popular, and the leaders of several parties having united against him, he had not character and interest sufficient to secure a majority in the new Parliament, which was elected in the spring of
In this Parliament, which met on the 4th of December 1741, Mr. Pitt was re elected for Old Sarum. The sirst question which the Minister . lost, was that of chairman of the committee of privileges aud elections; Dr. Lee being chosen by a majority of four, against Mr. Earle, who had been supported by himself. After losing some questions upon the decisions of the contested elections, he saw that there was a confirmed 1742. majority against him; and therefore, on the 3d os February 1742, he resigned his employments, and was created Earl of Orford. At the same
time the Parliament, by the King's command, C adjourned to the iSth of the fame month. J
Although the Minister was per fonally departed, , his influence was not extinguished: he still possessed power sufficient to enable him to capitulate with his-opponents for his sasety.
With his usual penetration, he prudently selected from amongst his opponents those who were the most eager for power, to commence his negotiation with. His view in making this selection was judicious. Those chiefs, or heads of opposition, to whom he made no communication of his designs, the moment they heard of the negotiation, became jealous of their friends ; and a schism amongst them was thereby created; which was the thing Sir Robert IValpole most wished ; because in their united state, they had power to crush him, but when divided, he knew they could not hurt him.
The negotiation began by the Duke of Newcastle requesting to see Mr. Pulteney privately at Mr. Stone's (his Grace's secretary) at Whitehall. Mr. Pulteney replied, That he would rather see the Duke at his own house in Piccadilly; and desired his Grace to fix the time; and added, that Lord Carteret must be present at the conserence. The same evening was agreed upon: and the Duke of Newcastle, with Lord Hardwicke, went to Mr. Pulteney s, where they found him with only Lord Carteret. They said, they came from the King with proposals; that it was his Majesty's desire, Mr. Pulter.ey should be placed at the head of the treasury. Mr. Pulteney excused himself, and proposed Lord Carteret for
Vol. I. D that
that situation. The conference ended, however*, without any thing being settled. But information of the meeting was in a sew hours spread all over the town. A' thousand conjectures were formed.
It was this private meeting, and another which happened two days afterwards, of the same persons, at the same place, which caused the division in the opposition. Between Lord Carteret and Lord Cobham there was no intimacy; but the contrary. The selection of Lord Carteret for these private conserences, which were to lay the foundation of, and to fix the boundaries of the new arrangement, was therefore a fort of marked exclusion of Lord Cobham, whose parliamentary friends (Mr. Pitt, Mr. l.yttelton, the three Grenvilles, [Richard, George and James] Mr. Waller, and several others) deserved consideration; whose personal character was high, and whose reputation had been assailed, in being turned out of the army. Lord Cobham was not of a temper to see these transactions with indisference. His friends selt their share of the contempt which was shewn to him; they gave him the tnost cordial assurances of attachment; and they immediately formed a separate party. They were in a short time joined by the Duke of Argyll, who, though he had taken the ordnance in the first moments of the change, he quickly resigned it. and returned to his old friends; who were in a sew weeks, joined by all thole who saw that the change of the ministry was only to be partial, inadequate and imperfect; that the nation, as well as themselves, had been deceived.