40] INTERVIEW WITH ME. CHAMBERLAIN 135
Mr. Chamberlain. ' Not absolutely. I think my idea was that it should take the initiative in introducing Bills, and that it should pass Bills, but that these Bills should not become law until they received the sanction of the Imperial Parliament. If any particular measure was brought in in the council and passed through the council, that measure should then be sent to the House of Commons, and be allowed to lie on the table of the House of Commons for say forty days, and then, if nothing was done upon it, it would become law.'
* That was a bigger scheme than what one ordinarily understands by local government ? '
Mr. Chamberlain. ' Certainly, it was a very big scheme. Perhaps it was too big a scheme. I do not think I should agree to it now, but I was ready to give it then. So far as I could learn, Parnell was not opposed to that scheme ; here again I have to depend on O'Shea. I remember another thing in this connection which, supports O'Shea. About this time Cardinal Manning asked me to call upon him, and talk over the Irish question. I went to see him, and we discussed this National Councils scheme. I asked him if he thought Parnell would accept it, and if it would be satisfactory to the bishops and priests, for I considered that important. He said he was in a position to speak for the bishops, because he had seen some of them passing through on their way to Rome, and that they were in favour of some such scheme as I had proposed. He said, in fact, that he thought the bishops would prefer a National Councils scheme to an independent Parliament. He also said he thought Parnell would accept it. I told Mr. Gladstone all that had happened, and he quite approved of the National Councils scheme. This was in 1884 or early in 1885. Ultimately Ihould legislate!?'ll had risen to in n shorter timo than I now take to tell the Htory. Whenoin Mr, (*lml**tunr,* Nr\t <luy tht*