The New Constitution

The Maitland Mercury & Hunter River General Advertiser

29 January 1848

In the year 1838, a plan for fastening on this colony a constitution similar to that proposed by Earl Grey in his late despatch was entertained, and to show how much of backstairs influence was at work, the following incident, partially reported in the Morning Post, though suppressed in the other papers, will show:-

Mr. Praed asked the Under Secretary of State for the Colonies, in his place in the House of Commons, whether the report was true that the gentlemen belonging to the Colonial Department had given over a part of their duty to other persons not belonging to the Ministry, and that in consequence a constitution was preparing for New South Wales repugnant to the spirit of the British Constitution. And further, if such rumour were true he would give notice of motion of impeachment of Her Majesty's Ministers.

The answer given was, that there was no such constitution preparing, but that Her Majesty's Ministers had beep endeavouring to obtain every information relating to the colony.