The Liberal government clears the decks for the first election of 1910

Following the Lords’ rejection of the budget, Prime Minister H.H. Asquith moved in the Commons ‘That the action of the House of Lords in refusing to pass into law the financial provision made by this House for the service of the Year is a breach of the Constitution and a usurpation of the rights of the Commons’. In his speech Asquith laid out the grounds on which the government would fight the election, ‘The House of Lords has deliberately chosen its ground. They have elected to set at nought…the unwritten but time-honoured conventions of our Constitution…We believe that the first principles of representative government…are at stake and we ask the House of Commons by this resolution…to declare that the organ and voice of the free people of this country is to be found in the elected representatives of the nation.’ The resolution was carried by a majority of 215 and Parliament was dissolved the following day.