Mr Plimsoll, himself a teetotaller, in opposing the bill, told some good stories of the inefficiency of the prohibitory liquor laws in America—one which especially excited the laughter of the House referring to the sale of corn whiskey under the title of “Sacramental Wine.”
Mr. Eustace Smith’s experience of America was, however, entirely different, and he recommended the measure on account of the success which had attended similar legislation in the United States.
Mr Bruce, in speaking for the Government, treated with avowed contempt the oft-quoted statistics as to the comparative amount of drunkenness in different towns, and showed that during the period that it was said that drunkenness had increased crime had diminished. Prohibition, he maintained, was impossible, and therefore he opposed the second reading of the bill; and at the same time he contended that all the evils complained of by the friends of the measure might be met by the regulation of public houses.
—Bicester Herald, England, May 10, 1872