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to pass whatever laws it pleases ; and, With regard to this bill of BÅRINA'S, according to Mr. Place, the House has the real tendency of it is to enable the a right to pass a law, not only to shut, ! powerful and the opulent to shut out or turn, poor men out of Parliament ; of the House of Commons any man but it has a right to pass a law to make offensive to them, who is not very rich, the qualification ten thousand or twentylor who has not great riches at his comthousand pounds a year in freehold/ mand. The very fittest men to be Jand; it has a right to pass a law to members of the House of Commons are prevent any man from being a member persons in trade. Such persons, and of a reformed Parliament, until he has even professional men, barristers, and taken an oath to maintain tithes and attorneys, and doctors, may, from some STURGES BOURNE'S Bills, and to do cause not arising from any fault or folly anything else that this ' rotten-borough of their own, be unable to answer all Parliament shall dictate. "
the pecuniary demands upon them. So much for Mr. Place's doctrine There is scarcely any man who is enabout the right of Parliament; which gaged in extensive business, and who, doctrine, observe, would sanction an act if called upon on a sudden to pay every passed by this Parliament to make its debt that he owes, though he might be sittings perpetual; and if this bill of worth tifty shillings in the pound, might BARING pass and become a law, mark not have a judgment issued against him, my words, that this Parliament will not and thus be taken from the service of be dissolved for a pretty long time to the people. Observe, too, how easy it come ; and that this is only one of a would be for the powerful and the rich series of measures for counteracting and to combine for such a purpose, if it were nullifying the effects of the Reform Bill. a formidable man that they wished to I trust that when Mr. Place has had get rid of. They would have nothing time for reflection, he will think and to do but to find out and bribe his say differently on this subject ; if he do principal creditors. A squib at an not, I shall know what to think and say election ; a libel real or pretended ; the of Mr. PLACE, whom, in the mean time, venue laid so as to have a special jury T take the liberty to beg to be assured, consisting of county magistrates, might that all the trickery that ever was con-souse a man of moderate fortune in tained in all the budgets of WHITEHALL damages, such as he would be unable is no longer capable of subjecting the instantly to pay; the next term issues people of England to a Government of forth the judgment against him, and in Rumps, though partly consisting of a few weeks he exchanges his seat in moral majors, and reverend” Unitarian the House of Commons for a jail, and parsons. I do not like your majoring corruption is ridded of her plague! And and colonelling and reverend patriots; this is what Mr. FranCIS PLACE calls unless they distinctly disclaim receiving insuring the moral honesty of memany money from anybody on account of bers, as the best guarantee for their their glorious, or pious calling. As “ political integrity !”. Dame Quickly says of Swagger, “ I am But, BARING, quitting this Place, let the worse when one says major or reve- me now turn to you a bit, and ask you, rend;" and I looked at this Union with in the first place, how this great anxiety great suspicion, when I saw that it was for the "dignity and independence of the fitted out with soldiers and priests. The House of Commons'' happened to pop report states, that a man called Major into your head just at this time; happened Revel said, that in the United States, to pop into your head just after a law had there was a law like this. I deny this : been passed to drive a hundred and fifty of I assert, there is no such law in that mere nominees out of the House? I supcountry; that there is no qualification pose it came into your head the moment and no disqualification, in respect to you became the Duke's Chancellor of any members of the legislature, includ- the Exchequer the other day. You ing the President himself. . I have been, I think, about twenly years
a member of the honourable set ; you! Young GEORGE Rose, during the last saw a man, who was in the King's debate upon the Reform Bill, expressed Bench for debt, and who, while there, his fears, from what he had seen in was elected for a rotten borough, iaken America, that the Reform Bill would out of prison upon the motion of old cause poor men instead of rich men to GEORGE Rose, of Treasury notoriety; be elected; and he told a story about a and you saw the honourable member very rich man in PHILADELPHIA, who swagger about at large, and laugh at had been beaten by a stable-keeper, his creditors. You have witnessed in- GEORGE was right as to the fact, but numerable instances of this description, wrong as to the time. The time was or very nearly approaching to it: you when I was in PulladgLPHIA; and, it is have seen scores of men who have been truly curious that your father-in-law, members of the House for years to the OLD ORIGINAL BINGHAM, was gether, and who never possessed any- the very rich man, and Mr. ISRAEL thing on which a sheriff or his officer Israel was the stable-keeper. ISRAEL could lay his hands : in short, you have beat the very rich OLD ORIGINAL seen the House a sort of an asylum for by, I think it was, more than two men who could not, or would not, pay hundred to one. ISRAEL was a man their debts : and now, when the nomi- of good sense, very great public nees are about to be sent adrift, when spirit, generally known and respectthe people are about to be permitted to ed, and everybody knew that he had enjoy part of their rights to choose re- not sprung up from being supercargo presentatives, you discover, all at once, of a privateer, and that he had not that it is absolutely necessary to pass a amassed wealth by jobbing in loans, most vigorous nieasure for upholding and by getting two or three hundred per the “ dignity and independence of the cent. by dealing in the poor soldiers' cerHouse!”
tificates. The people, therefore, chose BARING, listen to me a bit. Is not the poor man in preference to the rich this country in a most deplorable state ; man ; this is what they have always are you not at your wit's-end what to done since the establishment of their do with it; was not the whole thing government; and this is the great cause within eight-and-forty hours of being of their prosperity and their happiness. overturned in the year 1825, and was But, BARIXG, is there nothing besides it not within twenty-four hours the poverty that ought to exclude a man week before last? And, Baring, have from a seat in Parliament or to turn him not men of rank and of landed qualifi. out of it? Does Mr. Place's “ moral cation brought the concern into this honesty and political integrity," demand state? And, while they have been ma- nothing more than the mere possession naging our concern in this manner, have of money? Is the mere fact of possesnot the Congress of America, the mem- sion to be considered as a proof of the bers of which have no rank and no pe- right to possess? If this be the case, cuniary qualification whatever, carried then, where is the constable that will that country to a point of prosperity dare to take a bar of stolen gold from a and greatness which have astonished thief ? Let your bill be so amended, the world? Are not the members of Baring, as to insure a strict inquiry that Congress generally pour men; and into the source of the rich meniber's have not two of the Presidents out of wcallh: and then assent to it with all the seven died insolvent ; and were they my heart. What! you startle, do you? not insolvent at the time of their being Well, then, I will drop that matter for chosen ? If all these questions be an- the present, hereby pledging myself to swered in the affirmative, and every the people, that, if I be chosen a memone of them must, upon what ground ber of Parliament, I will endeavour to is a bill like this to be justified, even cause such inquiry; aye, and to cause supposing the present House competent I restitution, too, if, in any case, it shall to pass it ?
be found to be just!
Encore un coup, as the French preach-| Union. Will the Whigs prevent this ers say. BARING, worthy son-in-law of bill from passing? We know that they the old original Bingham, it seems to me have the power; and if they do not do that you have wholly overlooked one it, that is a stupid or a base man who thing; namely, that if clear pecuniary does not regard them as having a desire possessions ; if such a total absence of to do every thing they can to counteract poverty; if these be so necessary to and nullify the Reform Bill; and if the uphold the dignity and independence of BIRMINGHAM UNION continue silent the House of Commons, they must be under the passing of this bill, and supten times more necessary to uphold the port the Whiy Ministry afterwards, dignity and independence of the House every man of sense will regard them as of Lords!!! Whether any of their forming part of the Whig faction, and Lordships be in a state of insolvency; will look at all their acts with great whether all of them be, at all times, suspicion accordingly. ready to pay every farthing that they The bill is hastening along! The owe; whether their privilege is of no people should petition against it immesort of use to them against the pursuit diately, and particularly the people in of creditors ; how these matters may be, the metropolitan boroughs and the great I cannot pretend to say, never having, I towns. I call upon the people of Finsthank God, had any accounts with them. I bury, of Marylebone, of the Tower But, Baring, while I see swarms of HAMLETS, of the city and liberties of their mothers, their wives, their chil-1 WESTMINSTER, of Lambeth, of Greendren, their brothers and sisters, their wich, of SouthwARK, and of every uncles, aunts, and cousins, upon what great town in the North, especially that honest man, Lord ALTHORP calls those which are to be enfranchised, to the " list of charily ;” while I behold petition immediately against this bill. this, common humanity compels me to the manifest terdency of which is to believe, that some at least of their Lord-slut out, or turn out, the greater part ships have no very great deal of that of those very men whom they ought to sort of substance which is tangible to choose. If the Council of BIRMINGHAM the paw of a sheriff or his officer. At will not move in this work, I call upon any rate every one must see that it is the people of BIRMINGHAM, and partipossible, that some of thein may fall into cularly the young men of BirmiNGHAM, this state ; and, notwithstanding the to move themselves : let them once get wonderful ability which you have dis-together, and they will soon find that played, in proving that it was perfectly they want no little king in Council to honouring in you to “ assist the King" | lead them by the nose. I call upon the in carrying through a Reform Bill, which good fellows of Dudley, of BILSTON, you had, a hundred times over, declared of WOLVERHAMPTON, and of Walsall, to be “a revolutionary measure, striking to raise their voices, and to raise those at the very “ root of the monarchy; ” hard, smuggy, and honest hands, by notwithstanding the possession of this which they contribute so largely to the wonderful ability, and another quality, wealth and power of the kingdom ; I in which you certainly surpass all the call upon them all to come forth and rest of mankind. I defy you, though as- protest against this insidious bill, which sisted by Francis Place, of CHARING- I believe to be the first of a series of Cross, to show any one reason for bills intended to render the Reform Bill passing this bill, relative to the House not worth a straw. of Commons, which will not equally Lest any one should imagine that well apply to a proposition for a similar I have here been pleading on my own bill, relative to the House of Lords. account, I will observe, that this bill, if
And, now, BARING, I have done with passed into a law, will have no possible you for the present ; but I have just a effect with regard to me. I deem my word or two to say to the Whig Ministry security against insolvency full as great, and to the COUNCIL of the BIRMINGHAM at the leas', as that of this BARING him
self. Nor have I at presert my eye upon us; or, in other words, to our upon any man, whom I should like to earnings being taken away from us, and Have to assist me, who is at all likely given to those who give us nothing, ever to be exposed to the shutting out, and who render us no service in return. or the turning out, which is contem- When a man is robbed by a highwayplated by this bill. I plead for the man or a housebreaker, he clearly sees, right of the people to avail themselves that the property taken from him is of the talents that they may deem valu-l a clear loss ; and, my friends, no inatter able, though those talents may be ac- how the fruits of our industry be taken companied with the absence of wealth from us; no matter as to the manner of and the want of money. If the people doing this ; no matter by whom the act bestir themselves in time, this joint blow of taking away is performed, the effect of BARING and of FRANCIS Prace will is the same; the thing taken away is a fail; it will be beaten off at once; but clear loss, if there be not something I trust that we shall not be so ungrate- given, or something done in return. ful as not to take the will for the deed. This, then, is what we complain of. Wm. COBBETT. Our grievances are not fanciful and
theoretical, but real and practical. We complain that our rarnings are unjustly
taken from us; and we always hare TO THE ELECTORS ascribed, and now do ascribe, this to our UNDER
not being represented in Parliament; to · THE REFORM BILL.
our having been robbed of the right of
choosing those who impose taxes, and On the Caution which they will now who dispose of the money taken from us
have to exercise, and on the Duties in taxes. This has been and is our which they will have to perform grievance.
The Reform Bill, to redress this Kensington, 1st June, 1832. grievance completely, ought to secure MY FRIENDS,
The right of voting to every man of sane Owing to our own exertions, and to mind, and unstained by infamous crime; nothing else, we shall now have this but, for harmony's sake, we have, as REFORM Bill; and it becomes us now the Manchester meeting in their adto consider what use we shall make of it; dress to the King say, “ agreed to try for the mere name of reform will do us the effect of a more limited suffrage, no good at all. I trust that we shall " and, for the present, to forego a part now cease to be amused with shadows," of this our undoubted right." But, and that we shall be satisfied with my friends, in order that this Reforin nothing but the substance. We want Bill ipay be of real use to us ; in order the reform, and we have always wanted that it may be the means of removing it, to make us better off than we have our poverty and misery, and delivering been, and than we are. Our earnings our country from this mass of crime and have been taken away from us unjustly; disgrace, we must take care to choose we have been made poor and miserable trusty and able unen to represent us ; and by this; the most unfortunate of us we must take care not to be cheated by have been reduced to take, by force or intriguers, who, under the garb of paby stealth, the goods of our neighbours, triotism, will endeavour to make us the or to starve ; new jails, new poor-tools of one or the other of the factions, houses, new mad-houses, fill and dis- and thus expose us to be plundered as grace our country; offences against mercilessly as we have been heretofore. the law have increased a hundredfold; I have to address you, FIRST, on the those who have property dare not go to recent proceedings relative to the Resleep, lest they should have it taken form Bill; second, on the arts which from them, or have it destroyed. We will be made use of to cheat us out of ascribe these evils to the burdens laid all the good that a reform ought to
produce us ; ' THIRD, on the incasures every shape and degree to the last hour which we want to have adopted; and of his life ; and this is the case with FOURTH, on the sort of men who ought BROUGHAM, Lord Joun Russell, Lord to be chosen, and on the pledges which ALTHORP, little HOBHOUSE, and some they ought to give before they be of the rest of them. chosen.
How, then, can you believe that these
i men were ever sincere in their wishes I. On the recent Proceedings relative to for a real reform of the Parliainent? the Reform Bill.
The facts are these : that the cause of On the conduct of the Lords, of the parliamentary reform had been a great King, of the Ministers and their sup-cause in England from about the year porters, of WELLINGTon and his sup- 1770; that the late MAJOR CARTWRIGHT porters; of all these you have been was the great champion of that cause pretty well informed, in one way or from its beginning till the day of his another, through the channel of the death, which took place a few years: newspapers; but, in order not to be ago ;, that I, converted to the cause by cheated, you ought to be cautioned Major CARTWRIGHT, espoused it with against giving way to pruises bestowed all niy might in the year 1806; that upon anybody. We shall have the thereformers were persecuted,and I more Reform Bill, and we shall have it solely than any of the rest, until the present by our own exertions; we shall owe it to Reform Bill was brought in ; that, in nobody but ourselves, and we neverought the year 1830, including the month of to forget how much we owe to the December 1829, I went in person into country labourers, and particularly to three-fourths of the counties of England, those of them who first resolved to live and delivered lectures, urging the people upon potatoes no longer. Those who live to demand a reform of the Parliament ; upon the taxes and the tithes are never that, when the Parliament niet in the willing to allow that the people have any month of October 1830, the demand for merit at all; and though it is now evident reform was general throughout the to every one that it is the people them country; that the Duke of WELLINGselves who have made the Reform Billrox, who was then Prime Minister, depass, the greatest possible exertions are clared in the most positive and most making to cause us to believe that we insolent manner, that there should be shall owe that bill entirely to the good no reform as long as he was in power ; will, talents, and exertions of the Minis- that the people were so enraged at this ters and of their political party, which that he could neither walk nor ride the are commonly called the WHIGS.streets with safety ; that Lord GREY Now, my friends, nothing can be more then took the place of WELLINGTON, false than this: it is a lie as impudent promising the nation that he would as ever issued froin lips, or was ever make a reforın of the Parliament. It is, put upon paper. The whole of the therefore, clear as daylight that the reMinistry themselves, with the exception form arose out of the will and resolution of my Lords GREY and HOLLAND, have of the people ; and that Lord GREY either been the most bitter enemies of could not have kept his place any more parliamentary reform all their lives, than WELLINGTON had done if it had which is the case with PALMERSTON, not been for his promise to make a res GODERICH, MELBOURNE, GRANT, GRA- form of the Parliament. XAM, and AUCKLAND; or who expressly It is equally clear that the Ministry abandoned the cause of reformn in 1827, entered upon the work of reform with and joined CANNING, who had always extreme reluctance. They put the work been the reviler of that cause, and the off, in a most unaccountable manner, from persecutor of all reformers; and who, the first week in November 1830, to the at the very time when they joined him, first day in March 1831; and, from th: and when he was Prime Minister, de- statements of several of them, it was clared, that he would oppose reform in made very clear that they had done