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“ perfectly correct in stating, that seats in “ nected.--(Loud cries of lear! hear!) • Parliament had been notoriously bought “ He could not recollect, however, that « and sold by the Treasury. He would “ the hon. gent. (Mr. Creevey) had, at the
say, that this was not only his belief, “ time when a specific charge was brought “ but that it was within his knowledge. The ugainst a Secretury of the Treasury for such “ Treasury not only openly bought and sold those " interference, given the House the benefit of “ seats, but they kept in a great degree the mo- « his knowledge. The House would per“ nopoly of that market. If this was at. “ceive, that the case he alluded to was, “ tempted to be denied by Ministers, he "when a charge was brought against a « should be glad to have the opportunity of “ Secretary of the Treasury (Mr. Free“ proving it, and he could easily prove it from “ mantle), for interference in the election of “ the lips of any one who had ever been Secre- “ Hampshire, where he was undoubtedly a “ tary of the Treasury. It was absolute “ freeholder. The hon. gent. did not then w nonsense and delusion on the public, for “ tell the House a word of that practice " the House to spend their time in consi- “ which was within his own knowledge, of “ dering abuses in the Commissioners of " Secretaries of the Treasury corruptly “the Lottery, and every other minor de- interfering in the election of Members “partment, when they knew, and when " of Parliament. When he had that “ the public knew, that the greatest of all knowledge, how did it happen that his “ abuses was constantly practised by every patriotism was asleep on that remarkable “ Secretary of the Treasury, in buying “ occasion ?" Thus, you see, Mr. " and selling seats in Parliament. To talk Gooch, here is no denial of the fact, but “ of a dissolution of Parliament as an ap- merely a charge against the late ministers “peal to the people was mere mockery of having done the same thing:- Well, “ and imposition. It was perfectly well then, Sir, can you complain of the people, “ known that a dissolution of Parliament was that they entertain suspicions of, and that “ not an appeal to the people, but to the Trea- they attack, both parties? How, after this,
sury (Hear! hear!)--Although he had can they possibly have any confidence in “ great respect for the last government, either? It is not in nature that they " and owed some personal favours to them, should ! and, abuse them who will, they " yet he must say, that their dissolution of never will have confidence in either again. • Parliament, at the end of four years, like -Mr. Gooch has, it seems, no objec" the dissolution by the present Ministers, tion “ to see respectable persons opposing “ at the end of about four months, was the government; they are the guardians “ not an appeal to the people but to the of the public interest; but, he bitterly “ Treasury (loud cries of Hear! hear !)--complains of a power behind the opposi“ Until the House was disposed to sup- tion benches, greater than those benches “press this odious and unconstitutional | themselves. Yes, yes; to be sure, an " traffic, the legislating on these minor opposition; a regulur opposition; this is os abuses was mere mockery and delu- quite necessary, absolutely necessary, to ~ sion.' These are pretty round asser- the support of the system; and, indeed tions. They cannot be misunderstood. it is notorious, that the parties like one The man must be an ideot, who does not another very well. Respectabl. persons, understand them clearly. And yet, I am such for, instance, as Mr. Sheridun, Gew sure that Mr. Gooch will not deny, that neral Fitzpatrick, and Mr. Tierney ; these, the constitution, for which we are called it seems, may oppose as long and upon, and are ready, toʻspend our last shil- loudly as they please; they are the ling and shed our last drop of blood, does " guardians of the public interest,” though, not allow of this sort of traffic; but, on when in power, their party did pension off the contrary, distinctly forbids it, under Mrs. For and her Daughters; but, persons heavy pains and penalties. Well, then, like Mr. Whitbread, Sir Francis Burdett, what says the king's minister, Mr. Perce- Lord Folkestone, Mr. Wardle, Mr. Lyttleval, to this? • MR. PERCEVAL said, that ton, Mr. Coke, Mr. Brand, Mr. Maducks, “ the Noble Lord had stated his firm be- &c. &c. these " persons” mist not at6 lief of the existence of such transactions, tempt to oppose government ; no, nor to “ and the hon. gent. had gone further, and express their opinions. It is odd enough, 6 stated, that it was within his absolute at first sight, that the ministerial party “ knowledge. The hon. gent. to be sure, should be so very angry with these yen“ might have some knowledge, from the confi- tlemen, and particulariy with Sir Fran« dence which was reposed in himn by the late cis Burdett and Mr. Wardle, who have “ Administration, with whom he was con• distinctly declared that they do not wish
for a change of Ministry; but, the reason is “ roice? this : tbat these gentlemen wish to put an
When a cry was raised against end to regular opposition, without which public Meetings, because two Ministers both parties well know, that there is nei- “ were charged with corruption, he felt ther indemnity for the past nor security
" desirous to ask the Chancellor of the for the future."--In quite surprizel, " Exchequer a few questions, with respect that any man in his sober senses, should “ to the means of inflaming the public have conceived the idea of retrieving the “ mind. Was it meant to say that the few reputation of parties. It is a thing as im- persons who were at the recent Meeting possible as for him to raise the lead from “ could be so extremely dungerous ?
Was it the grave. Upon no point was the public “ true or not that gross corruptions existed ? mind ever
more decidedly fixed, ihan “ He would admit not so gross as in forupon this, that both parties are alike with “ mer times, but yet gross enough. Were respect to the people, and that it is not of so purified? Had we really done the smallest consequence to the people * enough in the progress of Reform? No, we which of them is in power.---To the “ could never do enough; it the work of speeches, which I have quoted from, there « Reform ceased, while human nature was were most triumphant answers given by “ human nature, corruption would sucMr. Biddulph, Mr. Whitbread, Mr. Brand, “ ceed and triumph.' . and especially by Mr. Lyttleton, who
Corrupt conduct said, that “ If the House adopted a mode- “ was imputed to Mr. Spencer Perceval " rate and just reform, he believed that the “ and Lord Castlereagh. The responsi“ public meetings would be fewer, and bility was on the mover, and let the « less alarming to the Government. They “House decide fairly ; the withdrawing “ were the natural consequences of the miscon- - the motion might carry the appearance " duct of the House, and there was no pre- « of mistake in the mover. It might have s tention of them by absolute force, but by “ been more prudent to consult the opi« timely Reform. As for misrepresentations “nion of the Chair; but the motion be" of the press, which were complained of ing made, he thought the principle of " by Gentlemen opposite, had not others, “ the right ought not to be yielded. This " and particularly an Hon. Buronet, been “ was an attack, not on ull public men, but on s treated to the full, with as littie ceremo- “ their corrupt practices ; and if defeated in “ny? He could not believe that the nation “the question now, he hoped it would be " would impute 10 the advocates of Reform brought on again almost immediately. " what the press imputed to them. In- They all knew of these practices, and “deed such reports of public meetings they had recognized them. The House " would be trampled upon, if the grievances « of Commons had passed over a cuse proved 's themselves did not actually erist. He con
before them, and the man remained a Mi• cluded by declaring his opinion, that the nister of State. Does not that transaction * Ministers of the Crown possessed an un- «« shew that abuse is not corrected or checked? " due influence in that Ilouse.” I could or and those men who do not wish for a wish to insert the whole of Mr. Whit- Parliamentary Retorin should look wel bread's Speech, but want of room pre- " to the remedy of what is practically vents me. Those parts, however, which “ wrong, and for which Members might relate to Public Meetings and to Reform, I “ be sent to Newgate. A Member offers cannot refrain from inserting. -He said
“ to prove the existence of Ministerial that “ a right hon. gent. bad thought pro- corruption, and up jumps some honour
per to inake some remarks upon gentle- « able Gentleman, and charges him with at“ mens' attending certain clubs and socie- " tacking all public characters, and endea“ ties existing for the purpose, as he sup- vouring to destroy the Constitution from the “posed, of exciting the public inind and foundation, and to build up some new edi“intlaming popular passion. What had, “ fice. He denied again the truth of such « in fact, excited the public mind? What, charges. Ile saw no proof or just sus« but the results of recent investigations into picion of such a systein as was alluded " transactions of public importance! What, - io. If the House would not give the peo
but the refusal of the House of Commons to ple the right of public investigation into “ do justice on a Díember and a Minister abuses, the people may be contented and “ who did not deny his offences. What, " quiet; but they would see, that they who « without imputing such a design 10 Mi- “ refused enquiry, refused to them the Bri" nisters, would be the consequence of an «« tish Constitution.”--The case is so clear, " attempt to stifle the expression of the public that no man can err in deciding upon it. The
cause of the Meetings is to be found solely , cheat their creditors. Is not this notoriin the existence, the known and acknow- ous? Well, then, does Mr. Curwen beledged existence, of abuses, which are so lieve; can he possibly believe, that such injurious to the people, and the pecuniary men would be at all checked by any oath pressure and constant difficulties and em- that he could devise ? Nay, if there were barrassments arising from which, are so a member, who would give his vote for severely felt. This is the sole cause of the sake of getting, or of keeping, a place the Public Meetings. Nur were the pension, can Mr. Curwen hope, that people hasty about it. They waited with such a wretch would regard an oath ? Oh, great patience to see what the House of no! Oaths are made to bind honest men; Commons would do. But, when they and an oath of the sort proposed might saw a committee of the House sending keep some such out of the House, but not down proof, that a minister of state and a a single rogue, not a single hunter after member of the House had been guilty of place or pension ; not a single man who offering a place of profit to be given for a would be liable to make use of his seat to seat in that House, was it not time for the the public injury: --What is wanted is people to speak their sentiments touching precisely that which would render oaths ihe necessity of a Reform of parliament? unnecessary.
I do not see any great And, when ihey afterwards saw a motion objection to five or six of the principal for censuring this member negatived, and servants of the King, who have, every the member still keeping his seat and day, statements to make to the House, holding his office as a great minister of having seats in it, though I cannot see the state, were they still to be silent ? Or, if necessity of it; but, is it not contrary to all they complained of this, were they to be principles of sound reason, that there represented as anarchists; as men bent up- should be amongst those, whom the conon the overthrow of the Constitution - stitution considers as a check upon the • The House of Commons, by chearfully Crown, so large a portion who actually voting to Mr. Wardle those thanks which receive the people's money from that he so well deserved, would have prevented Crown, which money they themselves any Public Meetings for that purpose ; first vote? We, who wish for a Reform, and by now making such a Reform as the are charged with desiring to degrade the necessity of the case so clearly points out, House of Commons, when the fact is, that they would prevent future Meetings for we desire to elevate the character as well that purpose. But, until the people have of the electors as of the elected. We wish this Reform, or see the House disposed to for nothing new; we wish to recur to the make it, they will meet, unless they be old principles of the constitution, which, prevented, as Mr. Whitbread said, by indeed, are the dictates of common sense, force; and, in the end, that mode of pre- that property should again, as it formerly vention must be unavailing.
was, be the basis of representation ; or, in MR. Curwen's Motion.- - There will, other words, that those who have interests hereafter, be opportunities enough for dis- to manage, should have the choice of the cussing this question ; but, I cannot, even managers. The great alteration, which now, refrain from observing, that, if the time has produced, inay call for some remotion be adopted, I do not see how it can gulation by which trade and profession produce any real good. To impose oaths shall be admitted to share with property upon men disposed to act corruptly appears in Jand; but still the principle is the to me to be doing nothing at all. There same; and, my opinion is, that, unless is no such thing as a minister of state's that principle be acted upon, there will selling or buying a seat in parliament, be no Reform worth the paper upon which eren now, without a breach of oath. the act shall be printed.- l'niversal sufThere would need no oaths at all, if the frage, though very fair in theory, is good system of representation was such as to for nothing in practice. They have tried give the voice of election to a suflicient this in America, and the consequence is, that portion of the property of the country, and the representatives are pretty much like the if care was taken to see that the pecuniary worst and most numerous part of the elecqualifications of members were real and tors, except in the cities, where the whole were to a sufficient amount. There have of the people have an opportunity of being been instances of men obtaining seats in well-informed. The truth is, that there parliament, in former times, at least, in is the same sort of likeness between our order to screen their bodies from the seiz- present system and that of universal sufure of a bailiff, and, in fact, in order to 1 frage that exists between Popery and Me thodism; and our electors, those who , for the 17th instant, the requisition to the have the nominal choosing of the far Sheriff being signed by ninety-two Freegreater part of the members, are of ex- holders and other Landholders. This is actly the same description as the most the manner in which such things ought to numerous part of the electors in America. be done. It shows, that the people
There is nothing to alarm; nothing take an interest in public matters. There to disturb; nothing to confuse; nothing is nothing of party in it. The voice of a to obstruct the government, in any one of set of men aiming at the possession of its functions; there is nothing of this to power and emolument does not go forth be apprehended from such a Reform as I to the world as the voice of a county. have been speaking of; but, on the con- My intention of inserting, at full length, trary, every thing to tranquillize the minds all the Resolutions, &c. passed at the seof the people; to inspire respect for, and veral Meetings, will, I am afraid, be frusconfidence in, the parliament; and to in- trated by the numerousness of them. At sure, against the attempts of all their ene- any rate, I will insert a List of them; and, mies, durability to all the establishments if any County or Place should be omitted, of the kingdom.-But, as to an oath! I shall be obliged to any gentleman, what is an oath ? An oath tendered to who will take the trouble to inform me those, who are disposed to be dishonest ? of such omission. I really cannot, in spite of all my respect I have great satisfaction, that the editors for Mr. Curwen, help expressing my sur. of the Portsmouth Telegraph, of the Oxford prize that any friend of his country should | University and City Herald, and of Bell's have thought of it.
Weekly Messenger, have intimated to me Mr. H. Martyn's motion about places their readiness to insert the letters, which and pensions I have not time to notice at I purpose to address to the People of Hamp. any length. Another opportunity will shire, and which letters will be principally ofter. But, it is quite good to see, that upon the subject of Parliamentary Reform. Mr. Perceral seems to agree, that there is -Letter I. which appeared in the last much of waste and abuse in this way; a Register, will be published in the Portsthing that he does not appear to have seen mouth Telegraph. - If any other County, before. Oh! this Mr. Wardle is a won- or Weekly Paper, shall choose to publish der-working man! And, are we still to these letters, I will take care to bave cobe told, that he does not merit our thanks. pics forwarded to them in time. The
My labours, too, in this way, have, it editors hare only to signify their wish by seems, been right, notwithstanding all the letter, addressed to Mr. Wright, No. 5, abuse, which has been heaped upon them? Panton Square, London. If any of these
-I, for years, complained of the sale of gentlemen shall differ from me in opinion, places under the government. An act is they will, of course, state it to their readers. now passing for the avowed purpose of All that I am anxious about is the triumph preventing such practices; and yet the of truth; d, in order to secure that hirelings continue to assault me as a jaco- triumph, we need nothing but open and bin, who wishes to overturn the government. free discussion.--I look upon it as a very --One must not mind this. One must great compliment from those who have keep on; never caring what they write or thus expressed their readiness to insert my what they say. The country itself is so observations; and I shall esteem it not good, and there are so many good people the less so, if it should appear that these in it, that one must not be disgusted into gentlemen do not agree with me in opisupineness by the abuse of the corrupt, nion. the venal, and the ignorant.-_When I N. B. Owing to a mistake in the printer am accused of democratical principles, I or the copyist, the Resolution, passed at console myself by reflecting, that Dr. the Hampshire Meeting, thanking those O'Meara obtained, through the means of who signed the requisition, the Sixty-nine Mrs. Clarke, the occasion of preaching were omitted, leaving nobody to be thankbefore the king a sermon against democrati- ed but Mr. Powlett and myself. I am cal principles; and that his worthy fellow- sure, that no one will suppose that this labourer, John Bowles, was the first man omission was intentional, and, therefore, I that moulded Anti Jacobinism into a trade. merely state the omission. Botley, 11th May, 1809.
PROCEEDINGS It is with great pleasure, that I see a In COUŃTIES, Cities, Boroughs, fc. reMeeting of the County of Wilts advertised lative to the recent INQUIRY in the House
of Commons, respecting the Conduct of the sentative of this County, has by his conDUKE OF York. (Continued from p.704.) duct on the late Inquiry, proved himself COUNTY OF BERKS.
unworthy of the confidence of his ConstiAt a Meeting of the Freeholders and tuents. other Inhabitants of the County of Berks, 7. That the conduct of Charles Dundas, held, at the Town Hall in Reading, in the esq. Representative of this County, on the same County, on Monday, the 17th day of late Inquiry, has not in this instance met April, 1809, convened by the High Sheriff
, with the approbation of his Constituents. in pursuance of a Requisition addressed to 8. That from the part which Ministers him for that purpose.
have taken on the late Inquiry, no hope Resolved, i. That the recent Investi
can be reasonably entertained of any efgation into the Conduct of the Comman- fectual reformation of eviis so generally der in Chief, and the result of other late and loudly complained of, until the ExeInquiries, fully satisfy this Meeting of the cutive Department of the State shall be existence of the most scandalous Abuses in entrusted to men, who will honestly enthe several Departments of the Executive deavour to detect, not shield abuses, and Government of the Country:
to whom the people may look up as the 2. That Gwyilim Lloyd Wardle, esq. avengers, not the abettors of corruption. by his unexampled courage, ability and 9. That the Thanks of this Meeting be perseverance in the Inquiry into the Con- 1 given to sir John Throckmorton, bart. Wilduct of the Duke of York, has faithfully liam Hallet, esq. and the other Gentlemen discharged his duty as a Member of Par- who have brought forward these Resoluliament, and has in a high degree merited tions, and for their able support of the the Thanks and Approbation of his Country.
3. That the Thanks of this Meeting be Town of NORTHAMPTON. given to sir Fras. Burdett, who seconded The Mayor having declined to accede Mr. Wardle's Motion; to lord viscount to a Requisition, signed by seventeen reFolkestone, for the active, uniform and spectable Householders, to call a Meeting able support which he afforded to Mr. of the Inhabitants of this Town, to take Wardle during the whole of the above In- into consideration the propriety of Thankquiry ; to Charles Shaw Lefevre, William ing Gwyliim Lloyd Wardle, esi., M. P. Lewis Hughes, and George Knapp, esqrs. for his recent patriotic exertions in Par(Members representing Boroughs within liament respecting the conduct of the late this County); and to the remainder of Commander in Chief, a numerous and rethe 125 Members who divided with Mr. spectable Meeting of the inhabitants was Wardle on his Motion for an Address to held April 17th, pursuant to public adverhis Majesty-in full confidence that they tisement, at the Angel Inn, when, for want will persevere in the investigation and re- of room, the company adjourned to the form of abuses, till corruption be fully Yard, and the following Resolutions were rooted out, and the people have the satis- then proposed and agreed to, viz. faction of knowing that the sacrifices they 1. Resolved unanimously, -That the make for the public good are not perverted sincere and cordial Thanks of this Meetto base and improper purposes.
ing be given to G. L. Wardle, esq,
M. P. 4. That this Meeting is convinced, for Oakhampton, in the county of Devon, that the abuses which we lament would for his manlv, independent and patriotic not so long have existed, without that culp- exertions, in instituting and conducting able negligence and dereliction of duty the Charges against the late Commander which the late Majorities in the House of in Chief. Commons have evinced.
2. Resolved unanimously, That the 5. That in order to secure in future a Thanks of this Meeting be given to sir due vigilance and attention to the rights Francis Burdert, bart., for having secondand interests of the people, so essential to ed the Motion of Mr. Wardle. the welfare of a free Government, it is re- 3. Resolved unanimously,—That the quisite that the duration of Parliaments Thanks of this Meeting be given to lord should be shortened, and that no Parlia- visc. Althorp, one of the Representatives ment should have any continuance longer of this County, for his public-spirited conthan for three years, as enacted by a law duct during the late Investigation, and passed in the reign of king William the particularly for his Constitutional Speech Third,
with which he prefaced the Amendment 6. That George Vansittart, esq. Repre. I to Mr. Bragge Bathurst's Motion.