The Ashburton Guardian. Magna est Veritas et Prevalebit. WEDNESDAY, JUNE 8, 1881. Mr Richmond’s Defeat.
TOWN EDITION. [lssued at 4.30 p.m.]
The defeat of Mr Richmond at the Nelson election yesterday, the news of which arrived to hand to-day, is not so surprising as would have been his election, Mr Levastam has, we think, only the fact that Mr Richmond was connected with the Colonial Treasurer to thank for his return. When Mr Richmond’s name was first brought before the public as a possible candidate at the election, one and all concurred in the opinion that no more suitable person could have come forward. This was taking the man on the merits of his previous performances, but following the after disclosure that he was strongly mixed up with the Taranaki influence in the Cabinet, his chances of success began to diminish rapidly, and after the delivery of his speech this was made doubly apparent. Mr Richmond’s address was disappointing to his own friends and to the Government. They lost confidence in his chances of his return, and, in turf parlance, began to “ hedge.” Yesterday’s result has proven the disfavor in which the particular party referred to have fallen. The public are beginning to sicken of Taranaki—blessed province that it is—and its nominees. The electors of Nelson have delivered a direct snub to this portion of the Cabinet. The majority by which Mr Levestam has obtained his seat is not great, and he will require to pursue a direct policy in the House to entitle him to the future confidence of his constituents. No rail jumping, we feel certain, will meet their approval. The new member is spoken of by Opposition journals as an avowed Oppositionist, whilst Government organs speak hopefully, and hang out the bait of conscientious voting, a la Allwright and Co. We give Mr Levestam credit for sufficient foresight to eschew the latter course. Let his decision be an aye or a nay, or we deem it not improbable that he will find himself out in the cold in the future.