THE WAKANOI CANDIDATES.
To the Editor. Sir, — I propose, with your permission, to place before the farmer electors of Wakanui a few plain facts with regard to the qualifications of the four candidates who are now wooing the electors’ favors for the coveted seat for the “ virgin constituency.” I will give Mr Ivess the position in my letter which his vanity leads him to suppose he will fill in the contest for Wakanni on the 9th prox.— viz., the fiist. Well, Sir, to take the so-called “ Lateral. ” I would ask my brother fanners to consider what he has ever done for them. Is he one of them 1 Has he ever identified himself with their interests beyond, when starting his paper, coming round and canvassing for their support, and now, as the election is drawing nigh, condescending to come and have a chat and a cup of tea with us, and enquire about our crops—of which, by the way, he knows about as much as the crops do of him 1 What thought will he every bestow on the struggling “ cockatoo,” if we send him to Parliament, except endeavoring to crush us with an iniquitous Land tax, and perhaps putting a heavier tax on our necessary machinery, in order to bolster up some rotten industry for which the colony is not ripe? And I would also point out that if the electors return Mr Ivess Ashburton and Wakanui will be virtually disfranchised, for on all questions of policy—a land tax, for instance—this candidate will vote dead against Mr E. O. Wright, a true Liberal. Again, I would counsel my brother farmers to pause before putting their interests into his hands. I now come to Mr Purnell, and I am sure most thinking men will find much that is worthy of consideration in his well-thought-out speeches. But he is not a farmer, and knows little of a farmer’s wants. His sympathies would be mostly with the large centres of population, and the “ cockatoo,” lam afraid, might take a back seat. Then there is Mr O’Reilly. Well he certainly came down amongst us one evening and discoursed learnedly regarding our water supply. But beyond that he has never identified himself with our interests in any way, and I do not see what claim he has for our support, unless we wish to see our present Education Act upset, for that’s what it would mean if Mr O’Reilly got into Parliament and had his way, w:th his previous views about subsidised denominational schools, views which, 1 am sure, are endorsed by only a very small section of the fanners of the electorate. I now come to Mr Wason, a former member for Coleridge, and a farmer. Mr Wason is a man who has staked his all in the countrj, and whose interests are thoroughly bound up with ours. He does not advocate a grinding land tax to screw the last drop of blood out of the unfortunate farmer. He would not be a party to taxing our reapers and binders and other machinery. His interests, as I have said, are too firmly bound up with ours to vote for class legislation against ns. In conclusion, brothe ■ electors, I would s iy, let the people of the township vote for this printer or this lawyer, but go you to the poll on the eventful day, and when you put your paper in the ballot-box let the one name un-erased be that of Wason—a farmer, like yourselves.—lam, &c., Farmer. Wakanui, Nov. 21.
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THE WAKANOI CANDIDATES., Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 498, 22 November 1881
THE WAKANOI CANDIDATES. Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 498, 22 November 1881
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