The Ashburton Guardian. Magna est Veritas et Prævalebit MONDAY, AUGUST 5, 1889 THE REPRESENTATION COMPROMISE.
When both parties to a controversy claim to hove gained tho victory, the decision should surely plcaso everybody, but this does not seem to be the case with regard to the Representation question. 'Iho town party are, or affect to bo, particularly jubilant upon the com promiso arrived at last Friday between them and tho country party, somo of their newspaper mouth-pieces goiug so fnr aB lo claim for the town members a victory all along tho line, while olhcrß go no further than to try to explain that the concessions their party mado ure only apparent and not real. They base their viow of tho case upon the construction which thoy place upon the clause protecting the towns from tho ndverso application to them of tho provision which gives tho delimitations of constituencies commissioners a margin of 750 cither way to work upon m forming practicable boundaries to the electoral districts. Tho towns clnim that the effect of the clause bearing upon this point which has been incorporated m tho terms of compromise will prevent any reduction of tho nnmber necessary to form a constituency m any district which has already had tho benefit of the 28 por cent allowance. This would mean that country constituencies shall contain no less than thoir exact quota of population, but might contain 750 more, while town constituencies shall not have a greater population than their exact quota, but may havo 750 less, tho effect of this clause being that tho largo towns will got tho benefit of any residue m the nnmber of members which this may leave. Thun if the country electoral districts are so defined that by adding to some of them without deducting from others the population is only sufficient for 48 instead of 49 constituencies the extra member will fall to tho lot of a town constituency, nnd tho town members will nnmlinta 90. lnctnnri nf Ol iUn. 1 - 4 1- y- .. nuuiuu. —_| at-vwtaia. va, *- I -, HI. AUtlt-l number iv each enso being thoir fair ehnro according to the principlo of the Bill. Wo cannot think that the « 750 margin " clause has been so worded as to ndmit of this interpretation, and this perversion of the principle wlr'ph the country party has bo strongly maintained. 'J he text of tho torm3 of compromise, which wo published on Saturday di I not read so, and though tho towns possess tho stronger forco of thoso skilled m legal Bubtletics, there are mon on tho country sido who aro astute enough to defrat any suoh attenipt to take away wilh ono hand that which has had to bo given with tho other. Dissatisfaction with tho compromise is strongly expressed by tho members of boroughs of which thopopulations number between 2000 nnd 5000, and which aro thus excluded on ono hand from ranking as town electorates, and on tho other from tho benefit of tho country quota It is natural that they should bo discontented at their proposod position, but a little consideration shows that no other just solution of tho difficulty is practicable. Towns evon of 2000 or 8000 inhabitants almost Invariably exercise a dominating political influence upon a much larger rural population than it will be necessary to link with thorn to form an electorate Tho members m question cannot do else than grin and boar their fate 'J hey havo no real injustico to suffer, and neither of tho main parties will take up their cause to upset tho com promise arrived at after so groat a waste of words and timo.
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