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REFORM AND PARTY POLITICS

One iof the mart striking indications of the tendencies of popular feeling that have recently came under our notice ie the retirement of Mr. T. H. Davey from the contest for- the Chrtetchurch East seat. Mr. Davey hae represented this particular electorate for twelve yeare, and hife record ie one of which any member of our Parliament might well be proud. According to the "Lyttelton Times,' , which may be presumed to speak with authority on this subject, "Mr. Davey ha* been an industrious if unobtrusive" representative in Parliament, and we arc sure an honest one, and if our system of government was not based on purely party lines he might still legitimately expect to hold the confidence of hje constituents." Why, ■then, U Mr. Davey retiring? Because, when he addressed bis constituents a week. ago, the meeting refused to give him a vote of confidence. But again, why did the electors deal in this tummary fashion with a. member who hus admittedly been a coiMcientious and capable representative of their interests in four Parliaments? Simply because Mr. Davey, for reasons that are not yet clearly apparent to us, declined to commit himself ■to a pledge to vote agamst the Maseey (ioverument on a n-o-coufldencc motion. Our readers may be aware that Mr. Davey now claime that he was misunderstood ; for in a telegraphic message, which appeared in our issue of yesterday, he is said to have stated that he did not promise to support the "Re-| form" Government. However, that may be, the fact that Mr. Davey refused to > pledge himself to do hie best to oust . the Maeseyitee seems to have been more than enough for the ejectors ol Christchurch East, *u4 Mr. Davey bee ' received such convincing proof of their • determination, to prevent hie return 'to j Parliament that he baa voluntarily ret tired froma the contest. r We regret that "Mr Davey's useful public career should be thus abruptly terminated. But we agree entirely l with the "Lyttclton Timee" that thie is - not a time when personal considerations should..be allowed to. outweigh tho S supremely important necessity for de- ' priving the "Reformers" of the powers • and opportunities that ,the X have co

grpssly misused. "\Ve say without the slightest hesitation," observes our Obrietchoreh contemporary, "that Die future welfare of this country will be advanced by getting rid of the Conservative Government which is now in office on a slender minority vote of tlie people, which has broken it« pledges in a score of directions, which owes most of the moderate support it received at the last election to a campaign of misrepresentation of the Liberal party, and w now making an impudent bid for favour for its administration of Liberal institutions and legislation that it bitterly opposed for a <:eneration." This strikes us as an entirely just view of the position. We have drawn attention on several occasions recently to the gross distortions of truth and fact in which the "Reformers" have so .systematically indulged, ami their failure to carry into effect even a small percentage of the promisee and pledges which they poured out so lavishly before the electors three years a;ro. We hope that the long list of their misdeedssine of omission and commission alike — which we reprinted yesterday from the "New Zealand Times,' , has been already carefully considered and laid to heart by many thousands of the electors of Auckland. Kor we believe that the people at this end of the Dominion realise as fully ac the electom of Christchurch East "that, a* the "l.yttelton Time*" has told them, "the one question that matters just now morr than anything else in our polities" is the necessity for driving the ••Reformer*" from the position that they never had any just right to hold. And though it may be rash to draw a positive inference from even so striking a sign ot the times m, Mr. Davey's retirement, it is certainly a significant fact that his failure to commit himself to a definite promise to vote against Mr. Massoy is. in the eyes of the majority of voters in a and influential constituency, quite sufficient to disqualify this honest and meritorious repreeentative from holding a eeat in Parliament, and to exclude hiaa from public life.

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AS19141126.2.23

Bibliographic details

REFORM AND PARTY POLITICS, Auckland Star, Volume XLIV, Issue 282, 26 November 1914

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713

REFORM AND PARTY POLITICS Auckland Star, Volume XLIV, Issue 282, 26 November 1914

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