RETURN OF MR. F. M. B. FISHER. HOW THE POLLING PROGRESSED. SCENES IN THE EVENING. ORDERLY STREET GATHERINGS. PREMIER AND VICTOR. Now Zealand has been described as a land of politicians, and Wellington, justly or unjustly, has the reputation of having a inoro strongly developed policnl bump than any other place iv the colony. Tho proceedings last night, when tho last scene in the by-election drama, which had occupied the electors' attention for a fortnight almost to the exclusion of other interests, was enacted, and tho curtain was rung down on a decisive victory for Mr. F. M. B. Fisher, evinced tho spectacular interest taken in the contest by a largo section of the public. As the total votes cast indicate, however, the electors whoso interest in the proceedings extended to th» excrme of their votes only numbered seven-twelfths of the available strength. During the day there were no outward signs to show that an election was in progress, and the voters cast their votes with an absence of ostentation or emotion that completely hid tho mechanism of tho election. The day was entirely without incident, and even tho signs of activo canvassing were not apparent, although a well-known politician's motor-car was whizzing vigorously about the city gathering in tho wandering elector. Tho booths presented a striking contrast to the noisy centres of activity of tho olden days, when the perplexed elector had to fight his way through a storm of ndvico concerning nis vote and *. thick bulwark of dodgers and handbills and tho other paraphernalia, of prehistorio politics. Shorn as it thus was of much of its pomp and circumstance, the election regained all of its old-time interest when tho evening came, and tho hopes and fears and doubts of candidates and partisans wero to be set at rest. Before seven o'clock tho sheets wero lively with great crowds eagerlj' speculating on the probable result, and offering to unheeding ears eleventh-hour prophecies. The crowd gradually sorted itself into two centres of congestion, and the street space in front of the newspaper offices quickly filled with an ever-grow-ing crowd. In Willis-street the throng M'iis particularly dense,, and it was nearly impossible to force a way in or out. There were also smaller crowds at various of the polling booths. When the result of the polling at tho Drill Hull was announced the Premier and Messrs. Izaid and Fisher were present, and there were cheers imd counter-cheers as tho numbers went up. Tho poll closed at 7 o'clock, and in less than half an hour tho first return — that from St. Mark's — was posted on the display board in the window of the Evening Post OHice. When it was seen that Mr. Fisher had polltd as many votes as his opponents combined there was a roar of cheering, and the irrepressible man who expresses his emotion by means of his hat gave excited evidence of his presence. The returns began to come in thick and fast, and tho crowd, heaving and swaying, and trampling on each other's toes with good huntour, cheered each result tbnt told of further success by the son of their old and popular representative in bygone days. Thero was practically no hooting, and tho bovino bellow of disapproval was reserved for tho trams, carts, and cnbs, which ploughed their way at a snail's paco through tho dense multitude. Thero wero many narrow escapes from the trams, and from the cabs and carts of the foolish individuals who nttemptod to force their way through. On ono occasion the crowd became angry, and turned the horse of one of the intruders, but a philosophic vein in tho nuimal restrained it from doing any damage. Tho crowd was essentially good-humoured, and beyond an occasional burst of horse play was particularly orderly. The returns on the Post window were displayed with great expedition, and the messengers and telephone service wero worked so rapidly that the election of Mr. Fisher was posted shortly after 8 o'clock — and the detailed figures were poßted nearly an hour boforo the official total had been made up by the Returning Officer, who had to await tho arrival of his deputies. By the time half the returns hod como in, Mr. Fisher's victory was practically assured, and it was only a matter of waiting to see what' tho majority would be. A fresh outburst of cheofs greeted the final announcement, and a few moments later Mr. Hutcheson appeared on tho balcohy erected for the ocension in tho front of the Post building. After many cries and interruptions, ho succeeded in delivering a speech. Tho other candidates, who had been speaking to an excited crowd outside tho Times Office, arrived after an impatient interval of waiting. A tremendous uproar announced tho arrival of Mr. Fieher, who was dragged through the crowd into tho Evening Post Office. His appearance on the balcony cnlled forth a roar of welcome, and cheers and shouts cut his speech up iuto shurt sentences. The crowd was very demonstrative, and was lavish in its cheers, which culminated in a lusty rendering of "For lie's a Jolly Good Fellow." They joined with enthusiasm in tho cheers for Messrs. Hutcheson and Izard which wero called for by Mr. Fisher, and then broke out into indiscriminate cheers for all and sundry. Mr. Tzard found some difficult}' in speaking, but with many interruptions succeeded in delivering his sentiments. When Mr. Fisher re-appeared he was joined by Mrs. Fisher, and placed in a cab from which the hoist's had been removed, and an excited team of electors proceeded to drag the cab through tho city, surrounded by a huge and excited crowd that cheered along the route. The procession passed swiftly along La mbt on -quay and up Molesworthhstreet to the Premier's residence. Here a halt was called, and the crowd poured into tho Premier's grounds. Mr. Fibber, accompanied by Mr. H. K. Bannister, entered for the purpose of shaking hands with the Premier. The latter, however, who >vas on the verandah of his residence, retired inside and re-appeared on the balcony, where he delivered a speech amidst cheers and hoots. He expressed i egret at Mr. liard's defeat, but declared that the result of the poll was a great. Liberal victory, and ho dealt with the prosperity of the colony in general and Wellington in particular. Tho crowd was not in a humour for a speech from tho Premier, however, and Mr. Fisher, who declined to wait longer on the Premier's convenience for tho proposed handshaking, left tho grounds, and after being forced to make another speech, was conveyed to the Railway Station, where ho managed to effect an escape. The night was notable for the absence of the inebriates who adorn most election?, and for the general orderliness of the proceedings. By half-past ten o'clock tho crowd had gone home and tho streets had once more resumed tlreir normal aspect. Small knots of men explaining tho result of the poll, and fighting the cam-
paign over again, were all that was left of the by-election half an hour later* Tins VOTING. Following are the returns of the voting for the different candidates at h« various election booths:—
SPEECHES BY JHE CANDIDATES.' As is usual on suck occasions, erie» were raised for the different candidates aa soon as tho result of tho polling wa£-anado known. MR. HUTCHESON. Mr. J. Hutcheson was tho first to make his appearance on the platform outfiide tho Eveninij Post building. H« was met with a perfect uproar of cheera and coun-ter-cheers, which lasted for several minutes. "Fellow citizens," he said, when something approaching quiet reigned for a moment, "to the 3021 voters who -»upporled me to-dny I offer my very heartiest thanks. (Applause and uproar.) To ; those faithful and loyal friends who so \ unselfishly stood by mo without fear, without reward, I tender my very heartfelt thanks." (Cheers and counter-cheers and a voice. "What about tho fat man?'*) A friend of his, he continued, said to him that day that a defeat would <lo him good, and ho believed ho was right. (Laughter and applause.) Ue felt inoie contented— • (uproar)— and cool than ever lx> felt at the end of an election before. "I have not been defeated; 1 was assaesintted," declared Mr. llutcheson — a reraark that caused an uproar that lasted several minutes, lie kid been assassinated by a • paper in a way which was a -disgrace to decent journalism. (Uproar, imd cries of . "Fieher.") He was not grumbling at be- • ing defeated, he could stand it easily. (Art- ". plause, and a voice: "You hawe to.") He.wiiß not grudging tho victory to his op« « ponent, lie wished him luck with it, bub ,• he was protesting against a Btab in the* back. Neither of the other two caadl-!<f dates would endorse the arfiton of thatt^i paper which stabbed him in the dark. (Uproar.) lie- would again test tho feelings;* of his fellow-citizens. There were ove*^ 7000 electors in Wellington who had nob " done their duty as citizens. There were \ over 7000 electors who did not dare go to the poll, but he was not satisfied that ' Wellington had given its true voice in. , this matter, and he would again ask WeU , lington whether it hod confidence in him ' as a representative. (Cheers and counter- • cries.) There- was ono -cheering thing, and) it M*as this, that Seddonism had received a very severe-check in the city — (applause) — and Mr. Seddon would not be proud ot the victory — (cheers) — and after all, hii purpose in standing had been achieved^ They had sent Mr. S?ddon a represonta-. tive who would be a thorn in his side.(Applause.) They had declared with no' uncertain voice that they were done with Seddonism. (Cheers, and a voice : "So wa are.") He (Mr. Hutcheson) was proud of that above all other things— that Mr. Seddon had received another noil in hife coffin — (cheers:) — which ho hoped at thb general election would be finally closed down — (renewed cheers)— and he hoped to be at the funeral. (Applause.) He (Mr. Hutcheson) would never whine ; whatever ■ ho received at their hands he would receiw it cheerfully — (applause^-y-and lift would sleep more soundly that night than) ho had slept for tho past eight or nin^ nights, lie knew perfectly well that) ' tho heart of Wellington was with him still. (Cheeis and counter-cheers.) He knew the heart of Labour was with him ' — (cries of "No") ; ho would ask it again, and ho would not ask it in vain ; and hfc told the working classes that they never ■ stood in greater need of a representative tlian they do now. (Cheers, and cries of - "Fisher.") At the next general election ' they would find Labour arrayed in n, solid phalanx; they would put in a representative of their own, and he hoped ,■ to be that representative. (Cheers.) THE SUCCESSFUL CANDIDATE. Later on in the evening Mr. Fisher andl ; Mr. Lsurd, attended by a large gathering of their supporters, made their way through the huge-crowd opposite our publishing office — a matter of some difficulty, —and addressed the gathering from the Post balcony. - Mr. Fisher met witi a, very hearty) reception, tho cheering that greeted hii \ appearance lasting for several minutes.* '~ "1 want." lie said, "to thank you for the honourable position in which you have > placed me. J deserve it"— a remark thai , ', called forth a tumult of cheers, which , Increased in force when he added, "1 ad» mire your taste." He went on to say thai the three candidates had Imd a fair fight, ''• and ho did not wish to bear any animosity) , *. to tiny one. As far as tho baad of th«" : | Government was -coucerned he (Mr. Fish- '' er) would carry out what he said in hie i ' public addresses. He reserved to himself a free hand to criticise, and he believed 1 it was because they thought thfcy had ufc,* him n "chip of the old block" that they, '! had elected him. (Cheers.) He believed he >?' would again stand in that honourable v position nest November — (loud cheering* ! and a voice : "You will")— and although ' he would not say co definitely, he thought y they had decided where his* future horn* wits going to be. (Applause.) Ue though!^ the people of Wellington had recognisedM that tho time had come when, they could '] get good men without going beyond tho ' colony. (Loud applause.) At Mr. Fisher's invitation the crowd' gave three cheers for the defeated candi* • dates, ami then, on ita own invitation, ib i gavo tremendous cheers for "Don Fisher," - followed by the singing of "Tie's a Jollj " Goo<l Fellow." Mr. Fisher also thanked tho Indies for what they had done fop him, and also those who had assisted him in the contest. He wanted them, ho added, to give Mr. lrard a fair hearing. During the fight, if there was one man who hud fought fair it was Mr. Tzard>-* (cheer**)— and he asked them to give him threo hearty cheers. THE GOVERNMENT CANDIDATE. The cheers were given, and Mr. Iwrd, on coining forward to speak, was received with a fresh salvo of applause. "Although 1 have been beaten." he said. "I am haptoy to say lam still nblp to smile"— a remark that wns received with appreciative an. plnuse. It was not every man who had the lwck come to him tho first time, but lie also was a colonial, and he was full -o! plnck-(hear, liear)-and his ncrricM wero at the disposal of the citizens if required. They had had a clean fight a good fight, and an open fight; ho and Mr Hutcheson had been worsted, but ],0, 0 could assure thorn that neither of them would ever bear any grudge to Mr. FishfnJ° r * h « "Mfc flßht he had put up. (Cheers.) Mr Iwrd then called for cheers for ft T ish ? r ; The invi^on Mas 5™ sponded to with groat heartiness, and the t" I dine OURrCIWd ° f PC ° rle bCßan rfowly SPEECHES ELSEWHERE. Mr Either, at the Times balcony, with his mother leaning pa his arm|
stopped forward amid great enthusiasm. It required aotno little timo to restore silence, Mr. Fisher expressed bis thanks tc tho electors for having placed him 111 the honourable position ho occupied. ' (A voico : You dosorvo it.) 110 did not take il so much to himself— ho took it as a tribute to ono thny would rather havo horo worn it possibfc. Ho oxpross- ;_ ed tho best and kindest fcolings towards t tho other candidates. Ho regretted very L" much that Mr. I/.ard, another Now Zoal lander, was not iv tho position on this r occasion, but ho was Bfttwsfled thnt if Mr. Izard would watch him in tho House ; next session— (laughter • and applause)— i r he would como round to tho right sido, j^and possibly got thcro next time. With yl reference to tho Premie*, had ho been i preson*. ho (Mr. Fishor) would 'have pubiUicly shaken hands wibh Win. Ho did entortain towards the Premier any i\ animosity. Whon he found tho Pregoing wrong ho would do what ho said ho would do>j at rho same bo would assist tho Premier whon- ,; }o*° r '» boHovcd ho was doing right. ».-Mr. Fishor then called for thrco cheers j.jfor Mr.^ Izard, which wore heartily j; given. "On tho momont of triumph' wo jkfWill bo conoroiis," nddod Mr. Fisher— three choors for Mr. Hutehoson," and jjrahoarty rosponso followed. Mr. Fishor, Si-proceeding, said ho know whom ho hnd ,to thank for this; ho had to thank tho i youngf New Zoalanders, ana ho hoped 'the timo would soon como when tHoro ... would bo a Now Zoaland Party in exist'once. Ho called for throo cheers for tho \ newspaper pross, which wero duly given. Mr. Izard stopped on to tho balcony with Mrs. Izard, and got an-enthu-siastic rocoption. Ho said thoy had fought a cloan fight, and a good fight. Ho had boon boaton, and so had Mr Hutcheson, but ho was pleased to sny ho wns ono of tho first to bo ablo to congratulate Mr. Fishor on his undoubled success. Ho nnd Mr. Fisher wore young Now Zoalandors, and ho was sufficiently patriotic to sny ho trusted thnt tho Parliamentary career of Mr. Fishor would bo «s bright nnd brilliant as ono that had gone l>eforo. As to himsolf, tho sun would shino again, and ho would bo as hnppy next day as ho wns tho dny boforo or last year. Ho regrottcd that ho hnd boon boaton, but ho was pleased to havo boon boaton by n New lealondor, and ho hnd no doubt that tho gontloman whom thoy had today roturnod hnd grout claims on their sympathy, reaped., and support. That it had been given him was a matter of congratulation to tho City of Wellington. Ho thanked thoso who had voter! .for him. On tho next ocrnsion his sorVices would bo at their disposal, and bo hqped thoy would sco thoir way to accept them. On Mr. Iznrd's call three choors were givon for Mr. Fishor. Mr. Fishor called for thrco more, cheers for Mr. Izard, which terminated tno proceedings. Mr. Fishor wns chaired from tho limes offico along Lnmbton-qtiay to •Wtllu-strcot.
Jttisher. '. Drillshed .., 283 Molosworlh-st. 112 St. Mark's . 144 Bucklo-st ... 243 Upper Willis-bt. 301 Kont-torraco . 307 Clydo-quay ... 351 Rechabito Hall 239 Herbcrt-st. ... 261 Sailors' Kcst^-. 147 Aro-st. ... 102 Sydney-st. ... 455 Tinakori-rd, ... 81 Willis-Bt. .„ Gl3 Botliuno's Mart 200 Druids' Ha 11...1 1... 630 Victoria Ha 11... 223 Isard. HutfthceolU 307 196 90 81 55 79 170 111 1 224 277 150 224 220 331 146 159 160 158 90 108 51 34 609 247 108 74 431 366 224 208 325 2CB 155 102 Totals . 4C92 3441 3021
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THE BY-ELECTION., Evening Post, Volume LXIX, Issue 82, 7 April 1905
THE BY-ELECTION. Evening Post, Volume LXIX, Issue 82, 7 April 1905
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