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POLITICAL GOSSIP.

[From Our Parliamentary Reporter.] WELLINGTON, August 13. The Utekalkc Runs. The matter of the leases of the Otekaike runs i 3 still engaging Mr Duncan's attention, and ho intends asking whether the Minister of Lands will set up a committee to inquire into all the circumstances attending the lease of Runs 28 and 28a to Messrs Robert Campbell and Sons. Preparing? the Way. It looks as though Mr Fisher were determined to run for the Manawatu seat at the next general election. He is now moving that there be laid before the House copies of nil papers relating to the validation of the election of Mr Macarthur as chairman of the Manchester Road Board. Education Reserves Management. Mr Feldwick is urging on the Minister of Lands the introduction of legislation transferring the administration of the educational reserves from the School Commissioners to the land boards of the colony. Tlie Financial Delittte was galvanised from dullness to something like life this evening by the speech from the Premier, which is generally admitted to be the best he has delivered for several sessions. It was most interesting to listen to. The facts were well marshalled, and though there was a greater absence of figures than was anticipated, this rather added to than detracted from the interest of his observations. Sir Harry was listened to by a full House, but as soon as the smaller fry resumed the talking, there was a marked exodus of members and the public alike from the Chamber. The feeling in the lobbies was that by his bold, manly tone the Premier had secured tho existence of his Government for tho remainder of the session. Speaking to Sir Harry later in the evening, he expressed himself strongly in respect t> tho attifule of tho Opposition this sessioD, in showing a want of responsibility, and in treating all the proposals placed before them in a cavalier fashion, lie anticipates defeating the present no-confidence motion, and thinks that members will then show every desire to push the work through as speedily as possible. lie tells mc that he expects the session to close about the first week in September. " Contempt" In Bellamy's.

A wholesome rule exists in Bellamy's, which forbids the discussion of political matters at the table w'lich is chiefly Irequentcd by members of the Lower House; but the same rule docs not apply at the other table affected by the Lords. At the first-named table theiule is strictly applied. As soon as the chairman takes his seat the slightest allusion to politic?, even addressing a Minister by his official title, is promptly punished by a fine of five bottles of wine. The other night a distinguished Legislative Councillor, hailing from tho South, transferred his quarters to tho Lower House table, and, sitting down beside the Premier, was soon detected beginning a discussion on the Property Tax Bill. Cries of " Order" were soon raised, and Mr Walker (chairman) having had his attention called to the matter, summarily declared the visitor from the upper regions guilty of a breach of good taste, and inflicted the usual fine. Payment wan resisted, and the hon. gentleman withdrew his accustomed seat in high dudgeon; but, on the facts being forthwith represented to them, his fel!o v Lirds adjudged him amenable to tho law. He then refused to admit his liability. The wino was ordered and doue justice to, and the bill has been duly rendered. Liability, however, is still denied, and it in probable that tho matter will be referred lor adjudication to a Parliamentary Court of Arbitration. The wine has to bo paid for, and it is said that the "costs" will in any case be heavy, and that the fine will be increased for defying the chairman's decision. The Pook Murders. It is said that tho Government are still making inquiries in the direction of verifying the statements of Haha Te Piri in his confession prior to his execution for the Pook murder?. The Representation Kill. Considerable opposition was shown in tiie Upper Chamber this afternoon to the Representation Bill, particularly the fourth clause, which provides for the abolition of plural voting. The Attorney-General, in moving its second reading, announced that he would not go into details of the measure, but would simply explain its principles, leaving members to discuss the matter fully in committee Sir G. Whitmore, though not liking the Bill, hoped that tho Council would agree to it, because the colony wanted rest upon the representation question, and the present measure was better than none at all.

Mr Reynolds preferred allowing the matter to be settled by the country at the next election. Mr Oliver considered the Bill was unworkable in its present form. He did not well see how it could be amended unless its principle were altered. Mr M'Loan urged that the Bill settled the vexed question between tho town and country, and thought that the Council should not disturb it. He was opposed to tho "ono man one vote" clause being crammed into the Bill, and for one would oppose it. Dr Pollen thought that the question of representation should be referred to the people of the oolony for them to consider. Mr Shephard considered that members of the Lower House knew what suited them best, and was of opinion that it would be unwise foi tho Council to alter the Representation Bill. Mr Shrimski did not like the principle of the Bill, and thought it would do more harm than good. There was no need for it being forced through this session, He also objected to any distinction being made between tho town and country, the effect of which would be to create jealousy and illfeeling. Ho said that if any member moved an adverse motion ho would gladly support it. Mr Wilson, while disliking the Bill, thought it would be unwise for the Council to support its rejection. He strongly objected to tho one man one vote clause, and considered that they would be quite justified in throwing it out or sending it back to the Lower Chamber for further consideration.

Mr Pharazyn regarded the Bill as a puzzle, and expressed the hope that members would endeavor to make themselves clear about it in committee. Like the last speaker, he was quite prepared to vote for throwing out the fourth clause. The second reading of tho Bill was agreed to on the voices, and its committal fixed for Thursday. The Hlslop-Ward Incident. The Committee appointed by the Council re the Hialop-Ward business held their first Bitting to-day, but did not resolve on any particular course of procedure nor decide as to what witnesses should be summoned. The Hon. Mr Wilson has been appointed chairman. August 14. The Chances of a Dissolution. It is claimed that Sir il. Atkinson's brilliant effort last night has decided the votes of wavcrers, and the Government now claim a majority of seven certain. My impression is that the Premier is playing for a dissolution during the recess, for it is evident that little practical work can be done with the iloxiio as constituted at present. If my conjecture proves correct, Parliament would not be likely to be dissolved till on the eve of the next session—say about April next. This would obviate the cost of a second session, and when members are brought together next it would bo os the new Parliament of seventy-one members. Petitions. Mr Allen today presented a petition from James Pearce, of Dunedin, for a military settlor's claim. The Potitions Committee having considered the petition forwarded by Fergusson and Mitchell and others re the appointment of an inspector of reservoirs, have reported that Government be advised to instruct their engineers in the various districts to report periodically re reservoirs; such report to be sent to the local body and the Government. Mr Moss's Amendment. It is probable that the division on Mr Moss's amendment will be taken to-night;

at least both sides claim to be prepared to go to the vote at once. The Opposition still say that the numbers are very closa, and think they will just about score a victory. On the other hand, the Government are rrore sanguine than ever. Some members aro still regarded as doubtful, but I expect to find when the division bell is rung that 49 votes will be recorded with the Government and 43 for the amendment. My estimate of the trial of strength is asfollows:—For the Government: Messrs Allen, Anderson, Atkinson, Buxton, Buchanan, Bruce, Carroll, Cowan, Dodson, Fergus, Fish, Fulton, Graham, Hall, Hamlin, Harkness, Hislop, Hobbs, Hodgkinson, Humphreys, Izard, Jackson, Lance, Macarthur, T. Mackenzie, Marchant, M'Gregor, Mills, Mitchelson, Menteath, Moat, Monk, Newman, Ormond, Pyke, Rhodes, G. F. Richardson, Ross, Russell, Samuel, S. Mackenzie, Samuel, Saunders, Seymour, Tapua, Tanner, R. Thompson, Valentine, Whyte, Wilson. For Mr Moss's amendment: Messrs Ballance, Barron, Blake, Brown, Cadman, Duncan, Feldwick, Fisher, Fitchett, Fitzhcrbert, Fraser, Goldie, Grimmond, Guirness, Grey, Hutchinson, Jones, Joyce, Kelly, Kerr, Larnach, Lawry, Loughrey, J. M'Kenzio, Mos3, O'Conor, Parata, Perceval, R. Reeves, \V. Reeves, E. Richardson, Seddon, Smith, Steward, Stewart, Taiwhanga, Taylor, T. Thompson, Turnbull, Verrall, Walker, Ward, and Withy. This leaves the Speaker and Messrs Beetham and Peacock (absent from the colony) unaccounted for.

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/ESD18890814.2.30

Bibliographic details

POLITICAL GOSSIP., Evening Star, Issue 7985, 14 August 1889

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1,539

POLITICAL GOSSIP. Evening Star, Issue 7985, 14 August 1889

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