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_-_--____-THE CONCILIATION…

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THE CONCILIATION BILL. EXPLANATION BY A MEMBER OF THE N.U.W.S.S. In a pamphlet recently published under this title by Mr JIi. N. Brailsford, the hon. secretary of the Conciliation Committee, he undermines by solid argu- ment every objection brought against this measure by its powerful assailants. 'A solution on party lines,' he declares, would be the ideal method of dividing suffragist forces.' The majority of Con- servative members are not in favour of women's suffrage, and the Liberal; forces are divided between anti-suffragists and those who believe in this moderate measure. The number of pledged adult suffragists in the house, is 120, and the experience of all who worked at the Voter's Petition at the last election goes to show that the man in the street is ready to en- franchise the women who pay rates and taxes, but is by no means ready to put political power into the hands of all women. It was the task of the Concilia- tion Committee to find some solution that would command the support of the mem- bers of aJl parties in the House who be- lieved that the time had come to insast upon a prompt solution of this woman's question.' This Mr Brailsford contends they have successfully done in making' Household Suffrage the basis of this measure. "Its principle is clear and democratic. Every lousehold is ifn a real sense a unit, which has, be it rich or poor, a concern in the government and an interest in furthering good and checking bad legisla- tion. The vote is naturally conferred upon the head of the House who is re- sponsible for rates and taxes directly im- posed upon rt. But there are households where the head is a woman of these women householders there are in the three Kingdoms alone one million who satisfy all the tests the law imposes upon men. Our Bill confers upon householders who already bear the, burdens and fulfil the obligations of their status, the rights and privileges which it ought to carry with it." The only other class of women enfran- chised would be those occupying business premises to the annual value, of £10. By a slight alteration in the wording: of the bill the possibility of faggot voting (that is of 2 or more votes in one family) has been removed, for as i!t stands now a hus- band and wife shall not be registered in the same constituency and thus an objec- tion, laid much stress on durinc, the de- bate in the House, has been- removed. It is hard to understand the position of ( those who on the same occasion urged that the bill was undemocratic. Mr Brailsford from statistics, given in Charles Booth's "Life and Labour of the People," and from enquiries conducted in several northern towns, shews that of the women enfranchised by this Billl between 82 and 91 per cent. would be working women- that is women actually earning! their own living or women who are housewives with- out a servant. But these figures seemed scarcely necessary in face of the fact that the Billl was introduced by Mr Shakleton, and that the Labour members voted for the, measure with only two exceptions. After two days discussion the Bill pass- ed, its second reading by a majority of 110 and "nothing stands in the way of its further progress save the Veto of the Cabinet. The great organised bodies of women unanimously support it regardless of party or class. Above all the representatives of the people, by a, majority greater than is held to be necessary to carry the largest constitu- tional changes, have given it the stamp of their approval." A town like Llandudno where there is such a. long list of women householders already exercising their municipal vote should be specially interested in gaining for these women their full political rights and should to that end do all possible to support the efforts of the local Women's Suffrage Society.

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..--THE DISCONTENTED ENGLISH-WOMAN.

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