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EAST CARMARTHEN LIBERAL ASSOCIATION. The adjourned annual meeting of the East Carmarthen Liberal Ass >ciatiou was held Fri- day afternoon at the I %,orites'-hall, Ammanford. There was about 80 delegates from various partt- of the division present, including a few ladies, and the chair was occupied by Mr Alderman Joseph Joseph, Llangennech (president for the year), who was supported by the secretaries, Mr W. Howell, Llanelly, and Mr D. J. Jones, Am- manford. Mr Abel Thomas, the member for the division, was also present, and was accorded a very hearty reception upon entering the li-ii. After the transaction of formal business and a brief speech by the chairman, Mr Abel Thomas, M.P., then rose to addres- .L. 1.. _1 1 l' tue ueiegates at ttie request ot the chairman, and was received with prolonged cheering. The hon. member thanked the meeting for the cordial greeting given him, and said he was very pleased to be able to say something to them before the General Election. He desired to ask them what they intended doing in future, because he felt sure that they had at heart what was his own view, viz., the good of the Liberal cause (hear, hear). He felt that, although he had been a Liberal from his youngest days, if he were t" cause a split in the Liberal party in East Carmar- thenshire that he would do more harm than good he might have done to the Liberal cause. It was because of that that he was pleased to speak to the Liberal Association which put him in his pre- sent position, and he had no hesitation in telling them that he would remain their member only as long as they asked him to be (applause). He hoped he was too good a Liberal to occup\ the position be held one single minute if the Association decided that he did not represent as well as he ought, or decided they could find a man who couli represent the constituency better. He would remain a member at their command. only, and he felt sure they would agree with him that that was the most honest and honourable course to adopt (cheers). Some of his friends —he honestly could call them personal friends, whom he honoured and respecetd—thought that in certain things he was not doing what they wanted him to do, and also, that perhaps somebody else could be found to represent them better than he could, be cause the views he held differed from theirs. A certain amount of misapprehension exhisted as to what he had formerly said, and as to what he meant to have said, and also as to what he had done in the immediate past, but he had been very much surprised since he came to the division three or four days ago to hear it said, amongst other things, that he, of all men in the world-he who was the son of a Nonconformist minister, and he was prouder of that than any- thing else—(cheers)—had been saying that he didn't care a fig for the Nonconformist ministers of Carmarthenshire, or what they might do or say. He didn't care to use strong language, but he was in the habit of using it sometimes (laughter) —and he was sorry to say that strong language only would describe what he felt about that Why, it was a deliberate lie (loud applause). As long as he lived he wouldn't turn his back against his own people and his father's honoured name. He felt that no man had done more good to the Liberal cause and against crime, and vice, and evils of the world than the Nonconformist minister- (cheers) -who was only too badly paid, and tf), little appreciated amongst his neighbours. He would indeed be ashamed of himself if he were at any time and amongst any people to say one word which would lower or weaken the power which ministers had amongst their people (applause). In saying that he came close t" what some of his friends looked upon as his greatest fault-he would not say sin— (laughter)-viz, the local option question. He agreed with his friends in this, and was quite as strongly in favour of it as they were (cheers). Passing on to the question of accepting briefs from licensed victuallers, the hon. member said he was not going to argue that out now. because it would take too long a time, One of the reasons why he was entitled to hold the position of a barrister was because he took briefs from anybody who came to him, irrespective of whether they were good or bad, or whether he believed or not in what he advocated, and that might appear to some of them who had not thought the matter out as a strong proposition, but yet it was the only way they would ever get justice in courts of law. He would honestly confess that he should like to join with those friends who differed from him, and to believe as they did, but he could not, and it would be only giving up his independency of life outside the House of Commons if he gave up what he considered to be his duty in regard to things of that kind. He lived by his profession entirely, and directly his profession left him he must give up representing East Carmarthenshire and ti-y to earn his bread in some other way but at the present time he didn't know how to do that (laughter). He might tell them that not once, but many times, during the time he repre sented the constituency had he thrown up briefs for the sake of attending divisions (applause). He thought he could safely say that he was one amongst the first six of the Welsh members in the amount of divisions attended in the present session—(applause)—and he hadn't missed even a division of a third-rate importance during the whole of the session. Further, he didn't think he had missed three divisions in which there had been four-lined whips since he had been in the House of Commors (renewed applause). In con- clusion the hon. member said that as long as the Liberal Association wished to retain him he would do his utmost to deserve the honour con- ferred upon him and to give satisfaction to all the Liberals in the division (applause). Mr D. J. Jones (secretary), Ammanford, then moved a vote of confidence in Mr Abel Thomas, and expressed a hope that the Liberal party were ready for the election (cheers) —The Rev. Dr. Rowlands (Llanelly) warmly seconded.—The Rev. W. Davies (Llandilo) had much pleasure in supporting the vote of confidence (applause) The Rev. J. Towyn Jones, Garnant, in a rousing Welsh speech, referred to the excellent spirit in which the hon. member had received the opposi- tion offered to him, and added that nothing would stifle their convictions. When the hon. member spoke at Ammanford they were made to believe that he went out of his way to speak against the religious convictions of the people, but he for one was delighted to find from Mr Thomas's clear explanation that day that he would do nothing whatever in that direction (applause)—Mr D. Morgan, schoolmaster, Llandilo, who said he represented 600 adult Rechabites in the division, referred to the hon. member accepting briefs from licensed victuallers, and said if they were true to their convictions they would be bound to oppose Mr Thomas at the coming election (Cries of dissent). He trusted the hon. member would see his way clear to fall in with the views of the temperance party, and heartily congratu- lated him upon converting the Rev. W. Davies (cheers). —Dr. Howell Rees said he was afraid upon coming to the meeting thnt a split would take place, but he was sincerely glad that they were a-ain happily united. Mr Thomas deserved their thanks for his work in the past, and he trusted he would continue in his useful work on 'heir behalf. He warmly supported the vote. The vote of confidence was then carried unani- mously, and a vote of thanks to the chairman terminated the proceedings.