10 MARCH 1866, Page 1


TrIHROUGEIOUT the week the air has been heavy with rumours .1. about the details of the Reform Bill, of which five-sixths are guesses, and the remainder able a priori deductions from the statistics collected by the Ministry. According to one account, the measure has at the eleventh hour been rendered more demo- cratic; according to another, the recent Cabinet Councils have ended in a decided rise in the qualification to be proposed for counties. Various new franchises, such as lodgers, income-tax payers, and savings'-bank depositors, are also spoken of, and may some of them be intended. Our own impression is that the Bill will comprise a suffrage for the counties not lower than 151., for the boroughs not lower than a 61. rating, a lodger franchise for the great cities intended to admit the workmen, and some considerable extension on the lateral side. The truth will be known on Monday night, and it has been asserted that Mr. Lowe will make a great speech against any Reform whatever, that the Tories will postpone dis- cussion -RAU the second reading after Easter, when the feeling of the cow Ty will be known, and that the real fighting will be in the Commons, the Lords dreading very justly the responsibility of rejection.