18 MAY 1867, Page 1

A deputation from the National Reform Union—a new and more

moderate Reform League—waited on Mr. Gladstone on SaetisClay, to express their dislike of the Tory Bill and their con- fidence in himself. In reply, Mi. Gladstone told them that the Liberal party in the Commons was a small one, so small that it re- minded him of a story of a Welshman who, asked if he had seen a fox, said, " Oh yes ! I seed him. He was a very little one, and he sunned up a tree ;" the fact being that the fox was a squirrel. He compared the Bill with its restrictions to a measure enfran- chising all one-legged men. That might be described as universal suffrage, everybody being at liberty to cut off the other leg. He should obey the law if it passed, of course, but it would be under

protest, and with the firm resolution of altering it. As to the 51. rating proposal, that was dead and gone ; but Mr. Gladstone did not bind himself to any alternative proposal. It seems to be understood,—though there is no certainty anywhere,—that in the event of the defeat of the Bill on the third reading he would propose a 51. rental suffrage.