Lord Rosebery's great speech, which is to be made to-day,
is expected with justifiable interest. He will, it is stated, ,announce the policy of her Majesty's Government with respect to the House of Lords, and propose a definite plan for the country to accept or reject. That plan, if it is produced, will, of course, be the pivot of the next election, and probably of the next great division of parties, and it will, moreover, afford -the first great opportunity of estimating Lord Rosebery's own powers. If he really has framed an acceptable plan, or even one that will work, he has more originality than he
himself a few months ago thought that he possessed. No hint of the plan has yet transpired ; nor, curiously enough, has any one mentioned an initial difficulty which certainly used to be supposed to exist. Is it not a constitutional rule that any reform in either Chamber must be carried in that Chamber before it is introduced in the other ? It is certain that no Bill can be introduced affecting the Royal prerogative without the previous consent of the Crown, and there is a tradition—or is it a superstition ?—that each Chamber also enjoys the privilege. Suppose the Lords discussed a Bill for raising the franchise !