At this time, the Reform Conference in St. Martin's Hall
is a memento not to be disregarded. It reminds us of several fasts which bear upon the questions that we have just mooted. In the first place, it reminds us that the suffrage has not been materially altered since the last general election, and that we must still ap- peal to that " balanee " of parties and interests which Lord John Russell trembled to disturb, and which oscillates with a delicacy difficult to calculate. It reminds us also, that although there are many active, intelligent, and really earnest men working away in a chronic endeavour to get a better Parliamentary representation, they cannot escape from the embarrassments of disunion ; the Man- chester men keeping one section of middle-class Reformers in doubtful relation with the rest. It reminds us most especially, that although the Manchester manufacturers, excited through their sensitive part, the ledger, feel a certain monetary enthusiasm on the one point of Free-trade, apathy exists elsewhere, as it does in Manchester itself on any but the one point; so that the next
election would be left in a great measure to chance and to the hazard of victory in the gambling of electionmongers' offices.
In the matter proper to it, Reform, the Cenference testifies to the existent* of no inconsiderable number of persons who are not wearied out, but are animated by an increasing desire for union among different sections of Reformers: and although individuals who fly off at a tangent, or provincial sections instigated by se- parate interests, make a great show of the disunion that exists, it does not need much penetration beneath the surface to see that the feeling of union and the wish to work out an unsectional reform are extensively shared.