7 JULY 1883, Page 1

The Corrupt Practices Bill has been under discussion all the

week, and sincere as the House evidently is in its determination to curb the influence of wealth, we begin to fear that the Bill is too elaborate, and its prohibitions too minute, to result in a. good workable measure. Its principles are hardly consistent, for while it permits private persons to lend their own vehicles for the conveyance of voters, it does not permit private persons to hire the vehicles of others for the same end, and Mr. H. Fowler's very reasonable amendmentoto forbid both practices was rejected. Again, while it allows candidates to hire the large room in an inn for electoral meetings, it does not allow them to take a room either in an inn or in any house of refreshment for a committee-room. And on the law of agency it seems likely to be so strict, that unless both parties are very forbearing, hardly any election in the kingdom will stand the tests of purity which this measure seems likely to apply. On the whole, we wish the Bill had insisted chiefly on a few broad principles,—including especially the strict limitation of election expenses,—and had busied itself less with minute restrictions.