12 DECEMBER 1885, Page 1

Assuming even that the " Independents " will prove, as

is very likely, steady Tories, and that the Conservatives carry the Universities of Edinburgh and St. Andrews,— which Mr. Erichsen may very possibly win,—the result will give 244 Liberals in England, 27 in Wales, and 62 in Scotland ; 220 Tories in England, 3 in Wales, 10 in Scotland, and 18 in Ireland ; or, in the grand total, 333 Liberals in Great Britain, against 233 Tories ; while in Ireland there will be 18 Tories and no Liberals. Further, Mr. Parnell's followers will number 85 in Ireland and 1 in England (Liverpool). In other words, the Liberals outnumber the Tories in Great Britain by 100 at least; are totally without colleagues in Ireland, where the Tories have 18; and therefore the Liberals may fall below the Tories and Parnellites counted together by 4. If Mr. Erichsen wins the Scotch University seat, the minority will be only 2 ; and if not only Mr. Erichsen wins the Scotch University seat, but one of the" Independents " turns out to be a Liberal on any question in which the Tories and Parnellites vote together, then the tie would be exact. As, however, the Speaker must be either a Tory or a Liberal, and in either case that would alter the balance of parties, an exact tie in a House in which no single Member is absent is not possible. But so long as Mr. Parnell's followers vote with the Tories,—and we are far from anxious for their aid,—the two sides will be so evenly balanced, that a con- stant see-saw may reasonably be anticipated.

It would be hard to say which of the counties is most thoroughly Liberal. Cornwall bears the palm in this, that while it returns 7 Liberals, it does not return a single Conservative; but Bedford- shire and Herefordshire share the credit of not returning a single Conservative, though each of them returns only 3 Members. The three counties together return 13 Liberals and no Conservative. On the other hand, Yorkshire, when all its Members vote, will swell the Liberal majority by the greatest number,—namely, by 20; 36 Liberals voting against only 16 Conservatives. Again, of the more populous counties, Durham gives the largest propor- tion of her representatives to the Liberals,—namely, 15 Liberals to 1 Conservative. Berkshire and Hertfordshire and Rutland- shire are the three counties which can boast of returning not a single Liberal ; but the representatives of all three taken together are only 10. Berkshire returns 5 Conservatives, Hert- fordshire 4, and Rntlandshire 1, that being the total number of representatives to which Rutlandshire is entitled. Kent and Lancashire are the most Conservative counties in the sense of contributing most to the Conservative majority. Kent con- tributes 18 Conservative votes to 1 Liberal vote, or a net addition of 17 to the Conservative majority. Lancashire contributes 37 Conservative to 19 Liberal votes, that is, it would give a net gain of 18 to the Conservative Party, were it not that it has returned also a Parnellite in Liverpool, who may, on occasions, swell the net Conservative vote, and on other occasions diminish it, according as Mr. Parnell shall decree.