29 JUNE 1867, Page 1

Precisely similar was the drift of the debate on the

proposal to extinguish freemen as a class, now that by far the greater number of them will be included under the household-rating Suffrage. Mr. Hardcastle proposed on Monday to wipe out those old customs by which freemen who are not rated householders get a vote. The cry was immediately raiserYthat this is a measure not of disfranchisement, but of enfranchisement, and Mr. Disraeli said that a good deal had been said about "the taint of bribery," —" he wanted to protect the measure before them from the taint of disfranchisement." The two ideas were at least obvi- ously connected. Mr. Disraeli wished to guard against the latter "taint," in order that there might be no danger of diminish- ing the former taint. If the members of the new House are to be rich men, it is surely well to secure them a considerable field khfkor the employment of their riches. What better one than the old

freemen? Mr. Hardcastle's amendment was negatived without a division.