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[people, and it is proper, therefore, that they alone, through their representatives, should impose the taxes ; a reason which would be unanswerable if the commons taxed none but themselves, but the property of members of the house of lords is equally taxable with that of the commons. The true reason, therefore, seems rather to be this, that the lords being an hereditary body, created, and so more liable than the commons to be influenced, by the Crown, it would be extremely dangerous to give them any power of framing new taxes. So jealous are the commons of this privilege, that they will not permit the least alteration or amendment to be made by the lords in any money bill, i.e., any bill by which any money whatsoever is directed to be raised upon the subject ; and the rule extends even to bills imposing pecuniary penalties or fines (6). Finally, since 1861, in practice the right of the lords even to reject a money bill has disappeared (c).
Secondly, with regard to ELECTIONS. The election of members to serve in the house of commons is the act of the people at large ; and in considering this matter, we shall have to consider,--1. The qualification of the electors ; 2. The qualifications of the elected ; and 3. The proceedings at elections.
1. As to the FRANCHISE, or qualifications of the ELECTORS.-The reason of requiring a qualification in voters is to exclude such persons as are in so mean a situation as to be specially open to the undue influence of others; and although upon the true principles of
(h) According to Sir Mathew Hale (Parliaments, 65, 66), it is allowable for the lords to alter a money bill by shortening the period for which a tax is granted ; and in such case, he is of opinion that the bill need not be sent back to the commons for their concurrence, but may receive the royal assent without further ceremony. [See
Year Book, 33 Hen. 6, 17 ; Resolution of House of Commons, Commons Journal, ix. 235, 509 ; but see May, Law of Parl., 10th ed., p. 547.]
(c) Anson, Law and Custom of the Constitution (3rd ed.), i. 267 ; Hansard, vol. xxvii. (4th series), pp. 985, 12:22 et seq.
[liberty, every member of the community, however poor, should have a vote,] and it has been one of the objects of our constitution to secure him some share in the election of representatives, yet the rights of property cannot be wholly disregarded.
And, first, of the qualifications which belong to the electors for COUNTIES. The knights of shires, (that is to say, the members for counties, or divisions of counties,) were originally representative of the Tanded interest ; and their electors, therefore, were until recently required to have estates in lands or tenements within the county represented. An estate of the value of 40s. per annum of free tenure, and in which the voter had also a freehold interest, was formerly the invariable qualification (d). And the law so continued until the year 1832, when, by the Representation of the People Act, 1832 (commonly called the Reform Act), new provisions were made with respect to the nature and value of the estates by which county, as well as other, electors should be qualified. The qualifications introduced by the great Reform Act have since been further regulated by the Representation of the People Acts, 1867 and 1884. And under the combined effect of this legislation, the lands or tenements in respect of which a vote may be claimed for the county, may now be either of freehold, of copyhold, or of any other tenure, and may be held either in fee or for life, or for years, or even by mere occupation (@). But no mortgagee is to have any vote by reason of his mortgage, unless he be in possession, the right of voting remaining in the mortgagor ; and no trustee is to have any vote by reason of his trust estate, but the cestui que trust in possession is to have the vote (f).
(d) 8 Hen. 6 (1429), c. 7; 10 Hen. 6 (1432), c. 2.
(c) Representation of the People Act, 1832, ss. 18, 20; Repre. sentation of the People Act, 1867, ss. 5, 6.
(f) Representation of the People Act, 1832, s. 23; Parliamentary Voters Registration Act, 1843, s. 74.
The value of the qualifying estate differs according to the different tenures. For (1) As to freeholds, with respect to all freeholders of inheritance, and also with respect to all freeholders for life (provided these latter were in the actual bona fide occupation, or had acquired their freeholds by marriage, marriage settlement, devise, or promotion to any benefice or office), the qualification remained the same after as well as before the passing of the Representation of the People Act, 1832, viz., “ 40s. by the year at least, above all charges” (9); this last-mentioned qualification when originally established by the 8 Hen. VI. (1429), c. 7, being of substantial amount, the sum of 10s. having been equal to 121. in the reign of Queen Anne, and to 201. in the time of George III. But with respect to other freeholders, their lands or tenements must be of “the clear yearly value of not less than 51. “ (formerly 101.), above all rents and charges payable “out of or in respect of the same” (h); and a freehold rentcharge, although at one time a qualification (i), has now (under sect. 4 of the Representation of the People Act, 1884) ceased to be so, unless it be a tithe rentcharge. (2) As to copyholds and customary freeholds, persons seised thereof at law or in equity for life or lives, or for any larger estate, are qualified to vote for the county, if the property is of the “clear yearly value of “ not less than 51., over and above all rents and charges “ payable out of or in respect of the same " (k). (3) As 10 leaseholds, every person entitled, as lessee or assignee, to any lands or tenements, of whatever tenure, for the unexpired residue of a term, which was originally for not less than sixty years (1), whether determinable on life or
(9) Representation of the People Act, 1832, s. 18.
(h) Representation of the People Act, 1867, S. 5 ; Representation of the People Act, 1832, $. 18.
(c) Vicholls v. Bulwer (1870), L. R. 6 C. P. 281.
(k) Representation of the People Act, 1867, s. 5.
(1) Trotter v. Watson (1869), L. R. 4 C. P. 434 ; Warburton v. Deuton (1870), ib, 6 C. P. 267.
not, is qualified to vote, if the lands are of “ the clear “ yearly value of 51. (formerly 101.) or upwards” (m); and where the term was originally less than sixty years but not less than twenty years, whether determinable or not, then if the lands are of the clear yearly value of 501. or upwards (n), the person entitled thereto, as lessee or assignee, is also entitled to vote. But as regards a sublessee, or an assignee of an under-lease, it is required, that, in order to vote in respect of such term of twenty years, he should be also in the actual occupation of the premises (o). It must be noticed that, as regards joint owners, under the Representation of the People Act, 1881, s. 4, one only of such co-owners may vote, unless in the case of persons deriving title by descent, succession, marriage, marriage settlement, or will, or unless in the case of partners boni side occupying land for partnership purposes. '
In addition to the qualification of ownership, there was also introduced by the Representation of the People Act, 1832, the qualification of occupation, commonly called the occupation franchise ; for by that Act, every one was qualified to vote at an election for the county, who occupied, as tenant, any lands or tenements within the county, for which he was liable to a yearly rent of not less than 501. (p); and, formerly, under the Parliamentary Voters Registration Act, 1843, s. 73, in the case of a joint occupation, each occupier might have voted if the rent when divided by the number of the occupiers gave at least 501. for each of them. By the Representation of the People Act, 1867, s. 6, every person is qualified who, as owner or tenant, occupies any lands or tenements within the county, of the rateable value of 121. a year or upwards (9). And, in
(p) Representation of the People Act, 1832, s. 20.
(9) Representation of the People Act, 1867, s. 6 ; Mather v. Allendale (1870), L. R. 6 C. P.
the case of a joint occupation, if the rateable value, on being divided by the number of the joint occupiers, gives a similar value, each is entitled to vote, but not more than two are to vote in respect of the same premises, unless they derive their title thereto by descent, succession, marriage, marriage settlement, or devise, or unless they are partners carrying on business therein (r). Finally, by the Representation of the People Act, 1884, s. 2, a uniform household franchise and a uniform lodger franchise at elections, which previously existed only in boroughs, have been established in all counties and boroughs throughout the United Kingdom ; and every man possessed of a household qualification, or of a lodger qualification, is entitled, if the qualifying premises are situate in a county, to be registered as a voter, and, when registered, to vote at an election for such county. The Act (s. 7) defines a household qualification as the qualification enacted for borough constituencies by the Representation of the People Act, 1867, s. 3(s), and a lodger qualification as the qualification enacted for borough constituencies by s. 4 of the same Act; and by section 3 a servant or employé inhabiting offices, which his master does not in habit, is entitled to vote as an inhabitant occupier of such offices(t). The Representation of the People Act, 1884, has also provided (ss. 5 and 6) that every man occupying any land in the United Kingdom of the clear yearly value of not less than 101. shall be entitled to be registered as a voter, and, when registered, to vote at an election for such county in respect of such occupation. But no one is to be entitled to be registered as a county voter in respect of the occupation of any dwelling-house or land within a borough, the last-mentioned provision not
(r) Representation of the People Act, 1867, s. 27.
(*) The borough qualification here referred to is having (between July 31 and July 31) been an "inhabitant occupier” (whether
as owner or as tenant) of any dwelling-house within the borough.
(1) As to this qualification, which is known as the service franchise, see Clutterbuck v. Taylor, [1896) 1 Q. B. 395.