Gladstone's Second Ministry {HOME}

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Electoral Reform

The Franchise Act, 1884

  • In the counties, the vote was given to all male householders over 21 and £10 lodgers
  • A £10 occupier franchise was created for those living in shops or offices
  • The older franchises still applied

Terms of the Redistribution of Seats Act, 1885

  • Boroughs with a population under 15,000 lost both their MPs
  • Boroughs with a population under 50,000 lost one MP
  • 142 seats were redistributed
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Electoral Reform

Corrupt Practices Act (1883)

  • Closed the loopholes that allowed corruption to continue from the Secret Ballot Act
  • Candidate's election expenses were set to a specified limit
  • Made clear what campaign moeny could be spent on
  • Election agents had to produce accounts
  • Clearly defined illegal and corrupt practices and introduced stiff fines and prison sentences for anyone breaking the law
  • Win support through promoting better policies
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Gladstone's Second Ministry (Ireland)

The Protection of Person and Property Act (Coercion Act)

  • Anyone suspected of involvement in illegal activities would be imprisoned for indefinite periods without trial
  • Suspension of Habeau Corpus

The Land Act (1881)

  • 3 Fs
  • Special Land Courts set up to established a fair rent and both landowner and tenant were to be bound by the court's decision
  • Rent was to be fixed for 15 years
  • Tenant was safe from eviction as long as he paid the rent and the rent could not be raised against a tenant's improvements
  • No definition of what fair rent was
  • Easier for tenants to buy lank
  • Assistance came from government loan schemes
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