O'Connell- 1820's The Emancipation Years
The Catholic Association was established in 1823 by Dan O'Connell, this was set up as a pressure group to obtain Catholic emancipation. This pressure group established The Penny Rent, this ment that people could join for the low cost of a penny, this made sure that the organisation always had secure financing and that all groups of people would be able to join eg, the very poor to the rich. This also brought in the Catholic Church as they became responsible for collectin the money at Sunday church. The Bishop of Kildare, James Doyle was the first to take a high profile place in the Catholic Association.
In 1826 in the Waterford byelection O'Connell told the 40 shilling freeholders to vote for a liberal mineded Villers Stuart. Stuart won the place comfortably on the back of the freeholders, this was a great achievement as now O'Connell had a Catholic sympathic sitting in a place at Westminister.
1827= The death of Lord Liverpool (a tory PM)
1828= William Vezy-Fitzgerald (Catholic sympathetic) runs for County Clare byelection and O'Connell runs against him...
O'Connell wins the place on scale of 2:1, but due to him being a Catholic he could not take his place in Westminister due to 2 oaths:
1) Oath of Supramacy - The King/ Queen is head of State
2) Oath of Abjuration - This means that O'Connell would have to renounce his faith and reject Catholic teaching to be a MP.
The goverenment at this time is a weak Tory government, and at its head is Edward Peel. The two men had a personal hatred of eachother and had nearly come to a duel, O'Connell said that Peel's smile reminded him of the "gleam of a coffin lid"