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"A system in crying need of urgent and substantial reform" Discuss with relation to the political system of 1815

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Introduction

"A system in crying need of urgent and substantial reform" Discuss with relation to the political system of 1815 In this question the focus is on the need to reform the political system which was in place in 1815. This meant that people who had a seat in parliament were often the aristocracy or gentry in British society. There was no salary paid to MP's and therefore only a few people could afford to enter the field of politics. From this quote we can infer that it refers to the needs of a change in organization for the British political system to work fairly for the benefit of the entire British nation in the future. In order to answer this question it is clear that there were indeed people who wanted to reform the parliamentary system. However, there were also those who were content with the system that was already in place. Nevertheless, the question of whether it was right to want a reform will be assessed in this essay. One of the main criticisms of the political system of the system of 1815 was the idea of that it was in the benefit of the royal and aristocratic few in the expense of the majority of the British people. ...read more.

Middle

This consequently meant that they had too much influence over constituencies and over the House of Commons. This meant that the house had little to do with the people of Britain, Wade called it a "mere organ of the Aristocracy" and many others shared the very same view. Further more, when voting was occurring during an election it was done publicly this meant that bribery and threatening of votes was common place. Cooping (kidnapping of a rivals supporter) was even going on at the time so that someone could win an election. Many saw this as simply as a corrupt and unfair system which did not have the interests of many people in the country. As a result, radicals wanted a fairer political system which focused on genuine ability and acceptance from the public in order to have a seat in parliament. Although it was true that some people wanted change, others were content with the system and how it was working in 1815. Some thought it worked well due to progress, prosperity and victory in wars. They thought that this was all due to the aristocracy being best suited and qualified for the rule of the nation. ...read more.

Conclusion

For those who rejected the influence of the aristocrats they might be surprised to understand that they were there to prevent conflict between the lords and commons. As well as rotten boroughs allowing the influence of some excellent MP's such as Elder Pitt who supervised the expansion of the British empire in the eighteenth century. For this reason it can be argued that the system was working fine just it simply did not suite the lower ranks of society because they sought after a larger say in the running of the country. In conclusion, after analysing the radical and conservative views of the subject it is indeed true that the unreformed electoral system was in desperate need of reform. It is correct to believe that the system of 1815 does have some admirable points, in theory, such as the representation of all aspects of society through "virtual representation". However, for the main reason of being unrepresentative and corrupt there needed to be a change in the system so that British politics could develop and mature into a system which allowed the best qualified people to become MP's rather than someone coming into power based on wealth who may not be taking a part in the job for the right reasons which was to facilitate Britain. ?? ?? ?? ?? Andrew Tait Page 1 09/05/2007 ...read more.

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