The effect of the abolition of the provinces on political parties in the New Zealand House of Representatives, 1876-7
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Arts
This work aims to describe the disappearance of an election issue during the life of the Parliament which has been elected in that issue. The members of the House of Representatives in the sixth Parliament of New Zealand were elected to vote “Aye” or “No” on the question “Shall the Act for the abolition of the Provinces remain on the Stature Book?” The Elections of 1875-6 were fought between the two recognized parties of Abolitionists and Provincialists. The Ministry of Sir Julius Vogel which has been responsible for the policy of Abolition took its stand against the attacks of the Provincialists led by Sir George Grey who demanded the repeal of the Abolition Act of 1875. Candidates who gave themselves out as Abolitionists pledged themselves to support the Abolition policy of the Vogel Ministry, while the Provincialists were pledged to repeal the Abolition Act. The simplicity of the issue was a great advantage to the Vogel Government, but, as the narrative of events shows, the Abolition question was really settled at the elections.