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The Rival Candidates

1867-8: Representation of the People Acts

Author: Anon [Q.]

Publication: Kilmarnock Standard

Published: 14 November 1868

Place of publication: Kilmarnock, Scotland

Publication type: Newspaper/Periodical

Featured individuals:
Edwin Chadwick (1800-1890)
Alexander Macdonald (1821-1881)
Edward Pleydell-Bouverie (1818-1889)

No full copy of this poem is available.

Archive/Library: Burns Monument Centre
Classmark(s): Microfilm
Pages(s): 3

This six-stanza poem appears just above 'The Battle of the Kilmarnock Burghs' in the last edition of the Kilmarnock Standard before the 1868 election. Like 'The Battle', it provides a comic summary of the policy positions and character traits of the three men challenging the incumbent MP in the Kilmarnock Burghs seat: 'Edwin' (Chadwick), 'Robin' (Robert Thomson, a local independent) and 'Mac' (Alexander Macdonald of the Miners' National Association). It mentions Macdonald's withdrawal in favour of Chadwick, done so as not to split the Advanced Liberal vote. These upstart candidates are described as 'tinkers' and 'jobbers' whose interference is unwanted, as the constituency already has 'a tradesman quite fit for the station' – the long-serving moderate Liberal Edward Bouverie, whose eventual victory is (correctly) predicted.