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Full text of "Political Science Of The State"

DEPARTMENTS  OF  GOVERNMENT IN A STATE.        299
ably never will; he knows nothing of their antecedents, their
real opinions ; above all, of their characters. What elector,
even among the most enlightened, could say in conscience
that he was capable of choosing, with due knowledge of the
case, forty, or it may be, fifty representatives for Paris. And
if the most enlightened man is almost always reduced to the
necessity of voting blindly, without knowing what he does,
in what condition will the ignorant man be found, that is to
say, almost the sum total of the electors? Under this form
of election some noisy and active politicians unite together,
and declare themselves representatives of a party, make up
a list of candidates and present it to the electors. These find
themselves then compelled to choose between two lists, or to
remain without a representative; for if they do not vote for
a list where the names which they dislike often constitute a
half, the candidates of the opposing party will gain the day.'1
"All is artifice and fiction in this system. The elector is
not free and cannot know either those in favor of whom he
votes or those against whom he votes. The suffrage called
direct is in reality indirect. It is also a suffrage with two de-
grees, because committees formed at hap-hazard and habit-
ually by intrigue and effrontery are those who prepare the
lists, introducing into them whom they please and exclud-
ing from them whom they please, and in this way, with no
regular agency to do so, discharging the most important
electoral functions ; whilst the part acted by the elector is
reduced to an act of consent in which he is not free. We
have thus an irregular suffrage of two degrees substituted
for the regular suffrage defined by law. A system cannot be
conceived of more favorable to men without character or
conviction, without popularity, fortune, or power, and above
all, to intriguers."
" This system has another result  worse  still, and  more
grave if possibleit favors the election of men who profess
extreme opinions, because  in  an ignorant population it is
always extreme opinions or rather violent temperaments that
' get the upper hand in each party.   We must not deceive