should be conducted by political parties, "a body of men united for promoting by their joint endeavors the national interest upon some particular principle in which they are all agreed." 40 However, he warned that clandestine royal influence over the House of Commons must be eliminated if this party system were to operate successfully. Though indicating his support for granting Wilkes his seat (see chapter 4), Burke advised against shortening the duration of Parliaments (from seven to three years) and, surprisingly, excluding placemen from the House of Commons. He implied that the overthrow of the North ministry and the return of the Rockinghamites to power would solve all the nation's problems. As Burke summarized,
If the reader believes that there really exists . . . a Faction ruling by the
private inclinations of a Court [note, not the king], . . . and that this Faction,
whilst it pursues a scheme for undermining all the foundations of our free
dom, weakens . . . all the powers of executory Government, . . . he will be
lieve also, that nothing but a firm combination of public men against this
body . . . can possibly get the better of it. 41
As noted, Burke's pamphlet failed in its immediate object: the North administration remained firmly in power. In the next chapter, we shall meet two people who basically agreed with Burke's American policy but who were outraged by Burke's refusal to support more basic parliamentary reform.