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[45] Nor, indeed, has our order ever been so harsh towards the common people, as to be unwilling to have it courted by moderate liberality on our part. Nor are our children to be forbidden to pay attention to the men of their own tribe or to show regard for them or to canvass them on behalf of their friends, or to expect a similar service from them when they are themselves candidates for any office. For all these things are only acts of mutual kindness and politeness, and are sanctioned by ancient customs and precedent. That was on our conduct when the occasions of our ambition required it; and such we have seen to be the course of most illustrious men; and even at the present day we see many men alive to the necessity of keeping up their interests. It was the dividing the men of a tribe into decuries, the classification of the whole people, and the attempt to bind men's votes by bribes, that provoked the severity of the senate, and the energetic indignation of all good men. Allege this, prove this, direct your attention to this point, O Laterensis, that Plancius divided the tribes into decuries, that he classified the people, that he was an agent with whom money was deposited, that he promised money, that he distributed it; and then I shall wonder at your not having chosen to use the weapons which the law has armed you with. For with judges taken from the men of our own tribe, I need not say we could not if those things were true, bear their severity, but we could not even look them in the face.


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