When they regained power at Westminster in November 1830, the Whigs were dedicated to reform without knowing exactly where to begin. For decades they had committed themselves to financial “retrenchment” and parliamentary reform and now they hoped to pacify an angry country by dealing with those two great issues. Indeed, their main objective was to restore public confidence in the constitution and to prevent a French-style revolution. But their approach to reform in 1830 was uncertain and unpromising. Their vague intentions can be partly explained by their lack of party organization and cohesion; in Parliament, Whigs served as individual opponents of Tory policies rather than as supporters of an alternative government. Factionalism among the Whigs had kept them out of office for more than a generation. Some Whigs were considered unpatriotic because they persisted in defending the ideals of the French Revolution. Still others were hostile to the notion of reform because they suspected that the Tories had already given the country as much reform as it could digest. For many Whigs, the extension of civil liberties to Dissenters (in 1828) and then to Roman Catholics (in 1829) was momentous enough. What the country now wanted was a sensible and flexible government which accommodated the spirit of the age by heeding public opinion. It is not surprising, therefore, that the new government in 1830 was really a coalition of liberals and moderates, and as Peter Mandler has remarked, it was a while before their potential was realized.