House of Representatives
26 July 1905

2nd Parliament · 2nd Session



Mr. Speaker took the chair at 2.30 p.m., and read prayers.

SUPPLY BILL (No. 1).

Assent reported.

page 180

PETITIONS

Mr. CROUCH presented a petition from certain residents of Werribee, praying that stringent legislation be enacted to prevent the importation of opium for smoking purposes into the Commonwealth.

Sir GEORGE TURNER presented two similar petitions from certain residents of Ormond and elsewhere, and from J. G. Davies and others.

Mir. DEAKIN presented two similar, petitions from certain residents of Ballarat.

Mr. KNOX presented two similar petitions from certain residents of Malvern and Canterbury and elsewhere.

Mr. McLEAN presented a similar petition from certain residents of Orbost.

Mr. HUME COOK presented a similar petition from certain residents of Northcote and elsewhere.

Petitions received.

page 181

PAPERS

MINISTERS laid upon the table the following papers : -

Pursuant to the Conciliation and Arbitration Act 1904 : - Provisional regulations dated 26th January, 1905, Statutory Rules 1905, No. 12 ; provisional regulations* dated 5th April, 1905, and repeal of those dated 26th January, 1905, Statutory Rules 1905, No. 23.

Pursuant to tlie ‘Audit Act 1901 : - Transfers of amounts approved by the Governor-General in. Council for the financial year 1904-5, dated 5th and 21st July, 1905.

Pursuant to trie Public Service Act 1902 : - Regulations Nos. 36 and 104, officers to obey summons, &<;., Statutory Rules 1905, No. 46; No. 8q., Furlough, Statutory Rules 1905, No. 41 ; No. 155, Allowances in PostmasterGeneral’s Department, Statutory Rules 1905, No. 42.

The Clerk laid upon the table

Return to an Order of the House, dated 16th November, 1905, relating to the sugar mills erected in Queensland for the cost of which the State Government is responsible.

page 181

QUESTION

IMPERIAL CONFERENCE ON SHIPPING LAW

Mr G B EDWARDS:
SOUTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT

– I wish to ask the Prime Minister, without notice, whether he will cause to be laid on the table of this House copies of any despatch or other documents received from the Secretary of State for the Colonies on the subject of a proposed Imperial Conference of representatives of various parts of the Empire, with a view to establishing a Common Navigation and Merchant Shipping Law for the British nation; and whether the Government intend to take any action in the matter?

Mr DEAKIN:
Minister for External Affairs · BALLAARAT, VICTORIA · Protectionist

– I will lay the despatch on the table with pleasure. The Government has the matter now under its consideration.

page 181

QUESTION

GERMAN PENAL SETTLEMENT IN THE ADMIRALTY ISLANDS

Mr JOHNSON:
LANG, NEW SOUTH WALES

– I wish to ask the Prime Minister, without notice, if he has reason to believe that there is truth in the report published in the newspapers to the effect that it is proposed to establish a penal settlement in the Admiralty Islands under the auspices of the German Government. If so, will he enter a protest against any action of the kind ?

Mr DEAKIN:
Protectionist

– The newspaper statement referred to has been before me, and I tam endeavouring to discover the authority for it. If the report be justified, action will certainly be taken.

page 181

QUESTION

COTTON CULTURE

Mr WILKINSON:
MORETON, QUEENSLAND

– I wish to ask the Minister of Trade and Customs if he will lay on the table the report on cotton culture made by Mr. J. Bottomley, and a precis of the information on the subject, placed before his department by Mr. Daniel Jones, of the Queensland Agricultural Department ?

Sir WILLIAM LYNE:
Minister for Trade and Customs · HUME, NEW SOUTH WALES · Protectionist

– I have no objection to doing so.

page 181

PUBLIC SERVICE APPEALS

Mr HUME COOK:
BOURKE, VICTORIA · PROT

– It is asserted that effect has not been given to certain appeals dealt with by the Appeal Board, instituted under the Public Service Act. I therefore ask the Minister of Home Affairs if it is true that, although certain appeals have been unanimously upheld by the Appeal Board, they have nevertheless been set aside by the Public Service Commissioner.

Mr GROOM:
Minister for Home Affairs · DARLING DOWNS, QUEENSLAND · Protectionist

– -Yes; but the Commissioner, in arriving at his decisions, had to view each case as it affected others throughout the Commonwealth. He alone has a full knowledge of the circumstances of the other States^ and of the effect of the appeals on the public expenditure.

page 181

QUESTION

LANDING OF A CABLE IN QUEENSLAND

Mr BAMFORD:
HERBERT, QUEENSLAND

– Will the Minister of External Affairs lay on the table all paper’s and correspondence in connexion with an application by a German trading company for permission to land a telegraphic cable on the coast of Queensland?

Mr DEAKIN:
Protectionist

– I am not aware of any objection to doing so, but before making, a promise on the subject, will look through the papers.

page 182

QUESTION

STATE INFRINGEMENT OF COMMONWEALTH POWERS

Mr MCDONALD:
KENNEDY, QUEENSLAND

– Has the attention of the Minister of External Affairs been drawn to the newspaper account of a question asked in the Legislative Assembly of New South Wales yesterday, and replied to by the Premier of that State. Mr. Cohen is reported to have asked if instructions had been sent to the Acting AgentGeneral with regard to the Marshall Islands trouble, to which Mr. Carruthers is reported to have replied that the Acting Agent-General had been instructed to make representations to the Imperial Government with respect to the position of Australian traders in the Marshall Islands. Will the Prime Minister give us his opinion as to whether this action of the Government of New South Wales is not an infringement of the powers of the Minister of External Affairs in dealing; with matters outside the Commonwealth ?

Mr DEAKIN:
Protectionist

– There has been no infringement of rights, but an act of courteous assistance. The Premier of New South Wales communicated with the Department of External Affairs in reference to this matter, and sent the instructions referred to with our concurrence..

page 182

QUESTION

CAPITAL SITE

Mr POYNTON:
GREY, SOUTH AUSTRALIA

– Has any progress been made towards settling the site of the Federal Capital territory?

Mr GROOM:
Protectionist

– The subject is now the matter of correspondence between the Commonwealth and the Government of New South Wales.

page 182

QUESTION

INTER-STATE TRADE,

Mr ROBINSON:
WANNON, VICTORIA

– Will the Minister of Trade and Customs furnish honorable members with the figures relating to InterState exports, some extracts from which are published in this morning’s newspapers ?

Sir WILLIAM LYNE:
Protectionist

– I have no objection to laving the paper on the table.

Mr KNOX:
KOOYONG, VICTORIA

– Has the Treasurer any objection to laying on the table a return prepared for the late Treasurer bv the Commissioner of Customs, showing the effect upon the trade between the States of the introduction of a uniform Tariff?

Sir JOHN FORREST:
Treasurer · SWAN, WESTERN AUSTRALIA · Protectionist

– I have not seen the paper to which the honorable mem”ber refers,; unless it is that about which the honorable member for Wannon has asked a question, and from, which extracts were published in this morning’s newspapers. If the honorable member will give notice of his question, I will look into the matter.

page 182

QUESTION

CUSTOMS VALUATION OF IMPORTS

Mr WATSON:
BLAND, NEW SOUTH WALES

– Has the attention of the Minister of Trade and Customs been drawn to the statements which have appeared in the press at intervals as to the persistent undervaluation of imports for Customs purposes ? If so, can he inform the House as to what course he purposes to take in regard to the matter, and more particularly as to whether goods will be charged Customs duty on their free-on-board value at their port of shipment, or on the value shown bv the factorv invoiced1 prices.

Sir WILLIAM LYNE:
Protectionist

– The matter has been under my consideration, and under that of the Government. The papers disclose that there has been a good deal of trouble - I will not say more - in getting at the true value of the goods exported here from other countries. It is our intention to adopt the free-on-board valuation at the port of shipment.

page 182

QUESTION

DUTY ON CORNSACKS

Mr TUDOR:
for Mr. Maloney

asked the Minister of Trade and Customs, upon notice -

Whether he will inform the House why the Tariff has been altered in order to compel certain cornsacks, known as “ 6 Porter 8 shot,” to be specially branded upon each sack - such sacks being the same size and weight as “8 Porter 9 shot” cornsacks?

Sir WILLIAM LYNE:
Protectionist

– The answer to the honorable member’s question is as follows : -

No alteration of the Tariff has been made. All that has been done is that the GovernorGeneral in Council has exercised powers conferred by the Customs Act to remedy a serious evil affecting Australian producers.

page 182

QUESTION

DISMISSAL OF NICHOLAS HART

Mr CULPIN:
BRISBANE. QLD

asked the PostmasterGeneral, upon notice -

  1. . “ Whether he has any objection to lay upon the table of the House a copy of all papers and correspondence relating to the suspension and dismissal from the service of Nicholas Hart?
  2. What was the total cost of the examination held by the Department in respect to this matter?
  3. Is it correct that the said Nicholas Hart was under suspension for several months, and was paid full pay during the whole term of his suspension ?
Mr AUSTIN CHAPMAN:
Postmaster-General · EDEN-MONARO, NEW SOUTH WALES · Protectionist

– The answer to the honorable member’s question is as follows: -

As this case is shortly to come before the Courts, it is not considered desirable to answer these questions at present.

page 183

QUESTION

CHIEF CLERK OF STORES

Mr WEBSTER:
MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES

asked the PostmasterGeneral, upon notice -

  1. If applications were invited through the press and Commonwealth Gazette for the position of Chief Clerk of Stores in the Postal Department?
  2. If so, is he aware that before those applications were invited, ft was a matter of common report that the person now appointed was the candidate designated for such appointment?
  3. Will he state the reason why Mr. W. H. Golding received this appointment in preference to other officers nominating, and who, it is said, on. the principles of preferment recognised in the Department, had superior claims for consideration ?
  4. Is it a fact that great dissatisfaction has been caused by this method of appointment, and that it has a tendency to discourage applications being sent in by eligible officers in the service?
  5. How long has Mr. W. H. Golding been in the Public Service of the State and Commonwealth, and what is his record of services?
  6. Is it a fact that Mr. Golding’s promotion to the position of Inspector in the Postal Service some years ago caused considerable dissatisfaction, as on the present occasion, for similar reasons?
  7. What are the reasons for Mr. Golding’s special promotions. Are there any objections to placing on the table of this House a copy of all papers relating to such promotions?’
Mr AUSTIN CHAPMAN:
Protectionist

– The following answers have been furnished by the Public Service Commissioner: -

  1. Yes.
  2. No.
  3. Mr. Golding was selected for the position as the senior applicant who possessed the necessary qualifications for the office to be filled.
  4. It is not known that dissatisfaction has been caused by the method of appointment in this case.
  5. Mr. Golding has been in the State and Commonwealth Services for a period of twenty-seven years. Before being appointed to his present position he occupied the positions of operator, postmaster, and inspector, and was reported to be a highly capable and energetic officer. He was the senior applicant who possessed the knowledge deemed essential to properly fill the position.
  6. I am not aware.
  7. Answered under 5 above.

There is no objection to the papers relating to Mr. Golding’s appointment as Clerk in Charge of Stores Branch being placed on the Library table.

page 183

QUESTION

IMPORTATION OF KEROSENE. ;

Mr G B EDWARDS:
SOUTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT

asked the Minister of Trade and Customs, upon notice -

Whether the regulation, issued on 19th November last, authorizing the importation of kerosene having a true flashing point (as per Abel’s closed test) of over 73 degrees Fahrenheit, has the support of scientific experts, as insuring a sufficiently high test for safety under the climatic conditions of many parts of the Commonwealth, seeing that New Zealand and a majority of the Commonwealth States had previously imposed a higher test, with a marked reduction of accident, and that a higher test, has been strongly recommended in the United Kingdom for the adequate protection of life and property?

Sir WILLIAM LYNE:
Protectionist

– The answer to the honorable member’s question is as follows : -

The professional opinion of acknowledged experts was obtained before fixing the “ flash point “ at 73 degrees Fahrenheit.

The question has, however, been reconsidered in the light of recent scientific reports, and it has been decided to raise the standard to So degrees Fahrenheit.

page 183

QUESTION

ALLEGED DEFECTIVE ELECTORAL ROLLS

Mr HUTCHISON:
HINDMARSH, SOUTH AUSTRALIA

asked the Minister of Home Affairs, upon notice -

  1. Has he noticed complaints in the newspapers with reference to defects in the electoral rolls, and the statement that every resident in Guildfordstreet, Bourke Division, has been struck off the roll?
  2. Will he ascertain if such statement is true?
  3. If true, on what grounds and by whose authority were the names struck off?
Mr GROOM:
Protectionist

– The answers to the hon- .orable member’s questions are as follow : -

  1. Yes.
  2. I am at a loss to understand why such a statement has been made, as inquiry shows that the police canvasser for the district called at every house and collected the names of all residents therein qualified to vote.
  3. Such names have never been struck off the roll.

page 183

QUESTION

RETIRING ALLOWANCES OF SYDNEY POSTAL OFFICIALS

Mr G B EDWARDS:
SOUTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT

asked the PostmasterGeneral, upon notice -

  1. If Messrs. Frizzell and Bartholomew, formerly employed at the Sydney Post Office, and retired after many years’ meritorious service for the reason that they had grown old, had to wait many months, while in indigent circumstances, for their retiring allowances?
  2. If the allowances ultimately paid these men were not largely reduced at the instance of the State Government?
  3. If retiring allowances to similar officers under similar circumstances have not been previously paid on the scale of a month’s pay for each year of service?
  4. If the Department has been legally advised as to the statutory rights of such officers accruing under the Public Service Acts ‘ of New South Wales, and the method of computing the amounts payable by the State and- Federal Governmentsrespectively ?
Mr AUSTIN CHAPMAN:
Protectionist

– The answers to the honorable member’s questions are as follow : - 1 and 2. The officers mentioned, having attained the age of sixty-five years, were each granted six months’ furlough on full pay from 1st July, 1904, and were retired from the Service at its termination on 31st December last in accordance with section 74 of the Commonwealth Public Service Act.

The State Public Service Board was asked in October, 1904, to have the necessary computations made in connexion with the retiring allowances payable in these cases, and when received it was found that such computations had been made on the basis of a fortnight’s pay for each year of service prior to 23rd December,1895.

As in some previous cases, retiring allowances, on the basis of one month’s pay for each year of service, had been granted, the State Board was asked on the 6th and 8th December, 1904, respectively, to advise as to the amounts payable to Fizzell and Bartholomew on that basis.

A reply was not received until early in January, 1905, and it did not give full information. The latest information available is that the State Board is in communication on the subject with the AttorneyGeneral for New South Wales. Pending a decision by the State authorities on the point at issue, authority was given in April, 1905, to pay the gratuities at the lower rate.

  1. Yes; see third paragraph of answer to 1 and 2.
  2. Yes.

page 184

QUESTION

COMMERCIAL REPRESENTATIVES OF THE COMMONWEALTH

Mr CARPENTER:
for Mr. Mahon

asked the Minister of Trade and Customs, upon notice -

  1. Whether it is correct, as reported in the press, that the late Minister had stated that the Commonwealth Government possesses power to appoint commercial representatives in various parts of the world?
  2. If correct, will he quote the section of the Constitution conferring such power?
  3. Have the State Governments, or any of them, expressed their willingness to withdraw their representatives abroad so that persons representing all Australia may be appointed in their place?
Sir WILLIAM LYNE:
Protectionist

– In reply to the honorable member, I desire to state -

  1. I have no other information than the press paragraphs.
  2. Such appointments could be made under the Trade and Commerce provisions of the Constitution subject only to the approval of Parliament as to the necessary expenditure.
  3. In any action taken the Government would endeavour to work in harmony with the States.

page 184

QUESTION

REMOVAL OF POSTMISTRESS, CHATSWOOD

Mr WEBSTER:

asked the PostmasterGeneral, upon notice -

  1. Is it a fact that the Postmistress in charge of the Chatswood Post Office, New South Wales, has been recently removed from her position ?
  2. Is it a fact that in this connexion an investigation into the conduct of a leading officer of the Department has taken place?
  3. Are there any objections to placing on the table of the House a copy of all the papers relating to those investigations?
Mr AUSTIN CHAPMAN:
Protectionist

– The answers to the honorable member’s questions are as follow : -

  1. Yes.
  2. No ; but in consequence of certain evidence a senior officer connected with the case was asked for an explanation, which was furnished.
  3. Aprecis of the case will be laid on the table of the Library, and if desired, after it has been perused, there will be no objection to place on that table all the papers connected with the inquiry into the case of the late Postmistress of Chatswood.

page 184

QUESTION

CHIEF INSPECTOR OF POST. OFFICES; NEW SOUTH WALES

Mr WEBSTER:

asked the PostmasterGeneral, upon notice -

  1. Have applications been invited through the public press and Commonwealth Gazette for the position of Chief Inspector of Post Offices in New South Wales?
  2. Is he aware that the name of an official is commonly mentioned in the service, as being the officer designated for this position?
  3. If this is a correct forecast of the condition of affairs, then wherein lies the necessity of advertising the position for applications, and thereby putting the Department and officers of the Public Service generally to needless trouble and expense in connexion with this position ?
Mr AUSTIN CHAPMAN:
Protectionist

– The answersto the honorable member’s questions are as; follow: -

  1. Applications were invited in the Commonwealth Gazette in the usual way.
  2. The Postmaster-General is not aware that the name of any official has been commonly mentioned in the service as being the officer designated for the position.
  3. Vacancies are notified in the Commonwealth Gazette in accordance with the provisions of the Public Service Regulations, and appointments to fill such vacancies are made by the GovernorGeneral in Council on the recommendation of the Public Service Commissioner. The fact that any officer may be commonly mentioned in the service as being the officer designated for the position does not affect the decision in any way.

page 184

QUESTION

COMMISSIONS FOR ARTILLERY GUNNERS

Mr CROUCH:
for Mr. Maloney

asked the Minister representing the Minister of Defence, upon notice -

  1. Under what conditions can a gunner in the Permanent Artillery rise to be an officer?
  2. Has any gunner been refused upon applying for such appointment, or to be permitted to attend an examination, and, if so, why?

Mir. EWING. - The answers to the honorable member’s questions are as follow : -

  1. The conditions are prescribed in Commonwealth Military Regulations, Part III., paras. 12 to 16.
  2. Yes. Bombardier Watts, R.A.A., applied for permission to present himself as a candidate at the recent examination for appointment to a first commission in the R.A.A. His application was dealt with in the usual manner by a Board of Officers who did not recommend him as a suitable candidate. The Commandants of the Commonwealth Military Forces of New South Wales and Victoria also stated that they could not recommend the candidate.

page 185

QUESTION

REDISTRIBUTION OF ELECTORATES

Mr JOHNSON:

asked the P.rime Minister, upon notice - t

Is it the intention of the Government to submit the proposals of the Commissioners for the redistribution of seats for the consideration of this House without delay, in accordance with the terms of the Governor-General’s speech at the opening of the session on the 28th of June last?

Mr DEAKIN:
Protectionist

– I assume that the honorable member did not hear my honorable colleague, the Minister of Home Affairs, when .he gave notice to-day of his intention to introduce a measure dealing with the subject. I shall also have something to say with regard to the matter in a few moments.

page 185

MINISTERIAL STATEMENT

Mr DEAKIN:
Minister of External Affairs · Ballarat · Protectionist

– I move -

That Statutory Rules No. 12 and 23 under the Commonwealth Conciliation and Arbitration Act 1904, laid on the table on 26th July, be printed.

I do this for the purpose of placing all honorable members upon an equal footing with regard to the discussion of the Ministerial statement ; but I sincerely hope that as few honorable members as possible will take advantage of the opportunity offered. An occasion of this kind would usually require some general statement from the new Administration charged with the leadership of the House; but in the present instance, in order to economize time, that can be very briefly summarized. This Ministry adheres to the practical policy sanctioned by the country at the last general election, and already submitted to this House, and exists for the purpose of giving effect to it. A majority of the members of the Cabinet are directly responsible for the programme submitted to Parliament in 1904, which was then accepted in almost every particular by our present colleagues, so that we represent to-day the same policy and the same party. The circumstances of our assumption of office prevent a formal submission of our programme in a speech from the Governor-General, but this is rendered comparatively immaterial, because the speech of His Excellency at the opening of this Parliament remains almost as completely applicable now as sixteen months ago, when it was. delivered. To refresh the memories of honorable members, I will rapidly run through the programme then formulated, and now re-submitted. Taking the subjects mentioned in the order in which they appear in His Excellency’s speech of March, 1904, honorable members will find - The taking over of the debts of the States (1), and compensation for transferred properties (2) mentioned in the third paragraph. The discussion on the first of these has been advanced a stage bv the Hobart Conference, whilst the joint valuations for the second are now about to be commenced. A Commonwealth system of old-age pensions is now under inquiry by a Royal Commission, and will be considered at the first opportunity (3). The encouragement of rural occupations (4), in particular by means of preferential trade (5) ; bounties for new products (6) : and speedier and cheaper transportation of meat, butter, and fruit, under improved conditions (7), will be attempted as soon as possible. To attract population (8), and to make provision for the appointment of a High Commissioner (9), are kindred ends to be achieved, together with, and in relation to, the matters just mentioned, with which they are closely allied. _ A Bill relating to navigation and shipping (10) in the light of the report expected from the Royal Commission now sitting, is in contemplation. The Bill for the establishment of the iron and steel industry (11) is under revision. (12) Two Ocean Mail Contracts provisionally accepted will be submitted, while (13) the whole question of subsidies for sea carriage will be brought under review as part of the general forward policy already alluded to. We hope to receive reports from the Tariff Commission, probably during the present session, and to take them into immediate consideration. The Budget will be framed upon the same plan outlined in 1904 (14). A continuance of the Sugar Bounty for a further period will’ be proposed (15). The Pacific Cable Conference is now being held, and will shortly report upon present and future arrangements (16V The Western

Australian Railway Survey Bill (17), the Papua Bill (18), and the Trade Marks Bill (19) are approaching their final stage. The Bill for an Inter-State Commission appears no longer urgent, as the preferential rates on railways have been practically abolished, and differential wharfage charges are being removed. The amendment of the Electoral Act (20),. projected in 1903, will be laid before you this session, providing for more effective administration.

Mr JOSEPH COOK:
PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917

– Is that the extent of its scope?

Mr DEAKIN:

– There will be another Bill. The other Bills promised relating to (21) Copyright; (22) Parliamentary Witnesses ; (23) Merchandise Marks - now replaced by Commerce Bill; (24) Rings and Trusts; (25) Quarantine; (26) Lighthouses, &c, are all in hand, and most of them ready for submission. The clauses of which the former Fraudulent Trades Marks Bill consisted having been divided, some of them have been added to the Trades Marks Bill, and the remainder expanded and embodied in the Commerce Bill. In addition to these, there are new measures to be brought forward this session. The Government is of opinion that (27) the constitutional method of determining the precise time at which the representation in the House of the people of the respective States shall be increased or diminished according to their numbers is by an Act of the Parliament. The dangers of leaving changes of this character in the hands of any Ministry, and of permitting them either to be set on foot at any moment merely by Executive Order, or to be delayed at Executive will, are obvious. Parliament itself should decide, subject to the Constitution, when and in what circumstances the representation shall be altered. A Bill to accomplish this will be introduced. Another important Bill will, it is hoped, effectually suppress what are known as Secret Commissions so far as they exist in the field of Commonwealth jurisdiction. In the light of the evidence before the Butter Commission the urgency of coping with the evil will be generally appreciated. (28) Several Bills considered in part last session will be revived by resolution, and, where necessary new amendments will be added. Among other matters engaging the serious attention of Ministers, and upon which it is intended at a later date to make proposals of an important character, that of Defence (29) is specially deserving of reconsideration, particularly in- view of recent developments. Short Bills relating to the Law of Evidence (30) ; Audit Act Amendment (31) ; Wireless Telegraphy (32); Census and Statistics (33) ; Weights and Measures (34) ; Designs (35); and Property Acquisition (36) will be placed before you. This list of subjects ‘may be divided into two parts. The first is made up of minor Bills, aiming at useful but independent additions to the ordinary machinery of Government. The other consists of major Bills, embodying a progressive policy of development of the resources of the Commonwealth, intended to be carried out by systematic effort here and in the Mother Country, and, if necessary, in the sister dominions of the Empire.

Mr McCay:

– Is all that to be done this session ?

Mr DEAKIN:

– It may not be possible to complete this programme, though with the help of Parliament a great advance can be made before the next recess. The policy as a whole can be pushed far onward if we are able to follow a business-like session this year with a longer session next year, devoted to questions of the first magnitude, approached steadily and consistently from the practical side. At all events, so far as Ministers are concerned, this Parliament will be afforded, as it has itself demanded, another opportunity of fulfilling the purposes for which it was .elected, and justifying the confidence of those who look to us to foster the national interests of Australia.

Honorable Members. - Hear, hear.

Mr REID:
East Sydney

– When the honorable member for Bland was Prime Minister, and made a similar statement under cover of a motion for the printing of a paper, the honorable and learned member for Ballarat asked for an adjournment of the debate, which was granted. When I delivered a statement of a similar kind on a motion for the “printing of a paper, the honorable, member for Bland, as leader of the Opposition, applied for an adjournment until the next day, and I had no hesitation in complying with his request. Following that precedent, I should like to have an adjournment until to-morrow in order to consider the Ministerial statement. The Prime Minister has referred only inferential Iv to a large number of matters which will require serious consideration.

Mr DEAKIN:

– Of course, it would be impossible, even if we so desired, to refuse the right honorable gentleman the courtesy for which he asks. There is no wish on our part to restrict the criticisms of honorable members, our only anxiety being that no further delay or postponement shall be asked for in connexion with this debate) but that we shall proceed with it to-morrow, and conclude it as rapidly as possible.

Debate (on motion by Mr. Reid) adjourned.

House adjourned at 2.55 p.m.

Cite as: Australia, House of Representatives, Debates, 26 July 1905, viewed 6 July 2017, <http://historichansard.net/hofreps/1905/19050726_reps_2_25/>.