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Friday, 6 August 1920

Mr TUDOR (Yarra) .- It would have been better had the Prime Minister explained that the reason for the amendment of the time allotment is that it is desired to extend to the departing GovernorGeneral the usual parliamentary banquet. I. personally, am opposed to any time-limit in connexion with this Bill. It is essentially a Committee Bill, but if we vote against the amended time suggested by the Prime Minister we shall, in effect, be voting for the shorter time already fixed. The amended time now proposed is about half-an-hour or an hour longer than that originally fixed.

Mr Charlton - Now that the Prime Minister sees that there is no obstruction, cannot he agree to further extend the time?

Mr TUDOR - I hope that he will. It must not be inferred that honorable members on this side, by not voting against the motion, are acquiescing in the timelimit. In the second-reading debate not one honorable member on either side of the House occupied his full time, although some of us spoke for an hour each. I plead with the Prime Minister now not to fix any time-limit. He must see that there has been no attempt to " stone-wall " the measure. Several honorable members have had to curtail their addresses, while others who came prepared to speak to the motion for the second reading of the Bill have been unable to do so. We have been told that the honorable member for Fawkner (Mr. Maxwell) was anxious to deal with a certain phase of the Bill, and although I disagree with his political views, I should have been glad to hear him.

Mr West - I have been left out.

Mr TUDOR - In common with many others. We have hanging over Australia to-day, like a great dark cloud, threatened trouble in the coal-mining industry, and unless something is done to prevent it every other industry in the Commonwealth will be affected. The honorable member for Newcastle (Mr. Watkins), the centre of the coal-mining industry in New South Wales, waited anxiously for an opportunity to speak to the motion for the second reading of the Bill, but was . not able to do so. We may disagree with the Government regarding certain aspects of this measure, but I appeal to the Prime Minister not to impose a time limit upon its discussion in Committee. The honorable member for Perth (Mr. Fowler) said that he will not again vote for this limitation of debate, since in this case the fixing of a time limit had prevented him and others from giving expression to their views upon the Bill.

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