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Tuesday, 19 December 1911

Senator GIVENS (Queensland) . - With the wisdom which usually characterizes him, Senator Rae took me to task for trying to increase the cost of vehicles to the poorer people, and he adduced iri support of that statement the extraordinary argument that because buggies are not imported a duty will increase the price. If buggies are not imported, no matter what duties may be imposed, it will not increase the price to poor men by a single farthing. A statement of that kind only shows the confusion in the mind of a Free Trader. As Senator McGregor has said, only a comparatively few of these vehicles are imported. I know that a large number come in here, but in parts, which are put together here.

Senator Rae - Should we not be supplied with statistics bearing on these matters before we are asked to legislate?

Senator GIVENS - If the honorable senator has any complaint to make in that regard, it does not lie against me, but against the Government.

Senator Rae - You are willing to legislate in the dark, and I do not wonder at it.

Senator GIVENS - I am not legislating in the dark. I know that we have requested a duty of 10 per cent, on the most important portions of the raw material for buggies, and I want to equalize matters by increasing the duty on the finished article by 5 per cent. That is only a fair and reasonable request, which I hope will be agreed to.

Request agreed to.

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