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Thursday, 14 December 1905

Mr McDONALD (Kennedy) - I do not think that it is because honorable members are opposed to this legislation that they desire its postponement. The feeling is that we have passed through a very long and arduous session. It is all very well for the honorable member for Melbourne to suggest holding a special session. He must, however, recollect that his home is in Melbourne.

Mr Maloney - My vote will be cast in favour of moving to the Federal Capital at any time.

Mr McDONALD - If Parliament were to meet in January at Charters Towers, what possible hope should we have of getting a House? I am sure that the honorable member for Melbourne would attend, but he and I would be about the only members present. We must recollect that the representatives of the distant States should at least be afforded an opportunity to get into touch with their constituencies.If I were to devote six solid months to canvassing, I could not visit every part of my electorate. When honorable members appreciate that fact, they will understand why it is necessary that we should have some recess. I contend that it is our duty to visit every portion of our constituencies. Those who reside in the outlying parts should not be neglected in favour of those who live in more populous centres. I hope that the Government will consent to defer the consideration pf this measure until next session. I say unhesitatingly that if I thought that by voting for the motion I should reflect the least discredit on the Government, I should .refrain from doing so. But I do not consider that any such construction could be placed upon my action. From what I have heard from various honorable members, it would appear that there is a general desire that the further consideration of the Bill shall be postponed until next session, in order that the House may have a reasonable opportunity to investigate the whole subject, and I may tell the honorable member for Melbourne that if this course be followed, he will obtain support from quarters whence he least expects it.

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