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Tuesday, 8 November 1938

Mr LYONS - The letter proceeds-

You know this to be quite untrue, for only this.morning in Cabinet in your presence I made it clear that while, for reasons of promptness and time-saving, matters of policy would in the . first instance be thrashed out by the committee, the results of their deliberations would in all cases bo brought to Cabinet, to which the final responsibility for decision would attach.

Mr White - The right honorable gentleman knows what that means.

Mr LYONS - It means what it says, I go on to say -

Moreover, it is interesting to note that your resignation was not tendered while you were (as was tentatively decided this morning) a member of the Policy Committee, but was tendered only when you discovered that there was to bea change and that the Minister for Defence wasto take your place.

Mr White - I made my protest in Cabinet.

Mr LYONS - The letter continuesThe welfare of Australia's secondary industries will in no sense beprejudiced by the decision to have a Policy Committee. The policy of the Government in relation to secon dary industries remains unchanged, and the Minister for Trade and Customs will - as in the past - have every opportunity of submitting recommendations and contributing to decisions.

I should add that your attitude comes as no surprise after the discreditable manner in which only yesterday, you indicated your annoyance at the Treasurer being placed above you in the order of precedence in the Cabinet.

Mr White - That is despicable. It was because the right honorable gentleman had not told me about it.

Mr LYONS - The letter concludes as follows : -

Your statement that yon did not wish to embarrass the Government by resigning during the period of the censure motion is inexplicable to me. You did not resign when the censure motion was determined. You, in fact, accepted office in the new administration, and were duly sworn in.No now matter of policy has been decided by the Government since then, and your resignation can therefore be related only to the personal issues to which I have already referred.

I am forwarding your resignation to His Excellency the Governor-General with a recommendation that it be accepted as on and from to-day.

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