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Tuesday, 29 November 1938

Mr JOHN LAWSON (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) . - The honorable member for Swan (Mr. Gregory) referred to a report in the Labor Daily, which purported to reproduce a statement made by me during an interview which I had with the waterside workers at Port Kembla on Friday last. I rise to assure the honorable member for Swan (Mr. Gregory) and honorable members generally that that report is a grotesque and fantastic invention. The mere fact that it appeared in the Labor Daily should be sufficient in any circumstances to cast grave doubt upon its authenticity. I add my assurance that the report is wholly without foundation. As to the comments of the honorable member for Swan concerning the proposed basis for the settlement of the dispute at Port Kembla, I merely wish to say that I did not commit the Government to the acceptance of any proposed terms for the settlement of that dispute. I did not commit the Government for the very good reason that I had no authority to do so. I no more committed the Government in that respect than the representatives of the waterside workers committed the men themselves.

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