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Thursday, 11 May 1939

Mr MENZIES (Kooyong) (Prime Minister) . - in reply - I inform the honorable member for Wimmera (Mr. Wilson) that the conference on the wheat industry to which I referred in my statement, does not necessarily exclude the possibility of setting up a select committee. This course was adopted partly as the result of communications from the State governments themselves, and partly because, in a problem of this urgency, it is felt that we should obtain as soon as possible the joint views of the State governments, which, after all, are very intimately associated with the problem and are largely responsible for wheat-growing policy in their own spheres.

With regard to the honorable member's further point concerning the calling into conference of representatives of wheatgrowers' organizations, I shall be very glad indeed if, at some time convenient to himself, he will have a talk with me and suggest the names of the persons he has in mind. I assure him that I have quite an open mind on the matter, and will be glad to avail myself of the best assistance offering.

The honorable member for Batman (Mr. Brennan) has again referred to the communications which passed between the right honorable member for Cowper (Sir Earle Page) and the Governor-General in connexion with the recent change of government. When the honorable gentleman raised this matter the other day, I had the files examined. I assure him that the only document relating to or associated with the resignation of my predecessor is the one that I have tabled to-day. I have not seen any other document, nor have 1 heard of one, and personally I am completely unaware of the nature of the advice tendered by my predecessor to His Excellency. On the day on which the letter was written which has been tabled to-day, I was communicatedwith by the Official Secretary to the Governor-General. I interviewed His Excellency and, as the result of that interview; was entrusted by him with a. commission to form a government. I am! quite unable to speak as to what advice His Excellency had had before that interview; from either my predecessor or any other person ; there is no record of it in my department.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

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