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Friday, 26 July 1946

Mr FADDEN (Darling DownsLeader of the Australian Country party) . - Members of the Australian Country party desire to be associated with the motion of the Leader of the Opposition (Mr. Menzies), because we feel that a grave injustice has been done to one of the most polite and tactful members of this House. I should like to know in what circumstances an honorable member is to be allowed to raise a point of order? According to the Standing Orders, an honorable member has the right to raise a point of order at any time. Therefore, we cannot understand your interpretation of the Standing Orders, Mr. Speaker. The House had to listen to the arrant humbug of the Minister for the Navy (Mr. Makin), who has just concluded his speech.

Mr SPEAKER - For one who is questioning the ruling of the Chair, the right honorable member is using very unparliamentary language.

Mr FADDEN - I simply said that we had had to listen to the arrant humbug of the Minister for the Navy.

Mr SPEAKER - I repeat that the language is unparliamentary.

Mr Barnard - The expression used by the Leader of the Australian Country party is personally offensive to me, and I ask that it be withdrawn.

Mr FADDEN - I did not even know that the honorable member for Bass (Mr. Barnard) was in the House. I am convinced that the Minister for the Navy did not mean what he said. He quoted rulings given by Speakers years ago, and we are asked to believe that no variation in the interpretation of the Standing Orders had occurred in the intervening period. Let me draw attention to one of your own recent actions, Mr. Speaker, when you descended from your lofty place and took part in a debate in committee in order to extricate your party from the difficult position in which it had placed itself. Every one knows that you are a very competent debater, but on this occasion you were unjust to the honorable member for Barker (Mr. Archie Cameron) by quoting only a part of a speech he had made, even by beginning in the middle of a sentence.

Mr SPEAKER - Order ! The right honorable member will resume his seat. We shall now hear another Standing Order, 266, which is as .follows: -

No member shall allude to any debate of the same session upon a question or bill not being then under discussion, nor to any speech made in committee, except by the indulgence of the House for personal explanations.

Mr FADDEN - I can quite understand that you do not wish me to draw attention to the. incident.

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