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Wednesday, 15 March 1961

Mr HAROLD HOLT - I am quite certain, Mr. Speaker, that you would not wish me to engage in the debate which the question put by the honorable gentleman quite clearly invites. One would have thought that, after the years he has been in this place, he could couch a question within the limits of the Standing Orders, thereby enabling a factual reply to be given. I think, if I may say so, Mr. Speaker, that you showed the honorable gentleman great indulgence, no doubt having regard to the fact that he has been a bit out of practice lately, for reasons which we all regret. I am sure that we are all glad to see him back in his customary place. However, he has even managed to get his information out of line with the facts. My colleague, the Minister for Immigration, announced, at the time of the last Budget, that the programme of migrant intake for this year would be altered. As an expression of the confidence which this Government feels in the capacity of this country to absorb additions to the work force, and of its determination to advance the progress of Australia, that former figure of 115,000 migrants is increased this year to 125,000.

Mr Ward - That makes it worse.

Mr HAROLD HOLT - You think so, but I doubt whether your leader would agree with you on that point. Here we have another obvious line of disagreement between senior members of the Opposition, but I point out, and I am sure that at least the Leader of the Opposition will-

Mr Ward - Where are you going to place them?

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