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Tuesday, 9 June 1970


Mr ANTHONY - I do not know what new developments have taken place over the weekend. I do not know whether the Labor Party has been putting into effect some of the words uttered the other day by the Leader of the Opposition when he said that he had not said anything to get the unions or the Australian Council of Trade Unions to take the action they have taken. It was not that T said that he had said anything. I accused the Leader of the Opposition in this House of having incited the ACTU to take action against any rams leaving this country. I still stand behind those remarks because I know that he met this disgruntled group which was opposing the lifting of the embargo and a group that requested that the unions take this sort of action. I know that he met the executive of the New South Wales Branch of the Australian Labor Party to talk about this matter. I can hardly imagine that the weight and influence of the Leader of the Opposition would not mean a great deal in relation to the action of the ACTU. However, if the Leader of the Opposition does have another point of view on this subject I wish he would tell the ACTU and let us get over this silly business that is happening at the present time.

I learnt over the weekend that the ambassadress from Brazil and the ambassador from Argentine have been to see the Leader of the Opposition about this matter. This certainly was not at my instigation, although the Leader of the Opposition tried to accuse me of it the other day. I knew nothing of it. The ambassadress and ambassador are concerned and worried that people came here and bought rams in good faith, thinking they could get them out of the country. Once the sale was made the Opposition had the audacity to see that the union ban was imposed. If this is its idea of creating goodwill with other countries then the Labor Party will be pretty hopeless in foreign affairs, should it ever become the government. The fact is that people from central American countries bought rams in Australia. So too did people from mainland China. South Africa, Italy and India. Those people bought rams and have not been able to get them out of the country. They came here thinking they would be able to do so. Yet the Australian Labor Party, through the mass strength of the unions, is defying the law.







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