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Wednesday, 14 November 1973
Page: 3340

Mr ERIC ROBINSON (MCPHERSON, QUEENSLAND) - This Bill is the act of a desperate Government. The second reading speech of the Prime Minister (Mr Whitlam) has a superficial appeal. When the Prime Minister speaks of the democratic process or of too many elections, that has a superficial attraction. I do not know whether it is his view or whether Caucus forced him into it, but when he talks about too many elections or the democratic process who is going to disagree? We all appreciate that there have been too many elections. We are all concerned about the democratic process. Much has been said about the cost of elections and it is significant that the cost of democracy cannot be estimated in terms of dollars and cents. What is the fact? What is the real reason why we have this sort of Bill? Of course, it is the result of the Government's frustration. The nation will not be hoodwinked by the Government's frustration. The Labor Government has 2 problems of significance in this Bill. It has a multitude of problems, if one looks across the board. The Government has an obsessional fear of the Senate.

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