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Thursday, 29 November 1973
Page: 4148

Mr CHIPP (Hotham) - Mr Speaker,I ask for the indulgence of the House to speak for no longer than 3 minutes about the resumption of the debate, or I could go through the forms of the House. May I ask for leave to make a statement not exceeding 3 minutes?

Mr SPEAKER -Order! You can speak to the motion or if you wish you can move an amendment. That is in your hands.

Mr CHIPP - I know, Mr Speaker. I was trying to overcome the necessity for that formality. I move:

That the debate be now adjourned.

I appreciate the difficulties of the Leader of the House (Mr Daly) in having such a complex Bill as this brought in at 8 p.m. on a Thursday in the second last week of the sittings. I know the reason why the Leader of the House wants the House to rise next week but I would like to point out, in fairness, that that is not the problem of the Opposition, it is the problem of the Government. I would have thought that a Bill such as this which literally affects every family in Australia should be debated while the proceedings are being broadcast and that there should Be a maximum time allowed for debate so that honourable members on both sides of the House can exercise their right to speak on this proposition.

Mr Innes - Sit for another week. How do you like that?

Mr CHIPP - The honourable member for Melbourne suggests that we sit another week to determine this matter. That would be welcomed by the Opposition.

Opposition members - Hear, hear!

Mr CHIPP - Is there that kind of unanimity in the Government ranks about the suggestion that we sit for another week to debate such an important issue?

Mr SPEAKER -Order!Honourable members will cease Mr SPEAKER-Order!Honourable members will cease interjecting.

Mr CHIPP - I do not want to be unreasonable about this matter but I suggest that it would be scandalous if the Leader of the House forced this debate on next Wednesday - I understand that that may be his intention - so as to preclude honourable members on this side from speaking at a time when our proceedings are being broadcast to something like 20,000 people, in view of the fact that the Minister for Social Security (Mr Hayden) has been not unpro vocative in some of the statements he has made about the Opposition and various aspects of this matter. I could use the forms of the House and force a division on a motion that the debate on this Bill be not resumed on Wednesday next but I will not do that. At this stage all I do is appeal to the decency of the Leader of the House and of the Government to bring this Bill back on for debate, a full debate, when the nation can hear it in the way that the people are accustomed to hearing important debates being broadcast.

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