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Thursday, 22 August 1912

Senator McCOLL (Victoria) .-It is somewhat strange that when an honorable senator desires to obtain information as to how the money of the country is being spent, he should be subjected to jeers and sneers and imputations, which are decidedly not fair. When I called for this return,

I did so because certain assertions had been made with respect to the cost of the new Treasury building, and I felt that information ought to be obtained onthe subject.

Senator McGregor - Who prepared the questions for the honorable senator?

Senator McCOLL - I prepared them myself entirely. I hope that the honorable senator will accept that statement. I have been accustomed to preparing such particulars for many years in my own business.

Senator McGregor - The honorable senator is a bit of an expert.

Senator McCOLL - I am not an expert on buffoonery, 1 am glad to say. Certain statements were made to me. I did not invite them. But as they were made I thought it right to try to find out the truth. I made no charges in respect of day labour, nor against any one concerned in the work. I simply asked for information, as I was entitled to do. I regret that it has been given with bad grace, and in such a spirit. But I am glad to have the information. It is satisfactory as far as it goes. I admit that frankly.

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