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Friday, 12 June 1914

Senator PEARCE (Western Australia) . - I appeal to Senator Stewart not to propose any amendment of the Bill. If we do so we shall attach to it an importance it does not deserve. In view of the judgment of the Privy Council the Bill is practically not worth the paper it is printed on. The Government, who see that an election is approaching, say that it is, but we know that without an amendment of the Constitution it cannot lead to the taking of evidence of any value on the question of trusts. The Government believe that it may enable the Commission to deal with the export trade, although I should say that is doubtful, but it can have no effect on internal trade or on the trade outside Australia. It would be ridiculous to try to amend the Bill to make it mean any more than it does, and it means little enough now.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Clause agreed to.

Clause 2, preamble, and title, agreed to.

Senator Guthrie - What a farce!

Senator Millen - Why not vote against it?

Senator Guthrie - I did.

Bill reported without amendment.

Motion (by Senator Millen) proposed -

That the report be adopted.

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