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Thursday, 25 June 1914

Senator GARDINER - I may not have the capacity to make myself clear, but I have- tried to do so. I have read Mr. Kelly's statement, in reply to the remarks of Mr. Poynton on the 21st April, where he led the House to believe that he did not know of Mr. Timms' offer, and I have read tlie" statements of Mr. Hobler and Mr. Deane, showing that on the 28th February Mr. Kelly, Mr. Timms, and Mr. Hobler sat side by side in the Minister's office and discussed this very question of Timms' offer, and that Mr. Kelly sent Mr. Hobler to get the papers in regard to it. I do not want to be tied down to the argument that when Mr. Kelly let the contract he was not aware of the offer. What I am complaining of now is that Mr. Kelly, as Assistant Minister, has not dealt in a candid way with the Parliament.

Senator de Largie - Why does he not present all the papers?

Senator GARDINER - Exactly.

Senator de Largie - We cannot judge from the papers which have been presented.

Senator GARDINER - The correspondence which has been laid on the table contains very few original letters. It comprises mere copies for the most part. Not only are they mere copies, but one can see for himself what the last report of Senator McGregor points out, and that is that the whole of the correspondence is not given.

Senator de Largie - And some of what does appear is mutilated.

Senator GARDINER - One has only to read ,the printed correspondence to realize that.

Sitting suspended from 6.30 to 8 p.m.

Senator GARDINER - The actions of the Assistant Minister of Home Affairs throughout the debates in the other House, in regard to the correspondence that has been laid on tlie table of the two Houses, and in the treatment of the Select Committee of the Senate appointed to inquire into the Teesdale Smith contract, were not those of an honest man, of a man who has nothing to hide.

Senator McColl - Is that a proper statement to make about a Minister?

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