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Thursday, 10 June 1915

Senator PEARCE - No.

Senator STEWART - It is curious that Mr. Garran did not tell me about the Secretary to Ministers. When I went to see him, he distinctly told me that he could do nothing without the consent of the Attorney-General.

Senator Keating - Perhaps he thought the honorable senator wished to go past the officer here to him direct.

Senator STEWART - He could not have thought anything of the kind.

Senator Millen - He should have been able to inform the honorable senator of the existence of a long established custom.

Senator STEWART - That is what I say.

Senator Keating - Perhaps he took it for granted that, being a member of the Senate, you knew all about it.

Senator STEWART - Probably he did not know anything about it. I think that honorable senators generally would like to have an officer appointed to whom they could go for this kind of assistance without applying to Ministers representing the Government in the Senate, or to the Attorney-General.

Senator Mullan - According to the statement of the Vice-President of the Executive Council, they do so now.

Senator Millen - Let the honorable senator try to secure the services of the officer when a Minister wants him, and then see where he is.

Senator STEWART - I have stated what I should like to see done. It is for the Government to say whether they will do anything in the matter.

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