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Friday, 18 June 1915

Senator PEARCE (Western Australia) (Minister of Defence) .- The fact that I have to keep an important appointment must be my justification for intervening at this stage of the debate. I would put to Senator Gould the question; "Is it not possible that we can be divided with regard to social politics, and yet united in regard to the war ? "

Senator Shannon - That is like offering war with one hand and truce with the other.

Senator PEARCE - No j that is practically the position taken up at the last election by the Government of which Senator Gould was a supporter-. They accepted the assurance of the then Leader of the Opposition, that in everything they did the Opposition would support them and they acted on this by inviting the Leader of the Opposition to attend their conference with the State Governments. At the same time they were conducting a vigorous campaign throughout the Country against the 'principles represented by the Labour party. Then the Prime Minister gave up his campaign and came to Melbourne, and the Leader of the Opposition _lid the sam'e-. After the conference was over each resumed the leadership of his party in the campaign.

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