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Friday, 15 July 1921

Senator GARDINER (New South Wales) .- I am very much obliged to the Leader of the Government in the Senate (Senator Millen) for the few kindly words he has uttered. Although it is thirty years since I entered the public life of Australia, thanks to the good judgment of the electors, I have not been continuously in Parliament, as 'they have given me an opportunity of a little relaxation on one or two occasions. Thirty years have passed since the 14th July, 1891, when the Acting Prime Minister (Sir Joseph. Cook) and I were first returned as members of Parliament. I cannot claim the same unbroken record as the present Leader of the Government in another place; but I never once went out regretting the attitude I had adopted, and. when I was returned, I never altered my policy ' or opinions in the slightest degree. The Minister for Repatriation has said that on occasions my presence in Parliament has not always added to his comfort, and I can only Bay that I have often found' that his presence has not added to mine. I look upon the Senate as a club, and however strenuous and bitter onr political, fights may be, party, warfare is soon forgotten when we leave this chamber. I thank the Minister for his kindly references, and I trust that the good feeling which at present . prevails will always continue.

SenatorDE LARGIE (Western Australia) [8.42] . -As I have just been reflecting upon Senator Gardiner's political past, I wish to add a word or- two in support of the congratulations which have been tendered by the Minister for Repatriation (Senator Millen). Although I have been discussing the honorable senator's Eree Trade views, I know, he will' accept my criticism in the- proper spirit, and at the same time my sincere congratulations on the fact that he has completed thirty years of . public . life. Although he stands alone in the Senate, he must not think that those on this side have other than the kindest feelings towards him.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

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