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Tuesday, 19 July 1921

Senator EARLE (Tasmania) .- I am quite willing to remain here all the year if need he, but I do not wish to stay in Melbourne unnecessarily. To me it seems that to postpone the work of the Senate this evening would constitute a veritable waste of time. It is obvious that if this Bill be carried in its present form, and if the Tariff Board Bill be rejected, it will be the duty of the Government to amend this measure in such a way as to make it meet the altered situation which will then arise. I have the best of reasons to believe that the majority of the Senate will agree to the Tariff Board. We can surely proceed with this Bill to-night, arid pass it with whatever amendments are desired. Then if it is not in conformity with the Bill constituting the Board as it finally passes, it will be the duty of the Government te recommit it.

Senator Russell - I have promised that.

Senator EARLE - The Minister must do so. We are up against a dead-end if we do not take some risks, because the Tariff Board Bill has reference to a Tariff. Unless this Bill is passed it maybe said that there is no Tariff, and that we must lay the Tariff Board Bill aside and pass the Tariff Bill. I am prepared to go on with the work now, and leave to the Government the responsibility of bringing this Bill into conformity with the decision of the Senate on the Tariff Board Bill.

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