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Thursday, 4 August 1921

Senator PRATTEN (NEW SOUTH WALES) . - The figures' which the .Minister (Senator Russell) provided with respect to the importation of prunes, apples, pears, and the like afford the fullest possible justification for an increase of the duty by Id. per lb. I am sympathetic with the amendment because it aims at consistency. Up to the present moment the Committee has made inconsiderable progress upon the schedule. Practically the whole of the afternoon has been devoted to an exhaustive discussion of one item, which has not yet been finished with. The Government appear to think that the Tariff should leave the Senate with every "i" dotted and every "t" crossed. If the Minister would display a little more elasticity in the consideration of obvious incongruities and anomalies, considerable time would be saved.

Senator Russell - I have been wonderfully patient, seeing that about half the members of the Senate are indulging in second-reading speeches upon subitems.

Senator PRATTEN (NEW SOUTH WALES) - I quite appreciate the difficulties in which Senator Russell finds himself, and I shall not occupy further time, except to repeat that, on the ground of consistency, I support the request.

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