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Wednesday, 2 December 1936


Senator PAYNE (Tasmania) .- I do not propose to record a silent vote on the third reading of this bill for the alteration of the Constitution, because it is essential that I should state exactly where I stand in regard to it. I voted for the second reading of the bill, and, as honorable senators know, did my best in committee to make it more acceptable to the people of Australia. I failed to amend it as I desired; but I am still thoroughly convinced that I then took the. right stand. Since we last discussed this measure I have had opportunities to meet people whose opinions are worth having, and have heard a good deal of comment with regard to the amendment which I sought to embody in the bill. I am now more confident than I was before that, in the State which I assist to represent, there is no possibility of this proposal being carried. I moved my amendment in a desire to help the Government; I want to see .continued the assistance which was so valuable to primary industries in the past; but at the same time I want it restricted to industries which would not otherwise be able to carry on because of the losses they incur in disposing of their surplus production on overseas markets. My amendment would have given restricted power to this Government, or any future Commonwealth government; that was my sole objective in moving it. In view of the fact that the Senate rejected my proposal, I am now asked whether or not I shall vote for the third reading of the bill. I say definitely my vote will be cast against it.







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