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Thursday, 3 December 1936

Senator COLLINGS (Queensland) . - My opinion of this matter is quite well known. It is not very long ago since the whole matter was thoroughly threshed out in this chamber. Senator Duncan-Hughes suggested that the House of Representatives considered this matter in a perfunctory and inadequate manner. I do not know how long the debate occupied or who took part in it, as it only occurred recently, but two legal members of the party to which I belong are incapable of passing a hasty or ill-considered judgment on anything that comes before them. Both honorable gentlemen supported the omission of this proposed new section and that is good enough for 'me. I am satisfied that the two gentlemen gave this matter full consideration. I have not altered my personal opinion regarding the value of the amendment since we first debated it. Everything that I have heard since confirms my opinion that it is of no value at all. The remarks which were made by the right honorable Leader of the Senate (Senator Pearce) ought to convince everyone of us that no good purpose would be served by pressing this provision. I think that we should not risk the loss of the bill for any reason unless it is indeed vital; to risk its loss merely because we cannot induce the other chamber to accept this proposal would not be wise. I remind the Committee that this bill does not alter the law; it merely consolidates it, and makes it more easily understood.

I think that this would be a fitting occasion to let our personal feelings go by the board.

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