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Thursday, 8 November 1973
Page: 1697


Senator LAUCKE (South Australia) - I wish briefly to indicate my attitude to the suggestion that there be convened a joint meeting of the Senate and the House of Representatives to determine the matter of location of a new and permanent parliament house. On principle I am opposed to departing from normal parliamentary procedures in the determination of a matter such as this. I believe that it is through legislative enactment that matters such as this can best and most properly be determined. The House of Representatives has the number to express its desire for a certain location. If we have a vote we have the numbers for a certain site. Whilst not being very good at arithmetic, it is quite easy to tot up the numbers to see just where the majority of favour would lie for a given location.

I was very impressed with Senator Cavanagh 's speech this afternoon. I believe that there is no necessity to depart from normal procedures, that there should not be any inundation by members from another place either for this matter or for any other matter at all to enter into a situation which is not constitutionally provided for, as Senator Murphy said in his opening speech on this matter. The meeting is solely a get together for a talk. I believe it is only through firm and normal parliamentary action, as suggested by Senator Wright in his motion, that this matter should be finalised and determined. I will not say, nor should I say, at this stage where the location of the new parliament house should be. Are we prepared, as a Senate, to agree to the proposal for a joint meeting? In general principle and background of respect for the system as we know it between the 2 Houses I am opposed to the suggestion of a joint meeting.


The PRESIDENT - As seconder of the amendment moved by Senator Prowse I call Senator Drake-Brockman.







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