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Allegations by ALP national secretary



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HBUS REIEHSE

M i n i s t e r fur /Jj A d ' m l n i e t r a t i v e - J ^

Services -

. PRESS RELEASE NO. 47

STATEMENT BY MINISTER FOR ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES, SENATOR THE RT. HON. R.G. WITHERS ON ALLEGATIONS BY ALP NATIONAL SECRETARY

The Labor Party is clearly terrified of the prospect of an election whenever it may be held. . . w

Its National Secretary is in a good position to know how badly disorganised the A.L.P. is. He also knows that all Australians remember the total mismanagement of Australia. . . brought about during the three tragic years of Whitlam Government.

Mr Combe is no doubt also concerned about the holding of an election at any time in the future because he does not know who will be campaigning as his parliamentary leader - Mr Whitlam,. Mr Hayden, or perhaps Mr Hawke.

In any event that is immaterial - the three rolled into one would not make a Prime Minister. .

I have not applied any pressure on the Redistribution Commissioners. They are independent. However, I am surprised that Mr Combe has clearly not read the Senate Hansard of March 22, in which the Opposition spokesman on electoral matters,

Senator Douglas McClelland, said "it is in the best interests of this nation and of the Australian Parliament to have an early redistribution of electorates. I hope-that no:: further untoward delay occurs in the appointment of commissioners or in the ensuing work that will be involved in order to effect an early redistribution.'

Perhaps it is just another- example of" how out of touch the Labor Party is with its own affairs. .

On February .17 I told the Senate it was hoped all the draft redistribution maps would be displayed in post offices on July 29. So in fact the redistribution is running behind the original schedule. .

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CANBERRA. 12 August 1977