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Thursday, 19 November 1959

Mr KILLEN (Moreton) . - I hope the Attorney-General will not accuse me of impertinence when I say to him that I believe that he was a little ungenerous to the honorable member for Mackellar (Mr. Wentworth). Surely our vote on clause 27 (m) last night did not postulate that we were committed to every provision in the bill that related to clause 27 (m). May I put it to the Attorney-General that a member of the committee may well approve of the broad principle resident in clause 27 (m), but may refuse to accept the principle postulated by the discretionary power. It is not a matter of wanting to travel over the ground again. I would be the last person to suggest that we should do that. But I put it to the Attorney-General that surely members of the committee are entitled to consider the other provisions in juxtaposition to clause 27 (m).

Of course, differences of opinion exist. The honorable member for Port Adelaide (Mr. Thompson) said that some members of the committee were relying on the authority of the Morton report, and that he preferred his own judgment. I believe that he is entitled to that attitude. But equally I believe that I am at liberty to look at the Morton report and see on what principles it could guide us. Equally I must say, without malevolence to the honorable member for Port Adelaide, that although I completely respect the views of the bishops or any other minister of religion, that does not mean to say that I am bound to accept them. I have said before in this chamber and I say again that I will exercise my own judgment on this, as on other matters. But I hope that the Attorney-General will not take it that because members want to deliberate upon provisions relative to clause 27 (m) they want to travel over the ground that we covered in the very small hours of this morning.

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