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Thursday, 12 May 1921

Senator DRAKE-BROCKMAN (Western Australia) . - It was my intention to make a similar speech to that delivered by Senator Benny; but I was not going to draw quite the same conclusion. I agree that the common law, as handed down to us by our forefathers, is excellent, and provides the proper and necessary protection for the custody and non-disclosure of documents which should be kept private; but I cannot see any necessity for an extension of the power which this clause contemplates. Experience of the administration of the common law in regard to this matter in, the past has not revealed any necessity, either in Great Britain or in any of her Dominions, for the extension contemplated. As there is protection at present, why should we extend it '( It is really carrying the principle a little farther, but to just what extent I am not prepared to say.

Senator Pearce - Wo have had to brief counsel every time we were called upon to defend our refusal to produce a document. We want to save money.

Senator Gardiner - The amendment would secure the votes of the members of the legal fraternity present.

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