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Tuesday, 9 May 1972
Page: 1422

Senator Gair - Mr President,I have been threatened with assault by Senator Douglas McClelland and I want to report the matter to the Senate. I think it is unparliamentary. It is unusual and I think it should he dealt with.

The PRESIDENT - The circumstances are unusual and I require both of you to do me the honour of attending upon me in my rooms as soon as I deal with the next business of the Senate.

Senator Gair - Mr President, I resent this matter, which is of a serious character, being dealt with in a flippant manner. I have been in the parliaments of this country for almost 40 years. I regard this as a very serious matter which should receive the serious consideration of the Presiding Officer of this chamber. When another member of the Senate can come across and challenge me and threaten me with assault because I referred by way of interjection to a speech he made here tonight-

The PRESIDENT - Senator Gair,I assure you that I was not treating the matter with any flippancy at all. I felt that we should get it out of the arena of dissension. Senator Douglas McClelland, do you wish to make any comment?

Senator Douglas McClelland (NEW SOUTH WALES) - Mr President, I will apologise for what I said to Senator Gair but frankly I do not accept the remarks that he made, during the course of the division, to me and to colleagues of mine in the Opposition. I take great personal objection and exception to the statements that Senator Gair made during the course of the division. Those statements were not recorded in Hansard and could not have been recorded by Hansard. So far as I am concerned-

Senator Poyser - Do not get to his level.

Senator Douglas McClelland (NEW SOUTH WALES) - I will not repeat the statement. I would not lower myself to do so.

Senator Gair - Were they obscene? Tell the truth. They were not.

Senator Douglas McClelland (NEW SOUTH WALES) - So far as I am concerned--

Senator Gair - You would lie for anything. Of course they were not obscene. You are obscene.

The PRESIDENT - Order! I call Senator Douglas McClelland.

Senator Douglas McClelland (NEW SOUTH WALES) - If Senator Gair wishes to go on in a drunkenly obscene manner he can do so.

Senator Wheeldon - Mr President--

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