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Wednesday, 14 August 1974
Page: 875

Senator COTTON (NEW SOUTH WALES) - My question is addressed to the Leader of the Government in the Senate. The Government having been responsible for getting the country into an economic mess with the threat of unemployment looming very largely, will the Prime Minister accept the offer of Mr Clyde Cameron to resign as he feels he can no longer take his responsibilities seriously?

Senator MURPHY - There is no doubt that a government got us into an economic mess, but it was the previous Government which did it. Honourable senators opposite will remember the report of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development which said that inflation was starting to build up in Australia. They will remember the great unemployment which existed under Liberal-Country Party governments. The test of the matter is what happened. Honourable senators opposite were thrown out of office because they could not run the country. They have since pursued a policy of obstruction in the Senate. They could not even judge the temper of the country because they went on with obstruction in the Senate. They did the unprecedented thing of threatening to refuse Supply because they thought they had the people with them, but they did not. They could not even judge that. They are foolishly carrying on with this obstruction, not understanding that the people of this country can see through all the nonsense and malarkey that go on when honourable senators opposite reject Bills, as they did yesterday, which are in the interests of the country and when they try to water down legislation like the Trade Practices Bill which is now before the chamber. They think they can fool the people by all the political stunts that they are going on with, but the people are a lot more sensible than honourable senators opposite think. I would suggest that instead of asking foolish questions like the one just asked they should co-operate with the Government to try to get legislation through this chamber which will be for the benefit of the people and try to assist the Government in the administration of the country, which they ought to be doing as a constructive Opposition. That is their duty. They are failing in their duty. They are being destructive.

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