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Friday, 11 December 1914

Senator MCKISSOCK - There is a briefholder for him on the other side of the chamber.

Senator DE LARGIE - I am not surprised that SenatorBakhap should take up the attitude that he has taken. But it is certainly not to be expected that a Labour man will tolerate conduct of the kind that has been called into question. To my mind, Senator Mullan has made out a very clear case. I say that Mr. Thompson is not fit to be in the Public Service, and to have men under his control. He belongs to the stone age of trade unionism. We thought that in Australia we had put an end to such conduct as that of which he has been guilty, and it came as a surprise to me to learn that a man of his type, who rejoices as he does in having disgraced himself, should be retained in authority over trade unionists. I hold that he is quite incapable of doing the right thing, and I appeal to the Minister not to lightly dismiss a serious charge of this kind by saying that he has inquired into it. I do hope, for the credit of the Government and of the party which is responsible for the working of the Departments, that the matter will not be allowed to drop at the present stage. During the projected adjournment of Parliament there will be an opportunity to inquire into it, and I would urge the Minister not to dismiss it in the airy way that he did, by saying that he had allowed what was prac tically an apology to take the place of a proper inquiry. Let us have a full inquiry into the facts, in order that justice may be done.

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