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Thursday, 3 July 1941

Senator CAMERON (Victoria) . - I support the motion. Attacks, such as this in the press are nothing new. It is part and parcel of the policy of these newspapers to seize upon every occasion, whether they be right or wrong, to discredit members of the Labour party. We iiic held up to ridicule whenever the opportunity offers. The very sky is painted in letters of red showing what terrible nien we arc, devoid of principles and honour. As a matter of fact, Senator .T. E. Hayes was not voted out. The voting was equal, and he lost the decision in the subsequent draw from the box - a procedure which is apparently favoured by honorable senators opposite. The newspapers concerned represent wealthy private interests, and their policy is the very antithesis of the Labour party's policy. Their aim is always to discredit Labour representatives if they cannot be bludgeoned into acquiescence. Senator A. J. McLachlan said a lot about truth. Apparently he regards himself as the personification of truth, but I am certain that neither he nor any other honorable senator opposite would be prepared to go into the witness box and swear as to how honorable senators on this side of the chamber voted. The editors of the newspapers concerned would not be prepared to make such a declaration. Obviously they could not do it. They could not satisfy any court, even if it were biased against Labour. The result of the presidential election was seized upon to endeavour to discredit certain Tasmanian senators for party political reasons. I repeat that it is all part and parcel of the policy of the privately owned press. Much has been said about the interests of Tasmania. Apparently honorable senators opposite would have us believe that those newspapers represent the interests of Tasmania, and that those interests have been jeopardized or prejudiced as the result of the voting for the President of this chamber. Nobody in his right senses would give credence to a statement of that kind. The "interests of Tasmania " is a phrase used to cover up ulterior motives. That is exactly what has happened in this case, as it has in many other cases. Those newspapers do not represent the interests of Tasmania as a whole to a greater degree than do honorable senators opposite.

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