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Tuesday, 17 September 1974
Page: 1156


Senator WITHERS (Western AustraliaLeader of the Opposition) - In paragraph 3 on page 2 of my proposed amendmentSenator Murphy adverted to this in his speech- it states: . . upon a request by a quorum of members of a committee, the clerk attending the committee shall convene a meeting of the committee.

I agree with Senator Murphy that it ought to be the chairman or deputy chairman'. I ask for leave of the Senate to strike out the words 'clerk attending the committee ' and insert ' chairman or his deputy'.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT (Senator Webster)- Is leave granted? There being no objection, leave is granted.

Senator MURPHY(New South WalesLeader of the Government in the Senate)- by leave- I did suggest that during my speech and I think there is general concordance. We are about to vote. I suggest that it would be convenient for us to vote firstly on the simple proposition of whether the Senate Standing Committee on

Foreign Affairs and Defence should be established and then to take the rest of the amendment in globo.


Senator Steele Hall - Mr Deputy President,I raise a point of order. If the question is put in this fashion is it to be taken that that is an amendment which will allow those of us who have spoken on the amendment in the first place to speak again to this proposal?

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT (Senator Webster)- The question I intend to put to the Senate is that the amendment moved by Senator Withers be divided into 2 parts. The first question I will put to the Senate is that we leave out paragraph 1 which you will find if you put your attention to the paper before you. The effect of that will be that the motion will be either carried or lost. Next I will put the question for the insertion of the new paragraph. That will give anyone an opportunity to move to leave out words or to insert words. I think that will be the best way of getting to this situation. Senator Hall, does that satisfy your wish in this matter?


Senator Steele Hall - Thank you.

Senator MURPHY(New South WalesLeader of the Government in the Senate)- by leave- On this procedural aspect I point out that this is in the nature of an amendment. I suggest that the whole of the amendment moved by Senator Withers should be divided so that we will have an opportunity to take those parts. It is an undeniable right in any gathering to have the question divided. We ought not to be put in the position of having to move an amendment to an amendment which would in effect require those who do not agree with one part to get a majority. To put the matter in simple terms, if it were divided and if there were a 30-30 vote Senator Withers would lose the portion of his amendment which deals with foreign affairs and defence. I suggest that we should deal with the first part and then see what might happen on the other matters.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT- If that is the will of the Senate we will deal with that portion first and see what is the outcome.


Senator Withers - May I speak, using the device of a point of order? If the first question is carried we leave out paragraph 1 of Senator Murphy's proposal. Do I understand that from paragraph (1) down to (a) there is no dispute on either side? If that is so, the questions in regard to sub-paragraphs (a), (b), (c), (d), (e) and (f) could be put separately. I understand that there would be no division in relation to subparagraphs (a), (b), (d) or (f) but that there is a possibility that divisions will be required in relation to the questions on sub-paragraphs (c) and (e). That would resolve whether 5, 6 or 7 separate questions were put. I think that the simplest way of going about the matter would be for the Government to agree to divide the questions in relation to those committees in that way. I am quite certain that the question in relation to subparagraph (a) and (b) would be carried on the voices. In relation to sub-paragraph (c), a division would be required. Sub-paragraph (d) would be carried on the voices, a division would be required on sub-paragraph (e) and subparagraph (f) would be carried on the voices. I do not know whether that suggestion would help. It would enable everybody to have an opportunity to vote on the re-appointment of each committee.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT (Senator Webster)-Is it the will of the Senate that the questions on the motions be put in the terms that Senator Withers has proposed? There being no objection, it is so ordered. The question now is that the paragraph proposed to be left out be left out.

 

 

Question resolved in the affirmative.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT- The question now is that the amendment moved by the Leader of the Opposition, Senator Withers, to insert a new paragraph ( 1 ) be agreed to.


Senator MURPHY - No.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT- We are now dealing with sub-paragraph (a), from the beginning of paragraph (1) dealing with the legislative and general purpose standing committees appointed last session. I understand that it was agreed that the one question be put in relation to sub-paragraphs (a) and (b). Is that the wish of the Senate? There being no objection, it is so ordered. I put the question that proposed new sub-paragraphs (a) and (b) be agreed to.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT- The question now is that sub-paragraph (c) be agreed to.







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