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Thursday, 4 September 1902

Mr McCOLL (Echuca) - I am very glad, indeed, that the honorable and learned member for Indi has, in a few graceful remarks, complimented the Minister for Trade and Customs, because, during the afternoon, I was disposed to think that he and one or two other honorable members were a little too severe upon him. I am delighted, therefore, with the spirit which he has just exhibited, and I join in saying that the Minister for Trade and Customs, in piloting the Tariff Bill through the House, has accomplished a titanic work. Whilst Victorian protectionists may be disappointed with the Tariff in its present form, we cannot blame the right honorable gentleman because they have not succeeded in securing the duties for which they fought. He has battled for them in a way that no other man in Australia could have done. The fact that we have not obtained what we consider are fair and reasonable duties even as a compromise between protective and revenue duties, is due to the defection of Victorian members in this House and in the Senate.

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