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Wednesday, 21 April 1915

Mr JOSEPH COOK (Parramatta) . - The Prime Minister has told us a lot of things, and simulated much indignation. After telling the honorable member for Eden-Monaro to be quiet, he finished up with his usual tactics, and sat down without telling us anything. Why does not the right honorable gentleman tell us precisely the part the Commonwealth Bank has played in connexion with this £18,000,000 loan? What is the Bank doing, and what is it receiving for it? Is it doing anything in the way of acting as agent?

Mr Fisher - Yes. certainly.

Mr JOSEPH COOK - The right honorable gentleman never told us so. If the Bank is doing anything, presumably, like every other Bank, it is paid for what it does.

Mr Fisher - Yes.

Mr JOSEPH COOK - I did not hear the statement of the honorable member for Wentworth, but the matter can easily be brought to issue. According to the honorable member for Eden-Monaro. the statement of the honorable member for Wentworth was that the Government, instead of making this money available as requested by the States for their purposes in London insisted on the business being brought here, to the detriment of the States. Either that is a fact or it is not. Either the States could have saved some money had the business been arranged in London, or they could not. The Prime Minister could settle the matter in two minutes without becoming indignant.

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