Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Full Day's HansardDownload Full Day's Hansard    View Or Save XMLView/Save XML

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment
Wednesday, 30 May 1928


The CHAIRMAN - The honorable member is fully aware of the remark to which I allude. He said to the Chair, when he was called to order, " Be quiet." The Chair now calls upon him to withdraw it.


Mr Fenton - Very well, Mr. Chairman.


Mr YATES - I am not satisfied with the clause. Its purpose is to amend section 39 of the principal act by omitting sub-section 2 and two provisos to subsection 3, and inserting the following : -

Provided that an elector whose real place of living is not in the division, in respect of which he is enrolled, shall not be entitled to vote as an elector of that division, unless his real place of living was at some time within three months immediately preceding polling day within that division. . . .

It is all very well for the Minister to say that this clause does not in any way interfere with the rights of a certain class of voters.


Mr ABBOTT (GWYDIR, NEW SOUTH WALES) - Your leader is satisfied.


Mr YATES - I do not care whether my leader is satisfied or not. If the honorable member has been tamed by his leaders, I have not. I have witnessed an exhibition of the honorable member being tamed, and coming to heel in a dog-like manner.


Mr Cook - The honorable member's leader has some brains.


Mr YATES - That is so, and I only wish that certain followers of the leaders on the Government side also had some. The Minister says that these questions will not be put to the electors who are enrolled, as the elector's claim that he is enrolled in a certain division will be sufficient for the returning officer. Will the Minister inform us just which electors will be asked these questions? -The presumption is that those already enrolled will not be asked whether their real place of living was at some time within three months immediately preceding polling day in the division in which they claim to vote. I suggest that these questions will be asked only of nomadic workers. The names of many men have been taken off rolls while they have been away working in other districts. A man who is working at Oodnadatta, and enrolled in Adelaide, would have no redress if he was refused the right to vote at Oodnadatta. The election would be over before he could make representations to the proper quarters. Under this provision many workers would be politically sabotaged.


Mr Ley - That is not so.


Mr YATES - The honorable member says it is not so; but let us see just how the clause would work. Let us take the case of a man enrolled in one division, but who has been living in another for some months. ' He will be asked if he has resided for the specified time in the division in which he is applying to vote; yet the Minister says that a properlyenrolled elector will not be asked this question.


Mr Ley - He certainly will not.


Mr YATES - Then who will be?


Mr Ley - The man who is not on the roll, but who claims to vote.


Mr YATES - But the clause has nothing to do with that. It applies to persons 'who are properly enrolled. It states - -

Provided that an elector whose real place of living is not in the division in respect of which he is enrolled, shall not be entitled to vote as an elector , in that division unless his real place of living was at some time within three months immediately preceding polling day within that division.

The proviso makes no provision for the man who is not enrolled, but who claims to vote. It says quite plainly " in respect of which he is enrolled ". I claim that it is too indefinite. . There is a nigger in the wood pile, and this clause will operate against workers in construction camps. They will be the only workers who cannot claim to vote without fear of being questioned. It is the duty of the Minister to make this provision perfectly clear.







Suggest corrections