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Wednesday, 10 May 1972
Page: 2288


Mr BEAZLEY (Fremantle) - I wish to make a personal explanation.


Mr ACTING SPEAKER -Does the honourable member claim to have been misrepresented?


Mr BEAZLEY - Yes. On 20th April the Minister for Education and Science (Mr Malcolm Fraser) made a reference to my part in the so-called GTeat Debate on Education. In the course of his reference to it at page 1858 of Hansard he said:

.   . the Opposition spokesman on education referred to its policies and promises in relation to education in this way - I think these were his precise words: 'I do not know what my promises are at the moment that I am supposed to live up to'. That was in answer to a question, I think from memory, on the costs of the Opposition's education programme.

The transcript of the debate shows that a question put to me by Dr Tannock from Perth concluded as follows:

Has your research into the cost estimates of Australian education shown that you can afford to live up to your promises?

Obviously he referred to 2 things - the cost estimates of Australian education, whatever he meant by that, and my promises not satisfied. I replied:

I don't know what my promises are, at the moment, that I'm supposed to live up to. We have had a survey of education in Australia, and I understand that the cost that has been adduced for changes necessary in education exceeds $ 1,000m.

I obviously interpreted his question to mean the survey's costs. I went on:

Well, very clearly you can't do that in one budget, and I believe, of course, that the appropriation under a Labor government to carry out some of the projects we have in mind for education will involve increased costs in education.

I interpreted his question in juxtaposition to the survey as to what the costs would be on top of the$1, 483m as necessary extra expenditure on education. It was that which caused the difficulty in my answer.







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