Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
Wednesday, 6 December 1905

Senator PULSFORD (New South Wales) - I desire to ask through you, sir, whether the Government have complete power to bring this matter before the Senate. With our Standing Orders as I read them, taken in conjunction with the report of the Standing Orders Committee, I confess that I do not quite see where the Government gain the power. We had a standing order, No. 234, which, on the 30th August was replaced by others, under which it is clearly necessary, before a Bill comes back to the Senate, that it shall have been proceeded with in the other House by request, . and I do not believe that any such resolution has been passed in respect of the Trade Marks Bill. I suppose that the other House relied upon the report of the Standing Orders Committee, which begins as follows : -

That in any action taken in either House respecting any lapsed Bill, it shall be given full effect to by each House up to the final determination of the issue raised in such Bill,

I cannot see that that recommendation of the Joint Standing, Orders Committee gives the Senate power to take back this Bill. There is certainly, it seems to me, a lapse somewhere. I do not see where the Government gain the power to re-introduce the measure. 1 should like, sir, to have an explicit ruling on the point.

The PRESIDENT - It was manifest that the Standing Orders of both Houses concerning lapsed Bills were deficient. Each House referred the question to its Standing Orders Committee. The two Committees met as a joint Committee, and agreed that the Standing Orders did not sufficiently carry out the wish of both Houses. It was then determined that new standing orders should be made, which it was hoped would be sufficient. But there was a class of Bill which had been treated - at all events in the other House, a Bill had been treated - as a lapsed Bill, under the standing order which it was proposed to repeal, and, in order to meet that case, the Senate resolved on the recommendation of the Standing Orders Committee, that any action already taken in either House respecting a lapsed Bill should be given full effect to by each House up to the final determination of the issue raised therein. That.I take it, is an agreement between the Houses. This resolution was passed by them in order to meet the class of cases referred to. Although it cannot be said that the Trade Marks Bill can be treated as a lapsed Bill under the new standing orders, it was exempted from them, and a specific course in iespect of it was agreed to by both Houses. Therefore I think that Senator Keating is in order in moving the motion, and that at would be a breach of faith with the other House if wedid not treat the Trade Marks Bill as a lapsed Bill.

Senator PULSFORD (New South

Wales). - I think, sir-

The PRESIDENT - I have given my ruling, and the honorable senator cannot speak unless he wishes to dispute it.

Senator PULSFORD - I simply wish to point out that you are under the impression that this understanding or agreement, or whatever it is, has been accepted by both Houses.

The PRESIDENT - I believe it has been.

Senator PULSFORD - I believe that it has never been considered in the other House.

The PRESIDENT - I do not know, but I was told that it had been.

Senator PULSFORD - I think that the report of the Standing Orders Committee has been simply tabled, but has not been considered.

The PRESIDENT - The other House adopted the report, I understand.

Senator PULSFORD - According to Hansard, the report has been simply tabled and has not yet been considered.

The PRESIDENT - We have adopted the report.

Senator PULSFORD - Yes ; but the other House has not.

The PRESIDENT - We have adopted the report and I think that we ought to adhere to it and keep good faith with the other House. Besides, what is a standing, order but a resolution of the Senate? It can alter a standing order by a new resolution.. Therefore, I think that the Senate meant, when it passed the resolution in August, that thisBill, or any Bill of a similar nature, should be treated as a lapsed Bill.

Senator PULSFORD - I venture, sir, to disagree with your ruling, and shall now proceed to put my disagreement into writing and to request that it be considered tomorrow.

The PRESIDENT - I am reminded by the Clerk that we have this Session dealt with the Life Assurance Companies Bill in the manner in which if is now proposed that we should deal with the Trade Marks Bill. Whether we were right or wrong in doing so, the honorable senator must see that, if he persists with his intention to move to disagree with my ruling, he will place the Senate and himself in an absurd position, seeing that we have already dealt with a Bill this session in a manner similar to that now proposed.

Senator Keating - And the GovernorGeneral has assented to it.

The PRESIDENT - And that Bill has been passed into law.

Senator Givens - If Senator Pulsford desires to fight the Trade Marks Bill, why does he not do so straight out, instead of taking despicable little points like this?

The PRESIDENT - I may say, so far as the Standing Orders Committee is concerned, that the question was debated at length by the Joint Standing Orders Committee, and I have certainly stated what was their intention, an intention which I think they conveyed to this Senate in plain terms.

Senator PULSFORD(New South Wales). - I beg to give notice that I shall move -

That the ruling of the President on the subject of lapsed Bills in connexion with the Trade Marks Bill be disagreed to, on the ground that it is not in conformity with the Standing Orders and the report of the Standing Orders Committee.

The PRESIDENT - The debate on the honorable senator's motion will be adjourned, and will be taken as the first business to-morrow. I now put the question that the message be printed and taken into consideration to-morrow.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Suggest corrections