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Thursday, 7 December 1905

Senator PULSFORD (New South Wales) - I do not feel that my case is quite strong enough to warrant me in taking up any longer the time of the Senate. I desire, however, to make one or two remarks. In, the first place, the action of the other House has in every respect been quite correct. They took up the Bill in accordance with their own original standing order, at the time when that standing order had not been brought under survey by the Standing Orders Committees. As to the joint meeting of the Committees, I point out that we should be involved in very great trouble indeed if two Committees, meeting under the circumstances, were presumed to have power to commit both Houses in an important matter of this kind. That, however, if I may say so, with all respect, seems to be embodied in vour ruling, Mr. President.

The PRESIDENT - Oh, dear me, no !

Senator PULSFORD - I think, sir, that you used the word "compact" - that you told us a compact was entered into at the joint meeting of the Committees.

The PRESIDENT - And it was ratified bv the Senate.

Senator PULSFORD - There can be no compact unless it be indorsed by both branches of the Legislature.

Senator Trenwith - The compact entered into at the joint meeting of Committees was to make a recommendation to both Houses.

Senator PULSFORD - The Committees decided to make a recommendation to both Houses, but had no power to enter into a compact, and did not do so. They exercised their power to make a recommendation, which this Senate has accepted-; whereas it was simply tabled in the other House, and has not yet been considered. Probably I should not have given notice yesterday of my intention to dissent from the ruling had it not been for the fact that on one or two points the President was misinformed ; and I thought it possible, on a further review, a different result might be arrived at. With these few remarks I beg leave to withdraw the motion.

Motion, by leave, withdrawn.

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