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Friday, 31 August 1906

Senator DRAKE (Queensland) . - I quite agree with what Senator Pulsford has said in regard to the debate which took place early this morning. I do not remember a debate in the Senate in which the argument was closer, and in which there was less rhetorical embellishment.

Senator de Largie - Was that owing to the absence of Senators Best and Symon ?

Senator DRAKE - It was owing, perhaps, to the absence of some honorable senators who, at times, deliver long and tedious speeches to which nobody wantsto listen, and which are simply addressed to the reporters, in order that they may be read by their constituents. These honorable gentlemen were in another part of the building, and the consequence was that the argument was very close and exceedingly well reasoned. All the amendments which were moved by me were marked in my copy of the Bill to be moved, and I felt it my duty to move them. In doing so, I said just as little as was possible to make the meaning of each proposal clear to the Committee ; there was no waste of time. I do not see a printed copy of the Bill in the Chamber. In standing order 204 there is a direction that a Bill, if reported with amendments, shall, before the adoption of the report is moved, be printed, and the object of the direction is that we shall be able to see in what form it appears when the amendments have been made. That is the reason why, I take it. the consideration of a Bill, when reported from Committee with amendments, is delayed until a future day. The standing order reads -

If a Bill be reported with amendments, a future day shall be appointed for taking the report into consideration, and moving its adoption, and the Bill, as reported, shall, in the meantime, be printed.

I desire to know, sir, whether the standing order has been complied with?

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