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Thursday, 20 September 1906

Order of the day read for the resumption of the debate on motion -

That this Bill be now read a third time.

Senator Clemons - I desire, sir, to ask your ruling as to whether it will be in order to proceed with this order of the day now? To-day you have ruled that certain irregularities have occurred, and consequently we had to suspend the consideration of the measure. I submit that we must go back to the point at which those irregularities began. If we have taken any action subsequent to Senator Playford's motion of the nth September on the assumption that it conformed with standing order 127 in relation to the Bill it must equally be out of order. On referring to the Journals of the Senate, I find that up to Wednesday, the 12th Septem ber the proceedings in relation to the Bill were in order. In other words, we had taken no steps on a Thursday, when, under the sessional order private business was bound to come on between 2.30 p.m. and 6.30 p.m. The Journals show that on Thursday, the 13th September, between those hours we entered into a discussion of this Bill in Committee. It follows that it was out of order, because according to your ruling to-day, that period of four hours was, on account of the sessional order, given over to the consideration of private business. We considered the Bill on that date just as we did to-day on the assumption that the resolution of the nth September had put that proceeding in order. I submit that inasmuch as the proceedings on the Bill on that Thursday were out of order, there is no course open to us now except to resume, after due notice has been given and other formalities have been complied with, the consideration of the Bill at the stage at which it had legitimately arrived, and that is in Committee on clause 2. I submit that it is a necessary corollary from your ruling that we must go back to that point.

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