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Thursday, 16 November 1911

Senator W RUSSELL (SOUTH AUSTRALIA) - I do not wish to disfranchise the Hebrews. I have always voted for adult suffrage for all classes, while honorable senators opposite have been on a different tack.

Senator McColl - The honorable senator votes for adult suffrage, and then prevents people from exercising it.

SenatorW. RUSSELL.- The trouble with honorable senators opposite is that they are afraid of the Labour vote. They think that to have Saturday as polling day will suit the Socialists, as they call us. I said that it would, and I gave an instance which Senator Vardon can corroborate. There are a greater number of electors on the roll for the Commonwealth for Adelaide than for the State electorate of Adelaide; and yet, on one occasion, there were 900 more votes recorded at a State election there, because it took place on a Saturday, than were recorded at a Commonwealth election held upon another day. I mentioned that; but perhaps I should not have done so. I am afraid I am too open-minded, and that I speak sometimes without looking far enough ahead. I reminded Senator Millen of this, and he has not forgotten it.

Senator Millen - I have not forgotten the last Saturday election that took place either.

Senator W RUSSELL (SOUTH AUSTRALIA) - Rather than put the Jews to a little inconvenience, which need not be a matter of much consequence, since, in any case, they would have two hours in which they could vote, our honorable friends would make the polling inconvenient for thousands of workers. I hope the Ministry will not yield upon this matter.

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