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Friday, 6 December 1912

Senator MILLEN (New South Wales) . - From the., statement of the VicePresident of the Executive Council, I find that no less than twenty-three Bills are to be placed before us, and I am entitled to ask when the honorable senator anticipates that we shall get through with them ?

Senator McGregor - As soon as possible.

Senator MILLEN - Does the VicePresident of the Executive Council seriously contemplate that we shall have disposed of them by the week after next?

Senator McGregor - I hope .so.

Senator MILLEN - If so, we shall have to reduce legislation in this Chamber - not for the first time - to a farce. We have to deal with six important measures involving proposed alterations in our Constitution, which would not be debated at undue length if they were discussed for a week.

Senator McColl - Then there are the Estimates and the Budget.

Senator MILLEN - One may be pardoned for reminding the Vice-President of ' the Executive Council that from his. little list of the business yet remaining to be done he omitted the consideration of the Appropriation Bill. I say that it will be reducing legislation to an absolute farce if the Government seriously contend that we must pass twenty-tour measures in eight days.

Senator McGregor - We can come back after Christmas.

Senator MILLEN - Then I suggest that the Government should select such Bills as can be dealt with by this Chamber before Christmas, and that we then adjourn to come back and complete our work in a workmanlike way. What I anticipate is that we shall pay the pen- alty for the Government's incompetency in handling the business, and that, as was the case last year, we shall have these measures forced through at the expense of all-night sittings.

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