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Wednesday, 22 October 1913

Senator McGREGOR (South Australia) . - I am rather surprised at being taken on the hop, as it were, in this manner. No doubt, Senator McColl had intimated to me that it was his intention, to take this course. I hope that the members of the Opposition will raise no objection to the motion on an occasion of this kind. The Government have evidently made a very serious blunder in administering the affairs of the Commonwealth, and consequently it is only our duty to do all that we can in the interests of its people to assist them in getting out of that difficulty. On many occasions here I have heard whines, and even boisterous objections, raised to a suspension of the Standing Orders. I recognise - and I have always recognised - that it is a very serious matter to suspend the Standing Orders, which were made for the purpose of carrying out the business of the Senate in a legitimate way.

Senator Millen - How long is it since you found that out ?

Senator McGREGOR - I also admit that there are serious occasions, and then it behoves the members of the Senate to consider the position seriously. To my mind, this is one of those occasions, and I hope that the members of the Opposition will assist the Government, and prove to the country that all the statements made by the Vice-President of the Executive Council, with respect to obstructive tactics by the Opposition in the Senate and another place, were misrepresentations, . of which he ought to be ashamed. I shall support the motion.

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