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Friday, 15 December 1905


Mr BAMFORD (Herbert) - I move- That the following new clause be inserted - " 26A. Section 97 of the Principal Act is amended by omitting paragraph c."

I am sure that honorable members will agree wilh me that no person should be prohibited from becoming a candidate for this Parliament on account of his poverty. If the electors have sufficient confidence in- him to return him, bis inability to find £25 should not act as a bar to his, election. Upon the last occasion that I submitted a similar proposal, the only reason advanced in opposition to it was that the absence of a deposit might lead to candidates being blackmailed.


Mr Conroy - A candidate has been known to poll only four votes.


Mr BAMFORD - But does the honorable and learned member suggest that candidates have gone to the poll for the purpose of blackmailing another candidate? The abolition of the £25 deposit which is at present required by the law would not have the effect of increasing the expenditure incurred by the Commonwealth. The machinery which has to be called into operation is exactly the same, irrespective of whether there are only two candidates engaged in a contest, or whether there are a hundred. In my judgment, the £2$ deposit which the law now insists upon is tantamount to a wager with the returning officer that a candidate will poll sp many votes.







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