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Tuesday, 21 August 1973
Page: 7

Mr BEAZLEY (Fremantle) (Minister for Education) - I should like to speak briefly on this motion of condolence for the late Arthur Calwell. With the Leader of the House I think I am one of the two survivors in this Parliament whose membership dates back to the time when Arthur Calwell was a Minister. I remember that as Minister for Immigration he was an extremely kindly man to immigrant families whose cases were presented to him, as I presented some in my first years here. I remember that he showed the same great courtesy to members of the Opposition of that time in the personal manner in which he dealt with cases which they presented to him as Minister for Immigration. He had a style of oratory which I think is now extinct. I remember him describing the Opposition front bench when he was Minister as a gibbering array of pathological exhibits. I am not sure what a gibbering array of pathological exhibits would be, but I think he must have spent some time polishing that expression.

There were 2 men who were extremely kind to me when I was first elected to this House. One was James Henry Scullin, a former Prime Minister, and the other was Arthur Calwell. I noted at his funeral that the mortal remains of both those men rest within a few feet of one another. I think there are many in this House who over the years have been grateful to Arthur Calwell for personal kindness and for many quite remarkable conversations. He was a man of very wide interests. I join with other honourable members in expressing sympathy to his wife and family.

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