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Wednesday, 14 November 1973
Page: 3315

Mr PEACOCK (Kooyong) - It would be a good thing if the Leader of the House (Mr Daly), instead of quoting from some second rate British politician's writing on the institution of the parliament had quoted what is involved in the motion for an allotment of time. Legislation that goes through this Parliament is based on powers granted by the Commonwealth Constitution. Under this allotment of time in respect of legislation relating to amendments to the Constitution we will be allowed in the Committee stage 15 minutes on each of the 3 Bills, including voting time. That is probably an effective speaking time of 5 to 7 minutes. The Minister for Secondary Industry (Dr J. F. Cairns) said in regard to a previous motion that a referendum is the most democratic form of getting decisions. Of course what he forgets is that under the Constitution itself in this country there can 'be no referendum unless this Parliament makes provision for it to be held and the Parliament must be given the opportunity to have a full discussion as to the warrants, the arguments and the benefits of the case that will be put before the people.

Mr Enderby - Why do you always oppose these things?

Mr PEACOCK - It is not a question of always opposing. You know that you are bound by a Caucus clique. You do not take your decisions here. You do not use this place as a persuasive body. Your decisions are taken outside. You must march in here and steamroll the decisions through. It makes no difference at all.

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