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Wednesday, 26 October 1910

Senator WALKER (New South Wales) . - I would remind Senator McGregor that there are cases in which men are obliged to travel for the sake of their health. Are such men to come back every six months and get permission from the Commissioner?

Senator de Largie - Such persons can find every kind of climate in some part of Australia.

Senator WALKER - I am acting in the true interests of Australia in trying to make this definition as liberal as possible; but if the Committee are against me, of course I must submit to their will.

Senator ALBERT GOULD (NEW SOUTH WALES) -. Colonel Sir ALBERTGOULD (New South Wales) [4.22].- The Government and their supporters appear to misunderstand the object of the amendment. Senator Walker has stated very fairly that it is borrowed from the New Zealand Act. We know that New Zealand is not a country where very much revenue is allowed to escape through any fault of the law. Honorable senators on the other side think that a man should not be away from Australia for more than six months. But the necessities of some persons are such that they are frequently called upon to be absent for much longer periods. They have the interests of Australia quite as much at heart as have men who have never gone abroad, and they contribute equally to its revenue. There seems to be an idea that directly a man sees fit to go out of Australia he should be regarded as an enemy rather than as a friend. It would be a very great advantage to many honorable senators if they had an opportunity of visiting other countries and realizing that there are men at the head of public affairs abroad who are inclined to deal with questions much more liberally than they are prepared to do. I am sorry that the Government are taking up this hostile attitude.

Senator McGregor - The persons of whom the honorable senator is talking are not absentees, and never would be so considered.

Senator Lt Colonel Sir ALBERT GOULD - The object of the amendment is to make the Bill a little more easy for those who are bond fide residents, but who at times have to go outside its boundaries for a lengthy period.

Amendment negatived.

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