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Tuesday, 15 August 1972
Page: 15

Senator WHEELDON (WESTERN AUSTRALIA) - Is the Leader of the Government in the Senate aware that it is being freely claimed that the Budget to be presented tonight provides for an increase from $35 to S43 in the weekly compensation payments made under the Commonwealth Employees' Compensation Act? If this claim is correct, will the Minister immediately inquire as to how this confidential information became public?


I have been a member of this Parliament for 19 or 20 years. I do not suppose that in that time there has been one occasion on which there has not been speculation as to what the Budget would contain. That speculation has come from people who work for the Press, radio stations and, in modern times, television stations. I think it was Lord Asquith who said 'Wait and see'. With great respect, I say that it is the right and privilege of journalists in a free democracy to speculate in that way and I believe that the honourable senator ought so to regard the comments to which he has referred.

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