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Wednesday, 30 October 1974
Page: 2178

Senator MURPHY (New South WalesLeader of the Government in the Senate) - A suggestion has been made by the Opposition side as to the Government's attitude. It is not open for Senator Wheeldon to speak again, so I say on behalf of the Government that in no way is what Senator Wood has said a correct statement of the facts. A motion was introduced in the other place by the Government. To my understanding, it was accepted in the House of Representatives by the Opposition as a proper basis upon which representation should go from this Parliament to the Constitutional Convention. The proposition which was put forward by the Government came here but it was not accepted by the Opposition. Members of the Opposition took their objection so far that they were prepared to wreck the Convention. They did wreck the Convention by their obstinate refusal to accept the inclusion of Senator Steele Hall in the delegation. The suggestion by Senator Wood has no basis. I think all of us would regret, and I think the honourable senator would regret, that he made a suggestion that there was some kind of pay-off, as he says, or patronage. There was nothing of that kind at all, and it is regrettable that that should be suggested against the Government or any honourable senator. I suggest that on reflection Senator Wood would want to not persevere with any suggestion that there has been anything such as that.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

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