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each name was called there was an opportunity for a response.   A shouted "yes" indicated that the member was nominating himself in the ballot.   All the previous ministers and four backbenchers nominated by calling out when their turn came.

        As a sign of slight eccentricity, Maher was one of th few men in parliament to regularly wear a hat.   His wide range of headgear was legendary.   He now produced a colourful example in Irish tweed and used it to draw out the order of candidate's names as they would appear on the ballot paper.

         There was a pause while the ballot papers were prepared outside:   and then we voted by writing in consecutive numbers, while we sat in our places.   A   long wait followed while the votes were counted outside by the returning officer, watched by scrutineers chosen by the candidates.

        I had put Laurie Brereton well up in my preferences, consequently dropping one of the older ministers.   I had never met this minister, and knew little about him except that he was from the right.   His particular departmental responsibilities did not seem of crucial importance to the electorate of Manly, but one could never be sure.   Also, he might be moved in a cabinet shuffle.   Nevertheless, he looked well past the prime of life and Brereton was full of youthful vigour.   I had been warned that ministers never forgot those.


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