Government House, 13th May
Dear Mr. Lang,
At our interview this afternoon you requested me to communicate my views by letter.
The position as I see it is that Ministers are committing a breach of the law. While you did not admit this, you did not deny it. Your case, as I understand it, is that Ministers are determined on their action in order to carry on the essential services of the State.
Into the aspect of justification it is not, as I conceive it, my province to inquire. My position is that if my Ministers are unable to carry on essential services without breaking the law my plain duty is to endeavour to obtain Ministers who feel able to do so.
As I have already pointed out to you in my letter of 12th instant, it is impossible for me to put the Crown in the position of being a party to illegal action.
If Ministers are not prepared to abide by the law then I must state without any hesitation that it is their bounden duty , under the law and practice of the Constitution, to tender their resignations.
I await an early reply, as I am sure you will agree that the present position cannot be allowed to extend over the week-end.