That settled it. The gallant sailor had torpedoed the Government. The vote was quickly taken. The House was in Committee with J.G. Bayley in the chair. Sir Littleton Groom, the Speaker, did not record a vote. He regarded himself as an impartial umpire above party strife. Bayley's vote was lost to the government unless there was a dead heat.
Hughes, Mann, Stewart, McWilliams and Marks all remained in their seats while the rest of the government side crossed to vote against the motion. Hughes was once more back with his former Labor associates. He sat next to Theodore. Marks was in most unusual company, sitting next to Frank Brennan. The Hughes amendment was carried.
The Bruce government was defeated. Bruce was still supremely confident that the situation was well in hand. He had little idea of the further shocks in store for him.