August 18 , 2003
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
Statement by the National Convenor
National Office, Sydney Australia
“The announcement that Mr Richard Butler has accepted appointment as The Governor of Tasmania-The Queen’s representative – must indicate a conversion on the part of Mr Butler from his previously enunciated views on the Australian constitutional system” said Professor David Flint, National Convenor of Australians for Constitutional Monarchy (ACM).
“On all accounts Mr Butler, as a distinguished diplomat, is well suited for vice-regal appointment but for one matter-his previously stated antipathy towards the Australian Crown.
As Governor of Tasmania, Mr Butler will be no rubber stamp, a term he has infelicitously applied to the Sovereign. Whenever he receives advice from his ministers, he will have to be satisfied that the advice is lawfully tendered.
Occasions may arise when he will have to exercise the reserve powers, an event made more likely by Tasmania’s electoral system. In ceremonial matters as well he will be expected to be above and beyond politics as the Head of State of Tasmania.
All this he will do as representative of The Crown, and therefore trustee for the people.
Australians for Constitutional Monarchy assume that when Mr. Butler solemnly places his hand on The
Bible and swears the Oath of Allegiance to The Queen, or makes an affirmation, being an honourable man he will then speak and act in accordance with the Oath and in furtherance of his high office. That is he will respect the office, the constitutional system, and the role of The Crown in it which is sanctified by time and proven by practice.
Moreover as was evidenced in the 1999 referendum, the Constitution has the support of a good 60% of Tasmanian people who the new Governor will represent in the highest office in the State.”