Parallel to the “mate for Head of State “ campaign, the republican campaign for a new flag continued around Australia Day.
The Sydney Fairfax Sunday newspaper, The Sun Herald invited new designs, and announced the results in its 29 January , 2006 edition.
The strong republican association can be seen by this comment by one flag changer: "There is only one correct way to change the Australian flag" and that is "to drop the Union Jack – when Australia becomes a Republic", which she hopes will be before 2010.
Provided you are sitting down and have had a stiff drink first you can see about fourteen proposed new flags, not one of which comes close to the beauty, the dignity, the meaning and of course, the intimate association with our struggles and our triumphs, of our revered Australian Flag:
While the republican movement now pretends the issue of the flag is separate, they were openly involved in promoting flag change up to the referendum. Indeed, a decision had been taken by the Keating government, and announced by the Hon. Kim Beazley, to change the flag before the Centenary of Federation in 2001, and without a vote.
That’s right . We weren’t to have a say about the liquidation of our national symbol, which the then prime minister, the Hon. Paul Keating , despised, saying the flag “ gets up my nose”
The republican movement knows support for the flag is very strong. That is why the big guns of the movement now try to hide any interest in changing the flag.
The republic is their number one priority and the flag can wait until that is achieved