It is the considered judgement of HM Leader of the Australian Opposition, Dr.  Brendan Nelson, that turning  Australia into a republic would shake up the nation's "fundamental balance of power," one that has created one of the world's most stable countries.  Dr Nelson, who was elected Leader by the Liberal Party at its first meeting after the election on 24 November 2007 has declared himself a constitutional monarchist, rather than a royalist.

 

Dr Nelson summed up his views on our constitutional system when opening the National Conference of ACM on Saturday, 25 August, 2007.   "We enjoy a stability which is the envy of many people throughout the rest of the world, “Dr. Nelson said. “A shift would see the nation leave behind a system that gave Australia stability, not through power wielded by the Queen or the Governor-General but instead it is the power they deny others. If you transferred that across to a person who may be elected in some form or another, either by the public or a majority of the parliament, then the fundamental balance of power in our country will change. People will expect, quite understandably, a person who is the president perhaps under a republic to exercise power in the name of what is popular."

 

Dr. Nelson won the ballot of Members of the House of Representatives and Senators on 29 November, 2007 against the only remaining candidate, the Hon. Malcolm Turnbull, Minister of the Environment in the Howard Government, and Chairman of the Australian Republican movement in the 1999 referendum campaign. Most of the media predicted Mr. Turnbull would win, and speculated whether he and the new Prime Minister would agree on a republic.The other candidate, the Hon. Tony Abbott, Minister of Health and Leader of the House in the Howard Government withdrew his candidature. Mr Abbott was the first executive director of ACM. ACM congratulates Dr. Nelson on his election.