June 15

Republic unattainable – yet another leading republican

The young leader of the Monarchist League of Canada, Robert Finch, concludes that while “the” republic has come and gone in Australia, it has never come to Canada.

(Since 1999 it has been has been incorrect to refer to "the" republic in the Australian context.  This is because of the extraordinary fact that the republican movement is either unable to work out what republic they want to foist on the nation, or they are hiding this from us.) 

And now another prominent republican, the delightful David Penberthy, agrees the time for a republic has well and truly gone.

He is of course referring to what many constitutional monarchists call  a "politicians' republic”. ( These include Michael Kirby, John Howard, Tony Abbott , and Justice Ken Handley.) 

…is PM a secret monarchist?…


He is the editor-in-chief of Murdoch News Limited opinion website, The Punch, and was previously editor of Sydney’s best selling newspaper The Daily Telegraph.

 In an opinion piece in the Telegraph (14/6), he recounts how he received an e-mail from an obsessively reader who is “quietly going mad with frustration” over the failure of his campaign to get Julia Gillard to call another referendum on a republic.

 (The Prime Minister may be reluctant to do his bidding because she has been advised by her lawyers that a referendum cannot be held on “a” republic.

 Our Founding Fathers wisely took the precaution of requiring that in any referendum to change the Constitution, the details had to be on the table before the people voted and not filled in afterwards by the politicians.)

"Is Julia Gillard a true republican or a secret monarchist, or has our PM really made a deal with The Queen regarding an Australian republic?" he complains.

…no republic in his lifetime…

David Penberthy  says that the Royal Family is "probably stronger now” than it was 10 to 15 years ago. He told his reader he should probably resign himself to the fact that he will not see an Australian republic in his lifetime.

In what will cause distress in the republican movement, he sees not only  no impetus for constitutional change. He says there is no interest  even for any discussion of constitutional change.

If we can't even get the matter discussed with a Labor left faction MP as PM,’ he says, “then we should probably admit that so close to the comprehensive failure of the referendum vote, there is absolutely no prospect of the issue being pursued at all within the foreseeable future.”

He says this "lack of public clamour to revisit the issue suggests Australians simply don't regard this as a first-tier issue, or even an issue at all.”


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