May 1

Royal Wedding: Seven million viewers blow to the republican movement says press

A force of millions has made the royal wedding one of the most watched TV events in Australian history, serving a crippling blow to the republican movement, reported Jon Kaila in The Sunday Herald Sun “Wills and Kate's day watched by all, serving a blow to the republican movement.” (1/5).

According to Barrie Cassidy on the ABC's Insiders (1/5) the audiences were bigger than the previous largest events, the opening and closing of the Sydney Olympics. 

At the time of writing the report attracted 49 comments, mostly from very unhappy republicans.

In an accompanying online poll ( not based on a sample) two thirds said Australia should remain a constitutional monarchy.

The report also cites social analyst David Chalke saying that before the wedding Australians were 5:3 in favour of the monarchy.

Now he says its 2:1.

This provides  an interesting comparison with the polls.

 In the 1999 referendum, the ratio of support for the constitutional monarchy to the Keating-Turnbull republic  was  5.7 to 4.3 

The republicans will say I am including the small number of republicans who wanted to elect the president. I am. They preferred the constitutional monarchy – and voted for it.*

The polls are now saying support for the monarchy is around 6:4. Once a model is announced the republican  support will splinter and support for the monarchy will move towards 7:3.

If the model involves popular election, republican constitutional lawyer Professor Greg Craven expects a landslide substantially greater than in 1999.  So do I.  Most leading republicans in politics and the media oppose direct election. The republicans would be significnatly more divided than in 1999, especially among the politicians and the media.

Experience shows that ina referendum most of the undecided will normally vote No, either because they are undecided or they do not wish to reveal their intentions.

This tendency for No voters to refuse to reveal their intentions  is exacerbated in relation to republicanism because the elites have succeded in making monarchism unfashionable in  media-political circles. 

…republicanism as a serious political force..


In the interview I did not say there would be a republic in 100 years. As the report correctly states, I said I could not see republicanism being a serious political force in the next 100 years. (I added the proviso "absent some calamity.")

The report continued:

More than seven million Australians tuned in to see Prince William marry Kate Middleton to eclipse sporting events and become one of the most popular spectacles of the past 10 years.The success of the event has sparked proud monarchists to jubilantly proclaim Australia will not seriously consider becoming a republic for another 100 years.

 Royalist David Flint said Australians had "voted overwhelmingly with their remote controls" and destroyed any meaningful call for Australia to become a republic. "This really is quite a magnificent result," Prof Flint said. "Australians, in their millions, have confirmed their great interest in keeping a constitutional monarchy."Prime Minister Julia Gillard has previously said the Queen should be Australia's final monarch.But Prof Flint said he saw no hope for republicanism. "When the Queen dies there will be a coronation that will receive as much interest, if not more, than this royal wedding," he said.

"Then there will be the interest in William and Kate's future children, Prince Harry marrying and his children, Prince William becoming king … I can't see republicanism being a serious political force in this country for at least 100 years when you add the generations together."

*(So did the people -around 2% – whose votes were declared informal. That is our expert legal advice, although the electoral commission takes a different view which goes against the plain English of the Constitution. In addition the AEC rulings in 1999 had the effect of more easily finding a valid Yes vote)


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