The story about Prince Williams wish to become Governor-General is from the pen of a fashion journalist, not first hand and therefore of doubtful authenticity.
But it must have worried republicans. Having no idea how to revive their taxpayer funded project, the republican movement is clearly demoralised. They realise that the appointment of a young handsome prince to Canberra would be resoundingly popular and strengthen support for the constitutional monarchy, which has been increasing anyway. In the same way they are frightened by the prospect of one of the Royal Princes marrying an Australian or New Zealander. Some are worried about the reaction when either marries. They know Australians aren’t interested in some republican bash even if it is candelabra lit and in a five star hotel, but they are very interested in our – let me stress – our Royal Family.
As I told those journalists who asked me on Friday, 29 June, 2007, if the Prince were appointed, there would have to be ways found to control the crowds of admirers, and the media of the world would be fascinated in a way they have never been by the Australian Governor-General. And he would have handled the job superbly. After all, would he not have a direct line for advice to the world’s most respected practitioner of the art of ruling, his grandmother, and our beloved monarch, Queen Elizabeth II. Every young person I spoke to or heard on Friday approved the appointment, and many were excited about the prospect.
Of course it was not going to happen even if a prime minister recommended it. The palace would no doubt insist that it be bipartisan, and that there be some guarantee that the appalling behaviour of our politicians in 1975 and subsequently in blaming the Governor –General and the system for their own behaviour in bringing our country to the brink. (Unbelievably, the principal beneficiary, Malcolm Fraser, later joined in, and converted to republicanism, thus abjuring his support for the Crown and, incidentally, for Australians for Constitutional Monarchy where he is recorded as a supporter. He claimed the dismissal would not happen under the 1999 politician’s republic, which was too true. Gough Whitlam would have sacked the President first. But he still would not have had supply, unless Mr. Whitlam had proceeded with the proposal to ignore the Senate, which would have been a dangerous revolutionary act.)
“How very good to see the prime Minister and Opposition Leader so quickly agree last week that, in the 21st century, the idea of Prince William as our governor-general will not fly. Still, this just wasn’t good enough for Professor David Flint of Australians for Constitutional Fairytales” wrote Peter FitzSimon in his column in the Sun Herald on 1 July, 2007. He will be remembered as the author of the failed Mate for Head of State campaign.
Mr. FitzSimon selected the following of my comments on the recent media story about Prince William:"The appointment of Prince William would be very popular and attract international attention. Unfortunately, the disgraceful,appalling behaviour of some of our leading politicians – all republicans has ensured it won’t happen.”:’
He commented: “Seriously, does anyone have the first CLUE as to what on earth he is talking about? He makes it sound like some of our pollies were caught weeing in the dahlias at Buckingham palace, with Sweaty Betty so annoyed she won’t send us her grandson. But, as far as I knoW, this is not what happened.
”Seriously, professor, please advise. Name names! Dish the dirt! What politicians are you talking about, and what have they done that has denied us the opportunity to grovel before a 25-year-old Englishman?” Accordingly, on the same day, Sunday, 1 July,2007 I sent the following email to [email protected]:
Peter FitzSimons (1/7) demands that I name the politicians whose “appalling behaviour” I said would make it difficult to appoint Prince William as governor-general, however popular that would be. I assume he took the extract he used from the site www.norepublic.com.au , about which he has previously complained. That spells out the fact that Gough Whitlam and Malcolm Fraser, who together brought on the political crisis in 1975, blamed the umpire and the political system for the consequences of their own action. One way to avoid a repetition of 1975 would be to allow the people the democratic right to petition for a recall election, which exists in parts of the US, Canada and in Switzerland.
And why does Mr. FitzSimon stoop to name calling when he refers to our 81 year old Sovereign? This in a lout would be unacceptable; in a mature columnist of a leading newspaper it is appalling.
Australians for Constitutional Monarchy,etc.”
(This was published on 8 July 2007 under the heading: "Respect our Monarch.")
And in the meantime, Beaverbrook, that wise commentator on the Canadian site, The Monarchist, says the Prince “has not yet forged a special bond with Australians at large. That would not be hard to do: As a Prince he has all the social advantages to make such a connection happen in relatively short order. He could, for example, apply and take up permanent residence; he could purchase property and buy a home; he could spend his formative naval training serving in the R.A.N.; he could apply for a passport; he could marry an Australian. He could do any number of things, any one of which would terrify republicans Down Under to their core – it would not be long – not long at all – before William would be considered a Mate. "A Mate for Head of State" the anti-monarchists chime – they should be careful what they wish for!”