29 September, 2020

Yet, Britannia Rules

The Republican cause suffers a setback with Howard's election

Yet, Britannia Rules

FOR 23-year-old David Lutz, links with the Queen of England are irrelevant. "I remember in primary school," he was quoted in The Melbourne Age as saying, "I had to sing God Save the Queen , and I thought it was quite silly back then, and I still do now." Like many other Australians, he feels it's time to cut the umbilical cord with the British monarchy. The recently ousted prime minister, Paul Keating, a dyed-in-the-wool Republican, believed that Australia's growing relations in the Asia-Pacific region hinged partly on the redefinition of its own identity. The Labor Party, encouraged by public opinion, was committed to creating a republic before the 100th anniversary of the nation's founding in 2001.

Although Queen Elizabeth II's profile decorates every coin in the country, her significance as constitutional head of state has diminished over the years. The monarchy is represented by the governor-general of Australia (an Australian citizen whose presence is largely ceremonial). As the Queen's representative, he can dissolve...



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