Natasha Stott Despoja has a plan to make the republic a reality – but admits it won’t happen overnight. The South Australian Democrat senator believes the Australian Republican Movement should be targeting the 18 to 35-year-olds who have no real opinion on a change to the Constitution. She was the guest of honour at the ARM’s Victorian Division’s Annual Dinner in Melbourne on Saturday night and spoke to a sell-out crowd at the Republican Café and Bar. She claims the republicans need to overcome their own differences, which the monarchists seize upon. She said: Their strength is the status quo, their strongest weapon is uncertainty, and their best argument is Don’t Know? Vote No!

Natasha called on the republicans to focus on the simplest of questions – Do Australians want a republic? She said it’s the question monarchists fear because they know that the answer will be a resounding “yes”. She had her audience in fits of laughter by reminding them that the Australians for a Constitution Monarchy’s website has an essay on republican disunity and called on the faithful to take heart from the so-called “royal hymn” which calls on O Lord, our God arise, scatter her (Elizabeth II’s) enemies and make them fall… confound their politics and frustrate their knavish tricks….and all that in 2005!

Her last words summed up the feelings of the majority – there is a small minority who believes the issue (of a change) has already been resolved, another minority that will never accept that it is resolved the other way and the majority that is more likely to ask: what’s on TV tonight?