The push
for Australia to shed our colonial subservience to an English/German monarch is
on again – and fireworks can be expected. The last thing John Howard wants right
now is a public stoush among the
Liberals on dragging Australia to constitutional reality – but he will be
powerless to stop it once a cross-party group calls for the change.
Flat-earthers such as Bronywn Bishop (who owes Howard nothing) and Tony Abbott
and Nick Minchin (who owe him everything) will head the Liberal status quo
group but this time the hyperbole and cant they trotted out in the Referendum
will have little impact.

The big argument now is not will we become a republic,
but when and the main thrust of future arguments will be how our president will
be chosen. It can be safely assumed that on the demise of the current head of
state the majority of Australians would find it distasteful in the extreme if
Charles Windsor and Camilla Cornwall became our king and queen. Monarchists
become shrill on that subject – claiming Camilla will have no status. As wife of
the king, she will become queen. If that is the case God save us all – from
becoming the laughing stock of the world.

(Disclaimer: Barry Everingham is an active member of the
Australian Republican Movement).

Peter Fray

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