How Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP could provide final blow to British monarchy in Australia

How Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP could provide final blow to British monarchy in Australia

The SNP leader renewed calls for a new referendum after her party’s resounding electoral victory in last December’s general election. Ms Sturgeon argued that Scots had neither voted for the Tories nor for Brexit and called on Boris Johnson to facilitate another independence plebiscite. If she is granted her wish and Scotland votes to secede from the UK, then this will provide a major boost to republicans Down Under, according to Sandy Biar.

Mr Biar is the national director of a resurgent Australian Republican movement, which is campaigning to hold a new referendum on whether to replace the Queen as head of state with an elected president.

He told “What will be interesting to watch and observe in the UK (post-Brexit) will be some of the internal machinations there.

“For instance, around whether there’s another Scottish independence referendum, whether the United Kingdom as we know it starts dissolving or falling apart from what we know it to be now.

“I think that will be another matter of topical interest in Australia.

“Many people of course have their personal heritage or at least cultural connections with people in the UK.

“If they see, for instance, Scotland going its own way, I think that will embolden Australians to do the same too.”

The movement hopes to be in a position to hold a referendum in three years time, as it seeks to capitalise on growing support, particularly among under-25s, for the establishment of a Republic

A Dynata poll carried out last June showed support for a republic among under-25s had grown to 57 percent, while 50 percent of those aged between 25-35 also were in favour of the constitutional change.

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“In fact they’ve sent representatives to try and direct trade deals that have undermined Australian interests.

“So for instance, sending Prince Andrew out on trade missions to secure jobs for the UK over and above Australia.”

He added: “Our previous trade minister, Tim Fischer, would often complain how dire the royals were, as our head of state, sending delegations out, so that we’re having to send our representatives out there to bid for these trade deals, finding ourselves competing with the monarchy.

“That’s just one example where the monarchy was actually working against Australia’s interests, while simultaneously being the head of our country.

“It shows the inherent conflict of interest that exists within the British monarchy.”

The Republican national director said only around a third of Australians knew that the Queen was the head of state, undermining any notion that the British monarch was representative of his country.

He argued the monarchy was a “divisive” force in Australian political life and the country needed a head of state with undivided loyalties.

“How can someone who’s been in the job for sixty years possibly represent everybody if people don’t even know that they’re doing the role for Australians?”, he said.

“Australia needs a head of state with undivided loyalties to Australia and retaining the British monarchy is actually divisive and dividing our nation.

“Whereas we should have a constitution that unites Australians behind our nation’s independence, which should be indisputable.”

Published at Fri, 29 May 2020 03:36:00 +0000