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Tuesday, 15 April 2008

Towards a republic?

The Republic word has suddenly come back in focus, following Mr Rudd’s off the cuff comment in the UK that it could be on the debate agenda later in the year. This week’s Taverner Poll (in the Sun Herald and Sunday Age 13 April) reports just under half (49%) of voters across NSW and Victoria are in favour of becoming a Republic and a large 42% are still against it. This shows very little change in Australian’s sentiment on the subject and certainly implies that a republic movement would still find it a hard task to achieve.

The Taverner Poll however reinforces the view that the biggest barrier to us becoming a Republic (under whatever format is most palatable to all of the vested interest groups) is respect for our Queen. When it was suggested to the voters interviewed last week that a republic movement could occur when the Queen’s reign is over, close to seven in ten show support. Only 27% were emphatic that we should stay a Monarchy. Even among some one in three who want the Republic status at some time, around a third of them would rather wait for until the end of her reign.

Taverner Research will run further polls to examine this issue as it evolves.

posted by Tom Mitchell-Taverner

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