Tuesday 26 January 2021

Australia Day 2021 comes with lowest republican sympathies since 1979


Support for Australia adopting a republican form of state has slipped, according to a poll published for Australia Day in The Age, which reveals only a third of Australians are in favour, 40 per cent were opposed to a republic. 

The polls show support for a republic has steadily ebbed since a peak in December 1999 – when 57 per cent of Australians were in favour – immediately after the failed 1999 republic referendum. The latest Ipsos poll found support for Australia becoming a republic was lowest among those in the 18-24 year old group, with only 26 per cent in favour compared to 34 per cent in all other age groups. 

Greens and Labor voters were more likely to support a republic (46 per cent and 41 per cent respectively) compared to 27 per cent of Coalition voters. 

Ipsos director Jessica Elgood said 34 per cent support for republic was the lowest recorded by Ipsos and Nielsen polls since 1979. She said former US president Donald Trump had not made a presidential system a particularly appealing prospect for most of Australia. 

Australian Republic Movement (ARM) chairman Peter FitzSimons did not accept the result of the opinion poll: "... We have been getting phenomenally strong support.” He claimed ARM's membership had increased by 19 per cent in the past six months. On Australia Day 2016 Mr. FitzSimons said former PM Tony Abbott's re-introduction of Knights and Dames in the year before had given the ARM momentum. He claimed then, ARM's membership had quadrupled since Mr. Abbott's "captain's pick", although total numbers were still just under 5,000. Will the new 19 per cent increase bring the figure up to the 2016 level?

The Australian Monarchist League anticipates support for the monarchy to increase dramatically over the next year with the Queen’s 95th birthday occurring on the 21st of April 2021 and the Duke of Edinburgh’s 100th birthday on June the 10th this year and the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrating 70 years on the throne occurring on the 6th of February 2022.

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