Surely the Australian Republican Movement and Labor realise that they’re flogging a horse that was pronounced dead almost 20 years ago by the Australian people?
I mean, our current Prime Minister was the head of the ARM for most of the nineteen-nineties, he lead the “yes” campaign for the Australian Constitutional Referendum in 1999, and even he doesn’t think it’s a priority issue right now. In fact, he referred to himself as an Elizabethan earlier this week.
Yet, the shadow Attorney-General, Mark Dreyfus, has come out and said it is “disappointing” the Prime Minister is not reinvigorating the republican campaign.
This follows on from news headlines earlier this week that the ARM – led by former footballer and current “journalist”, Peter FitzSimons – demanded that the Prime Minister discuss a transition to a republic when he met the Queen. Why? Because they said so.
This so-called transition seems to be no more than a thought bubble by the ARM’s “social media advisor” (this is an essential internal position these days in any serious organisation, didn’t you know?) in the form of an infographic detailing a path to a republic by 2022.
I assumed it was a meme before I looked at it a bit more closely. The status began with “Save the date…” What date?
Apparently, 2017 will be the year of “momentum”, 2018 the year of “conversations”, 2019 the year of “consultation” and then there will be a vote – not a referendum (that doesn’t come until 2022) – but a plebiscite to see whether Australians support the change or not. Isn’t that the entire point of a referendum?
The reality is, we have far greater issues to deal with in Australia right now.
This is not a priority and is a convenient distraction from the ever-growing too hard basket.
That basket includes combating radical Islamic terrorism and strengthening our nation’s security, paying off a Budget deficit of $30 billion and government debt of over $500 billion, addressing issues surrounding housing affordability and the list goes on.
The ARM and Labor need to stop flogging a dead horse, concede defeat and move on. They should take a leaf out of the book of most republicans from the nineties, including the Prime Minister himself.
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