Most Australians support monarchy after Queen Elizabeth II's death

Research carried out after King Charles III becomes Australia's new head of state

The separate Australian and Aboriginal flags are flown at half-mast on the Sydney Harbour Bridge on September 12, 2022, four days after Britain's Queen Elizabeth II died. Reuters
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A significant majority of Australians support a British monarch remaining as their head of state after a rise in popularity of the royal family, new polling shows.

Some 60 per cent of people polled believe Australia should uphold its status as a constitutional monarchy, while 40 per cent think the country should become a republic, research by polling firm Roy Morgan has found.

More than 1,000 Australians were interviewed in the survey, which occurred as King Charles III succeeded to the throne following the death of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II.

Backing for the monarchy is up by nearly five per cent compared with 10 years ago, the firm's data shows.

The research showed that older Australians were most vigorous in their support, with 67 per cent of those aged 50 to 64 confessing to be pro-monarchy.

Those under the age of 35 were also slightly in favour of the monarchy, with 51 per cent for and 49 per cent against the institution.

The findings also showed a marked gender split, with two-thirds of women supporting the royal family, while 54 per cent of men were also in support.

Pollsters at Roy Morgan found that most people felt that the current system of government worked well and that the constitutional brought some sense of stability.

However, many respondents said a directly elected head of state would emphasise Australia's status as an independent nation. They advocated a break from the country's colonial history, which some deemed to be an insult to aboriginal Australians.

Chief executive of Roy Morgan, Michele Levine, said that a "clear majority" of Australians were in favour of retaining the current system and that this has "consistently been the case for over a dozen years now".

“The main reasons provided by people for why Australia should remain as a monarchy are ‘Why change?’ and ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it'."

She said that only 10 years ago during the late queen’s diamond jubilee in June 2012, an even larger majority of 62 per cent of Australians favoured remaining as a monarchy.

Ms Levine said that polling showed that more Australians have consistently been in favour of remaining as a monarchy than becoming a republic since November 2010.

Before that, she added there was a consistent majority in favour of converting to a republic from 1994 to 2008.

Australia is a constitutional monarchy and officially adopted the British monarchy as its head of state in 1901.

The country held a referendum in 1999 and asked citizens if the country should change its constitution to become a republic.

The referendum led to nearly 55 per cent of the country rejecting the proposal to change its current form of government.

Updated: September 20, 2022, 9:57 AM
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