Based on the AEC, “Australians were asked to vote on two proposed laws to alter the Constitution:
1. Constitution Alteration (Establishment of Republic) 1999
To alter the Constitution to establish the Commonwealth of Australia as a republic with the Queen and Governor-General being replaced by a President appointed by a two-thirds majority of the members of the Commonwealth Parliament.
2. Constitution Alteration (Preamble) 1999
To alter the Constitution to insert a preamble ”
There are many arguments for the proposed change for Australia to become a republic. Some say that being a republic will mean independence and nationhood. Others say that Britain takes money and troops, but that if we are a republic we will not lose money and possibly lives to Britain. If we aren’t friends with Britain so be it. We will still be able to compete in the Commonwealth Games because other republic countries are still competing, and we will still be well protected because USA has been our dominant strategic defence ally since WW2, not Britain. There are many more ongoing arguments for why Australia should be self-governing independent country.
However, there are many arguments against the proposed change to become a republic. For example, Britain is paying for the Queen’s trips overseas. Whereas if we have a president, we would have to pay for him all the time. Another thing people worry about is not being able to participate in the Commonwealth Games if we are a republic. This is a problem because when we host it, that attracts more tourists, meaning more money for us to further develop as a country. Others worry that changes could lead to harsh consequences – apart from the high-cost to change everything that could be used on more important things. Lastly, there is nothing wrong with the current system, and unless the people rise up, there is no need to change the form of government they live under.
Your opinion on the Australian republic decision
I believe that Australia should become a republic. Even if the constitution states that such a move would be illegal, everything can be changed. It’s really all about money. Yes, it will cost us money, but how does that matter when it will save us in the long run? It is our chance to be a fully independent and sovereign nation… we should embrace it. And the talk about Australia not being able to compete in the Commonwealth Games? That’s `1rubbish! Other republic countries compete in it, so we will for as long as we please. As David Donovan, IA managing editor, said, “Our policy is to let the people vote for what they want. That’s democracy.”