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1999: 'We will know better next time'
Australian monarchists celebrated as plans to turn the country into a republic were resoundingly defeated.

People voted 54.87% in favour of retaining Australia's links with the British crown, to 45.13% for the republican dream. All six states came out against the proposal.

But in June 2001 the Australian Republican Movement resurrected its plans for the Queen to be replaced as head of state.

Your comments:

My experience of voting in the republican proposal (in Western Australia) was marred by a strong feeling that it was Rupert Murdoch and pals (aka the main media) promoting the republic option as foregone conclusion.

Other people certainly felt this - and I don't know if the Queen came into it so much!

It was patronisingly stagemanaged, a terrific amount of money, and trendily anti-British.

In actual fact, aboriginal groups attested to feeling safer, and many newer immigrant groups (e.g. non-Commonwealth, non-European) also favoured keeping strong historical continuity with Britain.

Undermining Britain's integrity as a colony has been a labour of love in Australia's universities for some time.

Until/unless more Australians get successfully re-educated by the greying Marxists who still flap about there, I expect that the Republican issue will lie dormant for some time.
Emily Evans, England

The republicans lost not because there were not more for a republic than for maintaining the current system, but because there were two schools of thought on how to elect a president.

I consider myself a republican yet I voted no because the model on offer was not acceptable.

When they offer the people the right to vote for their president then the republican vote will win in a landslide.
Peter, Australia

My memories of the ill fated defeat of the Republican Referendum are tinged with sadness and we will have to wait until the next opportunity.

Unfortunately subsequent events have markedly reduced the feelings that Australians generally have for the monarchy, for the potential successors to the present foreign Queen and for the Howard Government.

While there may be still some support for the foreign Queen as a person, there is an unsavoury prospect of having as her successor, an admitted adulterer who behaves quite contrary to the rules of the Church of England...

The tactics by the Prime Minister, 'Honest' John Howard, in structuring the referendum questions in such a way to divide the Republican supporters is possibly one of the earliest signs of his devious approach...

There is a need for major changes in the Australian political system. We can no longer give support to this dishonest Government, nor can we continue to support a redundant monarchy.

It is high time that we acknowledged the truth of Prince Phillip's comment the Australians were 'bloody fools' not to have accepted the Republic. We will know better next time. Let it come soon.
David Gothard, Australia

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Malcolm Turnbull holding yes banner
Malcolm Turnbull heads into the last day of campaigning for an Australian republic


No campaigners sticking banner above yes campaigners'
Rival banners posted outside a Sydney polling station
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