Vote no to the politicians’ republic


Museum of Australian Democracy collection

This badge was produced by Australians for a Constitutional Monarchy to support the ‘No’ case in the referendum on a republic, held in November 1999. The referendum proposed altering 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’.

The republic model proposed at the referendum was chosen by the Constitutional Convention, a meeting held at Old Parliament House in Canberra in February 1998. The meeting was attended by more than 150 eminent Australians from various sectors including politics, law and activism. Australians for a Constitutional Monarchy advocated that Australians vote against the proposal. Others who opposed the referendum question took exception to the proposed President being chosen by Parliament, rather than by direct election. Those who supported a republic argued that Australia was an independent nation that should not share a head of state with Great Britain.

The republic proposal was defeated by 55% of voters, with a majority of voters in only the Australian Capital Territory supporting the model.