Australian news host says anti-monarch Republican is a 'vulture'
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Sky News Australia host Andrew Bolt hit back at comments made by one of the recently-elected Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s ministers regarding abandoning the monarchy after the Queen’s reign comes to an end. Matt Thistlethwaite, assistant minister for the republic, said that while the Queen has been a “fantastic monarch”, Australia could be “mature enough” to appoint “our own head of state” in place of the future King Charles. Mr Bolt suggested Mr Thistlethwaite was “checking his watch already” ready to “pounce the second the Queen dies”.
Mr Thistlethwaite said: “Firstly, I’d like to congratulate the Queen on her Jubilee and her reign. I think she’s been a fantastic monarch and leader of the Commonwealth.
“But as she comes to the twilight of her reign, I think Australians are naturally beginning to ask themselves: ‘Well what comes next for Australia?
“‘Do we want King Charles or are we mature enough and independent enough to look to appoint one of our own as head of state?’”
Mr Bolt looked angered by the comments, before impersonating Mr Thistlethwaite as a vulture, flapping his arms as if they were wings.
He said: “A republic vulture poised to pounce the second the Queen dies. How old is she? 96. I can see Thistlewaite checking his watch already.
“‘Get ready guys. Flap flap flap. I’m hovering over the Queen. We’ll have a republic coming any second.’”
Mr Albanese announced on Tuesday that Mr Thistlethwaite had been selected as the Republic Minister, whose job will be solely dedicated to issues revolving around appointing a new head of state in Australia.
The appointment has resparked conversation in Australia about ending the Queen’s role as the head of their state.
Previous Labor leaders have promised to hold a second referendum on removing the Queen from her role in Australia.
But the only public vote on the Queen’s status was held in 1999, with just under 55 percent of the populace voting against the formation of a republic.
Mr Albanese has described the departure from the Royal family as “inevitable” in the past.
However, he did not make the promise a feature of his election campaign before his victory in last week’s general election.
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Prominent Republican, author and former Australian rugby international Peter FitzSimons celebrated Mr Thistlethwaite’s appointment.
He lauded Mr Albanese for creating a position in Government “singularly devoted to removing the Crown”.
He wrote on Twitter: “We are on our way! Let the record show, for the first time in the history of the Commonwealth, Australia has a member of the government singularly devoted to removing the Crown, and helping Australia become a republic.”
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