Religion And The Republic

Opinions are always changing, particularly on such a topical issue as should Australia be a republic? However, it is interesting to look at responses to a survey in 1993 and the relationship of answers to religious identification and behaviour.

In 1993, the National Social Science Survey asked “Do you think Australia should retain the Queen of England as Head of State or become a republic?”
Overall, 38% of the national sample said we should ‘retain the Queen’. 20% were quite definite, while 18% were not so sure.
62% said Australia should become ‘become a republic’. 35% were quite definite while 27% said it probably should.
There was a tendency for those attending church more frequently to be more in favour of retaining the Queen. Among those who never went to church, 29 per cent wanted to retain the Queen, compared with 50 per cent of those went to church nearly every week or more often. Put around the other way, 71 per cent of those who never went to church wanted a republic, compared with 50 per cent of those who went nearly every week or more often.
People varied considerably in their attitudes according to their denominational identification. Over 70 per cent of Catholics wanted a republic, compared with 46 per cent of Anglicans, 49 per cent of Uniting Church people, and only 29 per cent of Pentecostals. However, those most keen on the republic were people with ‘no religion’. 77 per cent of them favoured the republic.

Philip hughes

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