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Queen And Canada: Liberals To Vote On Resolution To Sever Ties With Monarchy At Convention

Tired of all the attention for the monarchy? You're not alone.

Members of the Liberal party will vote later this month on whether Canada should cut ties with the monarchy and replace the Queen with an elected head of state. The vote will take place at the Liberal convention, taking place January 13-15 in Ottawa, in response to a resolution put forward by the youth wing of the party.

The resolution makes several arguments against monarchical rule, most based around the fact that currently a Canadian cannot become head of state of their own country and that the British monarch must be Anglican. More interesting, perhaps, is the argument that Canada pays more for the institution than the British.

The resolution points to an article published in Maclean's in 2009 which argued that Canadians pay more per capita each year to maintain the monarchy than their British counterparts and that the costs associated with the relationship have doubled over the past 10 years.

There is little sign that the growth in spending on the royals in Canada has slowed since then. Prince William and his wife Catherine made a much-publicized trip to Canada. The federal government estimated their trip would cost roughly $1.2 million, but that projection didn't include many of the costs associated with the tour, such a local policing.

The Queen's tour of Canada the previous year cost even more. The feds said that trip cost taxpayers $2.5 million, and again that estimate does not include the cost of policing.

Last year, the government reinserted "royal" back in the the official names of Canada's air force and navy. The Tories have also called on government offices at home and abroad to display a portrait of the Queen.

The government is also preparing to lavishly celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee this year. Canadian Heritage has ordered more than 500,000 flags for the celebration.

The Liberals don't seem likely to find much support for their resolution with Canadians. An Angus Reid poll conducted at the time of William and Catherine's visit found just 33 per cent of Canadians favour cutting ties to the British crown. However, the resolution may help the Grits make gains in the key province of Quebec. The same poll found that 58 per cent of Quebecers favour dissolving our ties to the monarchy.

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