Tuesday, December 4th 2012 - 19:26 UTC

Bill to end British throne discrimination against women and Roman Catholics

All Commonwealth realms have agreed to press ahead with a bill ending discrimination against women in the succession to the British throne. Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said the government would now introduce the Succession to the Crown Bill in the House of Commons as soon as possible.It means the first child of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will become monarch, whether a boy or a girl.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

The duchess, whose pregnancy was announced on Monday, is in hospital. She is spending her second day being treated for acute morning sickness in the private King Edward VII Hospital in central London.

The new legislation will end the principle of male primogeniture, meaning male heirs will no longer take precedence over women in line to the throne. It will also end the ban on anyone in the line of succession marrying a Roman Catholic.

The legislation was agreed in principle at the Commonwealth heads of government meeting in Perth, Australia in October 2011. Since then, the government of New Zealand has been gathering formal letters of consent from the 15 realms of the Commonwealth.

They have confirmed they will be able to take the necessary measures in their own countries before the UK legislation comes into effect.

In a statement, Mr Clegg described the agreement as an “historic moment for our country and our monarchy”.

He added: “People across the realms of the Commonwealth will be celebrating the news that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their first child.

”We can also all celebrate that whether the baby is a boy or a girl, they will have an equal claim to the throne.

“The government will soon introduce the Succession to the Crown Bill which will make our old-fashioned rules fit for the 21st Century.

”It will write down in law what we agreed back in 2011 - that if the Duke and Duchess Cambridge have a baby girl, she can one day be our Queen even if she later has younger brothers”.

He said the bill would write down in law “what we agreed back in 2011 - that if the Duke and Duchess Cambridge have a baby girl, she can one day be our Queen even if she later has younger brothers”.

The succession bill will require amendments to some of Britain's key constitutional documents, including the Bill of Rights and Coronation Oath Act of 1688, the 1701 Act of Settlement and the 1706 Act of Union with Scotland.

In a statement on Monday, St James's Palace announced the duchess's pregnancy and said members of both the Royal Family and the Middleton family were “delighted with the news”.

But, the palace would not reveal when the royal couple had become aware of the pregnancy, only saying “recently”. It is understood the announcement was prompted by the duchess's medical condition.

The sixteen realms of the Commonwealth: United Kingdom, Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Canada, Grenada, Jamaica, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu. (BBC).-

46 comments Feed

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1 ptolemy (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 07:38 pm Report abuse
Little late for the Stuart line. Is it retroactive? Will a new line appear?
2 Britworker (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 07:38 pm Report abuse
This is old old news, it was all discussed and sorted out last year. Keep up to date Mercopress.
3 ptolemy (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 07:43 pm Report abuse
Well, sort my questions out. Will the Scots be in contention for the crown again?
4 Britworker (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 07:50 pm Report abuse
That's upto them, although you can't marry a country my friend. Alex Salmond wants to keep the monarchy but most if his party want to be rid of it, one of many contradictions the SNP are struggling with. The SNP only currently have a majority if one in the Scottish Parliament. Not the best footing for independence!
5 ChrisR (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 07:55 pm Report abuse
@1 ptolomy

Do you really, really think the goverment are going to introduce a retroactive law in favour of the Scots on this?

I would not imagine that has a cat in hell's chance. TMBOA has more chance of balancing the economy than you have of seeing a Scot on the throne of England.

Mind you, if Scotland votes to leave the union you may see a Salmon sitting on the Stone of Scone. I bet that will please you. :o)
6 LEPRecon (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 08:28 pm Report abuse
@3 - Ptolemy

Well Her Majesty the Queen is half Scottish. Her mother Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon was Scottish.

Her Majesty is also a DIRECT descendant of James I AKA James VI of Scotland. So the Scottish already have the crown. You could try doing some research before posting to avoid looking foolish.

Even if Scotland decided to leave the Union, it doesn't mean that Queen Elizabeth II of England AKA Queen Elizabeth I of Scotland, wouldn't be Head of State. In order to do this the Scottish Parliament would have to hold a referendum. I have lived in Glasgow and I can tell you that the majority of Scots are very supportive of Her Majesty.

In fact, the 1st minister of Scotland congratulated Prince William and Catherine on behalf of the people of Scotland.
7 briton (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 08:39 pm Report abuse
Jealousy will get you nowhere.
8 ptolemy (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 08:45 pm Report abuse
Thank you all for your answers, (even though my questions were at the risk, for looking “foolish.” ) I was interested because some where, (I don't remember,) I had read that some blood lines had more “royal blood” in them than those presently in power but had been cast out long ago because of the Roman Catholic ban.
9 briton (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 08:53 pm Report abuse
never always belive what you read, unless its the truth,

you cant get any purer.
as for looking foolish, as we cant see you, it is irrelivent,
have a nice day.
10 Think (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 09:12 pm Report abuse

I ”Think” it’s perfectly fitting that the Brits are ruled by a German Royal Dinasty........., the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.

However........, If Elizabeth II is succeeded by her child (or a child of one of her sons), the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha will be supplanted patrilineally by the House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg….. another German Royal dinasty….

Chuckle Chuckle©
11 TipsyThink (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 09:19 pm Report abuse
Obvíously this Prínce&Kate couple is moré hardworking thán British people.

I don't have a statistic on aboút how many Britain's “ viagra” importings.
12 LEPRecon (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 09:21 pm Report abuse
@8 Ptolemy

Sorry maybe I was too harsh, I think I had my sarcasm mode on far too high.

There is a good website called Britroyals which tells you all about the British Monarchy if you are interested.


Her Majesty the Queen can trace her lineage back to King Egbert, who ruled most of the territory that is now called England from 802-839 AD. He was her 34th great-grandfather.

The website covers the Monarchs of England, Scotland and Wales.

There is also a very good short essay that explains how the UK political system works.


Once again apologies for the inappropriate sarcasm.
13 ChrisR (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 09:39 pm Report abuse
12 LEPRecon

If you live in Glasgow are you also a Scot?

The only reason I ask is I cannot think the last time I heard a Glaswegian apologise!

Only kidding, you are a lovely man. :o)
14 Captain Poppy (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 09:47 pm Report abuse
Here's a question to any Brit out there, asked from an American (North) POV. Do you really like the concept of royal people?
15 Britworker (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 09:47 pm Report abuse
I can't comment on how many Scott's are pro monarchy but I can tell you with good authority that the vast majority of SNP are not.
16 Shed-time (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 10:25 pm Report abuse
The Keeping up with the royal family is a bit like the Khardashians. After a few minutes the saccharine taste appears in your mouth and you end up feeling they're quite inconsequential.

At least the poor people like reading about them I suppose.
17 LEPRecon (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 10:44 pm Report abuse
@13 - ChrisR

No I'm English, but I did work and live in Glasgow for a while a few years ago. Great city, really friendly people unless England had just won the Football/Rugby LOL.

@10 - Think

Well since the Queen can trace her lineage back to 802 AD and King Egbert, that makes her more English than most English people.

The Queens father was English, her mother Scottish. Her grandmother was German, her grandfather English.

What does that matter? It doesn't.

There is no such thing as a pure-blood Anglo-Saxon: the very name tells you that it was an intermingling of different tribes. Indeed Scotland gets its name from an Irish tribe that invaded them, the Scotti.

I know that this goes against your national socialist upbringing, but in Britain it doesn't matter where your ancestors came from, or what religion you are, or what your ethnicity is, because if you're British well you're British.

I myself have Irish, Welsh, English, Italian, Danish and Norwegian ancestors. It doesn't make me any less British than other British people.

@15 - Britworker

I can't speak for all Scottish people, of course, but most of the ones I know are very loyal to Her Majesty, even those that are SNP supporters.

They seperate the Crown from the government, and want a return to the days before the Act of Union where England and Scotland had different governments but the same Head of State, a bit like the Commonwealth countries who have the Queen as Head of State.

I am sure that there are members of the SNP, as well as others who want to become a Republic, but again it would have to go to a referendum to abolish the Monarchy, and the majority of Scots look favourably on the Constitutional Monarchy style of government.

Time will tell, but I'm still skeptical that Scotland will vote for independence just yet. The SNP are leaving too many questions unanswered, especially about the economy, which will be the most important issue for most Scots.
18 Clarice593 (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 11:08 pm Report abuse
About time these outdated rules were abolished.
19 LEPRecon (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 11:29 pm Report abuse
@14 - Captain Poppy

I suppose that's a difficult question. This is the only form of government that we have ever known. It would be like me asking you if you really like this President republic thing you have, when it's probably the only system of government that you have ever known.

I suppose that it's difficult to compare the UK and US system of government unless you have lived under both.

What I would say is that the Queen currently enjoys a 90% approval rating, a rating that most politicians would sacrifice their first born for.

Basically we have had the Monarchy for over 1000 years, and it seems to work for us.

The reason, IMO, that the Queen can enjoy such a high approval rating, compared to an elected Head Of State, is that she in apolitical (or non-partisan as you say in the US). This means that she appeals to the whole spectrum of society regardless of their political affiliations.

A politician will always be affiliated to one party or another, meaning that it you are opposed to their political beliefs it is difficult to support them, even if they are your Head Of State.

As for the actual question, do we like Royal people, well do you like the Statue of Liberty? Or the Liberty bell, or the Stars and Stripes?

The easiest way to look at the Monarchy is as a symbol of Britain. Every country in the world has symbols that represent their country. The US has the Stars and Stripes, the Bald Eagle, the Statue of Liberty. In Britain we have a living symbol instead, so does Japan and quite a few other countries.

You may find it interesting following the links in my post @12 as they may answer some of your questions.

I would say that like most things is life you will have people rabidly against, people rabidly for, but the majority of people happy with the status quo and will vary their opinion depending on their mood, the current situation etc...

I hope this is of some help to you.
20 Captain Poppy (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 01:11 am Report abuse
LEP, thanks for the insight. I was not judging only asking what you guys thought. George Washington had the option of King or President, we could easily have been a monarchy.
21 Ayayay (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 01:36 am Report abuse
22 Usurping Pirate (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 09:28 am Report abuse
All you UK posters are wasting your time trying to explain the monarchy to the Argies .......
The sort of troll you get on here genuinely believes the David Icke nonsense that the world is ruled by masonic lizards that can take human form , and that the Royal Family , the popes , rich industrialists and US presidents are lizards living amongst us and control our whole destiny .
They also believe that Argentina won the 1982 Falklands war , but that the lizards could not allow this , so Britain managed to cover this up by rebuilding the supposedly massive Royal Navy losses in secret and hiding up to 10,000 army casualties in so far undiscovered mass graves . Presumably the families of the dead have been threatened by the lizards into keeping quiet .
Queen Cristina the First of Argentina is NOT a lizard , though I am sure she and her supporters think she is a better species of lizard than the western democratic & neo liberal species found in the more advanced regions of the world . .
23 lsolde (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 09:59 am Report abuse
@22Usurping Pirate,
Do you mean to tell me that its not really true?
That there are no lizards, that the RN fleet wasn't rebuilt overnight?
Damn, l'm as devastated as l was when l found out the easter bunny didn't exist!
@10 Think,
lts spelled “dynasty”, Cher Think & probably half the European Royal houses are related to them, including Denmark.
24 Captain Poppy (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 10:50 am Report abuse
#22 I am an American LEP was explaining it too. Don't be so paranoid think everyone is your enemy.
25 reality check (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 10:58 am Report abuse
Just has your president can be impeached, so can the Monarch, only we call it abdication. Only a breach of our constitution would cause such a thing, but it has happened in recent history and our constitution constantly evolves, it is not a written constitution.
People outside the UK make the mistakeof thinking that we have an absolute Monarchy, when in fact it rules at the will of the people, through Parliament.
We, as you, fought a rather bloody civil war and for a while were a republic, or a Commonwealth as it was called then. Just over a decade later, the Monarchy was restored, by the will of the people.
So in a sense, we are much like you Americans, if we did have a written constitution, like yours, it would contain the most important words of all, “WE THE PEOPLE.”
Hope this rather simplistc view helps you understand our realtionship with the Monarchy.
26 GeoffWard2 (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 11:12 am Report abuse
Women is good - it will be nice to have a queen again.

Catholics! - they're christians, aren't they?
What about us non-christians ?????
27 Conqueror (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 11:28 am Report abuse
@14 Let me put it this way. Our Royal Family represents over a thousand years of our history. And, monarch by monarch, the Crown is continuity. Our Head of State is not a politician and doesn't have to get re-elected every few years. This, I believe, promotes stability. Britain rarely changes course to any great extent. Parts of our approach may have greater or lesser emphasis depending on the colour of the government, but things generally stay much the same. Other features are that the Queen has weekly meetings with the Prime Minister. Her experience is far greater than that of any politician. It will be years, if ever, before we find out what may have been said at those meetings but, since she promised at the outset to devote her life to our country, and has done so, I have little doubt that she has ever not had the interests of the British people at heart. I would also suggest that, if the entire government and Houses of Parliament were blown sky-high, we still have our Head of State. She, for the most part, is us. The other members of the Royal Family also play their parts. I doubt there are many organisations or events where the interest, patronage or attendance of a member of the Royal Family would not be welcome. I exclude a little-known organisation called “Republic”. The thing is that we like it. So does most of the rest of the world. But for the United KIngdom, its territories and the greater part of the Commonwealth, the Royal Family is the “glue” that binds us together. I point to the example of Australia. Time after time, Australian republicans thought they were on a winner. Time after time, they've been wrong! The Royal Family is an essential part of the British character. We endure more, we fight harder for our sovereign than for some politician. As I see it, you have the Stars and Stripes. We have our Royal Family. That's the best I can do. It's deep down in my guts. Fight and die for a bit of cloth? No. Fight and die for my sovereign? No doubts!
28 Pirate Love (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 12:35 pm Report abuse
@10 and?
i am very proud of ALL british history and there lies the point its HISTORY, and what has made UK the great country and people it is today, can you say the same about your countrys history, Racist?????
29 briton (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 01:01 pm Report abuse
Once again it show why argentines are just jealous of us,

They don’t have a queen, just a plastic post box,
Their arrogant envy shows day after day,
If they can’t have it, then they ridicule it, slag it off and throw insults,

One has to wonder why uncivilised nations hate us so much,
Its because they envy our success to their failure,
Enough said.
30 Idlehands (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 01:08 pm Report abuse
We need another war that we can send Conqueror off to fight in.
31 Captain Poppy (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 01:15 pm Report abuse
I asked question because I do not know the anwsers and I appreciate the insight from my bothers across the pond.
32 aussie sunshine (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 01:27 pm Report abuse
Shameful!! that catholics cannot govern in The UK.. BLOODY BACKWARDS LAW ...time to get your act together Great Britain and BLOODY SEXIST, TOO.
33 Britworker (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 02:33 pm Report abuse
I think you will find that Tony Blair is catholic, maybe you should get your facts right before you post?
34 reality check (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 02:35 pm Report abuse
You can blame religion for that, the historic insistance that the church law held precedence over the state,, things do not just happen, they evolve.

As for sexist, ever heard of a Lady called Margaret THATCHER.
35 ChrisR (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 04:38 pm Report abuse
@31 Captain Poppy

There is however a problem coming for the monarchy, his name is Charles and he is next in-line to the crown.

I am by no means alone in wishing, when the time comes, and may it be many years away yet that before our Glorious Queen is no longer with us, that he would accede in favour of William.

Charles (I cannot even say his proper title) is without doubt the biggest piece of worthless, spineless humanity that can be found in the monarchy. I cannot imagine which recessive gene caused this yawning chasm in the lineage but I can only hope he listens to the people and fcuks off with his slapper of a wife before any damage is done to the chance of William attaining the throne.
36 Think (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 06:23 pm Report abuse
( 23) lsolde

You say...:
“Probably half the European Royal houses are related to them, including Denmark.”

I say....:
No Cher Isolde..... About 95% of the European Royal Houses are VERY related to the GERMAN House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and/or to the GERMAN House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg…....
Including Hans Majestæt Kong Harald V til Norge, Hans Majestät Carl XVI Gustafs af Sverige and Hendes Majestæt Dronning Margrethe II af Danmark....

None of them had to change names to satisfy the local rabble though....

Windsor..................??? Pfffffff.......................... Fake Surname.
Mountbatten...........??? Pfffffff.......................... Fake Surname.

Chuckle Chuckle©
37 Bongo (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 08:40 pm Report abuse

“Evolve” is a description of things just happening, hence it's widespread misuse in current english. And while you're at it, why not blame religion for everything, including the weather.


Off with your head!
38 Captain Poppy (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 09:23 pm Report abuse
Chris I know little of the Windsors but they are popular in the USA with the house iwves. But Charles does come across indifferent. Priness Di was loved here as much as in the UK
39 ChrisR (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 09:47 pm Report abuse
38 Captain Poppy

Diana was admired everywhere, and while she was his wife that is understandable.

His first love is the woman he is married to (I just CANNOT say her name) and they were an item when they were very young. He was in the Navy at the time, and without saying a thing to her he assumed she would wait for him. She married someone else. He hadn’t even got the bollocks to ask her to marry him at the time.

When Charles came out of the Navy he was despondent and eventually agreed to marry Diana purely for an heir. He was shagging the other one all the time and so broke up two marriages and Diana turned into the floozy that eventually died in the tunnel in Paris whilst she was with a Muslim. You couldn’t make this up.

I am sure you recall that stupid love letter he wrote to his then mistress about wishing he was her Tampax (a thing women stick up their vaginas during their periods. Stupid, spineless person that he is.

After Diana’s death he then married his mistress.

You have no idea how I despise him: if crowned he will probably bring the monarchy to an end.
40 Captain Poppy (#) Dec 06th, 2012 - 12:12 am Report abuse
I just heard the big news items. I really do not follow them. I can barely stand following my own politicians here.
41 lsolde (#) Dec 06th, 2012 - 08:12 am Report abuse
@39 ChrisR,
Don't take him too seriously, Chris. He's only human. There have been worse kings(Edward II, maybe?).
l think he'll stand aside for his son.
@36 Think,
You seem to know an awful lot about the Royal families of Europe.
A secret Royalist, maybe? For all your communistic leanings. Shame on you Cher Think.
FYI- Mountbatten is the English translation of Battenburg.
Don't tell me you didn't know this, Cher Think? l'm astounded, (snigger).
Windsor was their home.
l think they changed their names because there was disquiet during the First World War.
Germany was the enemy & we couldn't be seen to have a German family in control of the Empire.
A war that NONE of the Scandinavian countries were involved in.
So why would they even think of changing their surnames.
Anyway Cher Think, so what? Your real name is not Think, is it?
Just for interest sakes, what is your real name, Think? ha ha.
C'mon Think, your secret will be safe with me☺
42 Santa Fe (#) Dec 06th, 2012 - 08:16 am Report abuse
Thinks got a new troll script, await his cutting short replys

who ever thought this one up at troll HQ will be munching on extra burger rations this Christmas, inspired :)
43 reality check (#) Dec 06th, 2012 - 10:06 am Report abuse
@37 Bongo
I believe I used the word in the correct context.

To Evolve.
a. To develop or achieve gradually: evolve a style of one's own..
1. To undergo gradual change; develop: an amateur acting group that evolved into a theatrical company.

Gradually and Gradual being the pertinent words.

As for religion, point in view, Arabs or MUSLIM extremists? Which?

Rest my case.
44 GeoffWard2 (#) Dec 06th, 2012 - 12:37 pm Report abuse
The law is being changed (evolved ;) to enable the first child of these two young Royals to be in direct line to the Throne whether the child is male or female.
Makes sense.

Religion is still an issue because there is so much sectarian Christian history in the UK.
It remains an issue - however much the Christians get their act together - because there will be a strong reaction to the possibility of a Muslim monarch.
This goes right back to the Middle Ages, when much of Spain/Portugal was Muslim ... and even further back, to when the Christians fought in the Holy Wars for the 'soul' of the Continent and beyond.
The fact that Diana might have had Muslim children by Dodi al Faihad may well have been a factor in their deaths (conspiracy theory).

At any rate, there is a strong non-Muslim (and much Muslim) public resistance in the UK to the further extension of Sharia Law into British public life.
45 Think (#) Dec 06th, 2012 - 07:27 pm Report abuse
(41) lsolde
Not “Battenburg”, cher Isolde......; Battenberg.
46 lsolde (#) Dec 07th, 2012 - 09:31 am Report abuse
Yes, Think, you are correct.
Happy now?

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