Three-in-five want to chuck Charles as Canadians cool towards new monarch

AS King Charles prepares to have his title formalized at the May 6 coronation – expected to be a toned-down affair as Charles “is very aware of the struggles felt by modern Britons” – many in Canada wonder if it’s time to split from the monarchy.

New data from the non-profit Angus Reid Institute finds half (52%) of Canadians do not want their country to continue as a constitutional monarchy for generations to come, nearly all (88%) of whom believe it’s worth opening the constitutional can of worms to sever the country’s royal roots.

Charles’ mother Queen Elizabeth II would have turned 97 last week. Canada’s affection for the longest-serving British monarch in history was well documented. While her role as Canada’s head of state passed down to King Charles, Canadians’ warmth to Elizabeth did not. Three-in-ten (28%) Canadians say they have a favourable view of their new King; half (48%) do not. In fact, a majority (60%) oppose recognizing Charles as King and all that entails. And when this recognition is broken down to its individual elements – swearing an oath to him and singing “God Save the King” at official ceremonies”, putting his face on currency – opposition is even higher. Overall, a majority of Canadians (52%) believe Charles will be a worse monarch than Elizabeth.

There has been debate in England as to what to call Charles’ wife Camilla. Last year, Queen Elizabeth said it was her “sincere wish” for Camilla to be known as Queen Consort. However, the palace wants to drop the “Consort,” referring to her only as Queen Camilla on invitations to the coronation. In Canada, both the titles of Queen (21%) and Queen Consort (19%) lose out to “she should not be referred to as ‘Queen’” (60%). This comes as two-third (66%) say they oppose Canada recognizing Camilla as queen of their country.

The couple next-in-line to the throne, William and Kate, are viewed more favourably by Canadians, but the positivity is flowing from those who believe Canada should continue as a constitutional monarchy. Four-in-five in that group have positive impressions of Prince William and Princess Kate. Those who want to see an end to the royals’ rule over Canada are more negative (William, 36% favourable; Kate, 41%).