rainbow-queen

Queen Elizabeth II did not approve the #EqualMarriage Bill

https://twitter.com/ABC/status/357494803782582273

The #EqualMarriage timeline on Twitter is full of people praising Queen Elizabeth II for approving the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill.  There is a strong sense of knowing irony steaming off those messages.  I feel that most of the people celebrating the new law think its rather ridiculous that the approval of the Monarch is still required.

What a relief, then, to learn that actually, Queen Elizabeth II did not formally approve the new law.  ‘Royal Assent’ is actually a procedural step in the House of Lords.  The monarch is invoked in the process, but she is not personally involved in the decision.  From the Wikipedia page:

The granting of the Royal Assent … is simply La Reyne le veult (the Queen wills it)

This matters, because we should recognise that this pro-family reform of the law is the work of Parliament and Democracy. It is not a gift to us from the Establishment.  It is not that ‘La Reyne’ or ‘Le Roy’ wills it… but that the people of the United Kingdom have willed it.  That’s important.

Benjamin Cohen, a long-term campaigner for the reform, has the right formulation:

https://twitter.com/benjamincohen/status/357502765620142081

2 thoughts on “Queen Elizabeth II did not approve the #EqualMarriage Bill

  1. It is not that ‘La Reyne’ or ‘Le Roy’ wills it… but that the people of the United Kingdom have willed it. That’s important.

    Yes, it’s very important. Especially to people who think the monarchy in any way undermines the functioning of our democracy. As this example shows, it clearly doesn’t.

  2. Oh, and also, I don’t think we had a vote on it, so I think we should really say “some of the people of the United Kingdom have willed it”
    I’m not sure we can really say or imply it was a majority, rather than just the loudest-shouters and lobbyists. Or maybe we can only really say it was the MPs who voted on it who willed it.. #democracy….

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