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Poll: Unpacking who supports — or opposes — the monarchy

What clusters of views go with support for the monarchy, or a republic? (Party support doesn't break out in the way you might expect.)
King Charles during a community engagement event.

Note: This is one in an occasional series in which we take a second look at older polls, using more sophisticated tools than were available at the time. 

A small majority of readers would vote for Canada to become a republic, an online poll conducted around the time of King Charles's coronation showed. 

Since then, Charles's cancer diagnosis, and the announcement that he will step back from his public duties for at least the time being (including a planned visit to Canada), has given the monarchy renewed attention.

How do Village Media readers fell about the future of the monarchy in this country? Here's what you had to say:

Women were much more likely than men to want to keep things as they are:

But there is a definite, consistent age difference:

It's interesting that there is a much sharper generational difference on this issue in the UK itself, on both ends, as this British poll shows. It's interesting to ask why: possibly the much greater visibility of the royal family in Britain leads to sharper opinions about it, in both directions.

Readers with longer memories may find this graph surprising: one Canadian culture war of the 1960s and 1970s featured symbolism related to the monarchy and the British connection more broadly. In general, the federal PCs, as they then were, wanted to retain these symbols, and the Liberals wanted to replace them. The angry, bitter debate over the modern Canadian flag, which replaced the Red Ensign, is perhaps the best-known example. (For better or worse, Ontario and Manitoba owe their provincial flags to the debate's aftermath.)

The pattern continues in these graphs:

What seems to be the case is that support for the monarchy is correlated with what we could call a traditionalist or small-c conservative set of views, but not necessarily with political support for the Ontario PCs or federal Conservatives.

Supporters of the monarchy also tend more toward restraint with regard to difficult family questions:

And on personal choices that can code as transgressive, like tattoos and cannabis use:

It also correlates fairly (but not perfectly) consistently with attendance at religious services:

The last graph, I would argue, fits into the broader pattern. Support for looser gun control seems to correlate with a libertarian cluster of views that tend toward support for a republic:

Patrick Cain

About the Author: Patrick Cain

Patrick is an online writer and editor in Toronto, focused mostly on data, FOI, maps and visualizations. He has won some awards, been a beat reporter covering digital privacy and cannabis, and started an FOI case that ended in the Supreme Court
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