Queen's Australia rep was assured of power before '75 crisis
CANBERRA Queen Elizabeth IIs office assured her representative in Australia he had the power to bring down the Australian government a week before he took the extraordinary move in 1975 and created a political crisis, according to letters released on Tuesday. The queens private secretary Sir Martin Charteris wrote to Kerr on Nov. 4, 1975, that the monarchs power to dissolve a parliament had not been used in years and some argued that the power no longer existed. I was of the opinion that it was better for Her Majesty not to know in advance, Kerr wrote on Nov. 11, immediately after taking the unprecedented step. Labor leader Anthony Albanese, Australia's opposition leader, said the 1975 crisis reinforced the need for an Australian head of state instead of the British monarch. It is, I think, a blight on our character as a nation that a democratically elected government was dismissed, Albanese said.