Isabel II was replaced on Tuesday by the Prince carlos in the highly symbolic “throne speech,” a “historic moment” in what is seen as the progressive transition of an aging queen determined not to abdicate in favor of her heir.
The monarch, 96, he usually opens each new parliamentary session by reading the legislative program drawn up by the government for the coming year.
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During her seven decades of reign, she has only missed this appointment twice: in 1959 and 1963, when she was pregnant with Prince Andrew and Prince Edward, respectively.
However, due to itsepisodic mobility problems and, after consulting with his doctors, reluctantly decided” don’t do it this time, for the first time in 59 yearsexplained the royal house.
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Carlos73, who increasingly replaces his mother, did not arrive by carriage but in an official Rolls-Royce with a transparent roof, accompanied by his wife Camila.
Nor did he wear the traditional ermine cape but a military uniform with innumerable decorations, nor did he wear the heavy crown adorned with precious stones that presided over the session on a cushion before the empty space left by the sovereign’s absent throne.
The Prince of Wales sat next to him, on a smaller throne that he has already occupied on other occasions with his mother. Accompanied by Camila and her eldest son, Guillermo, 39, number two in the succession line, read the speech with the same monotonous, solemn and applied voice of the queen, before the deputies and the Lords gathered in the upper house of the parliament.
All this pageantry, which included the arrival of the crown and the centers in a royal procession, the fanfares and the heralds in their heavy ceremonial robes, shows that “the queen is still in command”, in the words of the Daily Mail newspaper.
But “make no mistake, it is a historic moment for the crown,” the newspaper stressed.
Elizabeth II’s health has been a cause for concern since doctors ordered her to rest in October and she was hospitalized one night to undergo medical “tests” that were never specified.
Since then she has canceled her participation in prominent events and has been seen with a cane and difficulties in moving around.
But, during a historic radio address on her 21st birthday, during a trip to South Africa with her family, on April 21, 1947, then-Princess Elizabeth vowed to dedicate her entire life to serving her people, and everyone considers her determined not to abdicate despite to his growing ailments.
Especially this year, June 2-5 will see four days of grand festivities for the “platinum jubilee”, Elizabeth II’s 70 years on the throne, a record for any British monarch.
Johnson Legislative Agenda
The speech lasted less than 9 minutes and in it Carlos detailed the legislative agenda drawn up by the government of conservative Boris Johnson seeking to win back the British for the next two years, until the next legislative elections, in which he hopes to be re-elected.
The controversial prime minister has seen his permanence in power threatened for months due to the outrage caused by the so-called “partygate”, the scandal of the illegal parties organized in Downing Street during the confinements against covid-19.
Added to this is the severe electoral setback suffered last week by his party, which lost a dozen municipal councils and almost 500 councilors in local elections, including important London strongholds such as Westminster.
Voters expressed concern about the cost of living crisis, with runaway inflation set to exceed 10% this year.
More than 7 million adults and 2.6 million children, in a country of 66 million people, lived in a household in April where they do not eat enough, according to a study published Monday by the Food Foundation, an increase of 57 % since January.
In this context, the government will seek to “help alleviate the cost of living”, “reduce inequalities”, “support the Bank of England in its effort to return inflation to its objectives”, read Carlos.
The 38 new legislation projects also include measures in favor of the energy transition and changes to “take advantage of the opportunities” offered by Brexit, such as new competition rules and immigration control.