Ending Patriarchy In The Monarchy British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has acknowledged there have been discussions with Buckingham Palace about changing the law of succession to give royal women equal inheritance rights — and to allow an heir to the throne to marry a Catholic. But an attempt to do just that has stalled in Britain's parliament.
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Ending Patriarchy In The Monarchy

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Ending Patriarchy In The Monarchy

Ending Patriarchy In The Monarchy

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LIANE HANSEN, Host:

The British prime minister and Buckingham Palace are discussing some changes to the law. Royal women would get equal succession rights and an heir to the throne would be able to marry a Catholic. But as Vicki Barker reports from London, the move is stalled in parliament.

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VICKI BARKER: On Friday, Evan Harris, a lawmaker for the liberal Democrat Party, introduced a bill to overturn what he argued has become an embarrassing, discriminatory anachronism.

EVAN HARRIS: It's a welcomed opportunity to debate what I think most people, if not every right-thinking person, would consider to be outrageous discrimination in our constitution against Roman Catholics, and equally unfair treatment of women.

BARKER: Then why did Gordon Brown even bother to say he discussed the issue with Buckingham Palace? Henry Bellingham, a lawmaker for the opposition Conservative Party said look no further than recent headlines deploring Brown's attempts to turn around the British and the global economy.

HENRY BELLINGHAM: I would suggest is that, speaker, that some spotty, (unintelligible) spin doctor in number 10, has come up with a brainwave to find some diversory headlines.

BARKER: For NPR News, I'm Vicki Barker in London.

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