Of course, he's the brains in the family

>> Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Charles, that is...

“My understanding is that Prince Charles was less than happy that Andrew was given the role of trade envoy back in 2001 after he left the navy,” Robert Jobson, author of William & Kate: The Love Story and a royal commentator for NBC News, told me. “When Charles ascends the throne—which he will do despite all the talk to the contrary—he’d like the royal family to be streamlined; he wants a smaller, more cost-effective monarchy. Andrew has made a tremendous effort to keep Beatrice and Eugenie close to the Queen in order to assure their future as fully paid-up members of the Firm, as the royal family is called. In addition to their status as royal highnesses, Andrew has always wanted them to have around-the-clock security and the rank of working royals. But if Charles has his way, the girls will be thrown off the royal payroll and have to fend for themselves. Many of Andrew’s inexcusable actions—consorting with rich oligarchs in North Africa, the Mideast, and the former Soviet Union, and begging friends to bail out Fergie—have been done with his daughters’ welfare in mind.” (A Palace spokesman wouldn’t comment on Charles’s intentions with respect to the princesses.)
I'm surprised this article didn't make mention of Andrew's comments noted in Wikileaks-released memos. Oh well, Charles will get the last laugh any way...
A substantial number of Britons are in favor of Charles’s stepping aside in William’s favor after the Queen dies. But tampering with the succession to the throne would precipitate a constitutional crisis. It would require an act of Parliament plus the passage of legislation by all the Commonwealth governments, neither of which is likely to happen. What’s more, it is well known in royal circles that Camilla is keen to become the first commoner Queen and that Charles is eager to gratify her wish.

“What’s far more likely to happen,” said the royal-watcher Robert Jobson, “is that there will be a seamless change of power in the monarchy, a gradual shift away from the Queen. Charles’s influence will gain, as will William’s. During the last years of Elizabeth’s reign, Charles and William will be like shadow kings.”

Charles turns 63 in November, and given the longevity of the Windsor line, he may have a long wait to ascend the throne. But assuming he outlives his mother, he will become King. He has made no secret of the fact that he intends to make significant changes in the monarchy. To begin with, he’s determined to be seen as the representative of a more inclusive society. He has stated that he will be the Defender of the Faiths—plural—not simply the Church of England, which would be a monumental departure from nearly 500 years of tradition. He also wants a thriftier, pared-down monarchy, which is not so open to criticism.

All of this is bad news for Prince Andrew. Up till now, Andrew and his daughters have lived a charmed life. To please her favorite son, Queen Elizabeth has taken Beatrice and Eugenie under her wing and given them a place of honor on the balcony of Buckingham Palace during state occasions. Over the objections of her husband, the Queen has indulged Andrew’s wish to live under the same roof as his ex-wife, and she has turned a blind eye to his improper behavior.

But the time is nearing when Prince Charles will take a more significant role in running the affairs of the British monarchy. And as Queen Elizabeth’s power wanes and Charles’s power grows, Andrew is likely to find himself out of a job and out of luck.
Sounds like Charles is going to go for the Scandinavian-style monarchy!

"The Trouble with Andrew," Vanity Fair

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