May 23, 2024

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Charles delivers the King’s first speech in 72 years amid parliamentary pomp

LONDON – King Charles III wore a very heavy crown. Someone named Black Rod closed the door in her face. A lawmaker has been held ‘hostage’ by Buckingham Palace.

It was the official opening of Parliament, the time of year when the British monarch announces new laws on the government’s agenda, but this being Britain, it was an elaborate ceremony steeped in ancient customs that might seem a bit confusing to the uninitiated.

It was also the first time in more than 70 years that the king was handed over The speech, an event made famous — at least to Americans — by the 2010 film starring Colin Firth as wartime King George VI who overcomes a speech impediment. Since 1952, it has been the Queen who has been carrying out this task, although Charles replaced his mother in 2022 due to ill health.

Prince Charles opens Parliament, but it’s still the Queen’s Speech

It was also the first such event For Prime Minister Rishi Sunak – and he hopes it won’t be the last. His conservative party is trailing badly in opinion polls, and elections must be held by January 2025.

The King’s Speech is read by the king sitting on a gilded throne, but in this case, the king is merely a messenger. The speech is entirely written by the government and is the moment when the Prime Minister clarifies the ruling party’s priorities. With an election looming, this speech was closely watched for any clues as to how the Conservatives are planning to campaign in the upcoming election.

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The first bill Charles, a lifelong environmentalist, found himself reading was a new system for granting oil and gas licences. The current system stipulates that licenses are granted periodically, but the government says the new policy is important for energy security. Charles read the words with the deadpan delivery expected of a king.

Environmental groups He opposed the measure, saying the UK should focus on renewables and that the move was an attempt to create a wedge issue with the opposition Labor Party.

Sunak delays UK climate targets to avoid ‘bankrupting’ Britons

Charles, or rather the speech he was given to read, also announced legislative reforms including a phased smoking ban to create a smoke-free generation; New regulator for English football; and greater powers for judges to compel convicted criminals to appear in the dock for sentencing hearings.

The ceremony was a set of centuries-old customs reminiscent of a time when the relationship between king and parliament was much more fraught. Before Charles arrived at Parliament, royal bodyguards searched the Parliament cellars for explosives – a reference to Guy Fawkes’ “Gunpowder Plot” of 1605 – a failed attempt by English Catholics to blow up Protestant King James I and Parliament.

The best known part of the ceremony was Maybe when Black penisA senior official in the House of Lords knocked on the door of the House of Commons, only to find it closed in her face. It was meant to symbolize the independence of the House of Commons from the king.

Undeterred by the lukewarm reception, Blackroad then knocked on the door three times with her ceremonial staff – there was a dent from the beating over the years – and the door to the House of Commons chamber was finally opened. The legislators then appeared and followed Blackrod to the House of Lords to hear the King’s speech.

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In another tradition, inspired by the beheading of King Charles I in 1649, a legislator was held “hostage” at Buckingham Palace during the ceremony to ensure the king’s safe return.

For his part, Charles wore the Imperial State Crown, specially brought from the Tower of London, and a crimson velvet robe, which he replaced in the Robing Room. He made the short trip between Buckingham Palace and Westminster in a horse-drawn carriage.

After the speech, lawmakers returned to the House of Commons, where usual politics resumed. Sunak and Labor leader Keir Starmer will lead a days-long debate on the legislative program outlined in the speech, ending with a vote.