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Prince Charles. (Associated Press)

Prince Charles. (Associated Press)

Informer: Prince Charles still first in line for throne

Last Modified: Monday, July 29, 2013 10:18 AM

By Andrew Perzo / American Press

Can Charles become king if his mother, Queen Elizabeth, abdicates the throne? Some people say he cannot, because his wife’s been divorced.

Charles could be denied the crown if public opinion or Parliament opposed his ascension or if he or his wife were to become Catholic. But nothing in British law forbids him from ascending to the throne as husband to a divorcee, and the Prince of Wales remains Queen Elizabeth II’s heir apparent.

The laws governing the succession of the monarchy date from the late 17th century and early 18th century, when Parliament passed the Bill of Rights and the Act of Settlement.

“When James II fled the country in 1688, Parliament held that he had ‘abdicated the government’ and that the throne was vacant. The throne was then offered, not to James’s young son, but to his daughter Mary and her husband William of Orange, as joint rulers,” reads the monarchy’s website.

“It therefore came to be established not only that the Sovereign rules through Parliament, but that the succession to the throne can be regulated by Parliament, and that a Sovereign can be deprived of his title through misgovernment.”

Additionally, the Act of Settlement allowed the crown to be worn only by Protestants, forbidding “all and every Person and Persons that then were or afterwards should be reconciled to or shall hold Communion with the See or Church of Rome or should professe the Popish Religion or marry a Papist” from ever sitting on the throne.

Those who claim Charles can never become king usually cite the case of King Edward VIII, who abdicated the throne in 1936 to marry the twice-divorced Wallis Simpson, an American. But Edward, whose determination to marry threatened to provoke a constitutional crisis, relinquished the throne because, as the monarchy’s website points out, Simpson “would not have been acceptable as Queen” to people at the time.

The Informer will note, though, that if Charles ever becomes king, his wife, Camilla, will not bear the traditional title of Queen Consort, but will instead be known as Princess Consort.

The first 10 people in line for the British throne:

Prince Charles.

William, the Duke of Cambridge.

George, the newborn Prince of Cambridge.

Prince Harry.

Andrew, the Duke of York.

Princess Beatrice of York.

Princess Eugenie of York.

Edward, the Earl of Wessex.

James, Viscount Severn.

Lady Louise Mountbatten-Windsor.


McNeese employs 11 football coaches

How many football coaches does McNeese have, and what is their combined salary?

The school employs nine full-time football coaches and two part-timers.

McNeese pays them a combined salary of $602,582 a year, said Candace Townsend, a spokeswoman for McNeese, said.


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The Informer answers questions from readers each Sunday, Monday and Wednesday. It is researched and written by Andrew Perzo, an American Press staff writer. To ask a question, call 494-4098, press 5 and leave voice mail, or email

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