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Author Topic: Approval Ratings of the Monarchies  (Read 6191 times)
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Laprincess

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« on: December 30, 2020, 07:48:24 PM »

Hi all, I haven't been here or following royal news closely for a while. I came across this Spanish news article comparing the Dutch and Belgian kings' approval ratings and read articles posted in the Spain, Netherlands and Belgium folders. I think this is a topic deserves its own thread. I hope the link works:

https://www.revistavanity...-maxima-y-guillermo/48232

Paige posted multiple links in Felipe & Letizia News about Felipe's gaining in approval rating in the most difficult year for Spanish royal family.

These three took the throne at about the same time. They're close in age. All of them are educated and have solid marriages and families. When they took over, Spanish monarchy was in crisis after multiple scandals involving King Juan Carlos and Infanta Cristina/Inaki. Support for the monarchy in Belgium was not strong either due to the divided populace and Philippe was viewed as clumsy and lacks charisma. Dutch monarchy was seen as the strongest of the 3, with high popular support for the monarchy and a charismatic queen. At that time, RD ran a poll re the monarchy most likly to fall, IIRC, Spain and Belgium were the top picks.

Now, the world has THE horribilis of the century collectively, how things have changed. Besides the pandemic that hit all 3 countries hard, Felipe has to deal with his father's money laundering/tax evasion/black card scandal and a republican campaign by the extreme left. Philippe has to deal with BLM protest against his ancestor and his father's illegitimate daughter. WA has to deal with...nothing. But the former 2 are gaining in public approval while the latter's rating dropped 29% in just 8 months.

It comes down to personal character, demonstrative leadership and solidarity with their people. Here are what they did respectively:

Spain -
Felipe not only distanced himself from his father, he implicated his father by denouncing his inheritance and asking his father to leave the country. He also cut off his father's pay. Felipe didn't wait for the result of any investigations, he acknowledged his father's moral failure. It matches with the vow of exemplary behaviors he gave upon his proclamation.

He and Letizia also cancelled their summer vacation. Instead, they worked non-stop through lockdown and visited regions around the country. They're seen with common people, mask and all. On the contrary, Spanish PM used 2 palaces for his family vacation during the summer. The royal family stayed in Madrid.

Also, 3 of them, Felipe, Letizia and Leonor isolated themselves at different times after their contacts were infected. It shows they took the pandemic seriously and followed the rule.

Belgium -
Philippe sent an official apology to the president of Congo for Leopold II's atrocities. He also welcomed Delphine to the palace and made her Princess of Belgium. If I'm not mistaken, he did it on his own rather than being prompted by the government. His wife and kids also volunteered in serving the needies.

He and his family showed compassion, generosity, humility and solidarity. It's what citizens expect from people that have been given so much.

Netherlands-
Where to begin?

The royal family kept up their summer vacation in Greece and got photographed, maskless and distance-less, with a restaurant owner. They had to apologize for it.

Then WA bought a 2M euros yacht. Everyone knows Dutch royal family is wealthy. But rubbing it in your citizens' face when many are losing their livelihood or financially struggling? This is a terrible look.

Then the 2nd Greece getaway right after Dutch government advised against unnecessary travels. Most of us who have been confined at home wish we have a vacation home at a warmer climate to escape to. But we can't so we have to bear it. Another rubbing it in moment to their citizens who have to endure the lockdown/isolation at home. This has the shade of JC's Botswana moment. Then the 2nd apology (or non-apology?).

As I understand it, WA and Maxima also have not worked much through the pandemic. Correct me if I'm wrong. This all add up to an image of entitlement, tone-deafness, arrogance, insensitivity and unfeeling.

WA and Maxima have always lived large. Their exuberant lifestyle was interesting to gawk at by regular people when the time is good. The biggest jewels, the largest partes, the coutur gowns, the exotic vacations. IMO, part of their popularity was built on their exuberant lifestyle. It's like the classier version of the Kardashians with a royal title. But when the time is hard, it bites them back. They didn't change. Time changed and so did public perception.
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genegal43

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« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2020, 09:53:23 PM »

Thanks, this is not only a fascinating layout but and excellent read!
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thecrownjewelthief

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« Reply #2 on: December 31, 2020, 08:21:00 PM »

I also think it's really interesting to see how different families have handled this year. The Belgian and Spanish royal families are the most vulnerable in Europe, so they acted accordingly - no need to give anyone a reason to push further for their roles to be eliminated. They stayed very present this year and picked smart places to be seen working and supporting the country. Felipe also seems to understand the steps that needed to be taken to preserve the monarchy (for now at least) in Spain in regards his family's misdeeds. He seems to be a pretty smart person who would've gone places in life without being a royal too (and I think Letizia is smart too).

WA and Max probably thought they and the Dutch RF were popular enough to do whatever they wanted and didn't consider the optics, whereas I think Felipe and Philippe never would've done something like that Greece trip. They both seem pretty grounded and pragmatic, and have a good grasp of what the public thinks of royalty in their countries, and their actions the year have reflected a very careful consideration of that to me. I like WA and Max and they seem like lovely, fun people, but I don't think of either of them as grounded in reality.


Belgium -
Philippe sent an official apology to the president of Congo for Leopold II's atrocities. He also welcomed Delphine to the palace and made her Princess of Belgium. If I'm not mistaken, he did it on his own rather than being prompted by the government. His wife and kids also volunteered in serving the needies.

He and his family showed compassion, generosity, humility and solidarity. It's what citizens expect from people that have been given so much.


I think the courts made Delphine a Princess of Belgium, not Phil, but he was wise to reach out to her quickly and welcome her to the palace. Again, he seems pretty pragmatic and probably realized he could put the story to rest by being seen as kind and welcoming, rather than letting it drag out any longer.
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Kristallinchen

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« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2020, 08:39:10 PM »

I think that WA and Maxima both thought they had it easy, because unlike Belgium and Spain they never faced any kind of national or family crisis.

Felipe and Leti had to be very careful from the start, because of JC, Cristina, and ups and downs of the Catalan region etc. etc. Philippe and Mathilde had the thing with Delphine, the "quarrel" between Wallons and Flames, his father too etc.

JC was more or less forced to abdicate and A in a way too. In the Netherlands meanwhile everything went smoothly. So WA and Max must've thought that it would go on like this.
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Laprincess

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« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2020, 10:28:30 PM »

A few years ago when Brussels was locked down due to terrorist attacks, Philippe was caught in a luxury spa in France. He got criticized for it IIRC. He seems to have learned the lesson.

Felipe has to deal with crisis after crisis since he took over. He and Letizia have to stand on their toes the entire time.

Yes, WA and Max have had an easy ride so far. Optics didn't come into their thought process because they were used to all the adulation.
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Paige

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« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2021, 05:21:27 AM »

Good summary
Allow me to add that since September, Letizia has not worn a new dress or shoes or bag  or jewelry , This has no effect on the pandemic, but it is a good image to show to taxpayers
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Future Crayon

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« Reply #6 on: January 01, 2021, 11:35:18 AM »

Good summary
Allow me to add that since September, Letizia has not worn a new dress or shoes or bag  or jewelry , This has no effect on the pandemic, but it is a good image to show to taxpayers

It's a symbolic gesture, but a good one.

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LongMaySheReign

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« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2021, 02:24:18 PM »

Great posts guys. I think you are all right. Part Wax and Max's appeal, especially Max's, is that they're flamboyant but they need to be careful. The yacht and the vacation were terrible ideas in 2020. They need to be careful, we know the Dutch are rich but they don't need to flaunt it.
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SvenskaSarah

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« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2021, 03:18:34 PM »

This is a really interesting thread  Thumb up
I dont follow any of those three royal families particularly closely, so it is interesting to learn about Wax and Max jetting off to Greece twice, and Leti not wearing any new clothes, as well as the actions of the Spanish royal family compared to the actions of the PM.

It would be interesting to compare to even more royal families!
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