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Wills' Daughter Could Become Queen after Change in Law

Article excerpt

Byline: Nicholas Cecil Chief Political Correspondent

THE Government is in talks with Commonwealth countries to change royal succession laws, so if Prince William and Kate Middleton's first child is a girl she becomes Queen.

Ministers accept that the ban on Catholics marrying the monarch, under the 1701 Act of Settlement, and the rule of primogeniture, under which a woman in the line of succession is automatically superseded by a younger male sibling, may be "discriminatory".

Talks to reform the legislation began under the last Labour government and the Cabinet Office confirmed that these discussions are continuing.

But MPs today piled pressure on the Government to press on with the negotiations.

Keith Vaz, Labour chairman of the Commons home affairs committee, said: "This is a once in a generation opportunity to change the law.

"Prince William looks like a very modern prince. If he has a daughter first, it would be right that she become Queen of England."

Liberal Democrat deputy leader Simon Hughes added: "Laws which discriminate against sex or religion have no place in a modern monarchy."

If royal daughters had equal rights, Princess Anne would become fourth in line, behind Prince Harry. …