Australians want their free photos of Queen Elizabeth

Dozens of Australians are demanding portraits of Queen Elizabeth after a news report outlined an obscure rule entitling them to a free photo from local politicians, Reuters reported.

The law does not require federal politicians to hand out the pictures, but they can be reimbursed to provide the photos, as well as flags, at constituents’ request.

The allowance has existed since 1990, but wasn’t widely known until it was reported by Vice News on Wednesday, according to Reuters.

“I can say before the story was published, I had received zero requests for portraits of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth,” Tim Watts, an opposition Labor Party politician, told Australian Broadcasting Corporation radio.

About four dozen requests arrived in the 24 hours after the story ran, he said, adding, “I think 99 percent were tongue firmly in cheek.”

A national vote in 1999 defeated a motion that Australia drop the monarchy and become a republic.

Reuters reported although support for such a measure has remained close to 50 percent since, there is little appetite to put the issue back on the agenda, at least during Queen Elizabeth’s reign.