Labour MP Clive Lewis claims 'King avoids taxes as children suffer in poverty' ahead of coronation

Clive Lewis posted the video questioning the monarchy just days before the Coronation.
Credit: @LabourLewis/Twitter
Norwich South MP Clive Lewis wants the monarchy abolished in the UK. Credit: @LabourLewis/Twitter

A vocal republican MP has released a video in which he accuses the monarchy of avoiding taxes and normalising the gap between rich and poor - just days before the King's coronation.

Clive Lewis, a former shadow defence and business secretary, posted the recording on both Twitter and TikTok, asking his followers if they can "afford not to care" about the upcoming weekend of celebrations.

In it, the Labour MP questions claims that the royal family are "exemplars of British values in action, hard-working, conscientious and tireless public servants" who bridge "the differences within our society".

"Meanwhile, back on planet Earth, we've a monarchy that's exempted itself from 160 different pieces of legislation - everything from animal welfare through to workers' rights," said the former journalist in a piece-to-camera stood outside Buckingham Palace.

"Exemptions to the taxes we all have to pay and that have allowed our King to amass a fortune of almost £2bn," he adds, over screenshots of investigative reporting from The Guardian.

"And this at a time when almost three million children, his subjects, face abject poverty.

"Our monarchy isn't a social glue, rather it's a gilded veneer that makes grotesque disparities of wealth and power seem normal."

The video by the Norwich South MP - who has been frequently critical of Labour leader Keir Starmer - was posted on Wednesday, just three days before the nation prepares for King Charles III's coronation.

Alongside events and parties up and down the country, the coronation itself will take place at Westminster Abbey on Saturday following a procession from Buckingham Palace.

Following the service, the King and Queen Consort will be driven along a 1.3-mile route through the capital before the royal family gathers on the palace balcony.

A YouGov survey revealed 64% of British adults who were asked how much they care about Saturday's coronation responded "not much" or "not at all".

And the level of support for the monarchy has dipped back to 62% following a brief increase to 67% following the Queen's death last September.

But support is far lower among younger people - with just 36% of 18 to 24-year-olds wanting to keep a royal family.

Meanwhile, an exclusive poll for ITV News found King Charles III will struggle to unite his kingdom once he is crowned.

Earlier this month Norwich MP Mr Lewis wrote an article for the Guardian newspaper calling on his party leader to commit to a reform of the monarchy if he gets into power.

Buckingham Palace has been contacted for comment.

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