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The Oxford University student who led a vote to remove Queen Elizabeth II’s portrait — sparking outrage in the top tiers of UK government — is a wealthy American private school boy who is a Captain America fan, it emerged Wednesday.
Stanford grad Matthew Katzman, 25, tabled the motion to remove the image from Magdalen’s Middle Common Room, saying it was not welcoming because the monarch “represents recent colonial history.”
Members of the Middle Common Room then voted in favor by a “substantial” majority — sparking fierce backlash.
The Queen “is the head of state and a symbol of what is best about the UK,” UK Education Secretary Gavin Williamson tweeted. “During her long reign, she has worked tirelessly to promote British values of tolerance, inclusivity & respect around the world.”
A spokesman for Boris Johnson then told the Daily Mail that the prime minister “supports” his minister’s statement.
Now it has emerged that the man leading the movement to take down the portrait was not even British, but from Washington, DC — only adding to the outage.
Katzman is the son of commercial lawyer Scott Katzman, 65, who lives in a DC mansion worth more than $5.5 million, according to the Mail.
He previously attended the $48,000-a-year Sidwell Friends School, a historic Quaker private college — where the Mail says he “likely” counted former President Barack Obama’s 22-year-old daughter Malia as a contemporary.
Her younger sister, Sasha, also went there, as did Nancy Reagan, Chelsea Clinton, President Biden’s grandchildren and the offspring of other presidents, including Theodore Roosevelt and Richard Nixon.
His total education has cost at least $640,000, according to the Mail.
Katzman is also seen in photos on social media with a Captain America shield, alongside the Stars and Stripes.
But the computer sciences scholar insisted to the outlet that removing the portrait did not “equate to a statement on the Queen.”
“The royal family is on display in many areas of the college, and it was ultimately agreed that it was an unnecessary addition to the common room,” he said.
“It was decided that the room should be a welcoming, neutral place for all members regardless of background, demographic, or views,” he said.
“No stance was taken on the Queen or the royal family — the conclusion was simply that there were better places for this print to be hung,” he said.
Magdalen College — which has distanced itself from the vote — had long been “solidly royalist,” with its famous alumni including King Edward VIII, and the Queen herself getting an honorary degree in 1948.
The monarch also visited in 2008 to mark its 550th anniversary.
Magdalen College’s president, Dinah Rose, stressed online that the students “don’t represent the College,” while stressing that it “strongly supports free speech and political debate.”
“The photo will be safely stored,” she said.
Lord Chris Patten, the vice chancellor of the University of Oxford, said he hopes the scandal “does not do too much damage to the reputation of the college.”
“Freedom of speech allows even intelligent people to be offensive and obnoxiously ignorant,” he said, according to the Mail.
But Sir John Hayes, chairman of a Common Sense Group of MPs, said those “involved should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves.”
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