February 24, 2024

Forming the government in the Netherlands – Geert Wilder’s painstaking search for government partners – News

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Right-wing populist Geert Wilders wants to become head of the Dutch government. But coalition talks are difficult.

It has been two weeks since Geert Wilders’ huge victory in the Dutch elections. But whether the winner of the election will also become prime minister seems more open than ever. Because Wilder’s options for forming a government are limited.

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Geert Wilders has to suck up his coalition partners (23 November 2023).

Reuters/Yves Hermann

The most obvious coalition partners for Wilders are the right-wing liberal VVD, former Christian Democrat Peter Omtzigt’s new party NSC, and the Farmers and Citizens’ Movement (BBB). Such an alliance is Wilder’s stated goal.

Reluctant coalition partners

VVDLeader Dilan Yesilguz announced just two days after the election that she did not see her party – also the party of former Prime Minister Mark Rutte – in government. However, under certain circumstances, it would be prepared to support a minority government led by Wilder’s PVV party.

I will only accept a government that respects the constitution.

His new party, Peter Omtzgut, is more conservative National Security Council I got 20 seats right away. He announced last week that his group “currently sees no basis for starting negotiations with the Freedom Party over a majority or minority government.”

In particular, he expresses concerns about the rule of law. “I will only accept a government that respects the constitution. “This is very important for our party,” he told SRF. This does not fit with Wilder’s calls to ban the Qur’an or close mosques.

Woman in the foreground, man in the background wearing glasses

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The leader of the Farmers’ and Citizens’ Movement (BBB) ​​party, Caroline van der Plas, expressed her willingness to hold talks with Wilder’s party.

Reuters/Piruska van de Woo

The farmers’ and citizens’ movement has so far been the most open to an alliance with Wilders (BBB). “I think we should talk to each other first to build trust. “Only then will we see whether the path to negotiations is open or blocked,” says party leader Caroline van der Plas.

But the big winner in the regional elections in the spring was unable to repeat her success in the parliamentary elections and has only seven seats in the new parliament. This alone will get Wilders nowhere.

And this is how it continues

The parties are currently holding exploratory talks; Actual coalition talks will only be able to begin when they reach a basic consensus. This process can take a long time. But in the Netherlands people are used to it. The last government formation lasted 271 days.

In purely mathematical terms, it may also be possible to form a grand coalition without Wilder from left to centre-right. But no one seems to be pushing this option forward at the moment. If all talks come to nothing, new elections will likely be held. Until a new government is formed, the current government headed by Prime Minister Mark Rutte (VVD) will remain in office.

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