English and Japanese theatre and culture are my forte. My mother was raised in England, and my grand...
Dutch election results, the talk of Europe16 March 2017, by Alexandra van Kampen
The Dutch elections that took place on March 15, 2017 were actively covered in countries throughout Europe, noting that the decision of the Dutch people could have a great impact on the future voting trends in other countries.
Would the Netherlands follow in the footsteps of Great Britain, and vote for a party that might take steps to take the Netherlands out of the EU (Nexit), or would the people choose to stick together?
The results would also cast a light on the people’s position regarding involvement with their own country versus abroad, their stance toward immigrants and refugees, and various other issues.
The official results will be in on Monday, March 20, but some pretty conclusive statements make it clear that the reigning VVD has a clear win over the much discussed PVV, making a Nexit a very unlikely step, and casting a temporary calm over various other tumultuous discussion points.
Significant results per party
Turnouts at the voting booths was extremely high, with estimations running from 77 to 81 percent.
Although the VVD has kept its lead, it can safely be said the voting results have had some significant effects. Here are some of the main talking points:
› A clear winner
VVD has a strong lead with 33 seats, which is a drop from their previous number.
The total number of seats in the House of Representatives (Tweede Kamer) is 150. A coalition needs to be comprised of parties that have at least 76 seats combined, in order to have a majority, so the VVD will likely have to strike a deal with at least three other parties.
› Controversial PVV in second place
The controversial PVV, led by Geert Wilders, is currently winning second place with 20 seats. They are closely followed by CDA and D66, who each have 19 seats.
The VVD has previously announced that they would not consider forming a coalition with the PVV, making it likely that they will assume the role of opposition party.
› Great loss for a previous front-runner
The previous coalition partner of VVD, PvdA, has suffered a staggering loss, dropping from 38 to nine seats.
› Rise of the left-wing
Left-wing party GroenLinks celebrates a great gain, going from four to at least 14 seats. Other more left-leaning parties have also seen quite a rise in popularity.
› A place for smaller parties
New party DENK has defeated PvdA in Rotterdam and The Hague, and bagged itself three seats in total. Some other smaller parties, such as Partij voor de Dieren, have gotten a few more seats than previous years as well.
Coalition formation process starts today
Although the final results are not yet in, talks about the formation process for the coalition have already been set in motion.
Changes in seats per party
Here is a list of how many seats each party has (2012 election status in brackets):
› VVD 33 (41)
› PVV 20 (15)
› CDA 19 (13)
› D66 19 (12)
› SP 14 (15)
› GroenLinks 14 (4)
› PvdA 9 (38)
› CU 5 (5)
› Partij voor de Dieren 5 (2)
› 50+ 4 (2)
› SGP 3 (3)
› DENK 3 (0)
› FvD 2 (0)
Parties without seats
VNL, Piratenpartij, Artikel 1, De Burger Beweging, Lokaal in de Kamer, Niet Stemmers, Nieuwe Wegen, Ondernemerspartij, Houwer en Van Vliet, GeenPeil, JezusLeeft, Libertarische Partij, MenS, StemNL, Vrij Democratische Partij, Vrijzinnige Partij.
Description of the parties
Here is a quick description of the parties we mention:
› VVD (People's Party for Freedom and Democracy)
A right-wing liberal party focused on individual freedom of citizens.
› PVV (Party of Freedom)
A populist party with liberal and conservative points focused on independence for the Netherlands.
› CDA (Christian Democrat Appeal)
A Christianity-inspired party, focused on Biblical ideals.
› D66 (Democrats 66)
A social liberal party, focused on reform with the people coming first, adding a social component to classic liberalism.
› PvdA (Party of Labour)
A progressive, social democrat party focused on equal opportunity, and people’s participation in society.
› GroenLinks (Green Left)
A progressive party, focused on the environment and sustainability, and a fair distribution of power.
› DENK (Think)
A party that is focused on respect, tolerance, a just society and acceptance.
› Partij voor de Dieren (Party for the Animals)
A party that is focused on animal welfare.