Time to bring out that cartoon again, methinks.
From DutchNews.nl: Formal talks to start on a minority CDA Liberal government.
The Netherlands is set to get its first post-war minority cabinet, if talks between the VVD, PVV and CDA are successful.
The three parties agreed on Friday to start discussions on forming a minority cabinet between the VVD and CDA which will rule with support from the anti-Islam PVV.
VVD leader Mark Rutte said on Friday evening that he, CDA leader Maxime Verhagen and Geert Wilders saw ‘perspectives’ for such as cabinet. The three leaders have been in exploratory talks all week.
Wilders told reporters he was ‘extremely happy’ with the move and that a minority right-wing cabinet will be ‘fantastic’ for the Netherlands.
He said he expects a tough stand on immigration and integration, more police on the streets and better care for the elderly in return for his support.
The parties have also agreed to cut government spending by €18bn, the Volkskrant quoted Wilders as saying.
Forming a minority government will allow the CDA to get round objections to ruling with the anti-Islam party, frees Wilders from the responsibility of having to find ministers and gives him free reign to continue his anti-Islam campaign.
It would also be beneficial to the Netherlands’ reputation abroad not to have the PVV in government, the Volkskrant said earlier on Friday.
Together the three parties control 76 seats of the 150-seat lower house of parliament.
The agreement means Wilders will be involved in drawing up the coalition agreement and will sign it, but will not be part of the government.
In Denmark, the far-right DPP has given its parliamentary support to a right-wing government for nine years and Wilders would do well to copy this, Danish MEP Morten Messerschmidt told the Volkskrant.
Wilders is often in Denmark and knows DPP leader Pia Kjaersgaard well.
‘The cabinet cannot do a thing without our support. In return we get our way in the fight against Islam and in tightening up immigration and integration policy,’ Messerschmidt told the paper.
And with that the ‘Danish variant’ is closer then ever. As we argued before: In the present conditions of the highly polarized Dutch political landscape this makes eminent sense. Undeserved or not, Wilders is at the present time much, much too controversial. He still has to convince a sizeable portion of the population he can be an effective leader.
If Wilders were to become PM, with the mood in the Netherlands being what it is these days, he would not be able to govern effectively, I think. The extreme-left, having convinced themselves (and a goodly portion of the Dutch populace) that Wilders is evil incarnate, would be galvanized into action. He’d be running hither and yon, putting out brushfires. Irrespective of his competence (and I personally do not doubt those) he would find the Netherlands rather ungovernable.
Be that as it may: The alternative that was contemplated earlier, when first explorations for a right-wing broke down, was far, far worse. Things are looking up.
[UPDATE001] GoV posted a translation of the official statement by the three participants in the negotiations here.