The Netherlands sits primarily below the sea level, and now, voters fear its economy is also underwater.
But the most divisive subject it’s certainly immigration. As most other EU states, Dutch society is paying a heavy price for the suicidal policies that saw an influx in their society of people seeking a better life in the west.
Next week will be the first time caretaker Prime Minister Mark Rutte’s name won’t be on the ballot in a decade.
After last year’s brutal cost of living shock, one if left wondering whether will be willing to continue funding climate alarmist policies such as expensive offshore wind farms.
“At least three parties are still in contention to come out on top and designate a new prime minister but none is forecast to take more than 20% of the vote, making a new centre-right coalition and no major policy shift the most likely outcome.”
All voters are nowadays concerned with economic well-being, but leftists tend to be motivated by ‘climate change’ worries.
“Meanwhile restricting immigration – the issue that triggered the collapse of Rutte’s last cabinet in July – remains a key concern for both conservative and less wealthy voters.
Statistics suggest the country is doing pretty well: unemployment is below 4%, inflation is slowing, national debt is less than 50% of GDP, and official data shows the country is on track to meet its 2030 carbon emissions reduction goals. Yet a look behind those numbers shows a host of worries over the economy and simmering resentment over plans to cut the number of livestock farms, and over Rutte himself, who has acknowledged he might have overstayed his welcome.”
Rutte’s successor in the VVD party, Justice Minister Dilan Yesilgoz, is a Turkish immigrant that is tough on immigration. She wants to become the country’s first woman prime minister.
“Among her main contenders is lawmaker Pieter Omtzigt, a centrist policy wonk who founded his own party after breaking with the Christian Democrats, also polling around 18%. Omtztigt has proposed a raft of reforms, including ending subsidies on electric cars and solar panels he says benefit the wealthy. He also suggested seeking exemptions from European Union rules on agriculture and immigration arguing they do not make sense in the densely populated Netherlands.”
Former European Commission Vice President Frans Timmermans leads a combined Labour and Green Left Party ticket hoping to form a centrist coalition.
Anti-Islam firebrand Geert Wilders softened his image as his Freedom Party, which is fourth with 12%, could enter government with Rutte gone.
Between Yezilgoz, Omtzig, Timmermans and Wilders, the new Netherlands are being born.
But between those, Pieter Omtzig is said to be expected to be the kingmaker of this contested election.
He has highlighted his fundamental differences with anti-Islam lawmaker Wilders, whose party also is polling strongly.
Associated Press reported:
“Pieter Omtzigt, who only formed his New Social Contract party over the summer, is very narrowly behind the People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD) of outgoing Prime Minister Mark Rutte in the polls. Wilders’ Freedom Party (PVV) is in fourth place.
[…] Omtzigt made his name by campaigning on behalf of citizens caught up in government scandals and is calling for reform of the Dutch political system. He is expected to play a pivotal role in talks to form a new coalition after the vote.
He said that Wilders’ anti-Islam policies go against freedoms of expression and religion that are enshrined in the Dutch constitution. One of Omtzigt’s policy pledges is to create a constitutional court in the Netherlands that would be able to rule on government plans before they become law.”
Wilders toned down his anti-Islam program, saying that other policies now are priorities.
“Omtzigt also said Thursday that it would be difficult for his party to work with the Labor-Green Left bloc due to those parties’ tax and migration plans. Omtzigt has said he wants to significantly reduce all forms of migration to the Netherlands.”