Dutch cabinet survives Teevendeal debate but van Miltenburg is fall girl

Last week, the debate on the #teevendeal forced the cabinet to eat humble pie. Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte admitted Wednesday’s debate was the “most difficult in his political career”.  A vote of censure was brought by the opposition against Rutte. He survived, of course, cabinets always do apparently when they do badly in the … Continue reading Dutch cabinet survives Teevendeal debate but van Miltenburg is fall girl

Sheer numbers force shift in Dutch government’s stance on refugee crisis

Back in April, Rutte II almost split over the matter of what to do with failed asylum seekers who are unable or unwilling to leave the country. As tens of thousands of refugees advance towards the heart of Europe, the coalition has now been forced to find common ground on how to tackle the crisis. … Continue reading Sheer numbers force shift in Dutch government’s stance on refugee crisis

Is it time for change in democracy as a new Senate takes its seats?

Usually little attention is paid in the media to the election of the Upper House of Parliament in the Netherlands. It’s a slightly outdated system, in which the newly elected provincial parliament members vote for their candidate in the Senate. Not quite as archaic as the UK’s Upper House of hereditary peers, but hardly an example … Continue reading Is it time for change in democracy as a new Senate takes its seats?

Coalition partners lean so far they almost tipped the balance

The coalition partners VVD and Labour had agreed to disagree when Labour leader Diederik Samsom told a party conference recently his party would be leaning as far as it could to the left. At the same time, recent comments by VVD parliamentary leader Halbe Zijlstra showed the Dutch liberals are leaning as far as possible to … Continue reading Coalition partners lean so far they almost tipped the balance