The Netherlands moves to the right

The assassinated Pym Fortuyn was present at every stage of these elections, which saw his conservative party, three months after its constitution, claim 26 of his country’s 150 seats, while the Christian Democrat, Jan Peter Balkanende, is set to become the new Prime Minister.

The losers in this election were the parties which had formed the coalition led by PVDA party leader Win Kok, whose government had resigned after it was revealed that the Dutch army contingent in the UN had acted weakly in Bosnia, although the supposed Serb atrocities are still being investigated and are contested by many experts as having been yet another fabrication of evidence.

Wim Kok’s party lost almost half their members of parliament, falling from 45 to 24 members, while coalition partners the Liberal party fell from 38 to 24 places in parliament. The other member of the coalition, the independent liberal party D66, also saw its members of parliament decrease from 14 to 8.

On the left, the Socialist Party increased its membership in parliament, rising from 5 to 10 members. The winners were the conservative CDA (Christian Democrats) and Pym Fortuyn’s LPF (Dutch nationalists), which won 40 and 26 seats, respectively. The LPF managed to obtain 17% of the vote and if it enters a coalition, may receive between four and five ministries, although the party has no experience of government.

CDA leader Jan Peter Balkanende declared that “It is too early to talk about the new coalition”, which may take months to form. One thing is certain: the LPF is a new force on the Dutch political stage.

Final results, previous members of parliament first and new standing second: CDA (29 – 40), LPF (0 – 26), PVDA (45 – 24), VVD (38 – 24), SP (5 – 10), D66 (14 – 8)


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