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2017 European general elections


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So the first one of three key general elections is today, with voting in the Netherlands already begun.

Here's a breakdown of this elections. (Courtesy of Reddit)


Election system

Cycle: every 4 years, unless cabinet "collapses" before

Voting system: Party-list proportional representation

Apportionment method: D'Hondt method (slightly favours larger parties)

Total number of seats: 150

Electoral threshold: none (technically 1/150th of the votes, ~0.67%, around 70.000 votes considering previous election turnouts)

Short summary:

The Netherlands has a multi-party system, with numerous parties, in which usually no one party ever secures an overall majority of votes, so that several parties must cooperate to form a coalition government. Contrary to popular belief, the largest party does not always deliver the Prime Minister, nor does it have to take part in the coalition. Two weeks after the elections, the new parliament will be installed in the upper house (Tweede Kamer der Staten-Generaal). Coalition formation can take much longer. Parties that will try to form a coalition, will hash out a draft coalition agreement or regeerakkoord. Ideally a cabinet should be chosen from parties which together form a majority (76 seats) in the House, in order to pass legislation efficiently.

A record number of 28 parties will take part in the general elections this year, which has not occurred anymore since 1933.

Example of the voting ballot of 2012 elections with 21 parties

Elaborate explanation of the Dutch political system by u/TonyQuark

Current government: VVD - PvdA


VVD | Volkspartij voor Vrijheid en Democratie (People's Party for Freedom and Democracy)

centre-right to right, economic liberalism, conservative liberalism

Mark Rutte | Current leading party. Together with D66 part of ALDE in the EP. Supportive of the free market: focusses on tax and allowance reduction and international trade. The party recently stressed the strengthening of the national security. Campaign leader Mark Rutte is currently attempting to win back voters who have defected to the PVV with a though stance on immigration and recently wrote an open letter calling on troublemakers in the society to 'act normal or leave'.

PvdA | Partij van de Arbeid (Labour Party)

centre-left, social democrats

Lodewijk Asscher | Oldest secular party currently represented. Part of the current coalition with the VVD. Popular support for the PvdA fell into a gradual decline in the recent years and could lose up to 70% of the seats, mainly because of the cooperation with the VVD.

PVV | Partij voor de Vrijheid (Party for Freedom)

anti-immigration, Euroscepticism, conservative right-wing populism

Geert Wilders | Started with Geert Wilders' departure from the VVD in September 2004, because of their positive stance towards Turkey's possible accession to the European Union. It technically has Geert Wilders as its sole member, making the party odd in the Dutch parliament. Wilders has made a career of speaking out against the Islamisation of the Netherlands and lives under permanent armed guard because of death threats.

SP | Socialistische Partij (Socialist Party)

left, left-wing populism, soft Euroscepticism

Emile Roemer | Has roots in the former Dutch Communist Party and Leninist movement. Beside its socialist manifesto, it calls to reintroduce a collective healthcare system and to bring back the retirement age to 65 years. It used to hover around on the sidelines, but its support surged under the current leader Emile Roemer.

CDA | Christen-Democratisch Appèl (Christian Democratic Appeal)

centre to centre-right, christian democracy

Sybrand van Haersma Buma | Merged from three Christian-democratic parties in the seventies and eighties. The party and its predecessors have been part of almost every coalitions since 1918, though popular support for the CDA has been in a gradual decline. The Bible is seen as a source of inspiration rather than a diktat. Politically, the CDA is viewed as middle of the road and socially conservative

D66 | Democraten 66 (Democrats 66)

broad centrist, liberalism, eurofederalism

Alexander Pechtold | D66 was independently formed in 1966, describing itself as a progressive, socially liberal party and focusses on eduction. Unique issues: favours a Federal Europe and abolishment of the monarchy (reduction of the monarchy to a ceremonial monarchy). Although it never had more than 24 seats, it has been part of 5 coalitions since its formation. Current leader Alexander Pechtold has been winning plaudits for his opposition to the rhetoric of anti-Islam MP Geert Wilders.

CU | ChristenUnie (Christian Union)

centre to centre-right, social conservatism, christian democracy, soft-Euroscepticism

Gert-Jan Segers | Relatively yonug merger (2001). Holds socially conservative positions on issues such as same-sex marriage, abortion and euthanasia, is Eurosceptic, while maintaining progressive stances on economic, immigration and environmental issues.

GroenLinks (GreenLeft)

left, left-wing, green politics, green liberalism

Jesse Klaver | Merger of Communist Party of the Netherlands, Pacifist Socialist Party and two minor radical parties in 1989. Describes its basic principles as green, social, and tolerant. Strongly gained popular support after electing the new young party leader Jesse Klaver. Has not been part of any coalition since its formation.

SGP | Staatskundig Gereformeerde Partij (Reformed Political Party)

christian right-wing, orthodox protestant conservatism, dominionism

Kees van der Staaij | Oldest political party in the Netherlands in its current form, and has for its entire existence been in opposition. Holds calvinistic and orthodox social positions and believes women should not play an active role in politics. Mostly a testimonial party and receives most votes from the Dutch 'Bible Belt'.

PvdD | Partij voor de Dieren (Animal Party)

left-wing, environmentalism, animal liberation, green politics

Marianne Thieme | Founded in 2002. Among its main goals are animal rights and animal welfare, though it claims not to be a single-issue party.


pensioners' interest, populism

Henk Krol | Founded in 2009. Tries to lower the retirement age to 65 again.

Minor parties without a seat in the last parliament, but have a chance of getting one or two seats this year:

  • DENK (THINK / BALANCE in Turkish) multicultural / Muslim immigrant populism
  • VNL | Voor Nederland (For the Netherlands) anti-immigration, classical liberalism, Euroscepticism
  • PP | Piratenpartij (Pirate Party) digital pirate politics
  • FvD | Forum voor Democratie (Forum for Democracy) direct democracy, Euroscepticism, intellectual populism

Other parties:

Ondernemerspartij, Nieuwe Wegen, De Burgerbeweging, Vrijzinnige Partij, GeenPeil, Artikel1, Niet-Stemmers, Libertarische Partij, Lokaal in de kamer, Jezus Leeft, MenS/Basisinkomenpartij/VR, Vrije Democratische Partij

Total number of parties: 28


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saw this the other day  - 28 parties WTF is that all about !!

tricky one as for the European shake up I'd Like to see Wilders to win , but then equally he's clearly bonkers and shouldn't be allowed anywhere near politics , or even given oxygen

Sounds like if he does get a win nobody will work with him anyway so you'll have a weird situation  , one that I don't have enough knowledge of Dutch politics to know how that plays out


lets just get onto the main event of Merkel being kicked into touch and then the real fun begins

Edited by tonyh29
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11 minutes ago, tonyh29 said:

tricky one as for the European shake up I'd Like to see Wilders to win , but then equally he...shouldn't be ... given oxygen

WHat is the European Shake Up you'd like to happen, Tony?

If it's along the lines of greater openness, less sucking up to big business, less waste on moving from strasbourg to brussels every 2 weeks, reduction in the powers of some of the beaurocrats, less pro-globalisation, reforming the CAP and such like [I'm guessing, but they're the sort of things that make sense to me at least]  - how would electing an absolute horror help with that? One of the characteristics of all these Trump/Le-Pen/Farage/May ;) types is an unwillingness to listen or consult or do anything other than follow their "instincts". None of those types are (IMO) remotely likely to bring about any kind of reform of the EU i nthe way (I'm guessing) you'd want, surely?

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53 minutes ago, HanoiVillan said:

Who the **** votes for 'The Party for the Animals'? How and why is that a thing?

I think it's maybe Turkeys, as I've heard they don't vote for other stuff. Could be wrong mind. Maybe it's just sheeple, angry cows, daft birds and northern monkeys? 

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2 hours ago, HanoiVillan said:

Who the **** votes for 'The Party for the Animals'? How and why is that a thing?

So you wouldn't vote for "The Whopping Great Wellington Boot Party" as a matter of principle?

vowels in acronyms are for some derogatory term or other!

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8 hours ago, LakotaDakota said:

Exit polls showed a disappointing night for Brexit & Trump...

 I get the Trump reference but the Brexit link doesn't make any sense. 

Good news though regardless, Rutte getting into the mix with the Turks after Erdogan called the Dutch Nazi remnants probably helped him a great deal with the soft right vote. 

Wilders went from a predicted 41 seats in January to 19 on the day. It'll be interesting to see what the analysis suggests caused that collapse - although in raw numbers the PVV has still increased their Parliamentary seats. 

Le Pen will be a little more worried this morning too! 

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17 hours ago, StefanAVFC said:

The threat to Merkel is from the left, not the right. If Schultz wins then Germany will be even further pro-EU.

Yep, would still be a shift towards the political extremes but as you say in the opposite direction. 

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1 hour ago, Awol said:

 I get the Trump reference but the Brexit link doesn't make any sense.  

You don't remember Farage effectively conceding defeat at around 10pm while the votes were being counted?

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23 minutes ago, ml1dch said:

You don't remember Farage effectively conceding defeat at around 10pm while the votes were being counted?

Totally misread the post, thought he'd written show not showed. My bad.  

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  • 3 weeks later...

Marine Le Pen could still win the first round of the French presidential election but will then be crushed by her likely opponent, according to the latest poll.

The far-right leader is tied on 25 per cent of support for the initial ballot on 23 April but looks set to lose heavily to the centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron in the second and decisive vote.

More than 14,300 people were surveyed for the opinion poll by LeMonde/Cevipof, which showed a sharp rise in voter certainty as choices solidify ahead of the rapidly approaching election.


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  • 2 weeks later...
6 minutes ago, coda said:

Not a GE but what the hell happened in Turkey? I don't know if it was rigged, can't understand people voting for that.

Erdogan is exceptionally popular everywhere bar some cities (and even then only in some demographics). A lot of that support will just vote for whatever 'their man' says is right. I'm sure he's 'made sure' but I'd not be shocked to see him have the numbers legitimately.

Nationalism, and religious fervour in a nation that was constrained against religious interference, will do a lot for a candidate that tap it. And that's all Erdogan does.

Turkey as Atatürk envisioned has had the final nail driven into it.

Edited by Chindie
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