Wednesday, May 21, 2014 - 21:49
Rutte slapped down for Europe limits letter
Prime Minister Mark Rutte is being attacked by opposition party Members of Parliament over his issuance of a formal statement about what the Dutch representatives in European government should prioritize. Rutte, a member of the VVD conservative party, made comments directly opposed by the agenda of his government coalition partner, the leftist PvdA. A debate about the memorandum Rutte issued has been scheduled for Tuesday morning. Rutte wants those selected by the Dutch in this week’s European Parliament election to join him for dinner that evening. “The Prime Minister spoke out of turn,” and is being rebuffed, said D66 head Alexander Pechtold in comments to the Volkskrant. Similar comments were made by politicians from the Socialist Party and Christian Democrats, who also claimed that Frans Timmermans, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, directly opposed Rutte’s priorities list. Timmermans, a member of the PvdA, was joined by party leader Diederik Samsom in fiercely rebuking the Prime Minister. Green party GroenLinks also joined the chorus of voices against Rutte. In Rutte’s letter, he said that the Netherlands contingent of European parliament members should spend the next five years reducing regulations, increasing free trade, building a stronger domestic market, creating a single energy market, and eliminating aspects of collective bargaining power.