PvdA leader tells supporters to stay strong
Yesterday afternoon PvdA leader Diederik Samsom called on his party to be determined and to be confident that the changes resulting from the government policy will work out well for the country. In his speech to the PvdA-congress in Utrecht, he defended the cooperation with the VVD in the current Cabinet. Samsom has been increasingly under fire within his party in recent times. In the polls the PvdA is on a historic low of 11 seats. Among other things Samsom is criticized for making the 'PvdA-sound' heard too little and of too often defending the government policy. According to Samsom, the PvdA really gets business done in this Cabinet. "The PvdA is in this coalition because with it we can realize our ideals and nowhere else." In his speech Samsom said that he sees that there are doubts sneaking into the party. He called for determination and pointed to the "successes" of PvdA members such as Lodewijk Asscher, Martin van Rijn, Jeroen Dijsselbloem and Jetta Klijnsma. In the beginning of his speech Samsom discussed the recent attacks in Paris and the social unrest that derived from it. He stated that in the context of the attacks an "us"- and "them"- camp has indeed formed, but that this camp does not run along religious or ethnic lines. "No, we are the people who cherish freedom, tolerance, progress, democracy. There are so many. And they are of all religions, denominations, orientations and ethnicities."
Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem predicts that the second half of this Cabinet term will be better for the PvdA. It is will be better economically, there will be more money to spend. Dijsselbloem therefore asks the PvdA voters to have some patience with the Cabinet. "We are entering a new phase, also economically. Now we come into the second half in which it is possible to do all sorts of things. Let us self enjoy the fruits of the economic recovery and there also influence it in the next two years." Dijsselbloem believes that the PvdA should not throw in the towel if they get a bad result on March 18th. Last week Samsom stated that he will continue to lead the PvdA until the national elections in 2017, even if they suffer a loss in the elections on March 18th.