Dutch people head to the polls for 2017 parliamentary elections

Election time in the Netherlands - directions to voting stations
Election time in the Netherlands - directions to voting stations. (Photo: Onderwijsgek / Wikipedia )

Today the Dutch are voting for a new parliament at one of 8,891 polling stations. The first polling stations to open were in Castricum and Amsterdam at midnight. Hundreds of votes were already cast, RTL Nieuws reports.

All polling stations are open between 7:30 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. Don't know where to vote? A map with polling stations per municipality can be found here.

Milo Lambers from Haarlem was the first Dutch person to cast his vote in the parliamentary election. He waited for over an hour in front of the Castricum polling station before it opened. He would not tell RTL who he voted for, but did say that the party falls on the left of the political spectrum. "Both the party and the people who belong to it ideologically best fit with my views", he said to the broadcaster. Between midnight and 1:00 a.m. a total of 97 people cast their vote at the Castricum polling station, located at the flower kiosk at the train station. 

Many young people voted in Tolhuistuin in Amsterdam, according to NOS. About 400 young people between the ages of 18 and 25 years attended a voting party there, organized by music labels TopNotch, Noahs Ark and Rotterdam Airlines. To get into the party you had to take a voting pass and have your ID with you. According to one of the organizers, partygoers massively voted between midnight and 3:00 a.m.

No new polls will be published today, as to not influence the elections. In the last Peilingwijzer, the VVD was in the lead with the PVV following close behind. 

The first exit poll from research office Ipsos is expected from 9:00 p.m. The exit poll is based on a survey of 40 polling stations. About half an hour later, ANP will start publishing the first results. Depending on the size and distribution of municipalities, the news wire will publish the "voting picture" after the results of between 10 and 40 municipalities are in. After the results of between 50 and 100 municipalities are in, a preliminary forecast will be published. When most of the 388 municipalities have their results in, including three of the four large cities, ANP will publish its prognosis.

The official results will only be announced on Tuesday, March 21st.