Dutch Labour big winner in EU exit polling
The PvdA, Labour party in the Netherlands, was the big winner in the elections held in the Netherlands to determine the country's representation in the European Parliament, according to an exit poll by Ipsos for broadcaster NOS. With a European contingent headed by popular European Commissioner Frans Timmermans, the Labour party is expected to hold five seats of the 26 up for grabs on Thursday night. That would equate to an increase of two seats, with the exit poll carrying a two-percent margin of error equating to one seat in parliament.
Exit polling also showed a drop in support for Nexit and other nationalist issues, and an increase in support for a stronger European Union.
Nationalist far-right party Forum voor Democratie took three seats, which have them behind Prime Minister Mark Rutte's right wing VVD party. The pro-EU VVD is expected to hold four seats, an increase of one.
The gains by FvD do not mean an increase in seats for the nationalist wing in the Netherlands, as the big losers of the night were Geert Wilders's PVV. The party is expected to lose three of its four seats, meaning the two parties combine for four seats.
GroenLinks and 50Plus are the only other parties expected to gain a seat, with the greens upping their representation to three seats, and 50Plus capturing their only seat, according to Ipsos.
Also D66 saw their four seats slashed in half, striking a blow to that party's European goals. The results of the final exit polling shows the following political parties won specific percentages of the electorate (with the change from the 2014 election in parenthesis):
- PvdA, 18.1% of the vote for 5 seats (up 8.7%, up 2 seats)
- VVD, 15.0% of the vote for 4 seats (up 3.0%, up 1 seat)
- CDA, 12.3% of the vote for 4 seats (down 2.9%, down 1 seat)
- FvD, 11.0% of the vote for 3 seats (did not participate in 2014, first 3 seats)
- GroenLinks, 10.5% of the vote for 3 seats (up 3.5%, up 1 seat)
- D66, 6.3% of the vote for 2 seats (down 9.2%, down 2 seats)
- ChristenUnie-SGP, 7.9% of the vote for 2 seats (down 0.2%, no change)
- PVV, 4.1% of the vote for 1 seat (down 9.2%, down 3 seats)
- SP, 3.9% of the vote for 1 seat (down 5.7%, down 1 seats)
- 50Plus, 4.1% of the vote for 1 seat (up 0.4%, up 1 seat)
- Partij voor de Dieren, 3.6% of the vote for 0 seats (down 0.6%, down 1 seat)
- Other parties, 3.1% of the vote for 0 seats (up 2.0%, no change)
As other EU Member States are only voting over the weekend, the results for the European elections will only be available on Sunday night or Monday morning. Only the voting public in the Netherlands and the United Kingdom hit the polls for the election on Thursday.