There is a chance that upcoming elections in the Netherlands may have to be delayed due to the measures in place to curb the spread of the coronavirus, Minister Kasja Ollongren of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations said in a letter to parliament on Friday. She is currently looking into options to avoid this, such as whether voting stations can reasonably be organized so that everyone can keep 1.5 meters apart. Voting by mail is also being considered, she said.
In the run-up to the parliamentary election last year, pro-diversity party DENK worked on a fake PVV advertisement aimed at setting the anti-Islam party in a bad light, NPO Radio 1 program De Nieuws BV reports. DENK ultimately decided not to use the idea. PVV leader Geert Wilders is furious and is considering pressing charges against DENK.
The online ad consisted of a picture of Wilders with the text: 'After 15 March we will purify the Netherlands', according to De Nieuws BV.
This year Hurricane Irma, the parliamentary elections in March and the government formation that followed, a Dutch comedian mocking Donald Trump, and gay bashing in Arnhem held NL Times the most readers' attention. Here follows the top 10 most read stories on NL Times in 2017, in contrast to our picks for the top stories of the year.
2017 was a busy year for the Netherlands, with parliamentary elections and a new government forming, a hurricane hitting three islands that form part of the Kingdom, and a number of murders that rocked the country. Here follows a summary of the biggest stories of the year.
Hillary Clinton believes that her loss in the American presidential election last year, had an influence on the Dutch parliamentary election earlier this year. At the very least, Dutch voters were more informed about things like Russia trying to influence international elections with propaganda after that happened in the United States election, she said in an interview with RTL Nieuws correspondent Erik Mouthaan.
"I think it [the U.S. election] certainly gave Dutch voters information that American voters didn't have", she said in the interview.
The Netherlands may test digitizing some steps in the voting process for voters abroad in future elections. Hague mayor Pauline Krikke wants to adapt the election act so that voters living abroad can receive their voting card digitally, instead of by post. She wants the elections to be less dependent on other countries' postal systems, NOS reports.
"In some countries, it's no exception that a mail bag will lie in a post office for a few weeks", Krikke said. The Hague is in charge of arranging the elections for Dutch people abroad.
Some 40 percent of Dutch voters with visual impairment or with mental disabilities had trouble in the polling station during the parliamentary election in March, according to a study by the College of Human Rights. The Netherlands must do more to help these vulnerable groups cast their vote, the college said, according to RTL Nieuws.
A massive 8,700 votes from the municipalities Boxmeer and Bergeijk were not counted in the parliamentary election in March due to human error at the main polling station in Den Bosch, Minister Ronald Plasterk of Home Affairs revealed after receiving a report from Mayor Ton Rombouts, Brabants Dagblad reports.
If the PvdA wants to survive, it must spend the coming years changing from a classic management party to a broad public movement that stands with and for the people, Labour party celebrity Paul Depla said in a report on the party's future, ANP reports.
The party asked Depla, a prominent PvdA member and mayor of Breda, to investigate how the party could overcome the loss of 29 seats in the last parliamentary election. Depla did so by speaking with hundreds of people, both in and outside of the party, to come up wth what he calls "future recommendations".
The counting of votes in Dutch elections must be better checked and there must be more transparency into the process, Minister Ronald Plasterk of Home Affairs concluded after evaluating the parliamentary election in March, ANP reports.
VVD leader and current Prime Minister Mark Rutte does not see a breakthrough happening in the government formation talks any time soon. In fact, he worries that new elections may be necessary, he said in a live session the VVD hosted on Facebook on Wednesday afternoon, NU.nl reports.
The votes of 919 Dutch people abroad did not reach the Netherlands in time to count in the parliamentary election on March 15th, the Volkskrant reports based on information from the municipality of The Hague. The city served as central point for votes coming from abroad.
It seems that highly educated Dutch tend to vote more progressively. According to a study by the Erasmus University Rotterdam's Erasmus Magazine, if only votes cast at polling stations located at colleges and universities in the parliamentary election last month, the D66 and GroenLinks would together have more than half of the parliamentary seats. While the VVD, PVV and CDA together only got 24 percent of the votes.
The new Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, was sworn in on Thursday. Of the total 150 parliamentarians, 71 weren't in the previous parliament. All 150 parliamentarians had to take the oath, NOS reports.
The process of government formation continued on Wednesday with a meeting between coalition scout Edith Schippers and PVV leader Geert Wilders. The meeting lasted a relatively short 20 minutes. Afterwards Wilders would say nothing other than it was "interesting", NOS reports
Today the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, is saying goodbye to 71 parliamentarians. On Thursday the new parliament, which was elected last week, will meet for the first time, NOS reports.
The Dutch electoral council announced the official results for the parliamentary results on Tuesday, and they were exactly the same as ANP's final projection last week. The election turnout was 81.9 percent, the highest since 1986. The new parliament will consist of 13 parties, the highest number since 1972.
After all of the larger parties' leaders gave their coalition wishes through to coalition scout Edith Schippers, it is clear that the CDA, D66 and VVD are all willing to work together. A fourth party will be needed to give the coalition a majority, and the most likely candidates seem to be GroenLinks and ChristenUnie. So far the PVV hasn't been mentioned in any ideal cabinet, except on the PVV's own wish list. Leader Geert Wilders called it "undemocratic and unmarketable" if his party is not part of the coalition negotiations, the Volkskrant reports.
Edith Schippers, current Health Minister, is starting her work as "coalition scout" this morning with a meeting with VVD leader and current Prime Minister Mark Rutte. As coalition scout Schippers will speak to all elected party leader and discuss their desires in forming a coalition and present a report with the best possible coalitions, NOS reports.
Several PvdA Ministers are calling for calm and unity following a crushing defeat in the parliamentary election on Wednesday. According to the labor leaders, a reckoning now fixes nothing, Het Parool reports.
Despite numerous actions to get young Dutch voters, between the ages of 18 and 24 years, to the polls, fewer voted in Wednesday's election than in the 2012 election. In 2012 the turnout for this group was 70 percent, on Wednesday it was 66 percent, according to a large survey by Ipsos. Official results will be released by the Dutch electoral council Kiesraad next week, Het Parool reports.
After a night of celebrations or condolences following the parliamentary election on Wednesday, the Dutch political party leaders are gathering in parliament to discuss the election results and start the massive task of creating a new government. GroenLinks party leader Jesse Klaver thinks it will be "difficult" to for his party to form a coalition party with the VVD, the biggest party after the election, but he is willing to consider it, the Telegraaf reports.
Current Public Health Minister Edith Schippers (VVD) was appointed to explore the coalition possiblities for the Netherlands' new cabinet, lower house president Khadija Arib announced at a press conference on Thursday afternoon. Schippers will start working as soon as possible and is expected to have a progress report ready by March 21st, so that the new parliament can debate it on Thursday.
A photo of people counting ballots at football club r.k.s.v. EMOS in Enschede while a porno can be seen on a big screen in the clubhouse, caused quite a stir. "The results here are not known yet", Thijs Fiselier tweeted with the photo.
As a joke some footballers switched the big screen from NPO1 to a porn channel and snapped a picture. The photo shows two naked women on the massive television screen, while in the foreground two people are counting ballots, none the wiser.