A few weeks ago the participation of Geert Wilders’ party in a new government was virtually unthinkable. All the mainstream Dutch parties had closed ranks in a steadfast refusal to consider the possibility of any coalition that might include the PVV.
But something has changed in the meantime. The informateur has evidently been unable to cobble together a working coalition of any combination that excludes the PVV, so now the unthinkable has become thinkable.
According to Dutch News:
CDA Agrees to Talks About Talks on a Right-Wing Government
The Christian Democrats have agreed to enter talks about talks on forming a right-wing government with the free market Liberals and anti-Islam PVV.
The party’s 20 MPs met on Saturday and gave their unanimous go ahead to party leader Maxime Verhagen to take part in informal talks with the VVD and PVV.
On Friday, new cabinet negotiator Ruud Lubbers called on the three parties to meet informally to look at the options. Earlier, the CDA refused to join because of the PVV’s extreme stance on Islam.
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‘We have decided to fall in with negotiator Lubber’s request,’ Verhagen said after the meeting. ‘But we will not budge from our principles. Freedom of religion is for everyone…’ he said.
PVV leader Geert Wilders wants the introduction of a tax on Muslim headscarves, a ban on the Koran and ethnic registration. He currently faces charges of inciting religious and ethnic hatred.
The exploratory talks between the three leaders will take place without Lubbers, to emphasis the informality. No date and time as yet been set.
Verhagen and Liberal leader Mark Rutte had dinner together on Friday night.
If the three parties go on to form a new government, it would control just 76 of the 150 seats in parliament and have no majority in the upper house, or senate.
Now the big question: if the PVV does indeed become part of a coalition government, what ministry will be given to Geert Wilders?
Hat tip: C. Cantoni.