Dutch elections

7 March 2007

Provincial Assemblies: SP repeats parliamentary election triumph in regional poll

Following its increase from nine to twenty-five parliamentary seats in last November’s election, the SP has marked another enormous electoral victory in today’s polls for the Netherlands’ regional governmental assemblies, the “Provinciale Staten”.

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11 December 2006

SP leader Jan Marijnissen: CDA – SP cooperation unfortunately not possible

On the basis of exploratory meetings between the 'informateur' – a neutral person appointed by the Queen to advise on the composition of a new government – and the leaders of the Christian Democrats (CDA), the Labour Party (PvdA) and the SP, it now seems unlikely that the three parties will be able to form a coalition government. Mr Rein Jan Hoekstra's conclusion after repeated talks was that the differences between, in particular, CDA and SP were too great to allow them 'to come in the short term' to an agreement enabling 'stable and fruitful cooperation'. This decision stems from the CDA's desire to take the policies of the pre-election government of Jan Peter Balkenende as its starting point, policies which it seems determined to continue. In addition, the CDA is reluctant to put itself in a position where it forms the minority of a cabinet composed of its own ministers but also those of two parties to its left, the PvdA and the SP. It is particularly unwilling to do this given the clear majority in parliament of parties favouring a change in policy.

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24 November 2006

Dutch socialists paint the town red

STEVE McGIFFEN looks at the signficance of sweeping electoral gains in the Netherlands for Europe's fastest-growing left party.

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24 November 2006

Dutch Socialist Party: the reasons for their success

Elections: An anti-neoliberal party which last year brought about the failure of the European Constitution, the SP knows how to defend clear alternative proposals in the face of a consensus of left and right.

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23 November 2006

General Election: SP wins massive support throughout country

The parliamentary elections held yesterday in the Netherlands led to a veritable political earthquake. The biggest winner was the SP, which grew from nine to twenty-five seats in Parliament's 150-strong lower house, the country's main legislative body. The two parties of the outgoing governing right-wing coalition, the Christian Democratic CDA and the free market liberals of the VVD, lost between them a total of nine seats and thus the majority needed to continue in power. There is, however, no left majority either, for while the SP gained a total of sixteen seats, the social democratic PvdA (Labour Party) dropped from forty-two to thirty-three, with the Green Left falling from eight to seven. A coalition of centre-right CDA and centre-left PvdA also lacks a majority and would not be possible without the cooperation of other parties. The party founded by the right-wing populist leader Pim Fortuyn, gunned down during the general election campaign of 2002, lost all of its MPs and will no longer be represented in the lower house.

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22 November 2006

SP leader Jan Marijnissen: 'The socialists have overtaken the liberals!'

Quarter to ten, and SP campaign leader Hans van Heijningen introduces party leader Jan Marijnissen to a crowded , noisy Melkweg as “the winner of the parliamentary elections of 2006!”. Jan appears from the back of the hall, preceded by all of the SP's newly-elected candidates in a flurry of flowers, balloons and wild applause.

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26 October 2006

Lessons from the rise and fall of Dutch Fortuynism

“Do not think that populism can be tackled by neglecting it. Do not think that populism can be conquered without fighting it.” That should be one of the lessons learned from the spectacular rise and dramatic fall of Dutch populist Fortuynism, said SP-senator Tiny Kox in his contribution to the debate on European populism at the Norwegian Social Forum in Oslo on Friday October 20th. Kox spoke at the invitation of the Manifesto Foundation, which brings together left youth movements in Norway.

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31 August 2006

SP presents election manifesto: “A better Netherlands... for the same cost”

This afternoon saw the presentation in The Hague by SP leader Jan Marijnissen of the SP's draft election manifesto, an event which received unprecedented media attention. Its title, which translates as “A better Netherlands for the same cost” addresses fears that the Socialists in government would prove to be a tax-and-spend party, coupling the promise of improvements with the certainty of higher taxes. It demonstrates how the Netherlands could in fact become a better, more attractive and above all more socially-minded country if after the elections of 22nd November the SP formed part of a progressive government – without incurring extra expense.

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7 March 2006

SP doubles strength in local elections

The SP was, together with the Labour Party, the biggest overall winner in today's 2006 local council elections. The total number of SP council seats rose from 157 to 333. If the party were to repeat its performance in the coming parliamentary elections, it would grow from its present level of nine MPs to seventeen, making it, along with the PvdA (Labour Party), CDA (Christian Democrats) and VVD (right wing liberals), one of the major political parties of the Netherlands.

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