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Austerity talks collapse as Wilders walks out, election now likely

Saturday 21 April 2012

austerity%20talks%20collapse Prime minister Mark Rutte explains what went wrong. Photo: WFA

Austerity talks between the minority coalition and anti-immigration PVV collapsed on Saturday afternoon, when PVV leader Geert Wilders walked out. New elections are now on the cards, prime minister Mark Rutte told reporters.

In a news conference shortly after Wilders left the negotiations, both Rutte and CDA leader Maxime Verhagen blamed the collapse on the PVV leader.

'At the last moment, the PVV was shocked about the impact of the consequences of previously made agreements,' Rutte said.

Verhagen said all hopes of an agreement had been dashed. The PVV leader has 'left 16 million Dutch people in the lurch,' he said.

PVV position

The Telegraaf reports that Wilders felt he had to withdraw from the negotiations after discussing the package of measures with other PVV officials.

The talks between the coalition and its alliance partner resumed on Saturday to assess the results of a financial analysis of the austerity measures.

In a short statement Wilders said he could not accept that pensioners would have to pay for 'useless' demands from Brussels. Agreeing with the measures is 'not in the interest of our PVV voters,' he said.


Labour leader Diederick Samsom said new elections are now inevitable. 'Everyone will have to share in the pain of the crisis,' he said.

However, if there is an election, it is unlikely to take place before September. This means the minority government will continue in a caretaker function until then, but will be unable to take significant steps to revitalise the economy without parliamentary approval.

In particular, it is unclear what the implications are for the 2013 budget - which the coalition alliance has spent the past seven weeks working towards. The budget is always presented on the third Tuesday in September.

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

Let's hope VVD and CDA strengthen their position so that they can govern without PVV and SGP, maybe bringing alone D66.

By Andre L. | 21 April 2012 6:24 PM

The sooner the better, I say.

Let's just banish Geert Wilders and the PVV party into oblivion.

By poeliewoepsie | 21 April 2012 6:25 PM

New elections are now on the cards, prime minister Mark Rutte told reporters.

Maybe, maybe not. The Queen calls for an election, not the PM.

By Puck | 21 April 2012 8:07 PM

this so called minority goverment had let down 16 million dutch in limbo.

By sola | 21 April 2012 9:14 PM

I think the only winning strategy against PVV is to ignore them completely and never to discuss their publicity stunts.

By George | 21 April 2012 11:06 PM

Gertie sounds reasonable to me, why should pensioners pay for useless Brussels demands?

By Sharon | 21 April 2012 11:32 PM

Puck, just to clarify the concept of constitutional monarchy: the queen calls for an election when the prime minister tells her to. Have you any idea what would happen if he "asked" her to and she refused? Or if she "told" him she was calling for one without his fiat? No? Well, within a month this country would be either a republic, or Wim would be on the throne...

By William | 22 April 2012 12:48 AM

Thank you Geert for sticking up for Dutch pensioners! I wonder if the socialists can do the same for once? It seems that all parties be it left or right will screw there own people and do what ever the elitists & Eurocrats say.

By Phil | 22 April 2012 3:51 AM

While we argue about who's fault it is. The banks and credit rating agencies are plotting to introduce more austerity, raising interest rates, and taking the Netherlands into the same sinking boat as Southern Europe. People: the end of the Euro is not if, but when. The rich are buying gold and silver to protect themselves and we argue about politician puppets, that are fronts for the real crooks in the banking system. Wilders is not part of the banking system puppet show and he will have my vote in a few months again.

By Mark | 22 April 2012 6:41 AM

Love him or hate him, now that he is gone it is only a matter of time before the CDA turns its bottom towards Brussels for whatever shafting it cares to mete out.

By Al | 22 April 2012 9:37 AM

This was an inevitable result of having the PVV as a 'tolerated' coalition partner. The PVV's views are far too extreme and its really ALL about Wilders, not about governing or participating in the democratic process. The party itself isn't even democratic, of course this was doomed to fail. It was only a matter of time. Now however, is not a great time for this to happen. NL is on the verge of a ratings cut which seems much more likely to happen now with this development.

By Bill | 22 April 2012 9:53 AM

I think most people are surprised this awful government laasted so long.I see the other two are quick to point the finger at Wilders and rightly so but lets not forget they chose to work with him and allow him to almost destroy the reputation of the Netherlands abroad.All of them are to blame and the voters should rember this.Time for change time to be a seriouse country again instead of the laughing stock of the world.

By jason buttle | 22 April 2012 9:54 AM

not suprising! I didn't expect more from Geert Wilders! They shouldn't be in the government in the first pkace!

By Sara | 22 April 2012 12:17 PM

Useless or not, the Dutch government has been very consistent in demanding other countries to follow those same demands, so it seems only fair to comply with what you ask from others.
In my opinion, Wilders is only prooving the point that his blind xenophobia and missguided nationalism are hurting the Netherlands.

By Marin | 22 April 2012 1:04 PM

George April 21, 2012 11:32. You're so right. These guys are again fooling around with the Dutch people's minds. What a shame.

By Felice M. | 22 April 2012 1:06 PM

The Netherlands is a long time already screwed up with this Government and Kingdom rules for history!

By John Bertrand | 22 April 2012 4:48 PM

It still amazes me that in the last election Mark Rutte's party only received about 15% of the total vote and yet was ordained to form a government. Coaltions are subject to changes like this when one partner has a falling out. The collapse is no surprise to me, an outsider, and I believe the Dutch also knew union was bound to unravel sooner or later. It just came sooner than later.

By Roland (US Ex-Pat in Holland) | 22 April 2012 6:05 PM

Now that the countries finances are under stress, suddenly it is all due to "evil Brussels" and Eurozone failure.Consistently Nederland has been loudly condemning Greece and other southern States for being unable to maintain their finances.These 3% levels have been demanded by Nederland on other countries and now perhaps Nederland is seeing a little bit of the pain.I certainly disagree with the methods that these politicians come up with that almost always hurt those least able to cope with it.The culprits of these hard times are still largely unaffected and once again Banks and Business interests are sitting happily in the pockets of the Politicians.

By mario | 22 April 2012 7:57 PM

When you make pact with the devil, you cannot win, that´s a lesson to Rutte:)
AND, they ALL live from our tax money (+ what they make beside), and with that, they make decisions how to make cuts in the budget and take more of our money, with the excuses Euro, immigrants and whatever!!! Why don´t they dear to take the money from the right place??
At my work, they are firing everyone, and then the same company is offering the same positions in East Europe for a much lower salary.
So why doesn't PVV talk about that, instead of harassing poor people who run away from one mafia (East block), to the next one here.

By free | 22 April 2012 9:17 PM

In the 2010 elections, Rutte's VVD received the largest share of the vote at 20.4%, so was of course given the first chance to form a coalition.
With the rest of the vote split between PvDA ( Labour ) on 20%, PVV ( Wilders ) on 16% , CDA ( Balkenende ) on 14% and SP ( Socialists ) on 10% etc., any majority coalition would have needed at least 3 parties, and there was never much chance of e.g. VVD and PvDA agreeing on any shared policies.
A VDA/CDA coalition with tacit support from PVV was judged the only workable solution, but unwillingness to negotiate ( from all parties ) has made new elections inevitable.

By Simon | 23 April 2012 9:58 AM

Once again I see people blaming Brussels as though it was some alien government forcing itself on us.
Brussels has power because EU governments (including NL) gave them that power!
The 3% rule is another piece of legislation the Netherlands had a part in creating but now people are complaining thet it wasn't us, it was the nasty foreigners.

By Donaugh | 23 April 2012 10:30 AM

I really want to second what Jason Buttle said. It was indeed Mark Rutte and the VVD leaders (and also the CDA) who chose a right-wing government over a middle of the spectrum VVD-PVDA-D66 government or a left or a center-left government. Rutte chose to bring Wilders' instability into the heart of the country's governance and reputation. I hope both the voters and current MPs remember that.

By Robert | 23 April 2012 11:26 AM

Right on target Donaugh, thanks.
Stop crying about Brussels and the EU - you all voted for it! The time to stop it was BACK THEN, too late now. Now its going to cost us ALL a fortune, and the kids that follow us, and their kids.
WAKE UP Europe.

By Bill | 23 April 2012 3:46 PM

The measures from duet Rutte-Wilders, have led us to the recession, and rising unemployment. In any university in the world is taught that to get out of a recession, the first magnitude that it must be increased is domestic consumption. These measures are going exactly the opposite direction and they strangle growth. Increasing, therefore, the deficit rather than reducing it, by reducing incomes for state linked to growth.

By zenplus | 23 April 2012 6:13 PM

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