Political crisis: Who will lead the Christian Demcrats

Twenty months after Jan Peter Balkenende stood down as CDA leader following the party’s disastrous showing in the June 2010 general election, the party is still without a front man or woman.

One reason for the decision to delay the general election until September is to give the party time to find the right candidate to lead its election campaign.
Favourite among the voters is finance minister Jan Kees de Jager – regarded by 36% as the most capable person to do the job. However, De Jager has already made it clear he does not want the position, saying it should be up to politicians to decide.
Second in the EenVandaag poll is Sybrand Haersma Buma, who leads the parliamentary party, on 19%. Junior farm minister Henk Bleker, who hinted in January he would be interested in the role, has 7% backing. Bleker, who struggled in his role as minister, is a former party chairman.
According to Wednesday’s NRC, education minister Marja van Bijsterveldt has thrown her hat into the ring.
The CDA is considering holding an internal ballot to choose its campaign head, the Telegraaf reports. Since Labour’s membership vote for new leader Diederick Samsom, the party’s support has risen sharply in the polls.
The CDA lost nearly half its seats in June 2010 and is even lower in the opinion polls now.

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