Election watch: new look parliament has more women and minorities

The Dutch parliamentary complex. Photo: DutchNews.nl
Photo: DutchNews.nl

With all the votes counted, the line-up for the new look lower house of parliament has been finalised, and the ruling VVD will have 34 MPs rather than 35 as thought earlier.

D66 will have 24 seats in the 150 seat lower house of parliament and four newcomers – Volt, JA21, Bij1 and BBB – are all confirmed to have won enough votes to debut.

The Dutch election council will publish the formal results on Friday, but so far it appears three MPs have won enough preference votes to take seats, even though they were lower down the candidate list.

GroenLinks hopefuls Kauthar Bouchallikht and Lisa Westerveld, who were nine and 10 on the list, will now oust the numbers seven and eight. And new party Volt sees Marieke Koekkoek overtake the party’s number three.

The new look parliament will have 59 women and 91 men, an improvement on 2017 when fewer than one third of the seats were held by women.

Nevertheless, Devika Partiman of the Stem op een Vrouw (vote for a woman) organisation said that there is little improvement in right wing parties. Women make up almost half of the MPs in centre left parties but just 33% on the right, she said.

Party              2021       2017     change

VVD                 34           33         +1
D66                 24           19         +5
PVV                 17           20         -3
CDA                15           19         -4
PvdA                 9             9          –
GroenLinks        8           14         -6
SP                     9           14         -5
FVD                   8             2        +6
PvdD                 6             5        +1
ChristenUnie      5             5        –
Volt                    3             0        +3
SGP                  3             3         –
JA21                 3             0        +3
DENK                3             3        –
50PLUS            1             4         -3
BBB                  1             0        +1
BIJ1                  1             0        +1

In total, just over 63,500 Dutch nationals who live abroad voted in the election, and the VVD was the winner among them with 22.7% support. D66, which won the expat vote in 2017, took nearly 18% of the votes this time round.

The VVD was the biggest party in The Hague but D66 won in Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Utrecht.

The new look parliament will have seven MPs with Moroccan roots and three with a Turkish background, two with Surinamese antecedents and two with other ‘non-western’ origins, news agency ANP said.

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