Pieter Omtzigt, the former CDA parliamentarian and founder of new party NSC, has not yet said if he would be willing to be prime minister.
NSC is currently neck and neck in the polls with the right wing Liberal VVD and marginally ahead of the GroenLinks/PvdA alliance, meaning he may well end up with the biggest party.
Omzigt was asked during Sunday night’s televised debate with the VVD’s Dilan Yesilöz and Frans Timmermans from the left wing alliance if he wanted to occupy the torentje, or prime minister’s office.
“I want to put our election manifesto into practice,” he said. “Political perspectives have to change. Where I do it, is less important. Ten weeks ago I said I did not expect to be in this position. When I have decided, I will let you know.”
The election takes place in less than three weeks.
RTL political correspondent Frits Wester said the debate was notable for the lack of confrontation between the three party leaders.
“Timmermans and Yesilgöz tried to question Omzigt from time to time… but he was vague when it came to his solutions,” Wester said. “If I look at the whole debate, then I think he probably came off best.”
Meanwhile, research by Ipsos for tv current affairs show EenVandaag suggests a majority of NSC and VVD voters are open to a coalition with far right leader Geert Wilders.
In total, 25,000 people took part in the poll and were asked which coalitions they would like to see.
Some 48% of voters said a coalition made up of the NSV, PVV, VVD and pro-countryside BBB would be an acceptable option. A right-wing coalition without the PVV is backed by 42%.
Just 28% back a coalition made up of the NSC, VVD and GroenLinks/PvdA – who could on current polling form a three party alliance.
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