“Dutch Donald Trump” Repelled in Netherlands Election
According to exit poll results incumbent prime minister Mark Rutte has beaten the firebrand populist leader Geert Wilders. The dutch elections have been viewed by pundits as a test of Right Wing populism in Europe. The French elections are closing and may follow a similiar pattern.
“Today was a celebration of democracy,” Rutte said to an enraptured crowd. “The Netherlands, after Brexit, after the American elections, said ‘No’ to the wrong kind of populism”.
This “wrong kind of populism” they’re talking about is Geert Wilders, who campaigned hard on anti-islamic policies with his anti-immigration Freedom Party.
However Wilders party did grow, from 15 to 19 seats in parliament. It’s a disappointment for him though, as he was hoping to gain a majority over Rutte’s People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy, who will hold 31 seats.
Recently Rutte has been appeasing right leaning voters by talking tougher on immigration, but has fallen short of Wilders promises to straight up “de-islamify” the Netherlands. Wilders’ has been quoted as saying some outrageous things, such as comparing the Quran to Mein Kampf and saying it should be banned.
The Christian Democratic Appeal as well as Democrats 66 are tieing with Wilder’s Party for Freedom all with 19 seats. The real jump occurred for the Greens party who tripled their seats to 16.
The election has provoked the highest voter turnout in 30 years years, with 81% of the population voting.
Rutte might be pleased with his win and turnout, but he’s got other business to attend to first.
Question to Rutte: What is first thing you'll do tomorrow? "Teach." (He moonlights as a secondary school teacher in the Hague – true story).
— Michiel van Hulten (@mvanhulten) March 15, 2017
From here parties will need to form a coalition probably with the other two runner ups, the Christian Democratic Appeal and Democrats 66 who are both pro-EU.
“Rutte has not seen the last of me yet!” Wilder’s said in a tweet like a Scooby Doo villain.