Mar 17, 2023 at 05:04Update: 8 minutes ago
Now that the elections are over, coalitions must be formed in the twelve provinces. Almost everywhere the ball is in the BoerBurgerBeweging’s court as the largest party. It will be a tough job for the informants.
Just like after the parliamentary elections, a time of formation is now beginning in every province. Which parties will form and govern a coalition together?
In almost all provinces, the cards were shuffled completely differently after yesterday. The current coalitions are losing their majority everywhere. The BBB came out as the big winner and thunders into the provincial houses.
The party is therefore allowed to take the lead in the formation in many provinces. Several party leaders have already said that they want to govern in the coming years. They enthusiastically inform various regional broadcasters that they already have a scout ready. So is Kees Hanse, party leader in Zeeland.
“If we want to change something as BBB, we had to become the biggest,” he told Omroep Zeeland. “Otherwise you cannot change much and you are more dependent on other parties. Now we can take the lead in the formation. And we also want to take on that role and carry it out.”
Party leader Caroline van der Plas promised on Thursday that her party will only govern in provinces if farmers are not expropriated. For the BBB, this is a breaking point in any coalition negotiations. “That simply has to be stated firmly in the coalition agreement, that we will not do that in the provinces where we want to join the coalition,” Van der Plas said at Goedemorgen Nederland.
Another breaking point for the BBB is the year 2030. The government wants nitrogen emissions to be halved by that year. The law still states 2035 and Van der Plas is firmly against bringing this deadline forward.
BBB must seek cooperation with VVD and CDA
The BBB will have to look for parties that want to work together. The party has become big in many provinces, but not that big.
The party has won the biggest victory in Drenthe. With 17 of the 43 seats, forming a coalition seems at first sight an easy job. But without the participation of the VVD, CDA or the ChristenUnie, it is almost impossible to form a right-wing majority. In Overijssel that is not possible at all.
In other provinces, too, the party will have to seek cooperation with at least one of the coalition parties, which have often become the second or third largest party. Furthermore, the playing field is quite fragmented and many parties only have a few seats.
It makes a difference for the BBB that many local VVD and CDA administrators have been opposed to the national nitrogen plans for some time. They also believe that halving nitrogen oxide emissions by 2030 is not feasible. They also prefer not to hear about forced buyouts.
Parties can hardly get around BBB
In other provinces, more than three parties are needed to form a majority. There the formation will be a more complicated job.
In North Brabant, the current coalition consists of the VVD, CDA, D66, GroenLinks and the PvdA. Contrary to expectations, the VVD did not become the largest party again. The BBB also attracted more voters in the south of the country. The party has to do business with the VVD in this province anyway, because without the liberals the BBB has to look for cooperation on the left.
Conversely, the VVD can more easily form another coalition without the BBB. In North Brabant, the gap between the BBB and the other parties is smaller than in the northeast of the country. The current coalition could also form a coalition with the support of an extra party. However, this is not the option that will be the first on the table.
The enormous rise of BBB in almost all provinces shows that many voters want to take a different course. This signal has also clearly arrived in The Hague, Prime Minister Mark Rutte said on Thursday. Although he could not yet indicate what the cabinet will do with this message.
In any case, other parties in the provinces can hardly ignore the BBB. Scanning will begin in the near future. Established parties will want to know what kind of meat they have in the tub with the BBB. And the various BBB departments should start thinking about any concessions they might want to make.
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