What the Dutch election results mean for the Dutch Farmers.
Are we out of the woods yet?
A couple of days after the big farmers’ rally organized by Farmers Defence Force last Saturday, the so called ‘provincial elections’ were held in The Netherlands. Technically, these are regional elections (there are 12 provinces in The Netherlands), but they also indirectly determine the composition of the Dutch Senate - and are therefore very important. When the ruling parties lose their majority in the Senate (the chamber of reflection) then the chances of the government being able to pass legislation obviously becomes very slim. That’s why at the rally, our main message was 'Stem ze weg!’ meaning: ‘Vote them out!’.
However, when the first results came in on Election Day, things weren’t looking too bright. It seemed that the ruling parties: Mark Rutte’s VVD (Neo-Liberals), Sigrid Kaag’s D66 (Democrats), The Christian Democratic Party and the Christian Union (both weak hardly Christian parties), would still be able to form a majority with the help of the Labour Party and the Green Left.
However, some days later when all the votes were counted, it seemed they suffered a much bigger loss than expected and they wouldn’t be able to form a majority - not even with the support of Labour and the Green Left. Which is obviously amazing news.
Now, the big winner of the elections was the BBB-party (Burger Boer Beweging) which stands for ‘Farmers Citizens Movement’. Good name, right? Actually if you ask me, I think the very reason they became this big, is because of the fact that the Dutch people see BBB as the party to vote for if you support the farmers - but more on that in a minute.
The BBB won a staggering 17 (out of 75) seats - compared to Rutte’s VVD getting only 10 - making them the now largest party in the Senate. And mind you, this is the first time they’re running. So obviously, that is an incredible and virtually unprecedented result.
So are we out of the woods yet? Does this mean the farmers are in the clear? I’m afraid we’re not quite there yet.