The government should take more control of the housing market. In health care there should be more cooperation rather than competition, and financial incentives to offer or not provide medical treatment should be limited. The law on embryos must be updated, and people must be given control over the end of their lives if they want to. Broad bridge classes should be offered, so that students are not graded at a young age.
More than a week after the secret configuration document prepared by VVD and the D66 was completed, more and more details are leaking out. These proposed measures are recommended by various stakeholders Norwegian Refugee Council has been confirmed.
The “basic document” written by the negotiating teams of the two liberal parties should entice the other parties to reach final coalition talks. Earlier, it was leaked to the Norwegian Refugee Council that the two parties are proposing to amend Article 23, the article of the law that guarantees freedom of (private) education. Proposals will also be adopted from the Rainbow Convention to promote LGBT emancipation, an initiative of the COC interest group.
The mindset in the article explains the reactions of GroenLinks and Labour’s leaders, when a three-page summary was presented last week by whistleblower Mariëtte Hamer, VVD leader Mark Rutte and D66 leader Sigrid Kaag. The full document is more comprehensive.
Lillian Blumen (PvdA) and Jesse Claver (GroenLinks) said they see enough points of contact for further discussions. CU Leader Changed Yan Seagers wasn’t excited. It was clearly written by two liberal parties.
Now that more is known about the content of the piece, Wopke Hoekstra’s reaction was great. He said he wanted to be “constructive”. The CDA leader is known to also believe in the need to update Article 23. When he became party leader in December, after Hugo de Jong, who had previously been elected by the members, withdrew, he tried to change the CDA’s electoral program even more with the amendments. One of his proposed amendments relates to freedom of education. Hoekstra wanted to delete a sentence stating that the CDA “wants to protect the private school space to give substance to education based on religion or belief.” After members riot, the change was reversed. Members were assured that the CDA did not want to tamper with the freedom of education and that schools did not have to make an admissions commitment and might require a statement of identification from students.
There is no reason why CDA should not be sitting on the shaping table. The fact that negotiations on a new coalition agreement have just begun is also not due to the lack of parties willing to participate in the formation of the coalition – but parties that do not want to join each other.
Screens this week have been the familiar sight of political leaders and their lieutenants visiting Detective Hammer in pairs, whether or not they are accompanied by the party leaders responsible for the initiative: Mark Root (VVD) and Sigrid Kaag (D66).
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Inadvertently, the formation seems to be a test for Gert-Jan Segers: is his desire to remain polite limited? Since the D66 party reiterated last week that it does not favor an alliance with the Christian Union, Seagers has found the party to be “undesirable and unnecessary”. He doesn’t run away from the sock himself. He thinks VVD and D66 should decide whether he can continue to participate in the discussion.
On Wednesday Segers were greeted twice at the Binnenhof. In the morning he spoke only with Hammer, and in the evening he returned to have a conversation with Hammer, Ruti and Kag. After that last conversation, Segers gave the impression that this was his last visit to the detective. “Maybe I don’t get much anymore. It could happen.”
Behind the scenes, there is now impatience among the parties of the left. There we can hear that the liberals really have to cut the knot.
A week ago, Hammer was expected to present its final report this week. In the meantime, this is not being counted on, even if only waiting for the member consultations from GroenLinks and PvdA that will take place next Saturday. It is about the proposed cooperation between the two left parties and the possible participation in the negotiating table. The PvdA meeting in particular is unpredictable. A decisive movement is being prepared to refuse new cooperation with the VVD. It was after I hated the second Ruti government (2012-2017): PvdA suffered its biggest electoral defeat ever.
The material points leaked thus far are not unfavorable to supporters of GroenLinks and PvdA.
A version of this article also appeared on NRC on the morning of August 26, 2021
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