After more than six months of harsh reporting on the allowance issue, the House sees all the big promises that have barely led to progress. Especially the outgoing Prime Minister Ruta has to suffer.
Sometimes it seems that nothing has changed at all. Thousands of victims of the benefit case are still waiting for their money. There are still new discoveries about failed regimes and discriminatory government. The government still sends documents to the House of Representatives just prior to discussion.
CDA MP Inge van Dijk can get “angry”. She has taken over the benefits file from Pieter Omtzigt, but the message has not changed. “The Cabinet must do more justice to the position of the House of Representatives,” she told outgoing Prime Minister Mark Root.
Other groups also target the prime minister. What is the value of an apology? He wants to know Rep. Henk Nijbauer of the PvdA. According to him, many people are still in misery. The repair process is faltering: by no means everyone got the promised 30 thousand euros, and it is the people who have suffered much greater damage who have to wait longer. “There is no solution yet. What did the Prime Minister do now?”
Ruth is on the defensive
This attack appears to be spot on. Rota shoots on defense. “It’s not like nothing happened,” he says. He says the work is “incredibly difficult” and while that problem is clearly a “chefsache”, his role should be appreciated: not that he moved his office to the finance department. Root: I can’t think of what you can do now to make the grass grow faster. Except to change everything again, but then it will take longer.”
It is a message that the House of Representatives is tired of. The government that resigned in January over the harsh allowances report is still in the saddle – albeit resigned. There is an audible doubt as to whether this government team can ensure that the problems are resolved.
The fish will rot in the head
The SP MP Renske Leijten is the most violent: her group therefore rejected the government’s participation in a new government under Rutte. “The fish will rot in the head,” she says. Lijtten finds it inconceivable that the high-ranking officials who were heard under oath by the questioning panel were “still emotional and dry.” According to her, Rutte is part of the “elite that treats unsuccessful people with contempt.”
Ruti wouldn’t allow himself to say that: “Bullshit!” He “loves this country”, sees each person as unique and opposes the way Litten “stains” cabinet members.
It is a fierce exchange of words, which, according to other groups, very much distracts from the main question: how will this issue be resolved? SGP MP Chris Stover insists on “more realistic planning”, in which no disappointment takes root. And VVD member Folkert Idsinga wants a basic approach, without constantly seeking confrontation. “We also have to keep working together,” he says.
Because the House of Representatives also knows: There is a great chance that Rutte will head the next government again.
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