VideoNew detective Wouter Koolmees (D66) calls the formation’s continuation an “experiment”. “We are going to try something really new. Call it an experiment, with a brief coalition agreement and then a government programme.” Kolmes and fellow detective Johan Remix (VVD) also want to invite other political parties during cabinet negotiations between VVD, D66, CDA and ChristenUnie.
Peter Winterman and Jan Hodman
‘You will undoubtedly be a pioneer,’ says Remix this morning at the new whistleblower’s first press conference. Formation talks are being laid on new foundations. This is why there will be a later moment when we understand ourselves with groups other than the four negotiating groups. With this, Remkes hints that parties such as PvdA and GroenLinks may once again engage in the discussion. It is not certain whether these parties will accept the invitation.
Not stuck at 16, 17 or 19 pages
The mentors want a “brief coalition agreement”, after which newly appointed ministers are given free rein on the “government programme”. “It’s not stuck on 16, 17, or 19 pages,” says Remix of a coalition agreement. “It will take a lot of parties to spell out a brief coalition agreement,” he believes.
Christian Democrats leader Wopke Hoekstra, who visited the informants this morning, is optimistic about a weak coalition deal. “My strong impression is that there is a need for all parties to act quickly,” says Hoekstra. There are so many topics on the table, we all know the list. Problems of public housing, nitrogen, climate, undermining, education, the new management culture. We will have to talk about That. It must be done with great effort.”
D66 leader Kaag describes the cabinet about Sinterklaas as “pessimistic”. “As far as we are concerned, there is already a lot available,” she says after her conversation with Remkes and Koolmees. “Not only Mariette Hammer’s report on the major transformations, but also the document in outline by VVD and D66.”
The House of Representatives last night gave the green light to negotiations on forming a new government of VVD, D66, CDA and ChristenUnie. The negotiators met for the first time today. This morning CDA leader Hoekstra was the first to visit Remkes and Koolmees. Segers (ChristenUnie), Kaag (D66) and Hermans (VVD) also reported this afternoon. Tonight Kaag, Hoekstra, Seagers and VVD Leader Rota will be together. After that, Rota will return from the EU summit in Slovenia. It is expected that there will be no difficult negotiations so far. ‘We’ll also have a great dinner,’ says Seagers. “We’re a little ready for that.”
After more than six months of stalemate, things can now go quickly. Detective Johan Remix discovers “the will to hurry,” although he didn’t want to speculate on a date in last night’s formation controversy. It remains a hot topic over whether D66 and ChristenUnie can agree on medical ethical issues.
At the debate, party leader Sigrid Kaag said she wanted to make “progress” in the new government. Her party has completed a private member bill and wants to expand the Embryology Act. “I think it’s important that once the law is passed, it is enforced,” says Kag, who actually says she doesn’t want ChristenUnie to prevent the laws that have been passed from being enforced.
This makes a clash with the leader of Christinoni Seagers inevitable. Segers is vehemently opposed, for example, to the Full Life Act D66: he has said in the past that his party ministers would not enforce such a law.
‘My party is in jeopardy,’ Seagers said yesterday. You can not say: everything is free. But also no: nothing is free, we will close everything. We will talk about it. We’ll see if we can get out. Kag also warned: “It won’t be easy. It is not certain whether it will succeed.”
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Watch our political reporter Hans van Sost’s reaction to the press conference:
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