Peter Umtzegt will begin his return to national politics with a lecture on September 24 at the Zuiderkerk in Amsterdam. The lecture about his book A new social contract. The MP who has been at home with complaints of burnout since the election in March recently left the CDA. According to the organizers, Omtzigt will discuss the relationship between the citizen and the government that has been disrupted, as appeared in the appropriations scandal. What concrete political proposals does he have to restore the social contract?
With Omtzigt’s return, tension in the CDA increases over what Member of Parliament Twente is planning. The question is whether Peter Umtzigt will declare his party after his return to national politics. The fear is great that he will eat the divided CDA completely.
Two weeks ago, the Committee of Spies published an assessment report on the failure of the Christian Democratic Party elections. The party would have blamed itself for this loss on internal divisions. The spies called on everyone to apologize, including Peter Umtzigt. It doesn’t seem like he intended to.
Meanwhile, criticism of the spies report is growing within the CDA. The party is also falling more and more in the opinion polls. Of the fifteen parliamentary seats in March, the CDA will now have five to six seats left.
The evaluation report is seen as a “missed opportunity” to lend a helping hand to Omtzigt and his fans. But the commission did not give such an “outstretched hand”, Oversel’s deputy Eddie van Heijom quickly concluded. In fact, he reproaches the spies or Metzigt. And that’s hard for Omtzigt fans to digest. It provides few answers to all the questions that existed about CDA risks in the past year. Although the assessment refers to election results, it does so without citing any facts or sources. For example, a member consultation was held, which was filled out by 3,500 members, but the results were not included in the evaluation.
The spies also say nothing about what course the CDA should follow, and whether there should be room for more ombudsman policies, Omtzigt advocates. The spies wrote that the party had “again” lost votes to VVD, and to a lesser extent to D66, PVV and BBB. But voter research by research agency Ipsos shows that the CDA lost just 2% of the vote to PVV, and just 1% to the new Boerburger movement. In contrast, 5% of CDA members since 2017 have now voted for D66. CDA voters also turned to Volt, PvdA, ChristenUnie and Ja21. These four parties received 3 percent of the CDA’s votes, the same as the PVV and BBB votes combined.
He’s quiet about the party leader
According to CDA Midvoor, the spies’ conclusions are “baseless” and therefore “weak”. They wrote: “The fact that the Community Development Authority lost its right is unproven and does not appear correct.” Strikingly, party leader Woebke Hoekstra is privately spared from the report, while Umtzigt is emphatically accused of feeling “bigger than the party”.
Hoekstra came as the party’s new leader with right-wing themes, and changed the campaign strategy with, among other things, the motto of “Move forward now”. Spies wrote that voters no longer recognized themselves at the CDA. The report notes that “good management leadership” is crucial for any political party, and that this is “inappropriate”. Hoekstra only briefly responded to the Spies report via Twitter, endorsing Spies’ conclusions. Since then, calm has reigned around the party leader. Omtzigt officially returns to The Hague as a one-man faction of Prinsjesdag. On September 11, the CDA will hold an additional party convention.
The report of the Spies Committee is harsh
The resignation of the entire board of directors due to the chaos surrounding the failed elections.
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