BBB leader Caroline van der Plas is ready. After two and a half years in opposition, she believes it is time for her party to take responsibility. In the new coalition, she wants to work on a long-term vision for the Netherlands. “What kind of country do we want to be? And what choices does that entail?”
In March, BoerCurgerBeweging became the largest party in all counties in the March county council elections. This resulted in at least sixteen seats in the Senate.
Since then, the BBB has become important in The Hague. The party, which won about nine seats, was mentioned as a potential coalition partner by VVD leader Dylan Jeselgoz and NSC party leader Peter Umtsigt.
If that happens, Van der Plas wants to invest heavily to get things back on track.
Do you dare to make the hard choices?
“If it has to be done, it has to be done. But what it should be…that remains the question. We have set out visions in our election manifesto. I believe you must reach an understanding in the coalition negotiations.” .
“But the hard choice I make is that you can decide to let the national debt increase. And if that is necessary to get health care in particular, but also education, labor shortages, you name it, in order.”
Suppose you have to make cuts, where do you cut first?
“In the government apparatus, there are many administrative layers and eight hundred communications employees in the ministries. There are also ministries that do not work together in an integrated manner and do everything separately.”
“If there are cuts to health care, I will find it difficult to decide whether I want to participate in such a government. This is the next difficult choice I will make: perhaps I will decide to join the opposition after all.”
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The Netherlands is getting older and healthcare costs are increasing every year. Do you think continuing to invest in healthcare is the right thing to do?
“Yes, take dental care for example. If we include it in the basic package, it will eventually generate money. Older people now stay in hospital for a long time because they cannot go to a nursing home. If we have nursing homes again, that is It also makes money.
Where do we get the employees who have to work in retirement homes?
“Many people report that they spend 40 percent of their time checking boxes and filling out forms. Then they have to fill out to the insurance company that the lady is incontinent and then fill out again later whether she still is or not.” “Yes, still like that. “This is not going away.” This unnecessary administrative burden is one of the reasons they stop doing this.
“If people who work in health care can truly care again, they will also want to continue working in health care.”
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Don’t we also need migrant workers to get health care?
“Yes, but only if it is really necessary. If we cannot solve the problem ourselves, you could consider bringing people from outside the EU here for a strict period of three or five years to work in healthcare.”
Returning to the choices that must soon be made at the formation table: Your election manifesto states that you want fair compensation for the unlucky generation, that minimum wages and benefits should increase in the long term, and that corporations should not be used as people. ATM… Is all this possible at the same time?
“Look at this unlucky generation, these young people have simply been cheated by the government. And yes, we want to increase the minimum wage in the long run, but then we also say that employer contributions should decrease. Otherwise, SMEs and “Supply will get into trouble.”
All people have different desire. How this wish will be fulfilled will be determined at the end of the journey.
You can’t be friends with everyone.
“I think this is very unfortunate. Everyone looks at the bullet points in the electoral manifestos, but no one reads the first part (In this part the BBB summarizes the vision for a better Netherlands, ed.).”
“Everything that is stated in any program will not be implemented. This is not the case with the CDA, not with the VVD, and not with us either. But you indicate your preference. Let’s start by forming a long-term vision for the Netherlands. And thus enter into coalition negotiations.”
But are you ultimately more supportive of, say, that low-income voter or student or business community?
“Everyone has a different desire. How that desire is achieved will be decided at the end of the day. Look, there are parties, like the SP, that simply say: We will take over a lot of these big, profitable companies.”
Are you not for that?
“No, because they forget that many large companies also provide a lot of work for supply companies and SMEs. Just get everything there, it’s a very easy option.”
“The broadest shoulders bear the heaviest,” we write. “They must also be able to contribute more.”
What do you mean by that? For example, do you want people who earn more to pay more taxes? Or are you looking at assets, for example?
“I’ll tell you again. And as I also said at the beginning of the interview, I think this is something you should discuss in the coalition. And you shouldn’t now say as a party: ‘We’ll do exactly the same,’ we’ll do it exactly the same way.” “You will soon have to negotiate with each other, and then you will not be able to comply.”
“We have to look at a policy that is fair and just. We have to look at the long term, and what the returns on investments are. You have to take all of that into account when making a choice.”
Talk about this alliance. Who do you consider to be your favorite coalition partners?
Let me put it another way. Who do you think I could work with?
“Look, NSC and VVD could be good options. Maybe I can reach a deal with them. But I also see things in the programs there that make me think: Well, I don’t really know.”
Omtzigt wants to reduce intensive pig farming and toward land-based dairy farming. Are you shocked by his program on these points?
“Well, he puts it very frankly. It will cost twenty thousand jobs and 1.7 billion euros. I want to know from Peter how he sees it. And whether he is not adding fuel to the fire while the farmers are still looking to the future.” “.
Will he have to move your way at this point?
“Yes, sure. Many cultivators want to continue. They also look at Peter with some fear and trembling. If he chooses GL-PvdA, what will happen?”
Do you think there is room for everything in the Netherlands? You want more homes and preserved farmland, but your program doesn’t include reducing aviation, for example.
“That is the question. Let’s start creating a long-term vision for the Netherlands. We all need space, literally and figuratively. What kind of country do we want to be? And what choices does that entail?”
“I think we have to create this vision together. We have to reach some kind of Dutch agreement with all the organizations. Everyone wants everything, but the Netherlands is not expanding.”
But do you have an idea of what the Netherlands should look like?
“We should at least try to protect food production as much as possible. We have a strong agricultural sector here, a good climate and fertile soil. We also have a very high level of knowledge of sustainable, high-quality, food-safe agriculture.”
NU.nl spreekt in aanloop naar 22 november met verschillende lijsttrekkers.
- Lees het interview met NSC-lijsttrekker Pieter Omtzigt.
- Lees het interview met JA21-lijsttrekker Joost Eerdmans.
- Lees het interview met PvdD-lijsttrekker Esther Ouwehand.
- Lees het interview met SP-lijsttrekker Lilian Marijnissen.
- Lees het interview met Volt-lijsttrekker Laurens Dassen.
- Lees het interview met D66-lijsttrekker Rob Jetten.
- Lees het interview met PVV-lijsttrekker Geert Wilders.
- Lees het interview met CDA-lijsttrekker Henri Bontenbal.
De komende dagen verschijnen er meer interviews. Abonneer je via de optie hieronder om niets te missen.
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