The Palm Beach Post

Pro-business party claims win in Dutch elections
The Palm Beach Post

The pro-business VVD party claimed victory in Dutch elections early Thursday, as voters in the Netherlands continued a Europe-wide shift to the political right and rewarded parties that pledged to cut government spending and discourage immigration.

« It appears as if for the first time in our history the VVD has become the largest party in the Netherlands, » would-be prime minister Mark Rutte told chanting supporters in the seaside town of Scheveningen. The Dutch swing to the right follows that of voters in Britain, who ousted the long-governing Labor Party last month and Germany.

The VVD has pledged to slash the deficit by cutting government spending and welfare programs. Labor has criticized the program as harmful to the poor.

Labor wants to preserve government social programs, raise taxes on the wealthy and make it easier for immigrants to integrate rather than punishing those that fail.

« This country spends too much. For a lot of people it’s better to collect social security than to work, » said Willem Bosma, 32, a civil servant and VVD supporter casting his vote in Amsterdam’s main train station.

Although not as outspoken against immigration as Wilders, Rutte has also argued that immigrants who cannot contribute to the Dutch economy should not be allowed to come, and he would ban them from receiving welfare for 10 years after arrival.

Depuis le début de la récession, la gauche crie sur tout les toits que nous vivons une « crise du capitalisme ». Pourtant, depuis le début de la récession, l’Europe a résolument viré à droite (avec un penchant libertarien). Douce ironie !