RTL News revealed on Monday that Plasterk is the intended new candidate, sources from other parties confirm this. The choice for the former minister is remarkable, but with this Wilders shows the other parties that it is not about party color.
Plasterk was minister for the PvdA from 2007 to 2010 (Education) and from 2012 to 2017 (Home Affairs). Plasterk then focused on his own company and also writes a weekly column The Telegraph. PvdA members probably recognize little of their original ideology in those pieces. Plasterk is also a special professor at the University of Amsterdam.
Actually, PVV Member of Parliament Gom van Strien was supposed to start working as a scout on Monday, but… he resigned after publications about a fraud case in which he is involved. Wilders had no knowledge of that matter. He emphasizes that Van Strien has not yet been convicted, but acknowledges that this affair makes scouting work impossible. “This is my responsibility,” Wilders said on Monday. “It didn’t go well, it should have been better.”
By appointing Plasterk, Wilders hopes to be able to make a restart. On Tuesday, all party leaders will gather with Chamber President Vera Bergkamp, where they must officially agree. Although the PVV leader emphasized that he is already in contact with other faction leaders today about the candidate. Consent therefore appears to be a formality.
Plasterk can then start discussions with party leaders about the possibilities of a (majority) government. The start of the exploration is under high tension now that the VVD is for the time being thanked for participating in a majority government and Pieter Omtzigt’s New Social Contract has doubts about the cooperation.
The post first appeared on www.parool.nl