A majority of Dutch Christian Democrats have voted in support of forming a coalition government backed in parliament by Geert Wilders’ anti-Islam Freedom Party (PVV). At a party conference, 68 percent voted in favour of cooperation with the PVV, 32 percent against. A record 4,500 members attended the gathering.
The Christian Democrats intend to form a minority coalition with the right-wing VVD with parliamentary support by the PVV.
A number of prominent Christian Democrats spoke out against any form of cooperation with the PVV. They include two former prime ministers, past and present cabinet ministers and two current MPs. They argued that the PVV discriminates people for their religion and skin colour whereas the CDA aims to bring people together.
A definitive vote on the coalition agreement will be taken next week by the CDA parliamentary party. Under the constitution, MPs are free to vote without any constraints. It is not yet clear how two MPs who voted against the coalition agreement at the party conference will vote when the vote is taken by the parliamentary party.
See also Reuters, 2 October 2010