Netherlands: Socialist Party level with VVD in new poll, support for Wilders shrinks

The Socialist Party has drawn level with the ruling VVD in the latest Maurice de Hond opinion poll, while support for Geert Wilders’ anti-Islam PVV has reached a post-election low. The poll puts both the SP and VVD on 30 seats, while the PVV is on 21, three down on last week’s total and six below its year-end position.

De Hond says the decline in popularity of the PVV partly stems from the government cuts introduced last year. The party is not part of the government but does support it on economic policy. In addition, Wilders’ comments about the queen’s headscarf during her state visit to the UAE and Oman have also irritated voters. Some 50% of PVV supporters say the queen was right to cover her head while visiting a mosque and 49% support the way the queen responded – by stating Wilders was talking nonsense.

The Volkskrant says the PVV appears to be having trouble in keeping its supporters. Support for the anti-Islam group is at its lowest level since the VVD-led government came into power late 2010. The poll shows that just 65% of people who voted PVV at the June 2010 general election say they would definitely do so again.

Dutch News, 15 January 2012