Tuesday, April 24, 2012
Netherlands: Coalition government falls apart after failed austerity talks
The prime minister Mark Rutte along with his cabinet have tendered their resignations to the Queen. The Queen accepted of course!
The populist Freedom Party did not agree to austerity measures proposed by Rutte. The party is on the right and critical of Islam.
Elections were not due until 2015. Even now the earliest that elections can take place is in September. Until then Rutte will have to work with opposition parties as a caretaker government. Any austerity government will have to be negotiated with opposition parties to get majority support.
The Freedom Party leader Wilders walked out of austerity meetings saying:"We don't want our pensioners to suffer for the sake of the dictators in Brussels" The talks were designed to cut 21 billion dollars from the budget. The problems in the Netherlands plus the fact that a socialist led in the French presidential voting helped drive stock markets down yesterday. For more see this article.