It looks like the House of Representatives and the cabinet will debate the results of the Provincial Council elections, nitrogen and dissatisfaction in the country on Wednesday. The tough debate for the coalition was actually scheduled for Tuesday, but that did not take place: Prime Minister Mark Rutte had probably ‘eaten something wrong’ and reported sick.
It promises to be a charged debate. The CDA and D66 in particular are opposed to each other in the coalition, and the opposition is expected to make grateful use of this and try to play them apart.
Opposition parties mainly demand clarity, after last Friday’s confusing press conference. CDA leader Wopke Hoekstra stated that he wanted to use 2035 as the deadline for the nitrogen targets, not 2030, but 2035. He wants to break open the coalition agreement for this, but only after the Provincial Council has elected their boards. Rutte said he wanted to accelerate, without becoming concrete how.
Motion of distrust
If there is no clarity, it could well become ‘a very exciting debate’, according to insiders from opposition parties. Not all opposition parties want elections – after all, the country must be governed, some of them agree – but the coalition must show something. Other parties have already announced a vote of no confidence. Support for this will in any case come from JA21 and the PVV. There was also irritation that the coalition parties only signed up for the debate after all other parties were on the list. As a result, the four coalition parties only get their turn at the very end of the debate, while the eyes will really be mainly focused on them.
It will also be a long debate, longer in any case than initially expected. BBB leader Caroline van der Plas has requested more speaking time for all parties and this has also been granted. However, the debate remains between the Chamber and the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Ministers for the time being: a request to invite Ministers Piet Adema (Agriculture) and Christianne van der Wal (Stikstof) did not reach a majority. Several parties wanted them involved, as a significant part of the debate will be about their policy areas.
The debate starts in the morning. It is expected to continue into the evening.
What exactly is nitrogen? And how does it affect our nature and our world? (video):
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