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The Dutch Show American Conservatives How It’s Done

In an article titled "How Geert Wilders turned all corners of Dutch society into far right voters" the typically Left-leaning writers at POLITICO (unintentionally we're sure) gave American conservatives some helpful advice on how to save our country.


It turns out that sticking to the issues that concern voters, such as inflation, affordable housing, immigration (both legal and illegal), the Islamization of the country and other kitchen table issues is a formula for success at the polls.

 

And Dutch conservative populist Geert Wilders is just the latest European to harness the energy behind popular discontent with Europe’s traditional parties to achieve electoral success.



Wilders’ success took many by surprise, but it is indicative of a broader trend, reported Hanne Cokelaere and Eva Hartog. The alleged “taboo” of voting for populist, anti-immigration parties is fading. In the June EU election, the European Parliament’s Identity and Democracy group is projected to reap the electoral benefits of increasingly broad support; also among young voters.

 

In Portugal, reported Cokelaere and Hartog, exit polls from the March election suggested that under-30s accounted for approximately 25 percent of those who voted for the far-right Chega party. In France, according to a survey of voters in the first round of the 2022 presidential election, President Emmanuel Macron was only young voters’ third choice, behind far-left France Unbowed candidate Jean-Luc Mélenchon and the far-right National Rally’s Marine Le Pen.

 

In Belgium, the anti-immigration Flemish Interest party has been polling above 25 percent of the Flemish region’s vote ahead of regional, national and EU elections in June.

Researchers found Gen-Z men were particularly enthusiastic backers of the party, with 32 percent saying they were very likely to vote for Flemish Interest. In contrast, just 9 percent of the young women they surveyed said the same, Cokelaere and Hartog reported.


Exit poll data revealed men and women, urban and rural, old and young voted for the Wilders' conservative party.


According to Josse de Voogd, a Dutch researcher, Wilders’ voters typically fall into three broad categories: There are conservative voters, who previously backed Christian parties or the liberals (Editor’s Note: Roughly equivalent to America’s RINOs). Then there are voters in poorer areas, who used to vote socialist. Then there are those who live in suburban areas, where under the pressure of rising costs, people fear they’ll fall down the societal ladder in a sort of “middle-class stress,” De Voogd said.


As well as luring voters away from other parties, Wilders’ Freedom Party tapped into a major new voter potential: Non-voters. Dutch voter analysis has shown that Wilders’ second-largest source of new votes — about 11 percent — had come from people who had abstained in 2021.

 

In Cokelaere and Hartog’s analysis of an Ipsos exit poll, Wilders secured his victory by not only luring a large share of voters that had previously voted for the center-right VVD to his side, but also by convincing a considerable share of non-voters.


Bartender Astrid, who asked to be identified by her first name only for Cokelaere and Hartog’s article, said she had voted for Wilders because she felt asylum seekers were getting more state support than Dutch people who’ve fallen on hard times. “There are so many people who live on the streets,” she said.

 

“The Netherlands is simply full. We have housing needs, we have needs for everything, but we’re letting them in, and asylum seekers get their turn [for support] before the people who live here,” she argued. When Wilders says this, she stated, “he isn’t racist, he’s simply right.”



  • Geert Wilders

  • Dutch Elections

  • inflation

  • Illegal immigration

  • Islamization

  • populist anti-immigration parties

  • Portugal

  • young voters

  • Belgium

  • far right parties

  • European parties

  • first-time voters

  • non-voters

  • Affordable housing

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