As the November 22 Dutch Second Chamber election approaches, voters in the provinces of Drenthe, Groningen, and Friesland have a plethora of political options. Each party brings a unique platform and priorities to the table, shaping the political discourse in the northern Netherlands.
VVD: The People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy is a liberal-conservative party that supports free market policies, lower taxes, and more autonomy for the provinces.
D66: The Democrats 66 is a progressive-liberal party that promotes democracy, human rights, and European integration.
GROENLINKS / Partij van de Arbeid (PvdA): The Green Left / Labor Party is a combined list of two parties: the Green Left, which advocates for a green and social agenda, and the Labor Party, which focuses on improving the living standards, education, and health care of the people.
PVV (Partij voor de Vrijheid): The Party for Freedom is a right-wing populist party that opposes immigration, Islam, and the European Union.
CDA: The Christian Democratic Appeal is a centrist party that is based on Christian values and principles.
SP (Socialistische Partij): The Socialist Party is a left-wing party that opposes neoliberalism, globalization, and austerity.
Forum voor Democratie: The Forum for Democracy is a nationalist-conservative party that challenges the political establishment, the mainstream media, and the scientific consensus.
Partij voor de Dieren: The Party for the Animals is an animal rights and environmentalist party that advocates for a radical change in the human-animal-nature relationship.
ChristenUnie: The Christian Union is a conservative-Christian party that is based on biblical values and principles.
Volt: Volt is a pan-European party that supports more integration, cooperation, and reform within the European Union.
JA21: JA21 is a liberal-conservative party that supports personal freedom, political transparency and reliable government.
Staatkundig Gereformeerde Partij (SGP): The Reformed Political Party is an orthodox-Protestant party that is based on the Reformed doctrine and the Bible.
DENK: DENK is a multicultural and progressive party that represents the interests of ethnic minorities and immigrants.
50PLUS: The 50Plus party is a pensioners’ party that represents the interests of the elderly and retired people.
BBB: The Farmer–Citizen Movement is a rural and agrarian party that represents the interests of farmers and rural residents.
BIJ1: BIJ1 is an anti-capitalist, progressive left-wing party, advocating economic justice and opposing racism and discrimination in the Netherlands.
Piratenpartij – De Groenen: The Pirate Party – The Greens is a combined list of two parties: the Pirate Party, which supports digital rights, civil liberties, and direct democracy, and the Greens, which supports environmentalism, pacifism, and social justice.
BVNL / Groep Van Haga: BVNL / Group Van Haga is a combined list of two parties: BVNL, which stands for Better Netherlands, and is a right-wing populist party that supports lower taxes, less immigration, and more security, and Group Van Haga, which is a splinter group from the FVD, led by Wybren van Haga, who supports more freedom, less government, and less climate policy.
Nieuw Sociaal Contract: New Social Contract is a new party that supports a basic income, a shorter working week, and a more democratic and participatory society.
Splinter: Splinter is another new party which supports more transparency, accountability, and diversity in politics, and a more progressive and pragmatic approach to the challenges of the 21st century.
LP (Libertaire Partij): The Libertarian Party is a party that supports individual liberty, free markets, and limited government.
LEF – Voor de Nieuwe Generatie: LEF – For the New Generation is a new party that supports more representation and empowerment for young people, and a more sustainable and innovative future.
Samen voor Nederland: Together for the Netherlands is a new party that supports more cooperation, solidarity, and dialogue among the different groups and regions in the Netherlands.
Nederland met een PLAN: The Netherlands with a PLAN is a new party that supports a comprehensive and ambitious plan to tackle the major issues facing the Netherlands, such as climate change, inequality, and health care.
The parties listed above represent the diverse political spectrum of Drenthe, Groningen, and Friesland, offering voters choices that align with their values and concerns.
If you want to learn more about these parties and their platforms, you can use a vote compass tool, an online application that helps you compare your political views with those of the parties. After you answer a series of questions on various topics, you see how your answers match with the parties’ positions. You can also explore the parties’ platforms in more detail and see how they differ on specific issues.
One example of a vote compass tool is Kieskompas which you can access here. Another example is the StemWijzer voter guide, which you can check out here. These tools are available in Dutch and English, and they are updated regularly with the latest information from the parties.
The Dutch Second Chamber election is not just a moment for locals to shape their future; it’s an opportunity for internationals to have a say in the political direction of Drenthe, Groningen, and Friesland. Get involved, cast your vote, and be part of the democratic process!