Morning newspapers – 20 September 2007

20th September 2007, Comments 0 comments

The cabinet does not want to hold a referendum on the new European treaty to replace the rejected constitution. The Volkskrant reports this on the basis of "sources close to the government." Prime Minister Balkenende in particular is reportedly fiercely opposed to a new referendum after the rejection of the constitution. Labour PvdA ministers Plasterk and Ter Horst would support a new referendum, according to the paper. Nevertheless the cabinet is expected to come with a unanimous decision against a refere

The cabinet does not want to hold a referendum on the new European treaty to replace the rejected constitution. The Volkskrant reports this on the basis of "sources close to the government." Prime Minister Balkenende in particular is reportedly fiercely opposed to a new referendum after the rejection of the constitution. Labour PvdA ministers Plasterk and Ter Horst would support a new referendum, according to the paper. Nevertheless the cabinet is expected to come with a unanimous decision against a referendum.

Hans Wiegel says on the front page of De Pers that he has great respect for Wouter Bos, whom he says has undergone a transformation. "From the puffy red jacket and jeans to the morning suit and royal distinction in his buttonhole," says Wiegel, the newspaper's political commentator. Wiegel, a former VVD politician, does not of course agree with the cabinet's political direction, but this doesn't take away from his respect for the "political professionalism of the current deputy prime minister and minister of finance at the moment."

Wiegel's comment that the second Den Uyl government has come (a reference to a left wing cabinet in the 1970s, known for its debts due to excessive government spending) had also been uttered by VVD faction leader Mark Rutte during the parliamentary debate on the budget. Rutte's performance during the debate received much praise in the newspapers, who wrote about his "snappy one-liners" (Volkskrant) and the way he walked through Parliament, "self assured, visibly relaxed, hands in pockets" (AD).

In the Nederlands Dagblad the Evangelism & Muslims foundation levels criticism of Integration Minister Ella Vogelaar in her efforts to lessen the negative perception of Islam, especially among the youth. In doing so she is actually allocating money for "Islamisation," says director Cees Rentier of the foundation. "Muslims are people and as such deserve respect no matter what. Islam however is a religion which we should be able to criticise and the government should not be spending money on changing our minds about that."

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2007]

Subject: Dutch news

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