Morning newspapers – 22 November 2007

22nd November 2007, Comments 0 comments

After calling on the VVD party executive to step down on Wednesday, former party leader Hans Wiegel puts forward an even more radical proposal on Thursday. In De Pers he says that the VVD in its current form should dissolve and become a broader liberal movement. There would be room in this movement for Rita Verdonk, Geert Wilders and D66. Wiegel says that the party leadership won't be crazy about his idea, but the "real grassroots supporters" will.

After calling on the VVD party executive to step down on Wednesday, former party leader Hans Wiegel puts forward an even more radical proposal on Thursday. In De Pers he says that the VVD in its current form should dissolve and become a broader liberal movement. There would be room in this movement for Rita Verdonk, Geert Wilders and D66. Wiegel says that the party leadership won't be crazy about his idea, but the "real grassroots supporters" will.

Agis is introducing a special health insurance policy for homosexuals, the Telegraaf reports. The package includes extra measures specifically for this group, says Frank van Dalen, chairman of the COC organisation for gay rights which provided the initiative for the policy.  "For example homo-friendly hospitals and care institutions. Moreover we don't have home care workers, but rather gay and lesbian buddies. This home help can also be included in the care package." This kind of policy is the world's first.

The authors of a new book on Queen Beatrix's ancestors (entitled Voor de troon wordt niemand ongestraft geboren) respond in the Telegraaf and Volkskrant to criticism from the queen, who feels the book sketches a distorted view of her forefathers Willem I, II and III. The authors say that the historical analyses in the book are supported by three leading professors. "We don't understand the queen's criticism at all. We aimed to present a human view of the three kings, not their public image, which was already widely known."

Trouw says the temperature in the coalition "has dropped below freezing." The newspaper says this is the result of Prime Minister Balkenende's attitude that the PvdA could have compromised a bit more on a number of issues. The PvdA itself thinks it has compromised enough. Faction leader for ChristenUnie Arie Slob cites an album title from his favourite band Supertramp in the Volkskrant: "Crisis? What Crisis?" He says the conflict on redundancy legislation "shows precisely that we can handle a bit of a jolt." The PvdA had expected a cabinet crisis and was already thinking about a new election campaign, the Volkskrant writes.

 [Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2007]

Subject: Dutch news

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