Pastors courting Verdonk for new party
2 June 2006, AMSTERDAM — Leefbaar Rotterdam leader Marco Pastors hopes to persuade Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk to join him in setting up a new right-wing party in the Netherlands.
2 June 2006
AMSTERDAM — Leefbaar Rotterdam leader Marco Pastors hopes to persuade Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk to join him in setting up a new right-wing party in the Netherlands.
Pastors sent Verdonk flowers "to comfort her" following her defeat in the Liberal Party (VVD) leadership election. She lost by 1,600 votes to the moderate junior minister Mark Rutte on Wednesday.
Newspaper 'AD' reported Pastors wants to have a meeting with Verdonk to impress on her that she should not let herself be 'misused" to attract right-wing voters while the VVD under Rutte follows a "left-wing Dijkstal" political course.
Hans Dijkstal was political leader of the VVD in the 2002 election. A left-wing moderate, he was accused of losing voters to populist politician Pim Fortuyn. Leefbaar Rotterdam was controlled by Fortuyn until he was murdered in May 2002.
"I want to ask her what she is still doing in the VVD and how long will she be used as a lap dog by this club," Pastors said.
Verdonk, who portrayed herself as a Fortuyn-like populist during the VVD election, has said she intends to stay with the Liberal party. It has been agreed she will be number 2 and Rutte number 1 on the party's list for the general election next year.
Pastors said Verdonk had obviously not given sufficient thought to joining his party, which will be launched later this year. The working title for the party is "Niet Lullen Maar Poetsen" (No bullshit but cleaning up). Pastors has the support of LPF MP Joost Eerdmans and Councillor Ronald Sorensen of Leefbaar Rotterdam.
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2006]
Subject: Dutch news