Libertair, Direct, Democratisch

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Libertarian, Direct, Democratic
Leader Jean-Marie Dedecker
Founded 2007
Headquarters National Secretariat
Bellevue 5
9050 Gent
Ideology Conservative liberalism[1]
Libertarianism[1][2]
Euroscepticism[1][3]
Right-wing populism[4][5]
European affiliation Alliance of European Conservatives and Reformists
European Parliament group European Conservatives and Reformists
Colours Blue and orange
Former names Cassandra
Lijst Dedecker
Chamber of Representatives
(Flemish seats)
0 / 87
Senate
(Flemish seats)
0 / 35
Flemish Parliament
0 / 124
Brussels Parliament
(Flemish seats)
0 / 17
European Parliament
(Flemish seats)
0 / 12
Website
www.ldd.be
Politics of Belgium
Political parties
Elections

Libertarian, Direct, Democratic (Dutch: Libertair, Direct, Democratisch; LDD) is a conservative-liberal,[1] libertarian,[1] and right-wing populist[4][6] political party mainly within the Flemish part of Belgium. The party currently holds one seat in the European Parliament, one seat in the Belgian Chamber of Representatives, and seven seats in the regional Flemish Parliament.

The party was founded in January 2007 by Senator Jean-Marie Dedecker as List Dedecker (About this sound Lijst Dedecker ; also 'LDD'). Dedecker had left the New Flemish Alliance to found the LDD after the Cassandra think tank judged in 2006 that there was room for a right-wing conservative-liberal movement in the Flemish Community, expressing the need for a "common sense party".

The party surprised commentators by winning five seats in the Chamber and one seat in the Senate in 2007, and eight seats in the 2009 Flemish Parliament election.[7] The party remained with only one federal seat after the 2010 election. It adopted its current name on 22 January 2011.

The Eurosceptic LDD is a member of the Alliance of European Conservatives and Reformists, and its single MEP, Derk Jan Eppink, sits with the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) group in the European Parliament.

Platform[edit]

The party's economic program is predominantly based on free market economics, a flat tax system, the reform of unemployment benefits and social security schemes and the fight against waste and corruption.

Furthermore, LDD stands for the introduction of a binding referendum, the abolition of barriers for new political parties in Belgium and a tougher approach towards crime. The party also strives for a more independent Flanders. LDD is widely considered to be liberal on social issues, in spite of having a strong traditional conservative wing as well.

At the European level, the party allied itself with moderate Eurosceptics such as the British Conservative Party, the Czech Civic Democrats and the Polish Law and Justice, and sits on the European Conservatives and Reformists group in the European Parliament. LDD was initially expected to align themselves with the European Liberal Democrat and Reform Party (ELDR) after an open invitation to this effect by ELDR chairwoman Annemie Neyts. Prior to joining the ECR group, LDD was also briefly courted by Declan Ganley's pan-European movement Libertas.

LDD opposes the cordon sanitaire that is used to keep the far-right separatist Vlaams Belang from power, claiming that it is unsuccessful and undemocratic. Some critics even argue that the electoral success of LDD has hampered further growth of Vlaams Belang by virtue of attracting right-wing or protest votes that otherwise would have gone to that party.

At a given point in 2008, LDD was also looking for a political joint venture in Wallonia with liberal economist Rudy Aernoudt as their partner in this endeavour. In 2010, talks were undertaken with the People's Party of Mischaël Modrikamen, which Aernoudt had helped co-found, about political cooperation, but with no tangible result.

Elections[edit]

The 2007 federal election was the first ever election contested by Lijst Dedecker. They met the 5% threshold for parliamentary representation, in spite of all pre-election polls dismissing the chances for the party. Analyses in the aftermath of the election showing that Lijst Dedecker was able to attract voters from across the political spectrum and from all political parties, led up to vicious attacks and groundless accusations of populism against the party. The party's scandal-loving style also added to this.

In the 2007 federal election, the party won 5 seats in the Chamber of Representatives and 1 seat in the Senate. In the 2009 Flemish and European elections, Lijst Dedecker won a disappointing 8 seats in the Flemish Parliament and 1 seat in the European Parliament despite pre-election polls that had indicated a bigger share of the votes for Lijst Dedecker. On 25 June, one member of the LDD fraction crossed the floor to the Open Flemish Liberals and Democrats, leaving the LDD caucus with 7 remaining seats. [8]

After the 2010 federal election, the party only returned one representative to the Chamber of Representatives.

Representation[edit]

Federal Parliament[edit]

Chamber of Representatives[edit]

Flemish Parliament[edit]

European Parliament[edit]

Electoral results[edit]

Federal Parliament[edit]

Chamber of Representatives (Kamer van Volksvertegenwoordigers)
Election year # of
overall votes
 % of
overall vote
 % of language
group vote
# of
overall seats won
# of language
group seats won
+/– Government
2007 268,648 4.0 (#5)
5 / 150
5 / 88
in opposition
2010 150,577 2.3 (#7)
1 / 150
1 / 88
Decrease 4 in opposition
Senate (Senaat)
Election year # of
overall votes
 % of
overall vote
 % of language
group vote
# of
overall seats won
# of language
group seats won
+/–
2007 223,992 3.4
1 / 40
1 / 25
2010 130,777 2.0
0 / 40
0 / 25
Decrease 1

Regional parliaments[edit]

Brussels Parliament[edit]

Election year # of
overall votes
 % of
overall vote
 % of language
group vote
# of
overall seats won
# of language
group seats won
+/– Government
2009 1,957 3.8 (#7)
0 / 89
0 / 17

Flemish Parliament[edit]

Election year # of
overall votes
 % of
overall vote
# of
overall seats won
+/– Government
2009 313,176 7.6 (#6)
8 / 124
in opposition

European Parliament[edit]

Election year # of
overall votes
 % of
overall vote
 % of electoral
college vote
# of
overall seats won
# of electoral
college seats won
+/–
2009 296,699 7.3 (#7)
1 / 22
1 / 13

See also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

External links[edit]