People's Party for Freedom and Democracy

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People's Party for Freedom and Democracy
Volkspartij voor Vrijheid en Democratie
Abbreviation VVD
Leader Mark Rutte
Chairwoman Christianne van der Wal
Leader in the Senate Annemarie Jorritsma
Leader in the House of Representatives Klaas Dijkhoff
Leader in the European Parliament Hans van Baalen
Founded 28 January 1948; 70 years ago (1948-01-28)
Merger of Freedom Party and Committee-Oud
Headquarters Mauritskade 21
The Hague
Youth wing Youth Organisation Freedom and Democracy
Thinktank Telders Foundation
Membership (2017) 26,497[1]
Ideology Conservative liberalism[2]
Political position Centre-right[3][4]
European affiliation Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe
International affiliation Liberal International
European Parliament group Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe
Colours Blue and Orange
13 / 75
House of Representatives
33 / 150
King's Commissioners
4 / 12
89 / 570
European Parliament
3 / 26

The People's Party for Freedom and Democracy (Dutch: Volkspartij voor Vrijheid en Democratie, VVD; Dutch pronunciation: [vɔl(ə)kspɑrtɛi voːr vrɛiɦɛit ɛn deːmoːˈkraːtsi]) is a conservative-liberal[2][5][6][7][8] political party in the Netherlands.

The VVD, whose forerunner was the Freedom Party, supports private enterprise and economic liberalism.[9][10][11]

Mark Rutte has been the party's leader since 31 May 2006 and on 14 October 2010 became Prime Minister of the Netherlands, marking the first time that the VVD led a government. The First Rutte cabinet's parliamentary majority was provided by the Christian Democratic Appeal and the Party for Freedom, but this majority became unstable when the latter refused to support austerity measures amid the Euro crisis.[12] Therefore, a general election was held in September 2012.[13] The VVD remained the largest party, with 41 seats. From November 2012 until March 2017, the VVD was the senior partner in the Second Rutte cabinet, a "purple" coalition government with the Labour Party. VVD remained the largest party in the March 2017 election (though was reduced to 33 seats); therefore, Rutte was expected to remain as Prime Minister. However, continuing the existing coalition was impossible, as the Labour Party had lost 29 seats, therefore a centre-right coalition was negotiated with the D66, CU and CDA, which became the Third Rutte Cabinet.



The VVD was founded in 1948 as a continuation of the Freedom Party,[14] which was a continuation of the interbellum Liberal State Party,[15] which in turn was a continuation of Liberal Union.[16] They were joined by the Comité-Oud, a group of liberal members of the Labour Party (PvdA), led by Pieter Oud. The liberals within the Labour Party were primarily members of the pre-war social-liberal Free-thinking Democratic League (VDB), who went on to join the Labour Party in the post-war Doorbraak (breakthrough) movement. However, they believed that the Labour Party was becoming too socialist for their liking. Oud became the merged party's first leader.

Pieter Oud, co-founder and Leader from 1948 to 1963

Between 1948 and 1952 the VVD took part in the broad cabinets led by the Labour Party Prime Minister Willem Drees. The party was a junior partner with only eight seats to the Catholic People's Party (KVP) and Labour Party, which both had around thirty seats (out of 100). The Drees cabinet laid the foundation for the welfare state[citation needed] and decolonization of the Dutch East Indies[citation needed]. In the Dutch general election of 1952 the VVD gained one seat, but did not join the government. In the Dutch general election of 1956 they increased their total, receiving thirteen seats, but were still kept out[citation needed] of government until the Dutch general election of 1959, which were held early because of cabinet crisis. This time they gained nineteen seats and the party entered government alongside the Protestant Anti Revolutionary Party (ARP), Christian Historical Union CHU and the Roman Catholic KVP.

In 1963, Oud left politics, and was succeeded by the minister of Home Affairs Edzo Toxopeus. With the lead of Toxopeus VVD lost three seats in the 1963 elections, but remained in government. In 1962, a substantial group of disillusioned VVD-members founded the Liberal Democratic Centre (Liberaal Democratisch Centrum, LDC) which was intended to introduce a more twentieth-century liberal direction pointing to the classical liberal VVD. In 1966, frustrated with their hopeless efforts, LDC-members departed the VVD altogether and went on now to form an entirely political party -- Democrats 66 (D66).

In 1965, there also occurred a conflict between VVD Ministers and their counterparts from the KVP and ARP in the Marijnen cabinet. The cabinet fell and without elections it was replaced by the KVP-ARP-Labour Party cabinet under Cals, which itself also fell the next year. In the following 1967 elections the VVD remained relatively stable and entered yet again the cabinet under Prime Minister Piet de Jong.

During this period the VVD had loose ties with other liberal organisations and together they formed the neutral pillar. This included the liberal papers Nieuwe Rotterdamsche Courant and the Algemeen Handelsblad, the broadcaster AVRO and the employers' organisation VNO.


Hans Wiegel, Leader from 1971 until 1982

In the Dutch general election of 1971 the VVD lost one seat and the cabinet lost its majority. A cabinet was formed by the Christian-democratic parties, the VVD and the Labour Party offshoot Democratic Socialists '70. This cabinet fell after a few months. Meanwhile, the charismatic young MP Hans Wiegel had attracted considerable attention. He became the new leader of the VVD: in 1971 he became the new parliamentary leader, and in 1972 he was appointed lijsttrekker. With Wiegel the VVD oriented towards a new political course, reforming the welfare state, cutting taxes etc. Wiegel did not shrink from conflict with the Labour Party and the trade unions. With this new course came a new electorate: working class and middle-class voters, who because of individualization and depillarization were more easy to attract.

The course proved to be profitable: in the heavily polarized Dutch general election of 1972 the VVD gained six seats. The VVD was kept out of government by the Social Democratic and Christian Democratic cabinet led by Den Uyl. Although the ties between the VVD and other organisations within the neutral pillar became ever looser, the number of neutral organisations, friendly to the VVD, expanded. The TROS and later Veronica, new broadcasters which entered the Netherlands Public Broadcasting were friendly to the VVD. In 1977 the VVD again won six seats bringing its total to twenty-eight seats. When lengthy formation talks between the Social Democrats and Christian Democrats eventually led to a final break between the two parties, the VVD formed cabinet with the Christian Democratic Appeal (CDA), with a majority of only two seats.

In the Dutch general election of 1981 the VVD lost two seats and its partner the CDA lost even more. The cabinet was without a majority and a CDA, Labour and D66 cabinet was formed, falling after only a few months. In 1982 Hans Wiegel left Parliament to become Queen's Commissioner in Friesland and was succeeded by Ed Nijpels. In the Dutch general election of 1982 Nijpels' VVD gained ten seats, bringing its total up to 36. Once again, it formed a cabinet with the CDA under CDA Leader Ruud Lubbers. The cabinet began a program of radical reform to the welfare state, which is still in place today. The VVD lost nine seats in the 1986 elections but the cabinet nonetheless retained its majority. The losses were blamed on Nijpels, who stood down as leader of the VVD. He was succeeded by Joris Voorhoeve. In 1989 the CDA and VVD cabinet fell over a minor point. In the subsequent elections the VVD lost five seats, leaving only twenty-two. The VVD was kept out of government. Voorhoeve was replaced by the charismatic intellectual Frits Bolkestein.


Frits Bolkestein, Leader from 1990 until 1998

Bolkestein's VVD was one of the winners of the Dutch general election of 1994: they gained nine seats. It formed an unprecedented government with the Labour Party (PvdA) and the social-liberal Democrats 66. The so-called "purple cabinet" led by Wim Kok was the first Dutch government without any Christian parties since 1918. Like many of his predecessors, the VVD-leader Bolkestein remained in parliament. His political style was characterized by some as "opposition to one's own government". This style was very successful and the VVD gained seven seats in the 1998 elections becoming the second largest party in parliament with thirty-eight seats. The VVD formed a second Purple cabinet with the Labour Party and D66. Bolkestein left Dutch politics in 1999 to become European Commissioner. He was replaced by the more technocratic and social liberal Hans Dijkstal.

In the heavily polarized Dutch general election of 2002, dominated by the rise and murder of Pim Fortuyn, the VVD lost fourteen seats, leaving only twenty-four. The VVD nonetheless entered a cabinet with the Christian Democratic Appeal and the Pim Fortuyn List (LPF). Dijkstal stood down and was replaced by the popular former Minister of Finance Gerrit Zalm. After a few months Zalm "pulled the plug" on the First Balkenende cabinet, after infighting between Pim Fortuyn List ministers Eduard Bomhoff and Herman Heinsbroek.

In the Dutch general election of 2003 the VVD with Gerrit Zalm as Lijsttrekker gained four seats, making a total of twenty-eight. The party had expected to do much better, having adopted most of Fortuyn's proposals on immigration and integration. The VVD unwillingly entered the Second Balkenende cabinet with Zalm returning as Minister of Finance and as Deputy Prime Minister. On 2 September 2004 Geert Wilders a Member of the House of Representatives left the party after a dispute with Parliamentary leader Van Aartsen. He chose to continue as an Independent in the Member of the House of Representatives. On 27 November 2004 Gerrit Zalm was replaced as Leader by the Parliamentary leader of the VVD in the House of Representatives of the Netherlands Jozias van Aartsen.

In 2006 the party lost a considerable number of seats in the municipal elections, prompting parliamentary leader Jozias van Aartsen to step down. Willibrord van Beek was subsequently appointed parliamentary leader ad interim. In the subsequent party leadership run-off Mark Rutte was elected as the leader, beating Rita Verdonk and Jelleke Veenendaal.[17]

Gerrit Zalm, Leader from 2002 until 2004

The Dutch general election of 2006 did not start off well for the VVD: top candidate Mark Rutte was criticized by his own parliamentary party for being invisible in the campaign, and he was unable to break the attention away from the duel between current Christian-Democratic Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende and Wouter Bos of the Labour Party. However, the VVD's campaign started relatively late.[18] The election polls showed losses for the VVD; the former VVD deputy Prime Minister Hans Wiegel blamed a poor VVD campaign for this, caused by the heavily contested VVD leadership run-off between Mark Rutte and Rita Verdonk earlier in the year. Verdonk had her eyes on the deputy-minister post, while cabinet posts are normally decided upon by the political leader of the VVD.[19] On election day, the party received enough votes for twenty-two seats, a loss of six seats. When the official election results were announced on Monday 27 November 2006, preferential votes became known as well, showing that the second candidate on the list Rita Verdonk obtained more votes than the VVD's top candidate, Mark Rutte. Rutte received 553,200 votes, Verdonk 620,555.[20] This lead Verdonk to call for a party commission that would investigate the party leadership position, as a consequence of the situation of her obtaining more votes in the general election than Rutte, creating a shortly-lived crisis in the party.[21] A crisis was averted when Rutte called for an ultimatum on his leadership, which Verdonk had reconcile to, by rejecting her proposal for a party commission.[22] During 2007, signs of VVD infighting continued to play in the media. In June 2007, the former VVD minister Dekker presented a report on the previous elections, showing that the VVD lacked clear leadership roles, however the report did not single out individuals for blame for the party's losses.[23]

Mark Rutte, Leader since 2006 and Prime Minister of the Netherlands since 2010

After Verdonk renewed her criticism of the party in September 2007, she was expelled from the parliamentary faction, and subsequently relinquished her membership of the party, after reconciliation attempts proved futile.[24][25] Verdonk started her own political movement, Proud of the Netherlands, subsequently. In opinion polls held after Verdonk's exit, the VVD was set to lose close to ten parliamentary seats in the next elections.[26][27][28]

Jan van Zanen, chairman of the VVD's party board, announced in November 2007 that he would step down in May 2008, a year before his term would end. The rest of the board also announced that they would step down. On the same day of his announcement, honorary member Hans Wiegel called for the resignation of the board, because it could not keep Verdonk in the party.[29][30] Wiegel also opinioned that the VVD should become part of a larger liberal movement, that would encompass the social-liberals Democrats 66, the Party for Freedom of Geert Wilders and Rita Verdonk's Proud of the Netherlands movement, although he found little resonance for this ideas from others.[31]

In 2008, the VVD chose a new party chairman, Ivo Opstelten, the outgoing mayor of Rotterdam. Mark Rutte announced at the celebration of the party's sixth decennial that he would rewrite the foundational program of the party that was enacted in the early 1980s, and offer the new principles for consideration to the party's members in the fall congress.

After the Dutch general election of 2010 the VVD became the largest party with 31 seats and was the senior party in a centre-right minority First Rutte cabinet with the Christian Democratic Appeal supported by the Party for Freedom of Geert Wilders to obtain a majority. Rutte was sworn in as Prime Minister on 21 October 2010, becoming both the first VVD Prime Minister and the first liberal to hold the post in 92 years. However, on 21 April 2012, after failed negotiations with the Party for Freedom on renewed budget cuts, the government became unstable and Mark Rutte deemed it likely that new elections would be held in 2012.[32] On election day, 12 September 2012, the VVD became once more the biggest party within Dutch Parliament, winning 41 seats, a gain of 10 seats.

After the 2012 general election the VVD entered into a ruling coalition with the Labour Party as their junior coalition partner. This coalition lasted a full term, but lost its majority at the 2017 elections; the VVD itself lost eight seats, though remained the largest party with 33.[33]


The VVD was originally a merger of the Party of Freedom and Freethinking Democratic dissenters within the Labour Party. In this name, both tendencies, classical liberalism ("Freedom") and social liberalism ("People's Party"; "Democracy") are represented. Despite being a liberal party, the VVD did not openly call itself "liberal", mainly because of the for some still lingering negative connotations of liberalism developed during the Great Depression and Second World War.[citation needed]

The most common English translation of the name is the literal translation (People's Party for Freedom and Democracy).[34][35][36]

Ideology and issues[edit]

The VVD is a party founded on liberal philosophy,[38] traditionally being the most ardent supporter of 'free markets' of all Dutch political parties, promoting political, economic liberalism, classical liberalism, cultural liberalism, but also (in contrast to this) committed to the idea of the welfare state.

Post 1971, the party became more populist, although some conservative liberal elements remain.[10] The 2006 leadership election was interpreted by many as a conflict between a liberal group and a conservative group within the VVD, with the distinctly liberal Rutte beating conservative Verdonk.[39] The results were, with 52% voting for Rutte and 46% for Verdonk.[40]

Liberal Manifesto[edit]

The principles of the People's Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD) are outlined in the Liberal Manifesto ("Liberaal Manifest") and the election programs. The Liberal Manifesto is a general outlook on the direction of the party would like to mirror itself and is an expansion of the party's foundational principles.[41] The election programs are more oriented to practical politics, for example, winning the elections on-the-day and by any means possible.

The last Liberal Manifesto of the VVD was published in September 2005.[41] It develops a broad outline around the themes of democracy, security, freedom and citizenship, along with a vision of the future of party's internal structure. Below some of the points from the Manifesto are presented:



  • A common policy on defense and security in the European Union is called for.


  • The principle of non-discrimination should be given more importance than the exercise of religion.[citation needed]
  • 'Social rights' are to be continued. These are not simple 'rights', but they also create 'obligations'.
  • Euthanasia is part of a person's 'right' to self-determination.
  • Commitment to an open economy, with a 'regulated free-market', including patents.
  • Support for the freedom of contract. No right for workers to enter into nationally binding collective bargaining agreements.


  • Minimize the option of dual citizenship.
  • Social security should only be fully open for Dutch nationals. Migrants will have to integrate in order to become citizens.

Electoral results[edit]

Klaas Dijkhoff, Leader in the House of Representatives since 2017
Annemarie Jorritsma, Leader in the Senate since 2015
Hans van Baalen, Leader in the European Parliament since 2009


Election year House of Representatives Government Notes
# of
overall votes
 % of
overall vote
# of
overall seats won
1948 391,908 7.9 (#5)
8 / 100
Increase 2 in coalition
1952 470,820 8.8 (#5)
9 / 100
Increase 1 in opposition
1956 502,325 8.7 (#4)
9 / 100
13 / 150
Steady 0
Increase 4
in opposition
1959 732,658 12.2 (#3)
19 / 150
Increase 6 in coalition
1963 643,839 10.2 (#3)
16 / 150
Decrease 3 in coalition
1967 738,202 10.7 (#3)
17 / 150
Increase 1 in coalition
1971 653,092 10.3 (#3)
16 / 150
Decrease 1 in coalition
1972 1,068,375 14.4 (#3)
22 / 150
Increase 6 in opposition
1977 1,492,689 17.0 (#3)
28 / 150
Increase 6 in coalition
1981 1,504,293 17.3 (#3)
26 / 150
Decrease 2 in opposition
1982 1,897,986 23.1 (#3)
36 / 150
Increase 10 in coalition
1986 1,595,377 17.4 (#3)
27 / 150
Decrease 9 in coalition
1989 1,295,402 14.6 (#3)
22 / 150
Decrease 5 in opposition
1994 1,792,401 20.0 (#3)
31 / 150
Increase 9 in coalition
1998 2,124,971 24.7 (#2)
38 / 150
Increase 7 in coalition
2002 1,466,722 15.4 (#3)
24 / 150
Decrease 14 in coalition
2003 1,728,707 17.9 (#3)
28 / 150
Increase 4 in coalition
2006 1,443,312 14.7 (#4)
22 / 150
Decrease 6 in opposition
2010 1,929,575 20.5 (#1)
31 / 150
Increase 9 in coalition Largest party
2012 2,504,948 26.6 (#1)
41 / 150
Increase 10 in coalition Largest party
2017 2,238,351 21.3 (#1)
33 / 150
Decrease 8 in coalition Largest party
Election year Senate Government Notes
# of
overall votes
 % of
overall vote
# of
overall seats won
23 / 100
Increase 11 in coalition Largest party
1999 39,809 25,3 (#2)
19 / 100
Decrease 4 in coalition
2003 31,026 19,2 (#3)
15 / 100
Decrease 4 in coalition
2007 31,360 19,2 (#2)
14 / 100
Decrease 1 in opposition
2011 34,590 20.83 (#1)
16 / 100
Increase 2 in coalition Largest party
2015 28,523 16.87 (#1)
13 / 100
Decrease 3 in coalition Largest party

European Parliament[edit]

Election year # of
overall votes
 % of
overall vote
# of
overall seats won
1979 914,787 16.1 (#3)
4 / 25
1984 1,002,685 18.9 (#3)
5 / 25
Increase 1
1989 714,721 13.6 (#3)
3 / 25
Decrease 2
1994 740,451 17.9 (#3)
6 / 31
Increase 3
1999 698,050 19.7 (#3)
6 / 31
Steady 0
2004 629,198 13.2 (#3)
4 / 27
Decrease 2
2009 518,643 11.4 (#4)
3 / 25
Decrease 1
2014 571,176 12.0 (#4)
3 / 26
Steady 0


Members of the Third Rutte cabinet[edit]

Ministers Portfolio Assumed office
Mark Rutte Mark Rutte
(born 1967)
Prime Minister General Affairs 14 October 2010
Minister Foreign Affairs Vacant
(since 13 February 2018)
Eric Wiebes Eric Wiebes
(born 1963)
Minister Economic Affairs and the Environment 26 October 2017
Cora van Nieuwenhuizen Cora van Nieuwenhuizen
(born 1963)
Minister Infrastructure and Water Management 26 October 2017
Ministers without portfolio Title (Ministry) Assumed office
Sander Dekker Sander Dekker
(born 1975)
Minister Legal Protection
(within Justice and Security)
26 October 2017
Bruno Bruins Bruno Bruins
(born 1963)
Minister Primary Healthcare, Nursing,
Care, Biotechnology,
Drug Policy, Sport
(within Health, Welfare and Sport)
26 October 2017
State Secretaries Title Assumed office
Mark Harbers Mark Harbers
(born 1969)
State secretary Integration, Immigration,
Asylum Affairs
(within Justice and Security)
26 October 2017
Barbara Visser Barbara Visser
(born 1977)
State secretary Personnel Affairs, Equipment Policy
(within Defence)
26 October 2017
Netherlands politic personality icon.svg Tamara van Ark
(born 1974)
State secretary Social Security, Occupational Safety,
Unemployment Affairs, Youth Policy
Poverty Policy, Equality,
(within Social Affairs and Employment)
26 October 2017

Members of the States General[edit]

Members of the House of Representatives[edit]

Current members of the House of Representatives since the General election of 2017:

Members of the Senate[edit]

Current members of the Senate since the Senate election of 2015:

Members of the European Parliament[edit]

Current members of the European Parliament since the European Parliamentary election of 2014:

The MEPs of the People's Party for Freedom and Democracy are part of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe Party and Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe Group in the European parliament.

Municipal and provincial government[edit]

Provincial government[edit]

The VVD provides five of twelve King's Commissioners. The VVD is part of every college of the Provincial-Executives Gedeputeerde Staten except for Friesland.

In the following figure one can see the election results of the provincial election of 2003, 2007, 2011 and 2015 per province. It shows the areas where the VVD is strong, namely the Randstad urban area that consists out of the provinces North and South Holland, Utrecht and (parts of) Flevoland. The party is weak in peripheral provinces like Friesland, Overijssel, Zeeland, and Limburg.

Province 2003 2007 2011 2015
Votes Seats Votes Seats Votes Seats Votes Seats
Drenthe 18.0%
9 / 51
8 / 41
9 / 41
7 / 41
Flevoland 22.7%
11 / 47
9 / 39
9 / 39
7 / 39
Friesland 10.9%
6 / 55
5 / 43
6 / 43
5 / 43
Groningen 13.4%
7 / 55
5 / 43
6 / 43
4 / 43
Gelderland 16.9%
13 / 75
9 / 53
11 / 55
9 / 55
Limburg 14.5%
9 / 63
7 / 47
8 / 47
5 / 47
North Brabant 19.0%
15 / 79
11 / 55
11 / 55
10 / 55
North Holland 23.0%
20 / 83
13 / 55
13 / 55
11 / 55
Overijssel 13.7%
9 / 63
6 / 47
8 / 47
6 / 47
South Holland 21.4%
18 / 83
12 / 55
12 / 55
10 / 55
Utrecht 20.7%
14 / 63
10 / 47
11 / 47
9 / 47
Zeeland 14.5%
7 / 47
6 / 39
7 / 39
6 / 39

Municipal government[edit]

109 of the 414 Dutch mayors are member of the VVD. Furthermore, the party has about 250 aldermen and 1100 members of municipal councils. The VVD provides the mayors of several major cities like; the Mayor of Amsterdam Jozias van Aartsen, the Mayor of The Hague Pauline Krikke, the Mayor of Utrecht Jan van Zanen and the Mayor of Eindhoven John Jorritsma.


Historically the VVD electorate consisted mainly of secular middle-class[52] and upper-class voters, with a strong support from entrepreneurs. Under the leadership of Wiegel, the VVD started to expand its appeal to working class voters.



Party Board[edit]

Organisational structure[edit]

The highest organ of the VVD is the General Assembly, in which all members present have a single vote. It convenes usually twice every year. It appoints the party board and decides on the party program.

The order of the First Chamber, Second Chamber and European Parliament candidates list is decided by a referendum under all members voting by internet, phone or mail. If contested, the lijsttrekker of a candidates lists is appointed in a separate referendum in advance. Since 2002 the General Assembly can call for a referendum on other subjects too. The present chairman of the board was elected this way.

About 90 members elected by the members in meetings of the regional branches form the Party Council, which advises the Party Board in the months that the General Assembly does not convene. This is an important forum within the party. The party board handles the daily affairs of the party.

Linked organisations[edit]

The independent youth-organisation that has a partnership agreement with the VVD is the Youth Organisation Freedom and Democracy (Jongeren Organisatie Vrijheid en Democratie; JOVD), which as a member of the Liberal Youth Movement of the European Union and the International Federation of Liberal and Radical Youth.

The education institute of the VVD is the Haya van Someren Foundation. The Scientific institute Telders Foundation publishes the magazine Liberaal Reveil every two months. The party published the magazine Liber bi-monthly.

International organisations[edit]

The VVD is a member of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe Party and Liberal International.

Relationships to other parties[edit]

The VVD has always been a very independent party. The VVD cooperates on the European and the international level with the social-liberal Democraten 66. It has a long history of coalitions with the Christian Democratic Appeal and its Christian-democratic predecessors, but was in government with the social-democratic Labour Party from 1994 to 2002 and again since 2012.

The VVD participates in the Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy, a democracy assistance organisation of seven Dutch political parties.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ VVD ledentallen per jaar (1948- ) (in Dutch), University of Groningen, 2017. Retrieved 20 February 2017.
  2. ^ a b Andeweg, R. and G. Irwin Politics and Governance in the Netherlands, Basingstoke (Palgrave) p.49
  3. ^ Hans Keman (2008), "The Low Countries: Confrontation and Coalition in Segmented Societies", Comparative European Politics, Taylor & Francis, p. 221 
  4. ^ Sean Lusk; Nick Birks (2014). Rethinking Public Strategy. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 168. ISBN 978-1-137-37758-6. 
  5. ^ Rudy W Andeweg; Lieven De Winter; Patrick Dumont (5 April 2011). Government Formation. Taylor & Francis. p. 147. ISBN 978-1-134-23972-6. Retrieved 17 August 2012. 
  6. ^ Jochen Clasen; Daniel Clegg (27 October 2011). Regulating the Risk of Unemployment: National Adaptations to Post-Industrial Labour Markets in Europe. Oxford University Press. p. 76. ISBN 978-0-19-959229-6. Retrieved 17 August 2012. 
  7. ^ David Broughton (4 January 1999). Changing Party Systems in Western Europe. Continuum International Publishing Group. p. 178. ISBN 978-1-85567-328-1. Retrieved 20 August 2012. 
  8. ^ Thomas Poguntke; Paul Webb (21 June 2007). The Presidentialization of Politics: A Comparative Study of Modern Democracies. Oxford University Press. p. 158. ISBN 978-0-19-921849-3. Retrieved 24 August 2012. 
  9. ^ T. Banchoff (28 June 1999). Legitimacy and the European Union. Taylor & Francis. p. 123. ISBN 978-0-415-18188-4. Retrieved 26 August 2012. 
  10. ^ a b Andeweg R.B. and G.A. Irwin Government & Politics in the Netherlands 2002 Palgrave p. 48
  11. ^ "Website Info for". Archived from the original on 2014-05-15. Retrieved 17 March 2017. 
  12. ^ Bruno Waterfield (23 April 2012). "Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte resigns over austerity measures". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 3 March 2015. 
  13. ^
  14. ^ "Partij van de Vrijheid (PvdV) - Parlement & Politiek". 
  15. ^ "Liberale Staatspartij 'De Vrijheidsbond' (LSP) - Parlement & Politiek". 
  16. ^ "Liberale Unie - Parlement & Politiek". 
  17. ^ NRC Handelsblad 31 May 2006 Link Dutch language
  18. ^ "Rutte: "Het karwei begint nu pas"". NOS Nieuws. 4 November 2006. 
  19. ^ "Wiegel leest Rutte en Verdonk de les". 
  20. ^
  21. ^ "Verdonk wil onderzoek naar leiderschap VVD" (in Dutch). Elsevier. 28 November 2006. 
  22. ^ "Verdonk haalt bakzeil over leiderschap VVD" (in Dutch). Elsevier. 29 November 2006. 
  23. ^ "Rutte pleased with committee report". Expatica. 13 June 2007. Retrieved 15 June 2007. 
  24. ^ "Ex-minister Verdonk expelled from parliamentary party". Radio Netherlands. 13 September 2007. Retrieved 13 September 2007. 
  25. ^ "Verdonk zegt lidmaatschap VVD op". 15 October 2007. 
  26. ^ "Politieke Barometer week 42–19 oktober 2007". Interview-NSS. 19 October 2007. 
  27. ^ "Politieke Barometer week 43–26 oktober 2007". Interview-NSS. 26 October 2007. 
  28. ^ "Nieuw Haags Peil van 21 oktober 2007". 26 October 2007. 
  29. ^ "Hele hoofdbestuur VVD stapt op". 21 November 2007. Retrieved 21 November 2007. 
  30. ^ "Wiegel wants VVD executive to resign". Expatica. 21 November 2007. Retrieved 21 November 2007. 
  31. ^ "Little support for Wiegel's ideas for VVD". Expatica. 22 November 2007. Retrieved 23 November 2007. 
  32. ^ "Dutch government unravels over Brussels budget rules". EUobserver. 22 April 2012. Retrieved 23 April 2012. 
  33. ^ Kiesraad. "Kerngegevens Tweede Kamerverkiezing 2017". 
  34. ^ "People's Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD) – Netherlands – Full Members – Members – Liberalism". Retrieved 13 June 2010. 
  35. ^ "VVD News – EU Politics Today". 9 June 2010. Retrieved 13 June 2010. 
  36. ^ "Dutch Liberal Party forms-People's party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD) January 24 in History". 24 January 1948. Retrieved 13 June 2010. 
  37. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v "VVD Standpunten". VVD. 
  38. ^ "VVD's Official page - Liberale Beginselen". 
  39. ^ "Een Liberale VVD" in De Volkskrant June 1, 2006 accessible here
  40. ^ "Mark Rutte: Ik ben ongelooflijk blij". Elsevier. 
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