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Dutch caretaker Prime Minister Mark Rutte speaks with the media after the Netherlands’ general election Dutch caretaker Prime Minister Mark Rutte speaks with the media on the day of the Netherlands’ general election, The Hague, Netherlands, March 17, 2021 (pool photo by Eva Plevier via AP Images).

The Dutch Election’s One Clear Winner: Mark Rutte

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Dutch voters went to the polls last week and the results were, well, a bit muddled. Anyone claiming to have detected a dramatic and unequivocal message from the Netherlands is guilty of, at the very least, exaggerating the significance of an outcome that really was a mixed bag.

Headlines like the one in The Washington Post—where, full disclosure, I’m a contributing columnist—declaring that the Dutch elections add to evidence of “the far right’s global retreat” betray wishful thinking. There’s a good chance that the far right is in an initial phase of a global retreat, but that was not in evidence in the Netherlands. ...

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