There is no question of seduction dances on the right in order to achieve a political concentration of forces. On the contrary, N-VA chairman Bart De Wever has an attack plan ready to get the center-right voter away from the Vlaams Belang, CD&V and Open VLD.
‘A broad center-right block, in the image of the CSU in Bavaria, would be a fantastic story. That means a conservative and economically liberal community party. A majority of the Flemish would feel at home in this. ‘ With those words De Wever made in De Zondag yet another reflection on political redevelopment on the right.
CD&V chairman Joachim Coens responded remarkably enthusiastically. The image of the CSU that De Wever cites is the Christian Democrats in Bavaria. If he would like a widely supported Christian Democratic party, we are there for it, of course, ‘Coens responded the following day in’ De Oorning ‘.
It seemed as if De Wever, supported by Coens, wanted to breathe new life into the old Forza Flandria dream. That dream, which was already in the head of Guy Verhofstadt (Open VLD) 30 years ago, entails a joining of forces on the right. The Wevers dream is that the conservative voters at CD&V, the liberal voters at Open VLD and the Flemish nationalist voters at the N-VA together form a center-right bloc. According to the N-VA chairman, that is the only way to stop the advance of the Vlaams Belang.
There have not even been any rounds on the right, as there have been between progressives with a view to the development of a left-liberal movement or party.
But on the right, there have not even been rounds of snooping, as there have been between progressives with a view to the development of a left-liberal movement or party. When CD&V was faced with the choice in the government negotiations whether it would go into federal opposition with the N-VA or whether it would participate with Vivaldi, Coens could have gone to Antwerp to conclude a Forza Flandria deal. But that momentum has passed. It was also clear to De Wever at the beginning of 2020 that Coens would never sign for the opposition.
The reality is that not the political parties, but the voter will redistribute the political landscape. De Wever has therefore not set his sights on a party political reallotment, but wants to persuade the center-right voter to join the N-VA. In this strategy to remain the Flemish people’s party, separate lines of attack have been developed towards the Vlaams Belang, CD&V and Open VLD.
At the Vlaams Belang, with which De Wever has expanded, he mainly hopes for mistakes on their part, so that the reasonable right-wing voter can be addressed. The fact that Vlaams Belang chairman Tom Van Greeks brought out a can of pepper spray in the VTM studios is such a mistake. With that pepper spray stunt, Van Greeks wanted to defend Dries Van Langenhove, the foreman of the extreme right-wing Schild & Friends who is under investigation, but he did revive the image of a terrifying extreme right club.
The war machine that the N-VA still is, mainly has Open VLD in its sights.
Towards the CD&V, which according to the N-VA analysis is stuck in political irrelevance, it is marching to be ‘tempting’. But the war machine that the N-VA still is, mainly has Open VLD in its sights. There, the N-VA wants to drive a wedge between the left-liberal and the deep blue tendency, say: the VVD and D66 factions. De Wever wants to bring in the last ‘real’ liberals.
De Wever’s determination to destroy Open VLD is not only a well-reasoned strategic choice. She also has to do with the account he still has with Open VLD chairman Egbert Lachaert. The latter had assured De Wever that he would go for purple-yellow, as was shown this week in the second episode in the VRT documentary ‘BDW’.
The broadcast contains a passage in which De Wever briefs vice-chairman Lorin Parys and his sherpa Sven De Neef about a conversation that took place on 27 May with Lachaert and Alexander De Croo. De Wever tells at the briefing, which followed the day after the meeting, that Lachaert and De Croo had made the promise that they would never drop him for the Sixteen. De Croo would not become prime minister anyway.
‘BDW’ is political theater, but it would be punishment if De Wever knew months in advance how the formation discussions would end, and which lies he had to tell about it in order to denounce the ‘betrayal’ of Open VLD.
After the government negotiations, De Wever already revealed this ‘fraud’, but according to Lachaert, the N-VA chairman lied. Lachaert first denied that the meeting had taken place, after which he adjusted his story and said that as the new chairman of Open VLD he had seen all the other chairmen. But no promises had been made.
The passage in ‘BDW’ shows that it went further than a mere introductory meeting. Of course, De Wever knows better than anyone what he is doing when the cameras are pointed at him. ‘BDW’ is political theater, but it would be punishment if De Wever knew months in advance how the formation discussions would end, and which lies he had to tell about it in order to denounce the ‘betrayal’ of Open VLD.
If De Wever were to live in the 19th century, he would have challenged Lachaert to a duel.