Page 1, 16th July 1948

16th July 1948
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Page 1, 16th July 1948 — CATHOLIC VOTES UP IN DUTCH ELECTION
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People: Beet, C. Welter, C. Lomme
Locations: HAARLEM, Amsterdam, Rotterdam

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CATHOLIC VOTES UP IN DUTCH ELECTION

From Our Own Correspondent

HAARLEM, HOLLAND,

Last week's elections for the new " House " have clearly proved that the great majority of the country gives its full support to the Catholic-Labour government, under its capable Catholic Prime Minister Dr. Beet.

There was a slight drop in the number of seats for the Labour Party, which returns with 27 instead of 29 members; the Catholic People's Party, however, held its own, keeping all 32 seats in the House. the number of votes for the Catholic Party has substantially increased, but not enough for another seat.

This means a clear majority of 59 out of 100 seats, which is a remarkable achievement for a Government that has had to bear the full burden of post-war problems in a devastated country, and which, moreover, has had to grapple with a most delicate political situation in Indonesia, which, together with the Palestine question, is one of the almost permanent items on the agenda of the United Nations at Lake Success.

The dissentient Catholic Party, under a former Colonial Secretary, Mr. C. Welter, who advocates a firmer hand in Indonesia, has failed to obtain more than one seat in the new Parliament, in spite of an enormous amount of propaganda. This, again, shows that the Indonesian policy of the Government is backed by the majority of the nation, despite the long list of fatal casualties which reaches this country every week, notwithstanding the cease-fire.

NEW CONSTITUTION

The election result provides at the same time the nation's approval of the new constitution necessary for the construction of the NetherlandsIndonesian Union. As. however, the revision of the constitution demands a two-thirds majority, the basis of the new Cabinet may be widened by the inclusion of one or two members taken from other parties supporting the constitutional change, remarkable that the newlyareitis ted

Social-Democrat Party, consisting of Socialists who are discontented with the departure from Marxist principles of the present Labour Party, failed to obtain a seat. The votes that were lost by the Labour Party went either to the Christian Historical Party or to the People's Party for Freedom and Democracy, which was founded by Right Wing Labour members and Liberals.

After a day of dignified and quiet polling the country celebrated the elections result in a jolly mood.

At twelve o'clock, midnight, Prof. C. Lomme, the leader of the Catholic People's Party in the House made a short speech from the editorial chair of the Volkskrant, the Catholic daily with the widest circulation, pledging the Catholic Party's unflagging support of Christian policy. The only people that looked glum among the happy crowd were the Communists, who lost 20 per cent. of their votes; their losses in the big cities like Amsterdam and Rotterdam, arc especially significant.




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