Labour leaders want to take time to discuss merging with GroenLinks

The PvdA party board wants to take time to discuss more intensive cooperation or even a merger with GroenLinks, party chairman Esther-Mirjam Sent said in a letter to party members on Monday. She said the process must be careful and called for discussions about left-wing cooperation to be slowed down, “with the next parliamentary elections as a speck on the horizon,” the Volkskrant reports.

The discussion is raging among PvdA members, especially the mainly young initiators of the Rood Groen Manifesto. They’ll submit a motion to merge the factions in the Senate at the next PvdA congress on June 11. Both parties’ scientific offices and European delegations will meet on left-wing cooperation on Monday, May 9th. And four days later, the PvdA members will discuss it with Attje Kuiken, the new PvdA leader in parliament. 

Proponents of a merger stress that quick decisions are necessary, pointing to the importance of the Provincial Council elections and associated elections to the Senate next year. Several PvdA celebrities, like Amsterdam alderman Marjolein Moorman, European Commission vice-president Frans Timmermans, and parliamentarians Kati Piri and Khadija Arib, expressed support for a merger. 

But Sent urged caution and care in her letter to PvdA members. “All tastes are possible, and we determine that tase together as members,” she said. The party will make a final decision after “deepening” itself into the topic. “We will do that at the congress well before the next parliamentary elections.”

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