A Senate with Indirect Power. The First Chamber in the Netherlands

(Joris van de Kerkhof) THE LOW COUNTRIES - 2015, № 23, pp 301-302

In May 2015 the Dutch go to the polls for provincial elections. These are regional elections with a serious national character. Rutte’s cabinet anticipates the results with considerable apprehension, as it is through the provinces, rather than directly, that the 75 members of the Senate, or First Chamber, are elected. The Senate in the Netherlands has existed for 200 years. 

Since the foundation of the bicameral system, the role of the Senate has been debated. This Chamber cannot directly change laws, nor immediately dismiss a cabinet, but it can do so indirectly. It is therefore a Chamber with indirect power.

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