POSTS BY Peter J. van de Waerdt

Wilders vs. the Dutch Constitution: Constitutional Protection against Discriminatory Policies

Geert Wilders’ Freedom Party stands a fair chance of becoming the largest party after the elections next week. His political programme is blurry at best, but parts of it – such as a ban of the Quran – are clearly unconstitutional. Will the constitutional system in the Netherlands be robust enough to withstand this challenge?

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Geert Wilders’ “Incitement to Discriminate” Trial

Months before the parliamentary elections in the Netherlands, the leader of the far-right Freedom Party and election favorite Geert Wilders finds himself before a criminal court. He is charged with insulting and inciting discrimination against residents of Moroccan descent by promising his supporters “fewer Moroccans” in 2014. Wilders and his defence seem to invoke the theory of the ‘marketplace of ideas’, which is a common line of thinking in United States First Amendment law. The principal standard for Dutch courts however, the European Convention of Human Rights, takes a somewhat different stance.

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