Reformed Political Party

The State Professional Gereformeerde Partij ( SGP ) ( Reformed Political Party ) is a small reformed political party in the Netherlands. It was founded in 1918 in Middelburg (Zeeland), making it the oldest active party in the Netherlands.

The radically conservative, orthodox Calvinist party is represented consistently since 1922 in the Second Chamber of Parliament, but since 1994, with only two MPs. They achieved their best results in the so-called Dutch Bible strip that extends between Zeeland, the south of South Holland, the Betuwe and Veluwe in Gelderland and the Northwest Overijssel. The SGP has its headquarters in The Hague.

After the 2010 general election, the government coalition of VVD and CDA, together with the toleration partner PVV only a slim majority in the Second Chamber. In the absence of a voice the SGP would have been prepared to support the coalition.

Name and positions

The Dutch word civic knowledge means " political," " based on the state " within the meaning of. With Gereformeerd the party refers to a specific, strict direction of Calvinism.

The Party sees its foundations in their understanding of the Bible, which is explained in detail, among other things in Confessio Belgica and the Heidelberg Catechism. It is one of the few Christian groups in Europe, seeking a theocracy. Their program it belongs, " to ward off and eradicate all idolatry and false religion." To honor the Lord's Day and to protect the Sunday rest, she wants to keep shops and entertainment venues closed on Sunday.

According to historian Ewout clothes according to the attitude of the party at about 2010 has changed: " Once upon a time the SGP an isolated commitment Party which is not much interested in the politics of the day. " Up to this time the political leader Bas van der Vlies was a veteran parliamentarians, representing its views in Parliament and was perceived by the other parties as nice in person, but which one otherwise ignored. The new leader Kees van der Staaij, however, provided the right-wing parties led by Mark Rutte on his political support. But unlike the political left often thinks the SGP- politicians are not fundamentalists, but conservatives, so clothing. No longer the struggle against Catholicism or secularism, but against Islam now stand in the foreground.

Woman Question

As women then neither active members of the SGP still be allowed to hold on their behalf offices or mandates, the district court ( arrondissementsrechtbank ) in The Hague said on September 7, 2005, a judgment, according to which the Dutch State of the SGP could no longer pay subsidies. The party subsidy violated, the court, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, in which the Netherlands have committed to the fight against discrimination against women, and also violates the first article of the Dutch constitution, in which the principle of equality before the law is anchored. However, the Raad van State conceded this decision with the argument that programmatic political party have priority over these considerations, especially as it stands open to women to join other political parties.

Within the party, it created again a discussion about women membership. At a party conference on 24 June 2006, the SGP lifted the ban on female membership. In March 2007, a three-quarters majority of the members at a general meeting confirmed the amendment of the party constitution. However, the SGP is still against female candidates in elections to representative assemblies.

In April 2010, the High Council (Supreme Court) said that the attitude of the SGP respect of women candidates disagree but the UN Convention against discrimination against women. Therefore, the state must take action. The SGP was filed with the European Court of Human Rights to appeal. The ( left ) opposition parties PvdA, D66 and Groen Links expect the state measures against the women's policy of SGP. You suspect political reasons that the government protects the SGP. Interior Minister Piet Hein Donner ( CDA) will await the decision of the European Court. SP and ChristianUnion think the SGP had the right to remain true to their principles.

Election results

Second Chamber:

In the First Chamber of the SGP had a long time and two seats since 2011.