2014 Belgian Federal Election
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2014 Belgian Federal Election

2014 Belgian federal election
Belgium
← 2010 25 May 2014 (2014-05-25) 2019 →

All 150 seats in the Chamber of Representatives
76 seats needed for a majority
Turnout89.37%
N-VA Bart De Wever 20.26% 33 +6
PS Elio Di Rupo 11.67% 23 -3
CD&V Wouter Beke 11.61% 18 +1
Open Vld Gwendolyn Rutten 9.78% 14 +1
MR Charles Michel 9.64% 20 +2
sp.a Bruno Tobback 8.83% 13 0
Groen Wouter Van Besien 5.32% 6 +1
cdH Benoît Lutgen 4.98% 9 0
PVDA-PTB Peter Mertens 3.72% 2 +2
VB Gerolf Annemans 3.67% 3 -9
ECOLO Olivier Deleuze
& Emily Hoyos
3.30% 6 -2
FDF Olivier Maingain 1.80% 2 New
PP Mischaël Modrikamen 1.50% 1 0

Federal elections were held in Belgium on 25 May 2014.[1] All 150 members of the Chamber of Representatives were elected, whereas the Senate was no longer directly elected following the 2011-2012 state reform. These were the first elections held under King Philippe's reign.

Date

As part of the state reform adopted 19 December 2013,[2] the date of election will from now on coincide with the European elections,[3] which the Council of the EU has scheduled for 22-25 May 2014.[4] The regional elections in Belgium already constitutionally coincide with the European elections, consequently Belgians will vote for three elections on the same day.

On 25 April 2014, a declaration to amend the Constitution was adopted, formally dissolving parliament and triggering new elections within 40 days.[5]

Electoral system

The 150 members of the Chamber of Representatives are elected in 11 multi-member constituencies, being the ten provinces and Brussels, with between 4 and 24 seats. Seats are allocated using the d'Hondt method, with an electoral threshold of 5% per constituency.[6] Apportionment of seats is done every ten years, last by royal order of 31 January 2013, based on the population figures of 28 May 2012.

Representatives elected from the five Flemish provinces, Antwerp (24), East Flanders (20), Flemish Brabant (15), Limburg (12) and West Flanders (16), automatically belong to the Dutch-speaking language group in parliament, whereas those elected from the five Walloon provinces, Hainaut (18), Liège (15), Luxembourg (4), Namur (6) and Walloon Brabant (5), form the French-speaking language group. The 15 members elected in Brussels may choose to join either group, though de facto only French-speaking parties reach the threshold.

The 60-member Senate is composed of 50 representatives from the regional and community parliaments, plus 10 co-opted senators proportionally divided among parties based on the result of the federal election.

Voters

All Belgian citizens aged 18 or over are obligated to participate in the election. Foreigners residing in Belgium (regardless of EU citizenship) cannot vote, whereas Belgian citizens living abroad may register to vote. Following the sixth state reform, they can no longer freely choose in which constituency their vote counts; instead the municipality is objectively defined by statutory criteria. Since the previous elections were snap elections, there was more preparation time now, allowing for significantly increased use of the option compared to 2010.

The electoral roll was fixed per 1 March 2014.

2014 2010 difference
Eligible Belgians residing in Belgium 7,879,874 7,725,463 +154,411 (+2.00%)
Eligible Belgians residing abroad 128,902 42,089 +86,813 (+206.26%)
 - voted in-person or by proxy in a municipality in Belgium 20,241 9,741 +10,500 (+107.79%)
 - voted in-person or by proxy in the Belgian diplomatic or consular post where they registered 19,080 13,089 +5,991 (+45.77%)
 - voted by mail 89,581 19,259 +70,322 (+365.14%)
Total 8,008,776 7,767,552 +241,224 (+3.11%)

151 Flemish municipalities and 2 Brussels municipalities voted electronically; the remaining 157 Flemish and 17 Brussels and all 262 Walloon municipalities voted by paper ballot.

Timetable

25 February Start of the "waiting period" (sperperiode) running until the day of the election, during which political propaganda and expenses are strictly regulated
1 March The electoral roll is fixed by municipal authorities
25 April The Parliament adopts a declaration to amend the Constitution, formally dissolving parliament and triggering elections within 40 days[5]
10 May Final day for the official announcement of the election and the convocation letter to voters
21 May Polling day for Belgians residing abroad in the embassies and consular posts
25 May Polling day (from 8am until 2pm, or until 4pm where voting is done electronically)
19 June Constitutive session of the newly elected Chamber of Representatives

Background and reforms since last election

The previous 2010 election resulted in a victory for Flemish nationalist N-VA. The coalition formation stalemate went on for a record-breaking 541 days. Eventually, the negotiating parties agreed upon a sixth Belgian state reform and the Di Rupo Government was finally formed on 6 December 2011 and comprised PS, MR, CD&V, Open VLD, sp.a and cdH.

The state reform has the following consequences for the election in 2014:

  • The controversial electoral constituency of Brussels-Halle-Vilvoorde no longer exists; rather, each province plus the federal capital now has its own constituency, and voter discrimination has been abolished.
  • The Senate will no longer be directly elected.
  • The term length will be increased from 4 years to 5 years, and the election will always coincide with the European Parliament election.[3]

Election campaign

The campaign topics largely focused on socio-economic reforms: job creation and unemployment, tax reform, pensions, ... This campaign also featured an unprecedented level of quantified programmes by political parties. For example, the N-VA released its "V plan" and CD&V its "3D plan".

One week before the election day, former CD&V Prime Minister Jean-Luc Dehaene suddenly died while in France. Several debates were cancelled, and CD&V as well as all other Flemish parties suspended their campaign for a few days.[7]

Jewish Museum shooting

On 24 May, the day before the elections, a shooting occurred at the Belgian Jewish Museum in Brussels, with three people reported dead.[8] Self-described anti-Zionist MP Laurent Louis suggested that the attack could be a false flag operation seeking to discredit him and his political party (Debout les Belges, or "Stand Up, Belgians") on the eve of the elections.[9]

Political parties

The primary six Flemish political parties and their results for the House of Representatives (Kamer). From 1978 to 2014, in percentages for the complete 'Kingdom'.

Current situation

In 2010, ten parties won seats in the Belgian Senate: Christen-Democratisch en Vlaams (CD&V), Centre Démocrate Humaniste (cdH), Socialistische Partij Anders (sp.a), Parti Socialiste (PS), Open Vld, Mouvement Réformateur (MR), Groen, Ecolo, New Flemish Alliance (N-VA) and Vlaams Belang. In the Chamber of Representatives, the People's Party (PP) and Libertarian, Direct, Democratic (LDD) each also won one seat.

During the legislation, the Francophone Democratic Federalists (FDF) separated from the MR party and are now represented in the Chamber with 3 representatives, but have no Senators. The PP Member of Parliament left the party and became an independent. One Vlaams Belang member of the Chamber and one Vlaams Belang member of the Senate left their party and decided to become independents.

Thus, currently the ten major parties are represented in both the Chamber and the Senate; in addition, LDD and FDF are represented in the Chamber of Representatives.

However, most of the major parties only operate in the Dutch-speaking or in the French-speaking constituencies. Voters who live in the provinces of Antwerp, East Flanders, Flemish Brabant, Limburg or West Flanders can only vote for CD&V, Groen, N-VA, Open VLD, sp.a and Vlaams Belang, apart from the minor parties - except when a French-speaking party would present a list in one of these provinces, which has not happened except for a FDF and a PP list in Flemish Brabant. In the provinces of Hainaut, Liège, Luxembourg, Namur and Walloon Brabant, voters can only vote for cdH, Ecolo, MR and PS, apart from the minor parties - except when a Dutch-speaking party would present a list in one of these provinces, which has not happened in this elections.

In the constituency of Liège, the German-speaking parties CSP, Ecolo, PFF and SP all form one list with their French-speaking counterparts; the name of these lists only mention the French-speaking party. Therefore, the CSP politicians are on the cdH list, the Ecolo ones on the Ecolo list, PFF on the MR list and SP on the PS list. The other German-speaking parties (ProDG and Vivant) do not present a list due to their marginal chance of getting a seat in Parliament.

In the constituency of Brussels-Capital, Ecolo and Groen formed one list under the name Ecolo.[10] CD&V, N-VA, Open Vld, sp.a and Vlaams Belang will each present a single list.

LDD only presented a list in West Flanders. FDF presented a list in all Walloon constituencies, in Brussels-Capital and in Flemish Brabant. PVDA-PTB presented a list in all eleven constituencies of Belgium, making it one of the few parties which are represented in the whole of Belgium.

Main candidates

The following candidates are the first on the respective party list (lijsttrekker / tête de liste) per constituency.

Flemish-speaking constituencies

French-speaking constituencies

Opinion polling

The results of the opinion polls are usually split into separate numbers for the three Belgian regions. Below, they are transposed to national figures.

Date(s)
conducted
Newspaper N-VA PS CD&V MR sp.a Open Vld VB CDH Ecolo Groen Others Lead
15 April 2014 La Libre Belgique 20.6% 10.2% 10.7% 8.4% 8.5% 8.7% 6.4% 3.7% 3.9% 4.9% 14.0% 9.9% over CD&V
11 October 2013 De Standaard 17.6% - 12.0% - 8.4% 8.7% 6.7% - - 6.3% 40.4% 5.6% over CD&V
6 September 2013 La Libre Belgique[11] 22.3% 10.8% 10.9% 8.8% 7.6% 7.5% 7.2% 4.7% 4.7% 4.4% 11.2% 11.4% over CD&V
1 September 2013 Le Soir 19.3% 11.3% 10.8% 8.7% 8.0% 8.9% 7.5% 4.5% 4.3% 4.0% 12.5% 8.0% over PS
16 June 2013 Le Soir[12] 22.0% 10.5% 9.9% 8.3% 8.7% 8.3% 5.9% 4.6% 4.7% 4.8% 12.1% 11.5% over PS
25 May 2013 La Libre Belgique[13] 20.6% 10.2% 10.0% 8.9% 8.9% 8.1% 8.1% 4.7% 5.4% 4.1% 11.0% 10.4% over PS
25 May 2013 De Standaard[14] 20.2% - 10.9% - 9.3% 6.4% 6.7% - - 6.0% 40.5% 9.3% over CD&V
24 March 2013 Le Soir[15] 21.2% 11.8% 10.5% 8.6% 8.6% 7.8% 6.6% 5.0% 4.4% 4.9% 10.7% 9.4% over PS
16 March 2013 Het Laatste Nieuws[16] 21.0% - 9.4% - 8.5% 7.5% 7.0% - - 5.2% 41.4% 11.6% over CD&V
22 February 2013 La Libre Belgique[17] 24.3% 10.8% 8.8% 9.0% 9.3% 6.2% 4.2% 4.6% 4.7% 5.4% 12.7% 13.5% over PS
14 October 2012 Provincial election 2012[18][19] 18.0% 11.7% 13.5% 10.2% 8.6% 9.2% 5.6% 6.2% 4.8% 5.3% 6.7% 4.5% over CD&V
14 September 2012 De Standaard[20] 22.6% - 11.5% - 9.0% 6.7% 5.9% - - 4.9% 39.4% 11.1% over CD&V
10 June 2010 Federal election 2010[21] 17.4% 13.7% 10.8% 9.3% 9.2% 8.6% 7.8% 5.5% 4.8% 4.4% 8.4% 3.7% over PS

Results

Zetelverdeling-FK-2014.png

At the Flemish side, Vlaams Belang and LDD suffered major losses; their votes went to N-VA, which increased its position as largest party. CD&V, Open Vld and Groen gained slightly as well, while sp.a lost slightly.

At the French-speaking side, PS, cdH and Ecolo suffer losses while MR gained as well as newcomers PTB-GO! and FDF.


e o d Summary of the 25 May 2014 Belgian Chamber of Representatives election results
o 2014 o 2019 ->
Party Leader(s) Votes % +/- E.c. % Seats +/-
New Flemish Alliance (N-VA) Bart De Wever 1,366,397 20.26 2.86 Increase 32.22
6 Increase
Socialist Party (PS) Elio Di Rupo 787,058 11.67 2.03 Decrease 31.43
3 Decrease
Christian Democratic & Flemish (CD&V) Wouter Beke 783,040 11.61 0.76 Increase 18.47
1 Increase
Open Flemish Liberals and Democrats (Open Vld) Gwendolyn Rutten 659,571 9.78 1.14 Increase 15.55
1 Increase
Reformist Movement (MR) Charles Michel 650,260 9.64 0.36 Increase 25.96
2 Increase
Socialist Party-Differently (sp.a) Bruno Tobback 595,466 8.83 0.41 Decrease 14.04
0 Steady
Green (Groen) Wouter Van Besien 358,947 5.32 0.94 Increase 8.46
1 Increase
Humanist Democratic Centre (cdH) Benoît Lutgen 336,184 4.98 0.54 Decrease 13.43
0 Steady
Workers' Party (PTB-GO!/PVDA+)


Peter Mertens
PVDA+
PTB-GO!

251,276
118,333
132,943
3.72
1.75
1.97
2.17 Increase --
3.24
5.31


Increase 2


Flemish Interest (Vlaams Belang) Gerolf Annemans 247,738 3.67 4.09 Decrease 5.84
9 Decrease
Ecolo Olivier Deleuze & Emily Hoyos 222,524 3.30 1.50 Decrease 8.89
2 Decrease
Francophone Democratic Federalists (FDF) Olivier Maingain 121,384 1.80 new 4.85
2 Increase
People's Party (Parti Populaire) Mischaël Modrikamen 102,581 1.52 0.23 Increase 4.10
0 Steady
Libertarian, Direct, Democratic (LDD) Jean-Marie Dedecker 28,414 0.42 1.89 Decrease 0.67
1 Decrease
Others (parties that received less than 1% of the overall vote) 233,707 3.47 -- --
0 Steady
Valid votes 6,744,547 94.23
Blank and invalid votes 412,951 5.77
Totals 7,157,498 100.00 -- --
0 Steady
Electorate and voter turnout 8,008,776 89.37 0.23 Increase
Source: Federal Portal - Chamber Elections 2014
Notes:
1) E.c. = electoral college (Dutch- and French-speaking)

In detail

Dutch-speaking constituencies Bilingual constituency
Party Antwerp East Flanders Flemish Brabant Limburg West Flanders Brussels
Votes Perc. Seats Votes Perc. Seats Votes Perc. Seats Votes Perc. Seats Votes Perc. Seats Votes Perc. Seats
N-VA 449,531 39.38 11 306,309 31.03 6 192,698 28.37 5 174,030 31.39 5 230,265 28.50 6 13,240 2.65 0
CD&V 183,636 16.09 4 177,178 17.95 4 112,251 16.53 3 125,962 22.72 3 175,669 21.74 4 8,193 1.64 0
OPEN VLD 116,892 10.24 2 178,911 18.12 4 170,128 25.05 4 68,713 12.39 2 111,388 13.79 2 13,294 2.66 0
SP.A 132,096 11.57 3 131,607 13.33 3 81,254 11.96 2 98,194 17.71 2 142,406 17.63 3 9,633 1.93 0
GROEN 112,477 9.85 2 90,144 9.13 2 59,096 8.70 1 33,244 6.00 0 63,657 7.88 1 ECOLO
VL. BELANG 79,852 7.00 2 61,523 6.23 1 28,857 4.25 0 34,020 6.14 0 38,232 4.73 0 5,165 1.03 0
PTB/PVDA+ 51,638 4.52 0 26,294 2.66 0 12,664 1.86 0 14,253 2.57 0 13,397 1.66 0 PTB/PVDA-GO!
Total 1,141,541 100.00 24 987,205 100.00 20 679,125 100.00 15 554,454 100.00 12 807,929 100.00 16
French-speaking constituencies Bilingual constituency
Party Hainaut Liège Luxembourg Namur Walloon Brabant Brussels
Votes Perc. Seats Votes Perc. Seats Votes Perc. Seats Votes Perc. Seats Votes Perc. Seats Votes Perc. Seats
PS 303,085 41.04 9 187,934 30.00 5 37,373 22.02 1 83,361 27.83 2 51,359 21.41 1 124,053 24.86 5
MR 153,304 20.76 5 158,062 25.23 5 41,346 24.36 1 84,788 28.31 2 97,741 40.75 3 115,049 23.05 4
CDH 76,812 10.40 2 81,789 13.05 2 56,702 33.41 2 48,135 16.07 1 26,335 10.98 0 46,508 9.32 2
ECOLO 43,489 5.89 1 56,902 9.08 1 13,471 7.94 0 29,186 9.74 1 27,356 11.40 1 52,147 10.45 2
PTB/PVDA-GO! 38,194 5.17 1 50,609 8.08 1 4,003 2.36 0 14,559 4.86 0 6,449 2.69 0 19,142 3.84 0
FDF 14,382 1.95 0 13,917 2.22 0 2,811 1.66 0 8,367 2.79 0 11,198 4.67 0 55,323 11.08 2
PP 32,158 4.35 0 32,237 5.15 1 6,980 4.11 0 13,029 4.35 0 9,544 3.98 0 8,651 1.73 0
Total 738,496 100.00 18 601,826 100.00 15 169,719 100.00 4 299,512 100.00 6 239,869 100.00 5 499,082 100.00 15

Government formation

On 27 May, King Philippe nominated Bart De Wever (N-VA) as informateur, meaning he is tasked with finding enough points of agreement for a possible coalition.[22]

After five months of discussions, a centre-right coalition of four parties (CD&V, Open Vld, MR and N-VA) came to agreement on 7 October with Walloon Charles Michel as prime minister. Yet it is a Flanders-focused coalition that excludes Socialists from the government for the first time in 26 years.[23] Michel would be Belgium's youngest prime minister after the 28 hours of discussions over achieving a balanced budget by 2018. The announcement was made by party colleague and Budget Minister Olivier Chastel on Twitter: "Charles Michel becomes prime minister."[24]

References

  1. ^ "Europa bekrachtigt 25 mei als Belgische verkiezingsdatum". HLN. Retrieved 2014.
  2. ^ [1] Archived 6 June 2014 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ a b Proposal for a revision of the Belgian Constitution, senate.be
  4. ^ COUNCIL DECISION 2013/299/EU, Euratom of 14 June 2013 fixing the period for the eighth election of representatives to the European Parliament by direct universal suffrage, published on 21 June 2013 by the Official Journal of the European Union, L 169/69
  5. ^ a b 25 AVRIL 2014. - Déclaration de révision de la Constitution, Belgian Official Journal
  6. ^ Electoral system IPU
  7. ^ "CD&V schort campagne op na overlijden van Dehaene". deredactie.be. 15 May 2014.
  8. ^ "Three die in Brussels shooting at Jewish Museum". deredactie.be. 24 May 2014.
  9. ^ Laurent Louis (24 May 2014). "Facebook post by Laurent LOUIS".
  10. ^ "Groen en Ecolo op één federale lijst in Brussel". deredactie.be. Retrieved 2014.
  11. ^ "Baromètre: La N-VA gagne 2.7% en Flandre!". Lalibre.be. Retrieved 2014.
  12. ^ "Le PS en net recul en Wallonie, la N-VA toujours loin devant en Flandre". les documents du Soir. Retrieved 2014.
  13. ^ "La N-VA perd du poids, le PS en petite forme". Retrieved 2014. Cite has empty unknown parameter: |publisherlalibre.be= (help)
  14. ^ "N-VA krijgt een tik". De Standaard. Retrieved 2014.
  15. ^ "Grand baromètre: la N-VA recule de trois points". lesoir.be. Retrieved 2014.
  16. ^ "CD&V beperkt de schade". HLN. Retrieved 2014.
  17. ^ "Baromètre politique RTBF-La Libre: indécrottable N-VA". RTBF Info. Retrieved 2014.
  18. ^ "2012 Vlaanderenkiest". Vlaanderenkiest.be. Retrieved 2014.
  19. ^ [2] Archived 28 January 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  20. ^ "Open VLD op dieptepunt". De Standaard. Retrieved 2014.
  21. ^ [3] Archived 9 July 2015 at the Wayback Machine
  22. ^ "Bart De Wever nommé informateur par le Roi". LaLibre.be. 27 May 2014.
  23. ^ "Belgium agrees to form coalition government". DW.DE. Retrieved 2014.
  24. ^ "Belgium on course for government led by youngest PM". Uk.reuters.com. Retrieved 2014.

External links


  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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