Party For the Animals
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Party For the Animals
Party for the Animals

Partij voor de Dieren
LeaderEsther Ouwehand
ChairmanRuud van der Velden
Leader in the SenateNiko Koffeman
Leader in the House of RepresentativesEsther Ouwehand
Leader in the European ParliamentAnja Hazekamp
FounderMarianne Thieme
Ton Dekker
Lieke Keller
Founded28 October 2002 (2002-10-28)
Youth wingPINK!
Think tankNicolaas G. Pierson foundation
Membership (2021)Increase 19,173[1]
Political positionLeft-wing[4]
European affiliationAnimal Politics EU
European Parliament groupThe Left in the European Parliament - GUE/NGL
Colours  Green
Seats in the House of Representatives
Seats in the Senate
Seats in the States-Provincial
Seats in the European Parliament
King's Commissioners

The Party for the Animals (Dutch: Partij voor de Dieren; PvdD) is a political party in the Netherlands. Among its main goals are animal rights and animal welfare.[2]

Since 2019, the PvdD's political leader is Esther Ouwehand. With 3.2% of the vote at the general election, 2017, the PvdD held five of the 150 House of Representatives's seats. In the Senate it has three of the 75 seats, and in the European Parliament it has one of the 26 seats allocated to the Netherlands constituency.



The Party for the Animals was founded on 28 October 2002 by Marianne Thieme, among others.[5] Although initially considered a testimonial party, a party which does not seek to gain political power but to testify its beliefs and thereby influence other parties, however the party in 2021 has signalled its willingness to enter a coalition-government.[6][7] The party has not yet been part of a governing coalition at the national, provincial or local level.

In 2003 the PvdD competed in its first Tweede Kamer election. Founded only three months before the elections, the party competed in 18 of the 19 constituencies, missing ballot access in Overijssel due to a clerical error. The party won 47,665 votes, gaining 75% of the electoral threshold, but missing out on a seat.

Electoral breakthrough

The electoral breakthrough for the PvdD occurred at the 2004 European elections. The party won 3.22% of the votes (153.432 votes), not enough to win a seat, but a sharp improvement compared to their 2003 result. In 2006 the party won their first seats in the Tweede Kamer, with Marianne Thieme and Esther Ouwehand being elected to parliament. The party gained a lot of attention due to a number of prominent lijstduwers, such as Paul Cliteur, Maarten 't Hart, Kees van Kooten, Rudy Kousbroek, Georgina Verbaan and Jan Wolkers.

The Party won nine seats in eight provinces in the 2007 Dutch provincial elections, securing one seat in the Eerste Kamer. In 2010 the party won representation on the local councils of Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht, Arnhem, Gouda, Vlagtwedde en Pijnacker-Nootdorp, which meant that the PvdD secured representation on every level of government in the Netherlands.

In consequent elections the electoral support for the PvdD remained relatively stable, winning two seats in the Tweede Kamer in 2010 and 2012. In 2014 the party won representation to the European parliament and joined the European United Left-Nordic Green Left parliamentary group.

In 2017 the party gained its best result to date, winning five seats in the Tweede Kamer. On 16 July 2019 Femke Merel van Kooten split from the PvdD caucus and continued as an independent member of parliament. The reason for the split was that Van Kooten criticized the narrow political focus of the party, which in her opinion focused too much on ecology and animal rights.[8]

Ouwehand leadership

On 8 October 2019, founder and longtime leader Marianne Thieme retired from the leadership and the Tweede Kamer. Esther Ouwehand succeeded Thieme as parliamentary leader, and Eva van Esch replaced her as a member of parliament. She was previously a city council woman in Utrecht.

Allied organisations


In 2006 the PvdD founded PINK! as its youth organisation. As of 2021 PINK! has about 2000 members.

Nicolaas G. Pierson Foundation

The Nicolaas G. Pierson Foundation is the research department of the PvdD. Founded in 2007, it is named after Niek Pierson, a Dutch economist and an early political donor of the party.

Animal Politics EU

Initially founded as Euro Animal 7, Animal Politics EU is an informal grouping of animal rights based political parties within the European Union. Animal Politics EU has member parties in the Netherlands, Belgium, Cyprus, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Sweden and Spain. The group currently has two MEPs: Martin Buschmann for the Tierschutzpartei and Anja Hazekamp of the PvdD.


The electorate of the PvdD consists in majority of women (estimated at 70%) living in urban areas.[9] In 2017 the party achieved its best results in Amsterdam (6.02%), Bergen (5.78%), Haarlem (5.69%) and Zutphen (5.62%). The party has lowest support in rural areas, especially those with large agricultural industries, such as in the Bible belt.

Electoral results

Esther Ouwehand, Leader in the House of Representatives since 2019
Niko Koffeman, Leader in the Senate since 2007
Anja Hazekamp, Leader in the European Parliament since 2014

House of Representatives

Election Lijsttrekker Votes % Seats +/- Government
2003 Marianne Thieme 47,754 0.49 (#10)
new Opposition
2006 179,988 1.83 (#9)
Increase 2 Opposition
2010 122,317 1.30 (#10)
Steady Opposition
2012 182,162 1.93 (#9)
Steady Opposition
2017 335,214 3.19 (#9)
Increase 3 Opposition
2021 Esther Ouwehand 399,750 3.84 (#9)
Increase 1 TBA


Election Votes % Seats +/-
2007 3,366 2.06 (#8)
2011 2,177 1.06 (#12)
2015 6,073 3.16 (#9)
Increase 1
2019 6,550 3.78 (#10)
Increase 1


Election Votes % Seats +/-
2007[10] 144,132 2.55
2011[11] 131,231 1.88
Decrease 2
2015[12] 210,113 3.46
Increase 11
2019[13] 317,103 4.36
Increase 2

European Parliament

Election List Votes % Seats +/- Notes
2004 List 153,432 3.22 (#9)
2009 List 157,735 3.46 (#9)
Steady [15]
2014 List 200,254 4.21 (#9)
Increase 1 [16]
2019 List 220,938 4.02 (#8)
Steady [17]


Municipality Votes Percentage Seats
Amsterdam 24,672 7.1%
Arnhem 3,892 6.4%
Alkmaar 2,446 5.2%
Almere 4,106 5.9%
Apeldoorn 3,192 4.6%
Buren 1,059 9.0%
The Hague 10,201 5.3%
Gouda 1,303 4.0%
Groningen 5,475 6.6%
Heerlen 1,633 5.2%
Leeuwarden 1,600 4.0%
Leiden 4,388 7.7%
Nijmegen 3,694 4.5%
Pijnacker-Nootdorp 1,247 5.5%
Rotterdam 8,091 3.5%
Utrecht 8,317 5.3%
Westerwolde 626 7.0%
Zaanstad 2,663 4,3%

Members of the States General

Members of the House of Representatives

Current members of the House of Representatives, as of 2021:

Members of the Senate

Current members of the Senate since the Senate election of 2019:

Members of the European Parliament

Current members of the European Parliament since the European Parliamentary election of 2019:

The MEPs of the Party for the Animals are part of the European United Left-Nordic Green Left Group in the European parliament.

See also


  1. ^ "Documentatiecentrum Nederlandse Politieke Partijen / PvdD ledentallen per jaar (2007- )". Documentatiecentrum Nederlandse Politieke Partijen (in Dutch). Retrieved 2021.
  2. ^ a b c Nordsieck, Wolfram (2021). "Netherlands". Parties and Elections in Europe. Retrieved 2021.
  3. ^ "A eurosceptic's guide to the Dutch election". The Eurosceptic.
  4. ^ "Links en rechts".
  5. ^ "Tien jaar Partij voor de Dieren". NOS. 28 October 2012. Retrieved 2017.
  6. ^ "Ouwehand: PvdD is klaar om mee te regeren". (in Dutch). Retrieved .
  7. ^ "Vijf jaar Partij voor de Dieren in Nederlands parlement" (in Dutch). 2011-10-02. (note: testimonial party is 'getuigenispartij' in Dutch)
  8. ^ van Ast, Maarten (16 July 2019). "Partij voor de Dieren royeert Van Kooten vanwege 'zetelroof'". Algemeen Dagblad. Retrieved 2021.
  9. ^ Rooduijn, Matthijs (2021-01-14). "Plaatjes van de electoraatjes: de Partij voor de Dieren". StukRoodVlees (in Dutch). Retrieved .
  10. ^ "Provinciale Staten 7 maart 2007". Retrieved .
  11. ^ "Provinciale Staten 2 maart 2011". Retrieved .
  12. ^ "Provinciale Staten 18 maart 2015". Retrieved .
  13. ^ "Provinciale Staten 20 maart 2019". Retrieved .
  14. ^ "Kiesraad: Europees Parlement 10 juni 2004" (in Dutch). Kiesraad. Retrieved 2019.
  15. ^ "Kiesraad: Europees Parlement 4 juni 2009" (in Dutch). Kiesraad. Retrieved 2019.
  16. ^ "Kiesraad: Europees Parlement 22 mei 2014" (in Dutch). Kiesraad. Retrieved 2019.
  17. ^ "Kiesraad: Europees Parlement 23 mei 2019" (in Dutch). Kiesraad. 4 June 2019. Retrieved 2019.

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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