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Coalition partners Labour and CU sparring over ethical hot potatoes

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

THE HAGUE A key negotiator who helped the Labour party (PvdA) make a coalition deal with the Christian Democrats (CDA) and the smaller CU, and at the time promised to test the limits of the agreement seems to be following through on his promise. After municipal politicians created a stir throughout the country about conscience-objectors among marriage commissioners possibly thwarting homosexual unions, a controversy that lasted several weeks, the focus now is on abortion rights. The CU sought protection for marriage commissioners and also obtained clauses that put more emphasis on counseling pregnant women to consider adoption alternatives, among others things. A Labour junior minister (staatssecretaris) and an MP both scoff at CUs marks in the coalition deal, calling the policies unrealistic, undesirable, and too subjective. To the MP, abortion is just about a few cells.