Livable Rotterdam

Livable Rotterdam (Dutch: Leefbaar Rotterdam) is a local political party in the municipality of Rotterdam in the Netherlands, which was founded by Ronald Sørensen in 2001. It won the council elections of March 2002 due to the charismatic leadership of Pim Fortuyn. This made it the city's largest political party, a position which for the previous thirty years had been held by the Labour Party. Livable Rotterdam started as a spin-off of the national party Livable Netherlands but is commonly seen as the local party of the LPF (Pim Fortuyn List), the national party of Pim Fortuyn which was founded just after Pim Fortuyn was fired as lijsttrekker of the Livable Netherlands party in spring 2002.

Livable Rotterdam

Leefbaar Rotterdam
LeaderDick van Sluis
IdeologyConservative liberalism
Political positionRight-wing
ColoursGreen & Black
Municipal council of Rotterdam
11 / 45

The party consists of numerous members that are new to politics and were attracted to Fortuyn's dreams of political change. The party attracts attention and criticism for the upfront behavior of its members and its unconventional, if sometimes right-leaning vision, especially on issues of immigration and inter-culture tolerance.

In the municipal elections of 7 March 2006 Livable Rotterdam lost 5%, dropping to 29,7% of their votes and PvdA gained 15%, making the latter the biggest party again, with 37,4% of the votes. Before the elections, Livable Rotterdam declared it would not enter in a coalition with PvdA and several members even declared that, irrespective of the coalition, they would leave the council if PvdA would become the biggest party (which has happened).

After the municipal elections of 3 March 2010 the Public Prosecutor in Rotterdam launched an investigation into how proxy votes were solicited by the party, after an e-mail emerged in which one of the party’s councillors gives tips on how to accumulate these. Ronald Buijt wrote that he had 50 reliable citizens of the city who could take the proxy votes to the polling stations. The electoral council said this went against the spirit of proxy voting, which should only be used at the initiative of the voter. This irregularity was added to a litany of complaints against the poll in Rotterdam in these elections (many of which were caused by the PvdA), which resulted in a recount of all the votes cast. Back then the PvdA only beat Livable Rotterdam by a mere 650 votes, yet both parties had 14 seats in the city council.[1][2]

Joost Eerdmans was elected lijsttrekker of Livable Rotterdam on 6 October 2013.[3] Under his leadership, the party won the 2014 municipal election, retaining its fourteen seats. Since 8 May 2014, Livable Rotterdam leads a coalition with CDA and D66.[4]

Electoral results

Election Leader Votes Seats Position Coalition
# % # ±
2002 Pim Fortuyn 93,852 37.8
17 / 45
17 1st Coalition with CDA and VVD
2006 Marco Pastors 77,284 29.7
14 / 45
3 2nd Opposition
2010 Marco Pastors 63,647 28.6
14 / 45
0 2nd Opposition
2014 Joost Eerdmans 59,505 27.5
14 / 45
0 1st Coalition with D66 and CDA
2018 Joost Eerdmans 47,312 20.5
11 / 45
3 1st Opposition


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