Top Dutch European lawmaker Sophie in ‘t Veld is set to be a European election candidate for Volt in Belgium, in a bid to continue her two-decade parliamentary career.
In June, in ‘t Veld quit her Dutch liberal party D66, citing policy disagreements, and joined Volt, a federalist movement with parties in all EU countries. But after making the switch, Volt rejected her candidacy for the 2024 European election, as she needed a special dispensation to become a Volt candidate for 2024 because she had not been a party member for the requisite three months before being nominated as a candidate.
That looked like the end of her career in the European Parliament. But in ‘t Veld has now joined Volt Belgium, she announced Tuesday. If she’s elected as a candidate at the Volt Belgium party congress later this month, she can run again.
“Volt is a truly European party and I am a truly European politician,” ‘in t Veld said. She argues parliamentary democracy needs a “major maintenance” and that starts bottom-up, through a civic movement like Volt.
A candidate for the European election in Belgium does not have to hold Belgian nationality, as long as they are an EU citizen. According to the press release, in ‘t Veld has lived in Belgium for almost 30 years.
In ‘t Veld has been vocal in defending the rule of law in Hungary and Poland, criticizing illegal use of spyware by EU governments, and championing the so-called Spitzenkandidaten process to give the directly elected Parliament a greater say over who runs the European Commission, the EU’s executive.
As a Dutch native, in ‘t Veld has been a sometime guest on Dutch-speaking Belgian TV programs, but is relatively unknown to the wider Belgian audience.