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Old newspaper of 1999: The Night of Wiegel | by Michiel2005
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Old newspaper of 1999: The Night of Wiegel

The second purple cabinet was created after the elections in 1998. It consisted of three parties: the socialists, right-wing liberals and left-wing liberals. The left-wing liberals with 14 seats in parliament weren't necessary for a majority, but they were included anyway because they were part of the first purple cabinet. They wanted a constitutional change to allow referenda. During the first stage of the constitutional change a bill has to pass both houses of parliament with a simple majority. The second stage requires an two-thirds majority of both houses.

Senator Wiegel, seen here in the picture, old popular liberal leader and deputy prime minister in the 1970s, voted against the second reading and caused the bill to fail, even though his party in the lower house committed itself to the change.

The left-wing liberal party withdrew its support of the cabinet, threatened to withdraw its ministers too, and the cabinet was forced to offer its resignation. The row was settled and the second purple cabinet stumbled on for another three years.

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Taken on September 26, 2007