N-VA and PS meet for a second long time, but no breakthrough

A second long contact, on Thursday evening, between sp.a, PS and N-VA must further scan the site. It is not more than that for the time being. A large new package of support measures, which the government is already announcing with great fanfare, leads to frustration towards the run-up of the super-core: the opposition was barely inspected.

In the news: A new, second meeting, between Bart De Wever (N-VA), Paul Magnette (PS) and Conner Rousseau (sp.a).

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The details: No one can say that Magnette and Rousseau are not taking their time and talking thoroughly to everyone, including N-VA.

  • The supporters of Paul Magnette are warned: the PS leader is talking to the N-VA in silence. The red duo of Rousseau and Magnette have already sat twice with the N-VA chairman, this time Thursday evening. The meeting lasted several hours and was, according to various sources, an “open and pleasant discussion”.
  • Both leaders, Magnette and De Wever, made extensive analyzes and puzzled about what is possible and what is possible. “It is a sniffing round, so don’t expect breakthroughs or anything. But these are useful exercises ”, can be heard in circles around the red initiators.
  • Magnette and Rousseau saw yesterday again the French-speaking liberals: They had an appointment with Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès (MR), to which her leader Georges-Louis Bouchez, party chairman of MR, also joined.
  • Contrary to the public statements by Bouchez about the duo of “commissioners”, it was yet another quite pleasant meeting: “The the presence of the prime minister always makes the party chairman a bit milder“Is the thrifty comment.

The prospects: The weather is clear and calm, but a harbor to enter is definitely not in sight.

  • Magnette and Rousseau are finishing their second round of contacts, there are still a few meetings to do. But their mission does not “end” with that: they are generally believed to be at least two weeks further with their probing work.
  • The basic difficulties remain: certainly the MR is sitting in a chair to make absolutely nothing move. Since the PS allowed Bouchez to supply seven ministers, including a prime minister, in mid-March, he has been able to lean back. Moreover, a Vivaldi scenario for Bouchez is really not an option at the moment.
  • In addition, Egbert Lachaert (Open Vld), with a strong mandate, will still put a heavy socio-economic agenda on the table, which seems unthinkable in a center-left-green cabinet.
  • But the other option, purple-yellow, is also very difficult. Because even if the PS can make an agreement with the N-VA, it will also remain there the MR lurking like a sniper, to shred all the necessary Community part in such a deal.
  • “Ultimately, it is certainly the intention that Paul and Conner try to gather a team, with a vision and philosophy around it. But as you know, that is really not possible in one-two-three in this country ”, can be heard in the corridors at the PS.

Today on the agenda: A traditional super core on Saturday, where the government comes up with its new “rescue plan”.

  • That plan has already been worked out in great detail, drawn up and finalized with the three government parties. But more unusual: it has also been eagerly communicated, the radio reported about it, articles appeared online of the plan. Deputy Prime Minister Alexander De Croo (Open Vld) tweeted about it, as if it was already in a jar.
  • Within the government it is heard that it is mainly the liberals who were forcing about this and absolutely wanted to get the matter through this way.
  • At the same time, people were surprised when CD&V suddenly came to the consultation with the Sherpas of the opposition, in preparation for that super core, with a whole list, that was “on the wet dream of the ACWSeemed. An internal tension between liberals and CD&V was immediately visible.
  • “You should be able to do that, you have 38 seats and you roll on the street fighting, in front of the assembled opposition, “an insider points out.

Is it clattering? It seems that it will not be a very pleasant meeting.

  • The whole situation led to quite a bit of frustration with the opposition. “The opposition parties still know nothing about it. No proposals received, no texts, not even a list of measures that the government wants or will propose. This makes it difficult to have a serious meeting, ”said the director of the study department of sp.a on Twitter on Friday. That was when large parts of the plan were already known in the press, but were not yet in detail with the opposition.
  • Receipt, the government has the press text ready, they have a very detailed plan. Excellent. We also have a whole plan ready, if they want to talk about it tomorrow, figured out and discussed with experts, to shape the recovery. That will be an interesting meeting ”, it was said to be quite combative at the PS.
  • The sp.a also has its own plan, specific to the catering industry, that they want to launch tomorrow. So it promises to be a pretty intensive super-core, with the opposition really doesn’t want to just walk over it.
  • In principle, the government does not need “the ten”, the ten parties that support the powers of attorney, to push through its plan through KBs. But whether that is politically feasible is the question: it was just the idea of ​​a “national union” as Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès (MR) described it nicely at the start, a “broad consensus” under which this minority government wanted to tackle matters. Now that it is going against the socialist family, it would be at least against the spirit of the government.

What is on the table? So the government has a package ready, which contains many tax incentives.

  • The government calls it “the third recovery plan“, After there was already a first plan to roll out temporary unemployment, and then followed the” bazooka “for the banks, which had 50 billion euros ready to defer loans.
  • There are a lot of measures that come from the Werk CD&V cabinet, with Minister Nathalie Muylle (CD&V). That is how those power of attorney decisions are ready about temporary unemployment for those who have immune diseases.
  • In addition, Muylle also wants to continue temporary unemployment and wants to continue it also allow corona parental leave to continue. Whether that will not create a quasi-permanent situation is a question that can be asked on the right.
  • Self-employed persons who are unable to restart in July and August, such as in the event or travel sector, would be entitled to bridging premiums. The government wants to look specifically to help those two sectors.
  • For the taxation Alexander De Croo (Open Vld) on Finance has a whole series of measures ready:
    • It deferral of corporate income tax payments would continue even until the end of the year. That would not have a lasting impact on the budget, but would temporarily put a firm punch on it.
    • Who would put all his staff back to work would be entitled to a lower withholding tax.
    • There is also a tax shelter for SMEs ready to provide small businesses with even easier access to much-needed capital.
    • The investment deduction would also be increased once to 25 percent. For example, 25 percent of the investments could immediately be deducted from the profit.
    • In addition, the bazooka of 50 billion euros to be reworked, so that certainly also easier access for smaller companies and SMEs get to the loans.
    • In addition, the reduction of VAT in the catering industry up to 6 percent on the table, although economists such as Gert Peersman (UGent) have already shown that this definitely does not benefit the relationship.
    • But there is more to catering and events: the government would want to increase the tax deduction for companies to 100 percent. The latter would literally be a “free lunch“Are: dining at the expense of the government.
  • To keep things in balance, there is a gesture for the weakest economically: there should be a one-time premium of 250 euros, helicopter money, for all residents. That remains a particularly meager sum: the PS proposed to permanently increase those lowest incomes by 200 euros. In other words: people are still far apart.
  • The question is how the super-core will deal with it, and what exactly everything is knocked.

Also in the pipeline: The National Security Council will be held next week.

  • Because there now a digital Consultation Committee every evening was, to systematically prepare that long-awaited Security Council next Wednesday, more and more is already leaking.
  • After all, that council must meet on Wednesday, under the leadership of Prime Minister Wilmès and Flemish and Walloon Prime Minister Jan Jambon (N-VA) and Elio Di Rupo (PS), knock a lot of things off.
  • In fact, the trio in the Consultative Committee have become something of an ad hoc governing body, something super-federal, where one decides among the “three great ones”.
  • Incidentally, it is expected to be there next week a whole rimram is arranged, so that normal life starts again:
    • The catering industry reopens.
    • The bubble of four disappears.
    • Traveling abroad becomes possible again.
    • To the wrong will be possible again.
    • Small events be arranged.

Interesting to note: Ecolo co-chairman Rajae Maouane apparently opens the door to N-VA, but it immediately closes again.

  • Striking: Ecolo tries to be ‘moderate’ in this phase of the corona crisis. After all, in an interview yesterday morning at La Première, the younger colleague of Jean-Marc Nollet (Ecolo), Rajae Maouane, very cautious about a possible coalition, which would also include N-VA.
  • “We have to overcome the political breakthroughs, as this crisis has generally demonstrated. We want to have a table with all possible parties who want to give a future to this country, and build a society where everyone, in North and South, has their place, “said Maouane.
  • Was that giving up a veto against the N-VA, which Ecolo has been saying for a year now? Unlike the PS, where public vetos have often been denied, the French-speaking greens systematically pushed their “njet” too: they refused to appear at the table if N-VA was also there this summer, and just don’t want to know about any possible coalition with Bart De Wever and co.
  • Even now it appears that, despite Maouane’s soothing words, nothing has changed. “Not a single change of position“, So” assure “several leaders today in La Libre. A combination with the N-VA remains excluded. “Because when Rajae speaks about” parties who want a future for the country “, does she clearly exclude the N-VA?”, Says an Ecolo leader anonymously.
  • Ecolo’s stiff attitude has major consequences for fellow minds in Flanders. After all, green and Ecolo form one fraction in the House: the Flemish greens are thus swept up in a veto against the N-VA, which is not exactly in line with the ever-recurring mantra of ‘doing constructively’ in politics.
  • “We sit far too much attached to that federal marriage to Ecolo, where rigidity rules. That way we hurt ourselves, it wouldn’t be a bad thing to get rid of it, ”said a leading MP at Groen. In other words, not everyone there completely agrees with the strategy of “scotchée“To be with Ecolo.
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