Confidence in King Willem-Alexander not yet restored after sharp decline in corona years

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Queen Máxima, King Willem-Alexander and Princess Amalia
NOS News

At the inauguration of King Willem-Alexander ten years ago this month, almost 80 percent of the Dutch were in favor of the monarchy. But ten years later, only more than half of the population wants to keep the monarchy. Confidence in Willem-Alexander as king, which showed a sharp decline during the corona crisis, is also not recovering. This is evident from the annual NOS King’s Day survey, conducted by Ipsos.

According to the king, the past 10 years flew by, but with what exactly? Royal House reporter Albert Bos takes you through three themes: personal, politics and monarchy.

King ten years in the saddle, the ride so far

The king can count on the confidence of just under half (46 percent) of the population, which is about the same as last year. In 2020, that was still three-quarters of the Dutch.

This decrease was mainly explained by the fuss that arose about a holiday of the royal couple in Greece in the middle of the corona crisis.

Confidence in Willem-Alexander as king

Queen Máxima can count on more confidence than the king (almost 60 percent), but satisfaction with her performance has fallen sharply in recent years from over 80 percent in 2020 to 64 percent in 2023. A large majority does believe that she is of added value during the ten-year reign of Willem-Alexander and that she has clearly put her own stamp on it.

Both the king and the queen received a slightly lower mark than last year: a 6.5 for Willem-Alexander and a 7.3 for Máxima.

Support for the monarchy

The sharp drop in support for the monarchy that started in 2021 has now leveled off: 55 percent of the Dutch support the monarchy, a slight decrease compared to last year. This support appears to be considerably higher among the elderly than among young people.

The declining support for the royal family fits in with a broader social trend in which institutions receive less support among citizens. It is striking that the royal family has more confidence (almost 40 percent) than national politics (17 percent) and the media (23 percent).

Trust in the royal family compared to other institutions

Looking back on ten years of kingship, the majority (60 percent) believe that Willem-Alexander has grown in his role. Four out of ten Dutch people think that the king has been of added value to the country and that he knows how to connect people, but just as many people believe that the royal family has been discredited more often than under Queen Beatrix.

What is also striking is that the extent to which people find the king ‘compassionate’ continues to decline. Only 37 percent of the Dutch think this characteristic applies to King Willem-Alexander.

Role of Willem-Alexander as head of state

Princess Amalia can count on the sympathy and understanding of the population. Many see in her qualities that will later make her a good queen: “intelligent lady”, “committed and compassionate”, “close to the people”, are some of the reactions.

No less than three-quarters of the Dutch would understand if Amalia decided not to become queen because of the persistent threats from the criminal environment.

Because of those threats, the princess still lives at home and cannot participate in student life in Amsterdam. More than four in ten Dutch people think that the government should protect Amalia at all costs to make that possible.

  • Interior

  • Royal family

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