The Dutch Party for the Animals could win one or even two seats in tomorrow’s national election. "We see this as a follow-up to liberating slaves, giving rights to women, and finally giving rights to animals," says party leader Marianne Thieme. She would like to see a constitutional amendment guaranteeing animals the right to freedom from pain, fear and stress caused by humans.
The Party for the Animals has become a force to be reckoned with since its formation in 2002. In 2003, it fell only 2,000 votes short of the number need to win a seat in the 150-seat parliament. Recent polls suggest that its support has tripled since them. Ms Thieme criticises other politicians for ignoring animal welfare. "They say: people are more important. People should come first. But if you always follow that line of reasoning, animals never make it onto the agenda," she said.
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