I’m from the UK and always thought they were popular and well liked by the Dutch people - the King as a safe pair of hands, if a little “stiff” and Maxima as glamorous and charismatic. I know they have made some gaffes though .
According to the Dutch Royals themselves they don't believe in popularity so I guess they can't be bothered with the polls but the popularity of the monarchy is regularly polled and in fact waining due to gaffes most often attributed to Willem-Alexander but as their marriage is one of equals, Maxima is just as accountable for the poor judgement demonstrated by the couple on various occasions. Our monarchy still exists as an odd folklore. As WA;s father once described it: we are in the core a Republic (since the 16th century) with a hereditary head of state. We can't seem to get rid of the Orange-Nassau's because the majority of the people believe the alternative is worse. We have accepted them as expensive but useful folklore and the core family sees it as a lucrative family business, which it is. Of course they work hard and support many good causes but that's in the 'contract' I am inclined to say.
Are Willem-Alexander and Maxima not popular with the Dutch people?
Even if you think you know many of the facts it still's shocking. For instance to hear how Maxima and Willem-Alexander tried to downplay Jorge Z role and (their) knowledge of what happened during the Vildela regime. Also the spinning of information and manipulation of public opinion became painfully clear. It was a frightful look into the inner workings of power and government. A good reminder why we should be vigilant and curb the power of certain offices by parliament oversight and to always protect the independence of the judiciary. Unfortunately the derailing of the Videla regime was and is still seen by many in Argentina and beyond as a mere unfortunate side-effect. Jorge and many of his Videla comrades may have escaped legal persecution in Argentina but they were on the wrong side of history. I hope the Z family will come to terms with that at some point. In that sense I am curious what Amalia will think of abuelo's actions in time to come. What also struck me was that the documentary did not focus much attention on the role Beatrix and the then Queen's Cabinet played during this period. Beatrix traces were quickly and well covered by royalists in government but it is good to mention that the King's Cabinet is now under the direct supervision of the PM office and for good reasons!
This week the first episode of a documentary about the wedding of the current Dutch monarch will air.
It's already known that the series reveals that in 2002 the father of Queen Maxima had to be convinced to stay away. It was not his free choice (as it had been presented) but the opinion of Labour PM Wim Kok.
The PM came in conflict with the Prince of Orange about his intentions to marry Maxima and the attendance of her father.
Willem-Alexander was ready to marry without consent and would thus have given up his rights of succession. Friso would have become the Prince of Orange. He either would have given up his rights as well had he married Mabel or might have remained a bachelor. In either case Constantijn would have become his mother's heir.
I think he'll probably consider he had a lucky escape from the responsibilities of the crown but i think he might have done better than Alexander. His wife does not have the glamour of Maxima but she is respected and liked (though her speech was for the first years of their marriage subject of ridicule because it was overly posh).
Im looking forward to seeing what other revelations about the organisation of the wedding come up.
Where Maxima's father could not be present for the event, the day turned into the crowning event for the other father. Prince Claus was dying but did attend the most important parts. His short car-ride from the Berlage exchange to the New Church turned into a very impressive ode from the public to him.
« Back to index