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The case against Jan Peter Balkenende as EU president

balkieI honestly cannot believe that Dutch prime minister Balkenende is a serious contender for the job of EU president. Scanning the foreign press, one gets the idea that Balkenende is the perfect candidate – no sworn enemies, a neutral fellow with leadership experience, and so on. Yet this is also the prime minister who presided over two failed governments, who faces politically deadly scrutiny regarding his support for the invasion of Iraq in 2003, and leader of a party that would rather see him leave. Exactly who is this Dutchman who is suddenly seen as perhaps the first president of the European Union?