The new Belgian Prime Minister will put his political future on the line later today, as parliament is called upon to give its vote of confidence in the new leadership. Herman Van Rompuy, apparently a reluctant appointee, has stressed his wish to rebuild confidence in the power of the politicians, but the policies he puts forward are little different to those of his predecessor.
He has promised to implement Yves Leterme’s economic stimulus package. He is heading the same five-party coalition. But a successful resolution to Belgium’s problems has to see a political coming together of the French and Flemish communities. Van Rompuy is proposing ideas forums to that end. But again that is nothing new. If the parliamentarians who have to vote on him are reading the national press they may be somewhat discouraged. The media is not hopeful of this government lasting very long.