The Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte is being grilled on whether Princess Catharina-Amalia, who is the heir apparent to the Dutch throne, should abdicate if she marries a woman.
The current position of the Dutch cabinet is that 17-year-old Catharina-Amalia, Princess of Orange, should relinquish her claim to the Dutch throne if she marries a woman.
The logic behind the position is that since no children could ever be born from such a marriage, the very essence of the monarchy, which is hereditary in nature, would be jeopardised.
However, the cabinet’s current position is being questioned by MPs Rudmer Heerema and Hatte van der Woude of the centre-right VVP, which is the largest party in the governing coalition.
The MPs, whose party Rutte leads, hope the Dutch PM will announce a change in the cabinet’s official position on the matter before the House debates the King’s budget in two weeks’ time.
The reasoning behind their push for Rutte to reconsider the cabinet’s position is that the current stance does not fit “with the norms and values in 2021”.
They said: “(T)he heir to the Dutch throne should also be able to marry a partner of the same sex and, as a result, should not be excluded from the monarchy.”
Same-sex marriage has been legal in the Netherlands since 1st April 2001, having been approved by the House of Representatives, the Senate and then-Queen Beatrix the year before.
It made the Netherlands the first country in the world to legalise same-sex marriage. The latest opinion polls in the country put approval of same-sex marriage at over 90 per cent.
Catharina-Amalia became heir apparent to the Dutch throne when her father, King Willem-Alexander, ascended the throne on 30th April 2013.
She is not known to be in a relationship with a woman at the present, and the question surrounding her potential abdication remains hypothetical for the time being.
The next in line to the throne after Catharina-Amalia is her 16-year-old sister, Princess Alexia of the Netherlands, Princess of Orange-Nassau.