Jelle de Graaf, Piratenpartij Amsterdam

The First Elected Pirate in the History of Dutch Politics

The Piratenpartij Netherlands (PPNL) has achieved an historic result with the Amsterdam elections of 2014. With the seat for Jelle de Graaf in the board committee of Amsterdam West, PPNL has the first elected pirate in the history of Dutch politics. Assuming that irregularities in Amsterdam will not lead to changes in the numbers of seats, they almost won another two seats during the elections. The Piratenpartij Netherlands came 182 votes short for a seat in the city council and only 245 votes short for the board committee in Amsterdam South.

A summary of the results:

  • 1.8% of the votes in the city council
  • 1.8% of the votes for the board committee of Amsterdam North
  • 3,5% of the votes for the board committee of Amsterdam South
  • 3,6% of the votes for the board committee of Amsterdam West which resulted in a seat

Compared to 2012, PPNL tripled their score and even multiplied results fivefold (West) and sevenfold (South). Moreover, in this campaign they were able to gain much media attention. Some attention came from their action in which they made clear where Amsterdam registers you, and with the #Citionscan action in which they placed GPStrackers underneath the scan-cars of the parking attendants of Cition, various debates, strips, posters, comics and our CryptopartyPPNL staged a succesful campaigning for the elections which lead them to get in both the local, national and international media. Many people who did not know the Pirate Party before, probably do know them now. This result serves as a good start (and a boost of confidence) for the European elections of May 22.

Moreover , PPNL now has experience of what works in a campaign and what does not. One of things that seemed to work well was to conduct the campaigning on local levels. For this reason, PPNL are now seeking local campaign leaders and volunteers to support them during the European elections of May 22. Interested people can contact

Featured image:  CC BY-SA PPNL

Matthijs Pontier

About Matthijs Pontier

I have always had an interest for privacy, digital freedom and copyright reform. I actively Twitter about these subjects, publish opinion  articlesgivepresentations and perform at public debates or in the media every now and then. As an interdisciplinary scientist, I work to enable robots and computers to make moral decisions, and currently I am trying to bring morals and integrity back into politics by advocating transparency and citizen participation. I have been a candidate for the Pirate Party in several elections, and was among others lead candidate for the 2014 European elections for PPNL. Next to this, I have participated in various activist groups. Currently, I represent the Pirate Party in the waterboard.