Europe

Dutch populist Wilders warns of backlash if he is frozen out

FILE - In this Jan. 21, 2017 file photo, Dutch populist Geert Wilders delivers a speech at a meeting of European Nationalists in Koblenz, Germany. Wilders says mainstream politicians in the Netherlands will have to work with his Party for Freedom if voters strongly back his anti-immigration, anti-European Union platform in the country's upcoming election, or face a peaceful backlash. (AP Photo/ Michael Probst, file)

FILE - In this Jan. 21, 2017 file photo, Dutch populist Geert Wilders delivers a speech at a meeting of European Nationalists in Koblenz, Germany. Wilders says mainstream politicians in the Netherlands will have to work with his Party for Freedom if voters strongly back his anti-immigration, anti-European Union platform in the country's upcoming election, or face a peaceful backlash. (AP Photo/ Michael Probst, file)  (The Associated Press)

Dutch populist Geert Wilders says mainstream politicians in the Netherlands will have to work with his Party for Freedom if voters strongly back his anti-immigration, anti-European Union platform in the country's upcoming election, or face a peaceful backlash.

Wilders' Party for Freedom is polling strongly ahead of the March 15 election for the lower house of Parliament. Mainstream parties, however, have ruled out working in a coalition government with him. That means it would be extremely difficult for him to form a government, since the Dutch electoral system all but guarantees coalitions.

In a television interview Sunday, Wilders says "If voters make the PVV really big — I'm not talking about two or three extra seats, but really big ... they will have to" work with his party.