The Netherlands has not had Germany's problems with migrants or the economic problems of France, so why has Wilders become so popular?
"I am so proud at what has happened and happy that we have been given the trust again" by voters, said Tamara van Ark, campaign leader of Mr Rutte's centre-right VVD party.
"I want the Netherlands to be the first country which stops this trend of the wrong sort of populism", Rutte told reporters, ahead of a head-to-head debate clash with his rival anti-Islam MP Geert Wilders.
Wilders, whose campaign slogan is "Let's Make the Netherlands Ours Again", has said he will close the country's mosques, ban the Koran and withdraw from the European Union if his party forms the next government.
Dutch conservative and nationalist parties could gain an extra five seats between them following the diplomatic row and weekend rioting over a Turkish minister's attempt to hold a political rally in Rotterdam, a snap poll published on Monday showed.
As you can see, there are a bewildering number of parties in the Netherlands.
According the Dutch Peilingwijzer website, which combines results from six other polling outlets, VVD enjoyed around 17 percent support, putting them three percent ahead of the PVV.
"Not even in a tolerance structure - no, never, no", Rutte said, dismissing the possibility of forming a coalition with Wilders. Mr Rutte's party took 41 seats at the last election securing him the role as the prime minister of the Netherlands.
The front-runners were incumbent Conservative Prime Minister Mark Rutte and his far-right rival Geert Wilders, who has reportedly campaigned to take the Netherlands out of the European Union, close all Muslim mosques and ban the Koran.
After casting his vote at around 9:30 am local time, Wilders remarked: "Whatever the outcome of the election today the genie will not go back into the bottle and this patriotic revolution, whether today or tomorrow, will take place".
Wilders, whose Party for Freedom (PVV) is projected to increase its parliamentary seats to 19 from the 15 won in 2012, tweeted: "We won seats!"
Wilders though won support Tuesday from ideological ally French far-right presidential hopeful Marine Le Pen who called him "a patriot". "The Netherlands is for the Dutch", Wilders retorted.
Unlike most polls, the LISS panel also asks voters to give a percentage likelihood of their voting for a given party.
It does not look as if Mr Wilders can win enough seats to be part of a future Dutch government, but if he wins more seats than any other party it will add to the stresses and strains on the ruling coalition which emerges from the election.