Run-Off Vote: State Restructuring in Poland Continues

Re-election of national conservative President Andrzej Duda reveals the weakness of the opposition

Strong President in Poland

The Polish President is not only a ceremonial representative of the country. He is commander-in-chief of the armed forces and can veto legislative decisions without providing reasons. In order to pass laws against his veto , a 3/5 majority in parliament (Sejm) is required – and such a majority does not currently exist in Poland. To make matters more complicated for the PiS, in 2019 it lost the majority in the Senate, which can refer back and thus delay resolutions of the Sejm. Thus, in order to implement its national conservative course, the PiS needed its own man in the presidential palace.

Continue reading

From Poland With Love – June

Topic of the Month

Runoff!

The incumbent Andrzej Duda won the first round of the presidential election but must still go into a runoff vote. On July 12th, he will face Rafał Trzaskowski, mayor of Warsaw. The election was the first presidential vote to be held in the European Union since the pandemic hit.

It was the longest and the most peculiar campaign in Polish short democratic history, after 1990. Not only the elections were postponed from May 10th to June 28th due to the pandemic, but also new candidates appeared. The most important of the newcomers was of course Rafał Trzaskowski who replaced Małgorzata Kidawa-Błońska as the Civic Coalition candidate after her unsuccessful campaign marked with appeals for boycott of the elections (read more in the previous issue).

Continue reading

Presidential Election in Poland: Trzaskowski – Liberal Alternative to Duda

The first round of the presidential elections in Poland on Sunday confirmed what the opinion polls in recent weeks had predicted: firstly, although the incumbent President Andrzej Duda, candidate of the ruling national conservative party “Law and Justice” (PiS), received the largest share of the votes cast (43.7 %), it was clearly not enough for re-election in the first round. Second, his challenger for the run-off vote will be the liberal Warsaw Mayor Rafał Trzaskowski, candidate of the largest opposition alliance “Civic Coalition” (KO). According to current polls, the second round will be extremely close.

Continue reading

Op-Ed: Presidential Election: Hope for Poland’s Democracy

The upcoming presidential elections will play a key role in the future direction of the country.

 

 

The forthcoming presidential election in Poland will be decisive for the future direction of our country. Poles are faced with the choice between the final consolidation of anti-democratic rule, or a glimmer of hope for the future, in which Poland could be a fully engaged and respected member of the liberal, law-abiding European Community. Continue reading

Poland Ahead of the Presidential Election: Nothing is Decided Yet

 

On Sunday the Poles will elect their president for the next five years. If no candidate wins more than 50% of the votes in the first round of voting there will be a run-off vote on 12 July. The incumbent Andrzej Duda, who is close to the ruling national conservative party “Law and Justice” (PiS), leads the opinion polls with around 42%. Duda is considered as the election favourite. In recent weeks, however, his popularity has declined significantly. On the other hand, the largest opposition alliance, the liberal-conservative “Citizens’ Coalition” (KO), with its candidate Rafał Trzaskowski seems to be on the upswing. According to some polls, both Trzaskowski and the independent pro-European candidate of the centre, Szymon Hołownia, would narrowly win against Duda in the second round of voting. Continue reading