The Polish government’s war with both Brussels and a significant part of the Polish population over the rule of law is against Poland’s national interests. On October 26, the European Parliament adopted a resolution criticizing the Polish Constitutional Tribunal’s decision to ban over 95% of legal abortions in Poland.
The crisis of the rule of law in Poland endangers the proper functioning of the international organizations Poland belongs to. That risk depends directly on the level and scope of integration and the importance of mutual commitments.
After the PiS government declared it is going to “repolonize” media, the US and German ambassadors to Poland, respectively Georgette Mosbacher and Arndt Freytag von Loringhoven, have met to discuss the freedom of press.
In the midst of a pandemic, an unstable situation beyond our eastern border, disastrous relations with the EU countries, and uncertainty about the future of Poland’s key military ally, i.e. the United States, power focused on factional wars is a scenario that Poland simply cannot afford.
Poland is the only EU country in which vast majority of the Members of the Council of the Judiciary are selected by the parliament. Poland is also marked red when it comes to disciplinary proceedings against judges.
In Poland’s Presidential election, Andrzej Duda, the incumbent with strong ties to the Law and Justice (PiS) party, secured his re-election by a tiny majority of just 1.2% over his liberal rival, Rafał Trzaskowski.
The popular Warsaw mayor, Trzaskowski did not join the election campaign until mid-May, but he set the tone from the beginning. The 48-year-old politician of the opposition Civic Platform (PO) and former European Minister is a feared opponent of the PiS.
The presidential election in Poland, which was cancelled at short notice in May, will now take place on June 28. The new opposition candidate, Rafal Trzaskowski, is now positioning himself as the strongest challenger to incumbent Andrzej Duda.
The delayed elections give the opposition a small but significant window of opportunity to make known the responsibilities of the office of president – to make often tricky decisions for the good of the nation. President Duda has already shown to be Kaczynski’s president, not the people’s president.