Jesus Would Vote for Tusk

June 27, 2014
God with Godson

God with Godson

“I had a hard time deciding what to do, knowing that this decision could affect my future political career, or even end it. But when I asked myself what Jesus would do, I had no more doubts,” said MP John Godson, explaining the reasons behind his choice to support the current government. Godson was one of only a handful of opposition MPs to do so, during Wednesday’s vote of confidence for the government. As well as Godson, four independent MPs and one MP of Your Movement (TR) voted for the ruling coalition. Godson originally won his place in parliament as a Civic Platform (PO) candidate. He left the party in August, after voting against the party line. Currently, he is a member of Poland Together (PRJG), which declared its support for the PiS initiative of replacing the PO-PSL coalition with a cabinet of experts until earlier elections could be organised. Godson, however, had a last-moment change of heart and decided to help his former colleagues from PO instead. He explained that while the behaviour of the politicians implicated in the wiretapping scandal was reprehensible, it would be irresponsible to vote against the government now. It is what Jesus would have done.
tvn24.pl

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Vote of No Confidence

June 22, 2014
Much to Contemplate

Much to Contemplate

In the aftermath of ‘Vistulagate’, as the world’s media have christened it, Law and Justice (PiS) is calling for a constructive vote of no confidence in the government. This is not the first PiS attempt at replacing PM Donald Tusk with its own candidate. In all likelihood, the vote will fall through, just as the previous attempt did in March 2013. In order to succeed, the motion requires an absolute majority of 231 votes, whereas PiS has only 136 votes at its disposal, as opposed to the 235 votes of the government (the PO-PSL coalition). Jarosław Kaczyński, head of PiS, has invited potential allies to a meeting that will take place on Monday, but refused on principle to talk to Your Movement (TR), despite the fact that Janusz Palikot’s party could be willing to vote for the motion. What is more, PiS needs all the help it can get as even the entire opposition together would not secure enough votes to force the cabinet to resign. Due to this fact, PiS is looking to the junior government coalition partner, the Polish People’s Party (PSL), for support. However, PSL highlights the fact that the whole idea is unrealistic as the opposition will once again fail to stand united.
wp.pl

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Prisoners Vote for Prosecutor

June 15, 2014
Democracy At Work

Democracy At Work

In the elections to the European Parliament, Civic Platform (PO) managed 39.4% of all prisoners’ votes, whereas Law and Justice (PiS) did not fare too well. There was, however, one notable exception. In a detention facility in Chmielów, in the province of Podkarpacie, a PiS candidate garnered the majority of the votes. Stanisław Piotrowicz, a former prosecutor, was rather shocked by his popularity among inmates. “I would never have expected any kind of support from the inmates and more importantly, I would never ask for it”. It has since transpired that shortly before the elections, prisoners received packages containing packs of cigarettes and coffee along with election leaflets endorsing Piotrowicz. “It’s either some kind of setup and somebody put Piotrowicz’s name on the packages or it simply did not happen at all,” said Jarosław Kaczyński, head of PiS. The director of the detention facility informed the local prosecutor’s office about the fact that a crime could have been committed by one of the prison officers, who allowed the packages into the facility. The packages were supposedly sent by a businessman who wanted to help his favoured candidate, but he ended up doing more harm than good.
tvn24.pl

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Support for PiS Increases

June 12, 2014
Rise of Kaczyński

Rise of Kaczyński

Law and Justice (PiS) did not win the last elections to the European Parliament, but according to a recent survey, Jaroslaw Kaczynski’s party recorded the greatest increase in support and also came in first place in the survey, unlike ruling Civic Platform (PO), according to Rzeczpospolita. Your Movement (TR) would not manage to win any seats in parliament. According to the survey, 30% of respondents supports PiS, giving the party an increase of 1%. PO, on the other hand, has lost 3% and is supported by 26% of respondents. Assuming that the elections were held now, PiS and PO would be first and second in parliament with the Democratic Left Alliance (SLD) in third with 11% (a loss of 1%). The New Right (NP) of Janusz Korwin-Mikke would have 6% and the junior government coalition partner, the Polish People’s Party (PSL), would have 5%. Interestingly, people’s willingness to participate in the next elections has increased. Currently, 51% of Poles declares that they would like to take part in the next elections, while previous research indicated only 45%.
wp.pl

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Fire Fighter’s Day

May 10, 2014
Polish Strażak

Polish Strażak

“Polish fire fighters are the best in Europe and their great work is due to, amongst others, the trust that fire fighters have in the state,” said Prime Minister Donald Tusk during Fire Fighter’s Day last Sunday. “We envy this trust and the appreciation and pride people have in you,” he stressed. During a special ceremony in Warsaw, the PM emphasised that the Polish fire service is modernising and extremely effective. He also added that thanks to the professionalism of the fire service there are fewer human tragedies every year. Donald Tusk believes that the improvement of fire fighters’ work is also due to the efficient use of EU funds.
wiadomosci.wp.pl

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Mining the Key

May 9, 2014
Strong Community

PM Copying President

“Mining must become the basis of our energy security,” declared Prime Minister Donald Tusk in Katowice while opening the sixth European Economic Congress. Tusk admitted that in order to achieve this goal the country must support him. A large part of the PM’s speech was devoted to the crisis, which, he emphasised, had revealed many weaknesses in the modern economy. He also explained how the quest for a quick and easy profit may lead to a lack of responsibility for the community. “Here in Silesia you can clearly see that the term ‘community’ is not an archaic word,” Tusk added. The PM also stated that the challenges facing the energy sector have become even more relevant because of events in Ukraine. He stressed that the conflict has demonstated the importance of energy security for Poland. The PM explained that the government is working on become energy independent. Tusk also believes that focusing on the coal industry lies in everybody’s best interests. During the conference, issues such as energy security and industrial competitiveness were discussed. Negotiations also took place between the EU and USA concerning a revolutionary free trade agreement.
gazetaprawna.pl

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PO to win Euroelections

May 9, 2014
Ready for Victory?

Ready for Victory?

According to IBRiS Homo Homini forecasts, Civic Platform (PO) will come out on top in the elections to the European Parliament in Poland but it will have the same number of seats as Law and Justice (PiS). The IBRiS Homo Homini poll commissioned by Rzeczpospolita, RMF FM, and Interia.pl is the most comprehensive poll yet carried out before the elections at the end of May. The poll looked at the popularity of parties and its leaders among voters. The poll contains questions that are usually asked of one thousand respondents across the country but in this case the polls were distributed to one thousand participants in each province (there were two thousand in the Mazovian Province as it contains two constituencies). According to the poll, as many as six parties will cross the electoral threshold (five years ago only four managed the feat). 31% of Poles will vote for PO, giving them 17 mandates (8 fewer than in 2009). PiS will get the same number (2 fewer than five years ago). IBRiS predicts that they will be supported by 30% of Polish voters. Third place will fall to the Democratic Left Alliance (SLD), supported by 13% of voters. The Polish People’s Party (PSL) will retain its four seats with 7% of votes. New parties like Europa Plus (EP) (6%), Your Movement (TR) (6%) and Congress of the New Right (KNP) (5%) will have three seats each.
rp.pl

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Colourful Polish MEP

April 26, 2014
Euro Elections

Euro Elections

Civic Platform (PO) and Law and Justice (PiS), the two major political parties in Poland, have designated which candidates will stand in the European elections. They will either have already worked in Brussels or Strasbourg (PO), or simply know what’s what in domestic politics (PiS). Therefore, the final list of candidates is not a surprise because it includes people who are experienced politicians and whose names are immediately associated with politics. However, the minor parties such as Your Movement (TR) and United Poland (SP), want to draw attention to themselves with candidates who have unusual professional backgrounds, for instance, a boxer, a nurse, a model and a bouncer. The question is will they help their respective parties?
polskatimes.pl

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PiS Demands Olympic Audit

April 23, 2014
Gold for Kraków?

Gold for Kraków?

Law and Justice (PiS) Kraków MPs have filed a motion with the Central Anti-Corruption Bureau (CBA) to audit the 2022 Kraków Olympic Bid Committee. Last Saturday, Jagna Marczułajtis-Walczak, a Civic Platform (PO) MP, resigned as the Committee Chair. She said she was resigning due to a “media barrage” targetting her. Addressing media reports that her husband had allegedly lobbied the media to write favourable stories about having the Winter Olympics in Kraków, Marczułajtis-Walczak said she was sorry about the whole situation, but was unaware of her husband’s activities in this matter. “We want the CBA to audit the activities of the Committee, because, in our opinion, this is one way to safeguard public money earmarked for the bid,” said Andrzej Duda, PiS MP. He claimed that the issue of organising the Winter Olympics in Kraków “is beginning to look very grim” and that the activities of the Committee “have raised a lot of concerns.” Duda added: “In Kraków, some people have been openly saying that the whole thing is not about organising the Olympics, but about embezzling money earmarked for the promotion of the event.” According to Krzysztof Szczerski, another PiS MP, Kraków must not become “a small Sochi, i.e. a place where the Olympic ideal becomes corrupted by business, party politics and cliques.” The chairman of the Lesser Poland branch of PiS Andrzej Adamczyk has appealed to the Committee to publish a “white book” of all its expenses and liabilities incurred to date. In his opinion, the next Chair of the Committee should not be associated with PO. Prime Minister Donald Tusk recently said that despite the commotion caused by the resignation of Jagna Marczułajtis-Walczak, Poland still had a fair chance of winning the Olympic bid. “It would be a truly great opportunity,” he stressed. Five cities, including Beijing, Almaty, Lviv, Oslo and Kraków, are competing to host the Olympics. The decision will be made by the IOC on 31 July, 2015 in Kuala Lumpur.
rzeczpospolita.pl

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Euro Election Spending

April 9, 2014
Money, Money, Money

Money, Money, Money

According to Gazeta Wyborcza, during the first month of the campaign for the elections to the European parliament, Law and Justice (PiS) spent PLN 1.2m, Civic Platform (PO) spent PLN 0.5m and the Democratic Left Alliance (SLD) spent PLN 250,000 on their respective campaigns. Political parties which may have representation in all districts is allowed to spend a maximum of PLN 18m. Both PO and PiS wish to spend around PLN 10m. PO will give PLN 8m to local authorities which will be divided between candidates for individual campaigns. PiS candidates will receive much less: between PLN 2m and PLN 2.5 m. The euro-elections have not yet aroused the emotions of Polish people. The PiS YouTube video only garnered 19,000 views, whereas the PO video got 19,400.
wiadomosci.wp.pl

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