Monday, October 31, 2005

The personell gets political

Law and Justice (PiS) prepare to go it alone with a minority government in the Polish parliament.

After failing to get Civic Platform (PO), the right wing, free market orientated party, which came second in the parliamentary elections last month, on side, PM designate, Kazimierz Marcinkiewicz, has announced that Law and Justice will form a minority government, making ad hoc, individual alliances to get their program through parliament.

Included in the cabinet will be Marcinkiewicz’s old economics teacher, Teresa Lubinska, as Finance Minister. She’s 53 years old from Szczecin and is seen as a financial moderate.

Unofficial sources are saying that ex-presidential independent candidate; Zbigniew Religa – who backed Tusk in the second round of the election – will be Health Minister. Radek Sikorski – the MEP (correction - see comment) for PiS`in Strasbourg will take up the Defense Ministry portfolio.

At the weekend, Donald Tusk, the defeated PO candidate in the recent presidential elections, tried to back Law and Justice into a corner by declaring that his party would not enter a coalition unless Jaroslaw Kaczynski – brother of president, Lech – take up the position of Prime Minister, instead of Marcinkiewicz. PO believes that Jaroslaw is going to be the real power within the government, and wanted this position made clear.

But Tusk must have known that the offer would be turned down flat. “I announced before the elections that I would by no means be prime minister if my brother, Lech, was elected president," Jarolsaw said. This situation would be completely unacceptable in the eyes of the public.”

He’s referring to opinion polls before the election, which said that Poles voter would not accept twins in the two top positions in the country (see Double Trouble).

Tusk had also demanded that PiS`make no more alliances with radical populist parties, Selfdefence and League of Polish Families, as they did last week when forcing through their choice of Parliamentary Speaker, Marek Jurek.

Marcinkiewicz has said that he still doesn’t rule out a government including PO, however.

But until he does, he has to rely on the support of the parties that Tusk had demanded Law and Justice stay clear of – which will make it more difficult still to get an agreement with Civic Platform.

6 comments:

StefanMichnik said...

Radek Sikorski is not a European MEP but has been elected to the Polish Senate. He is Managing Director of the NEI Initiative i American Enterprise Institute (neo con think tank)

StefanMichnik said...

Dear Beatroot! One more thing. In your analysis you are not taking into account that PO might be not so stable actor...I can imagine that in 1 year we witness the situation that PiS has already 250 seats in Sejm. Tusk has lost everythig he could and now he will have to face own opposition in his own echelons.

Michael Farris said...

stefanek, you think SO and LPR_are_ stable actors and worthwhile partners?

Kaczynksi threw his lot in with them to get elected, let him live with them for a while.

Tusk might face opposition, fine. At least PO is a political party in the traditional western sense and not a cult of personality, depending on (a single) strong leader(s) (and unlikely to survive the leader's departure).

beatroot said...

Indeed...cheers, ‘Stef’, my old mate. How are you? Stable is not going to be a word in the Polish political dictionary for a while, me thinks.

I once heard someone talking to Sikorski about Poland, and how all the dramatic events were in the past, and the country wouldn’t be making the news headlines anymore.

And Sikorski, speaking English with a very ‘posh’ voice says:

“Blessed are the nations which never make the news…”

He says it in almost biblical English. And then he gave the example of Switzerland!

Graham Green – the British novelist – said something completely opposite. Countries that experience many changes and conflicts are usually the most creative ones. And then he said” “Countries that don’t have any conflicts or wars are also the least creative. I’m mean, look at Switzerland – what have they ever given us, apart from the cuckoo-clock?”

But why is Sikorski Defence (maybe he is going to build a few helicopters?) and not Foreign Minister?

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