The splits in Civic Platform mainly revolve around one crucial question.
As we saw before the local elections recently all is not well on the opposition Civic Platform (PO) – in fact, a few party members seem set to fall off it.
The main Platform dissident is Jan Rokita (right of photo). The last line in an ‘open letter’ sent to head of PO, Donald Tusk (left), he demanded an answer to one simple question:
“Will you, or will you not, rule out completely an alliance with the ex-communist Left?”
For many Poles this is still a crucial issue. Most of my friends are what in the West would be called ‘liberals’ – on social issue many are even ‘center-left’. But none of them would entertain the idea of voting for the ex-communist SLD, or Marek Borowski’s breakaway party.
So any alliance after an election between PO and SLD would be a very difficult one, for obvious and understandable historical reasons. SLD etc are the heirs to a party that locked up Solidarity dissidents, murdered striking miners and so on.
So Rokita’s question is a pertinent one: would you be seen dead in bed with the reds?
At the time of writing, Donald Tusk has failed to give a clear answer – suggesting that he may be tempted to make this historic leap, if an election resulted in a hung parliament with a composition that demanded an alliance between SLD and PO.
And that is a distinct possibility. I get the impression that the Kaczynkis are tempted to go to the electorate again. With scandals rife within the two main junior political parties in the coalition, he may just have to. And as their support declines most of it is going to the Kaczynski’s Law and Justice.
So time for Tusk to give a clear-cut answer to Rokita might just be running out.