And so it came to pass…the Polish Parliament votes for an election, probably October 21, just under two years after the last one (photo - Gazeta.pl).
Watching the debate before the dissolution vote Friday night, I couldn’t resist feeling a little teeny weeny bit sorry for some of the members of parliament, as I simultaneously laughed my head off at them.
As the speakers ranted from the rostrum, two were caught getting out little screw drivers and removing the name plates in front of their seats to take home for souvenirs. They knew they wouldn’t be coming back.
“Look, kids, I really was a Member of the Polish Parliament,” they will tell the grandchildren, one day, as they drool into their vodka, the fading memories of one of the weirdest terms of parliament in the history of weird parliaments whizzing round their crazed little brains.
Meanwhile, Jan Rokita – maybe the next prime minister in waiting – from Civic Platform feigned complete disinterest in the whole proceedings by flicking through what looked like an art catalogue.
On the government benches, Jolanta Szczypinska – who has been rumored to be Jaroslaw Kaczynski’s...um...girlfriend...was showing the MPs to the left, right and behind her a text message she had received on her mobile. Maybe it was a photo of Jaroslaw’s cat?
The debate itself was the usual pre-election stuff: the opposition taunting the government, the government trying to find things it was proud of.
Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski only turned up for the vote after the debate - the ruling Law and Justice party left it to their resident pitbull, Jacek Kurski to defend the government’s record.
He listed the government’s...um...achievements...most of which had nothing to do with them: robust economic growth, lowest inflation ever, lowest interest rates, etc….
He also claimed as a success the fact that President Lech Kavzynski had not ‘staggered around drunk’ in front of any memorials – a reference to an incident when the previous president, post-communist Aleksander Kwasniewski, once did appear to have had one (six) too many at a ceremony.
And then they voted. Most of the MPs knew that an election was the only way to resolve what has been two years of political instability. Many must have voted with a heavy heart, as many from the League of Polish Families and Self defense, for instance, will not be coming back.
But as to who will win the election is not clear. Civic Platform are favourites – although two opinion polls have shown a lead – the first time for 9 months - for Law and Justice. The Kaczynskis have around a 25 percent electoral base that no amount of scandal seems to shift.
And the Kaczynski team are amazingly good campaigners. They get dirty, really dirty. Expect all manner of scandals to emerge about other politicians. They are going to dig and dig for dirt. Corruption is going to be their platform, yet again.
So don’t bet against ‘the Ducks’. Many of the scandals over the last two years, and the incompetence and the manipulation and the intrigue, have literally been like water off a duck’s back.
Saturday, September 08, 2007
Posted by beatroot at 9/08/2007