Sunday, 25 October 2015

The historic day

Last week of the campaign was hot. On Monday evening two would-be prime ministers clashed in a TV debate, lacklustre, full of trotted out catchwords, hackneyed promises and hollow words. The other day TV stations hosted a debate of eight party leaders. That show’s value added was much higher and probably substantive, appealing appearances of small party leaders (Mr Petru, Mr Zandberg) took some support off the largest parties and helped smaller grouping garner more votes. Nevertheless the Tuesday’s debate laid bare how embarrassing Mrs Kopacz and Mrs Szydło are and how leaders of other parties stand out. I suppose the debate convinced many voters the times of choice between PO and PiS only should be over and a breath of fresh air is essential to unfreeze Polish political arena.

Today I turned up to the polling station in NI just after 9:00 a.m. I have a habit of going to vote possibly early, but never, ever have I seen such turnout. Clement weather and clocks going backward a few hours earlier could have contributed to high number of citizens casting votes. Media reported numerous queues in polling stations, while official figures by PKW showed the turnout at midday was anything but impressive, but at 5:00 p.m. up-to-the-mark with commendably high number of voters visiting polling stations in big cities. Such facts theoretically should not augur well for PiS…

Needless to say ban for publishing part results of the elections in the era of the Internet is ludicrous. Disguised results, varying from one to another, were disturbing, most showing swingeing lead of PiS (allowing them to form a government without having to look for a coalitional partner) and distressingly high score of Kukiz ’15.

Preliminary results show 4 parties will definitely make it to the parliament, PSL is balancing near 5% threshold, Kukiz is unlikely to get a double-digit score and… PiS will get what they were fighting for – simple majority in the parliament. They managed to attain what was unattainable even for PO at the height of its popularity. Fortunately, along with Kukiz, they are short of some 20 deputies to change the constitution.

I congratulate the winners and wish they run Poland well. We have to respect the citizen’s will. Let’s give them a chance.

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