Commentary

Duda's back is against the wall

The Polish president is in a tough political situation, writes Zuzanna Dąbrowska for Rzeczpospolita. If he does not sign Law and Justice’s (PiS) reform changing the electoral law in European Parliament elections, he risks losing the party’s support in the next presidential election

President Andrzej Duda’s relationship with Law and Justice is not an easy one. The newest reform on electoral law in the upcoming European Parliament elections is seen as troublesome. Not only by the opposition, but also by smaller right wing parties, writes Zuzanna Dąbrowska for Rzeczpospolita.pl.

If he does not sign it, he risks losing Law and Justice’s support in the next presidential election, she adds.

The new reform is meant to be a tool to help Law and Justice gain more influence in Brussels. Although the reform would also increase the influence of the Civic Platform, the government’s main opposition, it would cut out the smaller formations such as Kukiz'15 from the elections. The gained support will probably be worth the criticism towards Law and Justice from both the left and the right, argues Dąbrowska.

“As for Andrzej Duda, he can bid farewell to his dreams of political independence,” Dąbrowska adds.

There was a time when the Kukiz'15 movement wanted to become Duda’s political backing. However, much has changed since the President declared full cooperation with Kukiz'15 over a year ago. The movement’s results in the polls have fallen significantly and that makes them a much less viable support for Duda in the upcoming elections.

Only Law and Justice can provide that kind of political base, which is why he will have to do what the government tells him to.  

After all, there is nothing more important for a political party than elections writes Dąbrowska. “Law and Justice look for confirmation and legitimization of their changes to the law. They need to show that their popular support is as strong as ever, even if slightly less people vote for them than in the previous election," she concludes.

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