“AND our fourth victory in a parliamentary election and the third in a row. It is a great success for our party and for our project for Poland”, declared Jaroslaw Kaczynski shortly after the polls closed, at 9 pm local time (8 pm in Lisbon), and when the first voting projections were known, which give a parliamentary majority to the opposition.
“The question that remains is whether this success will be reflected in our new government and we still don’t know, but we must have hope and know that, whether we are in power or in opposition, we will defend this project in any way we want”, proclaimed the historic leader of populist conservatives, adding that their party will not allow “betrayals of Poland, nor for Poland to lose what is most valuable in the nation, its independence”.
On that the leader of the opposition, the former head of government and former president of the European Council, Donald Tusk, claimed victory.
The exit poll, released by tvn24 and prepared by Ipsos, gives PiS 36.8% and 200 of the 460 seats in the Polish parliament, followed by Tusk’s Civic Platform (PO) liberals, with 31.6% and 163 seats.
Behind are Terceira Via (conservatives), with 13% and 55 seats, and Lewica (Left), with 8.6% and 30 mandates, which means that these forces, allied with the PO, achieve a majority in parliament.
The radical ultranationalists of the Confederation (far-right), who could make a PiS executive viable, did not go beyond 6.2% and 12 seats.
Participation, according to projections, should be above 73%, which, if confirmed, should be a record in the country.
In the last legislative elections, held in 2019, participation was 61.7%, but today, in updates from the Polish Electoral Commission, at 12:00 and 17:00 local time, it was clear that participation would rise substantially, while television broadcasts showed long queues at polling stations in Warsaw and other large cities.
Furthermore, when the leaders of the main party forces began to speak to their supporters and the country, in the case of Tusk at 9 pm sharp, followed immediately by Kaczynski, there were still noticeable queues at many polling stations.
In contrast to the participation in the legislative elections, the 30 million Polish voters were also called to vote in four referendums, but all of them must be declared invalid, since, according to exit polls, they did not reach more than 40% participation, falling short of the 50% required to be binding.
At issue were two questions about immigration and asylum policy, in opposition to the migration pact approved by the European Union, and about the wall built on the border with Belarus, the raising of the retirement age to 67 and the privatization of state assets .
After widespread noise, especially in the scaremongering surrounding the debate on migration, the opposition called for a boycott in the referendums.
In an atmosphere of euphoria, Donald Tusk declared victory among his peers, with a wide smile and an emotional tone.
“Poland won. Democracy won. We kicked them out of power,” he told his supporters and other candidates for parliament in a packed and vibrant room.
“I know that our dreams were even more ambitious. I have been in politics for a long time. I have never been so happy in my entire life,” said the former Polish prime minister, adding: “A year ago no one believed. Three months ago no We were certain.”
These were the most divided elections in recent years in Poland, after eight years of absolute dominance by PiS and a stance of resistance and disobedience to EU determinations and accusations of interference in the judiciary and the armed forces and also of a muscular and alarmist policy. in relation to immigration.
The opposition proposed, as an alternative, easing with Brussels, which froze the transfer of community funds to Warsaw due to deviations from the rule of law, and with neighboring countries, but also strict rules on matters of immigration, abortion and the LGBT+ community.
Monday should mark the beginning of a negotiating marathon, in order to ensure that the results obtained by the opposition are converted into a government solution to be presented to the President of the Republic, Andrzej Duda, coming from PiS.
Around 30 million voters today chose 460 deputies and 100 senators in 41 electoral districts. Parties that obtained less than 5% of the votes and coalitions with less than 8% of support are left without parliamentary representation.
Read Also: Poland. Opposition leader Donald Tusk declares victory in the legislative elections
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