Categories
World News

Polish president comes top in election first round: final results

WARSAW (Reuters) – Poland’s President Andrzej Duda got the most votes in the first round of the country’s presidential election, final results showed on Tuesday, as the focus turned to what looks set to be a close-fought run-off vote on July 12.

Duda, an ally of the ruling nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) party, got 43.50% of the vote, the results showed.

Liberal Warsaw Mayor Rafal Trzaskowski, who is standing for the largest opposition party, the centrist Civic Platform (PO), came second with 30.46%.

Source: Read Full Article

Categories
World News

Polish presidential challenger vows to end monopoly on power

WARSAW (Reuters) – Polish presidential challenger Rafal Trzaskowski tried to rally voters of other opposition candidates to his centrist cause on Monday, vowing to hold the nationalist government to account ahead of what looks set to be a knife-edge run-off vote.

Incumbent President Andrzej Duda, an ally of the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party, came top in the first round of the presidential election on Sunday, but fell short of the 50% needed to secure outright victory, setting the stage for a head-to-head contest with Trzaskowski on July 12.

“I am directing my words to all those who want change,” Trzaskowski told supporters in the central Polish city of Plock.

“Without them there will be several more years of a monopoly on power which is not honest and it is not possible to hold it to account because it attacks independent institutions.”

The re-election of government ally Duda is crucial if PiS is to further implement its socially conservative agenda, including judicial reforms which the European Union says undermine the rule of law.

Duda has painted himself as the guardian of the government’s generous social benefit programmes, and has vowed to protect the traditional family and ward off what he calls “LGBT ideology”.

The morning after the election, Duda said he would protect conservative social values, including ensuring gay couples could not adopt children, in an effort to win over the almost 7% who voted for far-right Confederation candidate Krzysztof Bosak.

“We have many common values with Krzysztof Bosak,” Duda told Polish public radio. “We want the family to be respected in Poland, we want traditional values to be a strong backbone that Polish society will lean on.”

Duda got 43.67% of the vote, according to results based on 99.78% of the total number of polling districts.

Liberal Warsaw Mayor Trzaskowski, who is standing for the largest opposition party, the centrist Civic Platform (PO), came second with 30.34%, qualifying for the run-off.

In competing for votes, Duda will face a growing sense of unease in parts of Poland over his allegiance to PiS, as well as concerns over jobs and salaries as the coronavirus pandemic pushes the economy into recession.

Two opinion polls conducted late on Sunday for private broadcaster TVN and the state-run TVP showed Duda having a lead of less than 2 percentage points over Trzaskowski in two weeks’ time.

Source: Read Full Article

Categories
World News

Polish president maintains lead in election first round: majority results

WARSAW (Reuters) – Poland’s President Andrzej Duda came top in the first round of the country’s presidential election, the majority of results showed on Monday, but fell short of the overall majority needed to avoid what looks set to be a tight run-off vote on July 12.

Duda, an ally of the ruling nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) party, got 43.67% of the vote, according to results based on 99.78% of the total number of polling districts.

Liberal Warsaw Mayor Rafal Trzaskowski, who is standing for the largest opposition party, the centrist Civic Platform (PO), came second with 30.34%.

Source: Read Full Article

Categories
World News

Poland election heads for second round – exit poll

Exit polls in Poland’s presidential election suggest the incumbent, Andrzej Duda, has finished first but without enough votes to win outright.

If confirmed, Mr Duda, a conservative, will face the liberal mayor of Warsaw, Rafal Trzaskowski, in the second round in two weeks’ time.

The polls suggest Mr Duda took just under 42% of the vote and Mr Trzaskowski just over 30%.

Turnout was high despite coronavirus and social distancing restrictions.

President Duda is an ally of the governing nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) party and if he loses, the opposition could push through major changes in Polish politics.

The president has the power to veto legislation, so Mr Duda’s re-election would be of benefit to PiS, of which he used to be a member.

Mr Trzaskowski, meanwhile, has pledged to heal rifts with the European Union. Mr Duda’s allies have frequently clashed with the bloc over controversial reforms to the judiciary and media.

Mr Trzaskowski rose fast in the polls after joining the race in May. Previously a member of Donald Tusk’s Civic Platform government, he won the capital’s race for mayor in 2018 promising “Warsaw for All”.

“This is a decisive time. A lot will really depend on this decision,” said Poland’s anti-communist hero Lech Walesa as he voted in the northern port of Gdansk.

Last week, Mr Duda travelled to Washington and received a ringing endorsement from President Donald Trump.

“He’s doing a terrific job,” said President Trump, in what was widely seen as a domestic boost for Mr Duda. “The people of Poland think the world of him.”

Poland’s election had been due to take place in May, when Mr Duda was higher in the polls and stood a better chance of winning in the first round.

Although the epidemic had not yet peaked, the government was desperate for the May vote to go ahead. It eventually backed down when a junior coalition partner joined the opposition in saying PiS were putting politics before public health.

Source: Read Full Article