Emmanuel Macron comes to Poland today. It is his first trip to the country since coming to power in 2017. Will he reach out to the Warsaw rulers who accused his France of breaking democratic principles? What is the olive branch? The list of disagreements is long. The list of common interests seems short. Is … Continue reading Macron in Warsaw
The presidential elections in Poland are scheduled for late spring 2020. Most likely the first round of voting shall take place on 10 May 2020, but the formal decision has not been taken as of now. The incumbent, Andrzej Duda, has been the country's president since 2015, and an MEP before that (2014-2015) with Law … Continue reading Poland votes for President 2020. Who’s running?
Brexit is looming on the European Parliament. A few days ago the EP's research service published a simulation showing how the Parliament changes on 1 February 2020, the day EU shrinks to 27 member states. The main consequence for the delicate balance in the fragmented Parliament is the end of the minimal centre-left majority in … Continue reading EP post-Brexit: the End of Centre-Left Majority
When the Council of the EU votes on energy transformation, environmental protection or transport, the PiS government is usually in the minority. The Eternal Question Since joining of the EU, Poland is facing the question of its own position in the Union. The question is linked to its size: Poland is the smallest among the … Continue reading Poland loses interest in EU
At one point this summer Ursula von der Leyen said her Commission will be “geopolitical”, as opposed to the “political” Commission of Jean-Claude Juncker. There was no meaning to the adjective back then. There is little meaning to it today. Still, the adjective is growing on the Commission. First foreign trip of the new President: … Continue reading What kind of Geopolitical Commission?
"The EPP is dead"! Did Viktor Orbán plan a hostile take-over of the party? What are the plans for the future? Welcome to rainy Zagreb, where the European People's Party holds its congress 2019. Hashtag #EPPZagreb The Croatian capital is cold and rainy this time of the year. Grim are the moods in the great … Continue reading EPP in Crisis
Today there were hearings in the European Parliament. Extra hearings following the rejection of the initial candidates for Commissioners from Romania, Hungary and France. The replacement candidates who did well are the two: Adina-Ioana Vălean of Romania, who is scheduled to be the Commissioner for transport, and Thierry Breton of France, who will be responsible … Continue reading 2 Commissioners missing
For the new European Commission to take office - initially scheduled for 1 November - we are still missing four confirmations and a final confirmation vote in the European Parliament. Three Commissioners-candidates were rejected earlier by the European Parliament. The French Sylvie Goulard was denied after her hearing. The Romanian Rovana Plumb and the Hungarian … Continue reading 4 Commissioners missing
President of the European Council just announced a new book to be published in December, "Szczerze", or "Honestly", about his 5 years in office as the President of the European Council. https://twitter.com/Agora_SA/status/1188859934500380678?s=20 Agora, the publisher, announced the date, 12 December. Mr Tusk's term in office ends on 1 December. The question of the week everybody … Continue reading Donald Tusk writes a book
Almost two weeks after the Polish general elections the politics in Warsaw is fourfold. There is a fight for the control over the Senate where the united opposition parties snatched a tiny majority (51-49) over the ruling Law and Justice (PiS). PiS challenges outcome in six districts with limited chances of success. The other three … Continue reading Jarosław Kaczyński writes to voters
Just four days after the parliamentary elections in Poland and the new political reality in Warsaw is slowly settling in. What do we know? A New PM in sight - unlikely Mateusz Morawiecki was or is the candidate for the Prime Minister job. But before this question is answered by the PiS chair, Jarosław Kaczyński, … Continue reading The Week After the Vote
PiS loses out in the Senate to the Opposition. Difficult time ahead. #Gimme5EU
So yesterday Poles went to the polls. And yes they did. Big numbers, some 61% (estimated) of the electorate showed up. The celebration of democracy continues. As the results come in and they are distorted after 25% and 42% of the vote, I prefer to present the "late poll" result, which is almost identical with … Continue reading Poland voted: the morning after
Today Poles go to the polls to elect new Sejm of 460 MPs and 100 Senators. As the first exit polls come out, Law and Justice is the clear winner with 43.6% of the vote. The centrist Civic Coalition (KO) is second with 27.4% of the vote. The Left's back in the Polish Parliament with … Continue reading Poland voted: First reactions
In four days Poles will chose their Parliament. There are 460 seats in the Sejm and 100 Senate seats to grab. Five electoral committees are competing for the votes: Law and Justice (PiS) is the ruling party, the Civic Coalition (KO) is the centrist opposition, the Left is the progressive coalition, the Polish Coalition (KP) … Continue reading Poland Votes 2019: four days to go
Janusz Wojciechowski will be Ursula's von der Leyen's Commissioner for Agriculture, after all. The Agricultural Committee of the European Parliament just heard the Polish politician for the second time today. After the second hearing was held with Mr Wojciechowski speaking at ease in his native language, the coordinators unanimously agreed to give him a green … Continue reading Wojciechowski gets EP approval on second attempt
The 1 October Wojciechowski hearing is poor. Even when the chair of the AGRI committee asks for the MEPs to applaud the Commissioner-designate it is lukewarm, at best. Mr Wojciechowski's performance is the poorest of all the Commissioners heard to date. It did not matter he is a PiS affiliate. It did not matter he … Continue reading How bad did Wojciechowski perform?
Ever since the replacement of the next Polish Commissioner, Mr Wojciechowski has kept a low profile trying to avoid the temper of the gods of the European Parliament who are on the hunt in this years hearings. Today he takes the centre stage; will he pass the Parliamentary hearing? Janusz Wojciechowski is a 64 year … Continue reading Will Mr Wojciechowski pass the test?
The second to last element in the process of establishing the new European leadership is about to take place. The show will begin as each of the individual Commissioners-nominees will face the European Parliament committee or committees. In the committees public hearings are scheduled. Here is the itinerary of the upcoming shows: 30 September: Commissioners … Continue reading The Hearings Are Coming Up
Ursula von der Leyen is proud. Her College is gender almost-balanced. There are 27 members, 14 men and 13 women. There were never as many ladies in the European Commission college. Yet, is this truly her College? Yes, she asked for female candidates. She also asked for two candidates to chose from. In the past … Continue reading Ursula’s College: the critical approach