Polish incumbent wins first round of presidential vote

Polish President and presidential candidate of the Law and Justice party Andrzej Duda speaks after the announcement of the first exit poll results on the first round of presidential elections in Warsaw Poland

Polish President and presidential candidate of the Law and Justice party Andrzej Duda speaks after the announcement of the first exit poll results on the first round of presidential elections in Warsaw Poland

Duda had always been seen as the clear favorite to win the election, but several recent polls had shown Trzaskowski could win in the second round of voting.

Poland's conservative president, Andrzej Duda, was the frontrunner in Sunday's election, but fell short of the 50 percent of votes needed to win in the first round, according to the projection of an exit poll.

President Andrzej Duda, a 48-year-old conservative backed by the nationalist ruling Law and Justice party, is running against 10 other candidates as he seeks a second 5-year term.

"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.

All other candidates in a field of 11 polled even lower. He also won the backing of US President Donald Trump earlier this week, who said he was doing a "terrific job".

Warsaw Mayor Rafal Trzaskowsk, standing for the liberal Civic Platform party (PO), seen by many as Duda's main opposition, got 30.4 percent of the votes, the poll showed.

The campaign has been dominated by concerns over democracy and bread and butter economic issues as Poland faces its first recession since the end of communism because of the pandemic fallout.

Poland's electoral commission apologised yesterday for the restrictions at polling stations to stem the spread of the coronavirus, which include wearing masks, maintaining social distancing and asking voters to bring their own pens.

3 World Series Contenders Nobody is Talking About
Despite being loaded on offense, the Cardinals have been inefficient in 2019 and rank near the bottom-10 in runs and home runs. Louis has title-winning pedigree and are loaded offensively, but thus far simply haven’t delivered consistent results.

While PiS insists the changes are needed to weed out judicial corruption, critics and the European Union insist they erode judicial independence and democracy just three decades after Poland shed communism. "After these five years many more people voted for me". "For democracy, the judiciary and respect for minorities", said Joanna Ugniewska, 66, after casting her ballot at a polling station in a school in Warsaw city centre.

But in Tarnow in southern Poland, a PiS stronghold, Andrzej Guzik said he would be voting for Duda because of his consistent leadership.

"Personally I only see Duda as president", said Guzik, 52, an employee at the PGNIG state gas company.

In a speech to cheering supporters late Sunday in the town of Lowicz, west of Warsaw, Duda noted that his result was better than in the first round five years ago.

The ballot took place seven weeks later than originally scheduled because of the Covid-19 pandemic, although Poland has had relatively few cases and deaths.

Trzaskowski has instead supported gay rights and says he is open to the idea of same-sex civil partnerships.

Duda is expected to lead, but is likely to go head-to-head with Trzaskowski in a July 12 run-off, opinion polls show. Whether Duda wins will determine whether the governing party keeps its near-monopoly on political power in Poland.

On the campaign trail, Trzaskowski promised to keep the ruling party's popular social welfare spending programs while vowing to restore constitutional norms and Poland's relationship with the EU.

Recommended News

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.