Poland to hold rescheduled presidential election on June 28

Poland picked June 28 on Wednesday as a new date for a presidential election that was cancelled last month amid the coronavirus pandemic, setting the stage for a short campaign that could weaken the country’s nationalist government, Reuters reports. 

Planning for the election had plunged Poland into political turmoil after the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party abruptly called it off four days before the original May 10 date.

“I would like it very much if we could finally pick the head of state. It’s a matter of ... Polish statehood,” Elzbieta Witek, the speaker of the lower house of parliament, said in a televised speech announcing the new schedule.

For PiS, the election is vital to cementing its grip on power and making further progress on its conservative agenda. The incumbent Andrzej Duda, a PiS ally, is the frontrunner, although his lead has shrunk in recent days amid signs of economic contraction due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Running behind Duda are centrist Warsaw mayor Rafal Trzaskowski and an independent candidate - TV show host Szymon Holownia.

PiS has a fragile majority in parliament and needs the president to rubber stamp its legislative agenda, particularly its justice reforms that the European Union has said undermine democratic checks and balances.


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