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Polish opposition parties join forces for Senate elections

17.08.2023 20:00
The leaders of Poland’s opposition parties have said they will contest October’s elections to the Senate together in a bid to retain control of the upper house of parliament.
2023 Senate Pact: Polands opposition parties have joined forces ahead of Octobers parliamentary elections, agreeing to field joint candidates for the upper house.
"2023 Senate Pact:" Poland's opposition parties have joined forces ahead of October's parliamentary elections, agreeing to field joint candidates for the upper house.PAP/Tomasz Gzell

The agreement, dubbed the 2023 Senate Pact, was announced at a news conference in Warsaw on Thursday.

In attendance were Donald Tusk, the leader of the centrist Civic Platform (PO) party and a former prime minister; Władysław Kosiniak-Kamysz from the agrarian Polish People’s Party (PSL) and Szymon Hołownia from the centre-right Poland 2050 grouping; and leading leftist politicians Włodzimierz Czarzasty and Robert Biedroń, Polish state news agency PAP reported.

Under the deal, the opposition parties agreed to back a single candidate for each of the 100 Senate seats.

Candidates will be recruited from all the opposition groups in proportion to the parties’ showing in the polls and based on which party "has the best electoral chances in a given constituency," according to officials.

Tusk on Thursday welcomed the signing of the Senate Pact and described the deal as “an extremely effective democratic project in the Senate elections,” referring to the opposition’s victory in the 2019 race.

He said it was also a “symbolic” agreement that would make it easier for the opposition parties to "work together after winning the parliamentary elections."

Czarzasty said his New Left group would “do everything to help us win together,” while Biedroń hailed the Senate Pact as “very important news for everyone who values the rule of law, democracy and human rights."

The PSL’s Kosiniak-Kamysz said that, thanks to the agreement, the Polish opposition parties would “repeat their victory from 2019” and even increase their majority in the Senate.

Poland 2050's Hołownia stated that the Senate Pact was “the only way” to prevent the ruling conservative Law and Justice (PiS) party and the far-right Confederation group from taking control of the upper house. 

On February 28, the Civic Platform, Poland 2050, the New Left, the PSL and the Yes! For Poland (TDP) local-government movement issued a joint declaration saying they intended to contest this year's elections to the Senate together.

The 2023 parliamentary elections are scheduled for October 15, with Poles set to elect 460 MPs and 100 senators for a four-year term, the PAP news agency reported.


Source: PAP, rp.pl