- Title: Values or economy? Right-wing Poles weigh options in election runoff
- Date: 10th July 2020
- Summary: GNIEWOWO, POLAND (JULY 2, 2020) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (Polish) BOSAK VOTER FROM SOUTHERN POLAND, WHO PLANS TO VOTE FOR DUDA IN SECOND ROUND, MARCIN STASKO, SAYING: "I am a devout person, and I make my life choices as well as the political ones based on that." STASKO'S EYES (SOUNDBITE) (Polish) BOSAK VOTER FROM SOUTHERN POLAND, WHO PLANS TO VOTE FOR DUDA IN SECOND ROUND, MARCIN STASKO, SAYING: "Simplifying, PO (Civic Platform) and Mr. Trzaskowski are the left side of the politics and they are the enemies of what it means to be Polish, which is tradition, the nation, Christianity, values. These are people and (political) group which supports the attack on our civilisation which we have witnessed in recent years."
- Embargoed: 24th July 2020 13:07
- Keywords: Andrzej Duda Confederation party Krzysztof Bosak Polish president Rafal Trzaskowski far-right party presidential election swing voters
- Location: WARSAW, REDA, GNIEWOWO, GDYNIA, GDANSK AND VARIOUS LOCATIONS, POLAND
- City: WARSAW, REDA, GNIEWOWO, GDYNIA, GDANSK AND VARIOUS LOCATIONS, POLAND
- Country: Poland
- Topics: Government/Politics,Elections/Voting
- Reuters ID: LVA008CM87YVB
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: In the neck-and-neck presidential election in Poland to be held on July 12, voters for the small far-right Confederation party could be the wild card that decides whether the nationalist incumbent Andrzej Duda wins another five-year term in office.
Marcin Stasko did not hesitate to vote for the Confederation party's candidate Krzysztof Bosak, 38, in the first round of Poland's presidential election last month, attracted in part by his promise to cut taxes.
But Stasko, a 50-year-old labour inspector, faces a harder decision in Sunday's runoff when he must choose between Duda, a social conservative with a left-leaning economic agenda, and the pro-European mayor of Warsaw, Rafal Trzaskowski, who favours a more market-based economy.
Stasko, a father of three who plans to vote for Duda in the second round, said he was a devout person and made his life and political choices based on that.
Many supporters of the Confederation, a motley grouping of free-market liberals, fringe anti-Semites and ultra-conservative anti-feminists, are unhappy with the generous welfare programs of the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party, which supports Duda.
But they also share Duda's belief that Poland is under attack from a liberal West that wants to destroy the nation's traditional Catholic identity and force it to embrace "alien" ideas such as LGBT rights.
Such right-wing voters may hold the key to whether Duda can secure a second five-year term in what has become a tight race.
Konrad Korf, a 27-year-old computer programmer from Gdansk, a traditionally liberal city on the Baltic coast, plans to vote for Trzaskowski, after favouring Bosak last month, because of his demands for less state involvement in the economy.
The Confederation won 6.81% of votes in a parliamentary election last October, one of the best results of any far-right group in Poland since the 1989 end of communism, riding a wave of anger against the establishment among the young.
It believes Poland should leave the EU, although Bosak acknowledges timing might not be right, with a majority of Poles supporting membership. He has avoided telling his supporters whom to back in Sunday's runoff.
A political scientist from the University of Warsaw, Anna Materska-Sosnowska, said she believed that a third of Bosak's electorate would support Duda, and the remaining two-thirds would vote for Trzaskowski or abstain.
(Production: Malgorzata Wojtunik, Kacper Pempel)
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2020. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None