Warsaw – Polish President Andrzej Duda announced in a televised speech this evening that he will entrust the formation of a new government to current Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki from the Law and Justice (PiS) party. The latter won the parliamentary elections in October, but lost the majority needed to confirm the cabinet and govern.
The ruling Law and Justice party, which has been in power since 2015, won 194 seats in the last election in the 460-member Sejm – the lower house of parliament – and is unlikely to find a coalition partner, according to the media.
It is widely expected that the next government will be able to be formed by a coalition of pro-European parties under the leadership of former Polish Prime Minister and head of the European Council, Donald Tusk. The Citizens’ Coalition (KO), the Third Way and the New Left won a combined 248 seats in the Sejm and had previously indicated that they wanted to form a cabinet.
The far-right Confederation will also be in the lower house of parliament.
Duda, a close ally of the nationally conservative Law and Justice party, indicated before the election that he would entrust the formation of the government to the representative of the party that wins the election. Recently, Duda named Tusk and Morawiecki as serious candidates for prime ministership.
According to the Polish constitution, the first step in forming a government is the president’s decision to appoint someone to form a cabinet, which must then be approved by parliament. After that, the head of state can appoint the prime minister and the government. If the cabinet does not get the support of the legislators, another candidate will get the chance to form the government from the Sejm.
“If Mateusz Morawiecki’s mission fails, the Sejm will present another candidate for Prime Minister and I will immediately entrust him with forming the cabinet, Duda said today according to the Onet.pl server. The current Prime Minister will have two weeks to convince the MPs to vote of confidence, the PAP agency reported .
Morawiecki thanked the president for the commission, but did not comment on it further. Duda’s decision was welcomed by PiS spokesman Rafal Bochenek, who called him on the social network X https://twitter.com/RafalBochenek/status/1721605891789578534 as a “confirmation of the long-standing constitutional tradition” of Poland.
The leaders of the parties ready to form a coalition government led by Tusk agreed after Duda’s decision that they were not too surprised. “The majority is known and we are calmly working on our own,” said Wladyslaw Kosniak-Kamysz, co-chairman of the Third Way, on the X network, alluding to the government’s preparations. His colleague Szymon Holownia stated that he did not have high expectations and therefore is not disappointed.
Tusk said shortly before the president’s speech that he would become prime minister, whatever the head of state decides. “This game … unnecessarily exposes Polish interests to significant losses, but … it will not change anything,” he said, according to Reuters. According to Reuters, the politician had earlier urged Duda not to delay his mandate to form a government, arguing that a delay could damage the chances of unblocking EU funds meant for Poland, which have been frozen by Brussels over a dispute over Polish judicial reforms.
Poland election government president