Poland’s ruling conservatives win general election.

14 Oct 2019

 Poland’s ruling conservatives secured a second term in power. The victory by the Law and Justice (PiS) party followed a campaign focused on a raft of new welfare measures coupled with attacks on Western values.

 Terming the victory a “huge success,” PiS leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski said his party had “obtained a mandate to continue our good change … to continue to change Poland.”

Since it took office in 2015, the PiS has in many ways upended Polish politics by limiting liberal democracy through a string of controversial court reforms that have stoked tension with the EU, as well as through its monopolization of public media, among other measures.

  The PiS scored 43.59 percent of the popular vote, for 235 seats. Up to now it controlled 239 of the 460 seats in the lower house of parliament.

  The opposition Civic Coalition (KO) scored 27.40 percent support for 134 seats. It draws support mainly from urban voters upset by the PiS’s divisive politics, controversial judicial reforms and graft scandals.

The PiS lost control of the Senate, or upper house, taking 48 of the 100 seats, something analysts said would provide a check on the party’s legislative drives.  Turnout tallied at 61.74 percent, the highest since Poland shed communism in 1989.

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