Photo source, Platforma Obywatelska, (CC BY-SA 2.0)
Civic Platform (Platforma Obywatelska) and Modern (Nowoczesna) would at times mention the need to unite the opposition ever since the onset of the term, but only now, in the face of local election campaign, actual steps towards this goal have been taken. Modern’s leader Katarzyna Lubnauer aimed to create a coalition as broad as possible, a diverse one that would enable the smaller parties to preserve their identities.
Back in December, she invited PSL (EPP) and SLD (S&D) to join it as well, but the former, sure of its potential in local elections, declared it would run alone, and the latter decided to build a coalition of its own on the left, as difficult of a task as it may prove to be.
In early February a team consisting of members of both parties was formed. Its task was to set common “programme foundations” and find a way to select common candidates. For now, Nowoczesna and Platforma agreed to put up a single list of candidates for voivodeship sejmik elections, but some, like Modern’s Sejm deputy from Poznań, Joanna Schmidt, already stated they expected “more agreements on lower tiers”.
Similar hopes can be satisfied with Grzegorz Schetyna’s words – “regional structures are already seeking an agreement and partners on different electoral levels”, he reported. Katarzyna Lubnauer admitted that the parties are discussing “every town” as well.
During a joint press conference Nowoczesna’s leader emphasized how important the agreement is – “this election is going to be a plebiscite of what the Poles choose: do they choose inclusivity, do they choose cooperation with the European Union, do they choose being close to people, or do they choose divides and conflicts”, she warned.
The leader pointed out that “inclusivity, creativity and being close to people” are values that PO and her party follow together, while also accusing PiS (ECR) of causing divides and conflicts. She didn’t conceal her optimism – “I think it’s going to be be a plebiscite won by us”, she admitted.
“We want to let us all hope that it’s the first step to build a grand coalition, to build a sensible alternative for PiS” – Grzegorz Schetyna added. PO’s leader asserted that the parties would team up wherever possible – “we believe that the Poles expect us to cooperate”.
Both parties are certain that thanks to joining the forces they are set to win the election. Borys Budka, a PO Sejm deputy, is even convinced that a common list would let the parties win parliamentary elections, too.