Tusk is back: can Poland's opposition make headway now?

After several years of involvement in European politics, former EU Council President Donald Tusk is returning to the Polish political stage: the liberal Civic Platform (PO) elected him as its provisional leader on Saturday. At the same time, the rulingnational conservative PiS confirmed Jarosław Kaczyński as its chairman. Poland's next general election is scheduled for 2023, but there is now speculation about bringing it forward.

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Gazeta Wyborcza (PL) /

A boost for the opposition

Gazeta Wyborcza is delighted:

“Tusk's return presents the democratic opposition with all sorts of new opportunities. They can use his daily presence in Polish politics to their advantage on multiple levels. Negotiating skills will be badly needed ahead of the elections - but also afterwards, when the state will need rebuilding. The experience and contacts of the former prime minister and European politician are invaluable capital for the entire anti-PiS camp.”

Rzeczpospolita (PL) /

An indictment of immature parties

As Rzeczpospolita sees it, Tusk's comeback exposes the weakness of the Polish parties:

“Both the PO and the PiS are inexperienced and - apparently - unfit to survive in the long term. In fully-fledged democracies parties are ideological platforms: the Republicans and the Democrats in the US; the CDU/CSU and the SPD in Germany; Labour and the Tories in Britain. But once Kaczyński and Tusk are finally gone, all we will have left are some empty logos with no one behind them.”