Jarosław Gowin, a former justice minister who quit the ruling Civic Platform in early September announced he will be cooperating with several experts in creating a plan to govern Poland in the years 2015-2019 with the ultimate aim of establishing his own political party.
Jarosław Gowin intends to establish a new political party
Courtesy of KPRM
Amongst the experts who will be working with Mr Gowin on the program are Stanisław Gomułka, an economics professor and former deputy finance minister, Krystyna Iglicka-Okólska, an economics professor and demography expert and Konstanty Radziwiłł, MD and long-time head of the Polish Chamber of Physicians and Dentists.
Mr Gowin, who lost the leadership election of Civic Platform to Prime Minister Donald Tusk in August this year, has been a harsh critic of the present government’s economic policies, accusing it of veering to the left and abandoning its liberal economic roots.
When he quit the party in September, he listed the government’s recent transfer of assets held by private pension funds (OFEs) to the state-controlled Social Insurance Institution (ZUS) as the proverbial “last straw.” “Mr Tusk wants to take money out of Poles’ pockets,” said Mr Gowin then.
At the press conference where he announced he was working on his program, Mr Gowin also said there was “too much party politicking and too little policy in Polish politics.”
“Today, I want to start work on a program to govern Poland in the years 2015-19,” he added.
A new party? Yes
Mr Gowin made no attempt to hide his political plans for the future. He said his aim is to win 20 percent support in the 2015 parliamentary elections by creating a party which would “decide what kind of policies to employ when it comes to families, demography and the healthcare system.”
“I want to create a wide socio-political formation, which will be convincing and will be addressed to the disillusioned voters of Civic Platform, to those who choose [opposition] Law and Justice as the lesser evil and also to those millions of Poles who say they have no one to vote for,” he added.
WBJ asked John Godson, Poland’s first black MP, who likewise recently quit the ruling party, what he thought of Mr Gowin’s move. Mr Godson said Poles are “sick of political parties run by bureaucrats.” He also said that Mr Gowin consulted him on his plan to “mobilize the grassroots electorate, NGOs and other civic societies by engaging experts not involved in politics.”
Asked if he planned to get involved in Mr Gowin’s initiative, Mr Godson said he hoped to be “part of the electoral committees which would put such policies into place.”
A September CBOS poll revealed a party led by Mr Gowin could count on the support of 7 percent of Poles, enough to get into parliament. Interestingly, the major opposition party, Law and Justice, stands more to lose than Civic Platform if Mr Gowin were to form a new grouping, the study showed. While only 3 percent of current Civic Platform supporters would defect and vote for Mr Gowin, as many as 7 percent of Law and Justice’s supporters declared they would do the same.
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