As WBJ went to press it looked like Warsaw Mayor Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz would lose her post in a recall election scheduled for October 13. In one of the last polls before the election, conducted by MillwardBrown, 74 percent of those planning to vote said they would cast their ballot to remove her from office.
Warsaw Mayor Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz
Courtesy of PlatformaRP/FLICKR
The survey also revealed that 32 percent of Warsaw’s residents intend to take part in the election (and an additional nine percent was considering doing so), well above the 29 percent voter turnout threshold needed for the recall election to be valid.
So the question now is what’s next for Ms Gronkiewicz-Waltz and the Civic Platform party of which she is the deputy leader. They have two options. One is to appoint an acting mayor who will govern the city until next year’s local elections. Prime Minister Donald Tusk had earlier suggested that he would appoint Ms Gronkiewicz-Waltz to that position. But it looks like he won’t have to.
Despite the fact that most people taking part in the recall referendum are against their current mayor, the majority of Varsovians still think she’s the best candidate for the job. In another poll, conducted by TNS Polska, 54 percent of respondents said that they would vote for Ms Gronkiewicz-Waltz in elections for the Warsaw mayorship if such a vote were held.
This could mean that Civic Platform (which also has the majority in the Warsaw City Council) could use the second option and organize snap elections that would put Ms Gronkiewicz-Waltz back in the seat she was just recalled from.
“We should make use of this potential as soon as possible,” an anonymous source from Civic Platform told daily Gazeta Wyborcza, commenting on the poll results. The newspaper also quoted a source from the Warsaw mayor’s office as saying that a snap election could take place in January.
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