Following two months of political stasis since the country’s October parliamentary elections, Poland finally has a new government, led by returning Prime Minister Donald Tusk, bringing an end to eight years of right-wing nationalist rule in Warsaw.
The parliamentary confirmation and subsequent presidential appointment of Poland’s new government comes after the country’s opposition parties triumphed in October’s parliamentary elections, defeating the now former ruling Law and Justice party (PiS) and its allies. The PiS-led ruling bloc’s last-ditch attempt to secure a majority by courting individual MPs was ultimately in vain, allowing Poland’s ideologically and structurally diverse opposition to form the country’s next cabinet on 13 December.
The new Tusk Government is supported by the longtime PiS rival Civic Coalition (KO), an ideologically diverse coalition of multiple parties, the Third Way alliance of the centrist-liberal Poland 2050 movement and the Polish People’s Party (PSL), as well as the left-wing Lewica bloc. Together, the three formations control 248 of the 460 seats in the more powerful Polish lower house. While the unity of this experimental and ideologically diverse coalition is likely to be tested even in the short term, Aretera expects the new ruling bloc to remain united by their opposition to PiS.
The new cabinet will also work to repair the country’s strained ties with EU institutions, strengthen its relations with war-torn Ukraine, revisit the central budget for 2024 and reverse PiS-era policies to strengthen the rule of law and unlock billions of Euros in post-pandemic recovery funding. Simultaneously, the new government is expected to clash with several PiS-linked public figures and institutions, including Polish President Andrzej Duda, the country’s Constitutional Tribunal and the National Bank of Poland.