What can Poland’s ‘ghost’ election teach us about democracy in the epidemic era

No, it’s not the United States. This momentum continues in Poland, where its presidential election was due to take place earlier this month. Concerns over the virus and a drawn-out team led to a messy, last-minute suspension – and constant uncertainty about when and how the new election would take place.

The result is a “bizarre ghost selection” as a news agency. It says – Election day where no votes were cast and no polling stations were open – was the end of weeks of political fighting between the ruling right-wing law and justice party (PIS) and the opposition in Poland. Although an election date was set before Poland was infected with the virus, Pais leaders insisted the vote should proceed as planned, thinking his candidate would fight in the next election as Poles began to feel the economic impact of the epidemic. They introduced the law in early April, which enacted an unprecedented all-mail vote on May 10th.
Opposition leaders and international observers, however, vehemently opposed the plan, saying it was being hastily reformed – and that national elections, especially under a government. Democracy and the rule of law have been criticized for it, Pais and its current president, Andrzej Duda, is a power grabber. As a result, Pais leader Jarosla Kaczynski announced just four days earlier that the vote would not actually take place; Election officials later ruled it illegal and called for fresh elections on some scheduled dates this summer.
Holding elections during an epidemic is not an easy task, as countries like Poland have learned: in a constantly changing situation, officials need to strike a balance between ensuring the people’s democratic right to vote and protecting public health. There are at least 622 countries in the world, from the United Kingdom to Italy, from Ethiopia to Bolivia Decided to postpone the election Other southern cities, including France, the state of Bavaria, and others due to the spread of the virus Different Us Of the state, This national vote has moved ahead with the individual-election despite the risk of citizens being at risk.

While there is no set playbook for safe and fair elections in times of coronavirus crisis, Poland’s experience in the United States teaches some important lessons for navigating these questions: Getting things done right means planning as soon as possible – and finding a way that everyone believes is fair. Exclude political bias to come up with a plan to vote.

Why did the situation in Poland turn into such uncertainty – and why are the debates over the new election more likely to be thorny than the debates held until May 10? Why was it organizationally possible for Poland? Just switching to a last-minute mail-vote, the skill of effectively preparing for an election means that if you don’t get a political sense of how you want to do it, it doesn’t mean much.

When neither side trusts the other to act in the best interests of the citizens, the people influence their vision of democracy. And it “seriously affects confidence in the institution of the election,” Sasaki told Jessely, director of research for Europe and Eurasia at Freedom House, a democracy watchdog. “This is a very serious concern, because it is one of the most important elements of a functioning democracy.”

Control is divided in the Polish parliament, as in the United States: the ruling party’s coalition follows, the Sezm controls, while the upper house of the opposition controls the Senate. Opposition groups called for a by-election in early April, when Sejam forced a unanimous ballot. The power to delay the constitution The law, in the end, took a full 30-day permit. This means that the law was passed until May, just four days before the election was due to take place.

If Pais politicians had applied for a constitutional provision called a “state of natural disaster”, all of this could have been avoided first, which would have automatically delayed elections by at least 90 days in an epidemic-like situation. But once PIS leaders insisted on an election timetable, they did not want to back down and change course – even when ballot papers and ballots were leaked on the streets, making it clear that only mail votes were not ready.

Pais-allied candidate Dudao also benefited from the power of power, an incident that in this case was more clearly expressed during the epidemic, at least with voters trapped inside the house. As permanent president, Duda could travel around the country, visit hospitals and talk about government measures to fight the virus – most of the time Broadcast live to voters Regulated by, by state television Sympathetic The ruling party.
Opposition candidates, on the other hand, left Zoom to host a press conference and move their entire campaign online. Malgorzata Kidawa-Blanska, a candidate in the largest opposition civic coalition, has suspended her campaign in protest and called on supporters to boycott May 10; One The survey began in early April A few of the proposed polls planned to vote.
The postponement of the election provided the necessary recovery for Poland, and the controversy over what happened next has led some in the opposition to be hopeful that something will be done. A personal vote with the help of a vote-by-mail option is mandatory Already under consideration, And a Date of new election – probably in late June or early July – is expected to be set soon. The Citizens’ Coalition announced earlier this month that it had selected a new candidate for the new election, Warsaw Mayor Rafal Trajskowski, who is already making significant gains in the election.

However, those in the opposition who are still reluctant to accept the underlying benefits and are willing to draw the line in the way PS can, still have big concerns.

Milos Hodun, a member of the Citizens’ Coalition and an adviser to the liberal Novocassana (“modern”) party, said: “Only the president can campaign across the country … All other candidates are restricted to media and online presence.”

The United States has also faced deep political polarization that has been exacerbated by the epidemic; President Trump has pitted himself against those governors – mainly Democrats – who have imposed tougher restrictions on fighting the virus brothers, calling for the country to be restarted as soon as possible using his stupid mimbi. With each state responsible for setting its own election rules before the nationwide vote in November, there is little chance of falling into the controversy line over mail vs. individual voting and access to each agreement; As in Poland, this could mean that any change is only implemented at the last minute.

Polish observers are hoping their country has learned from the fisco of its “ghost” election – and the country may soon hold an election that could be a better and more beautiful election than the one not held earlier this month. Others, especially the United States, should pay attention to them.

About the author: Dale Freeman

Typical organizer. Pop culture fanatic. Wannabe entrepreneur. Creator. Beer nerd.

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