Cover Osteuropa 10/2007

In Osteuropa 10/2007

The End of the “Fourth Republic”
The Outcome of the 2007 Polish Parliamentary Election

Peter Oliver Loew

Deutsche Fassung


Donald Tusk’s liberal-conservative Civic Platform emerged from the elections on October 21, 2007, as the clear winner, Jaroslaw Kaczyński’s governing Law and Justice Party as the big loser. Tusk was able to boost his profile in a television duel with Kaczyński. Many younger, well-educated, urban voters were mobilised to unseat a government that had distinguished itself primarily through a polarising way of thinking in terms of enemies and an antiquated nationalist rhetoric. Kaczyński’s project of clearing out “post-Communist in-sider relationships” and creating a renewed “fourth republic” is at an end. The “Poland of those who have made gains” has triumphed over the “Poland of those who are frustrated.” The new government has the chance to overcome the inner conflicts of Polish society by means of a socially balanced policy and domestic reforms.

(Osteuropa 10/2007, pp. 43–50)