Poland’s ruling party starts grassroots campaign for local elections

Poland's ruling party leader Jarosław Kaczyński during a meeting with local community. Photo: PAP/Paweł Jaskółka

The Law and Justice Party has started staging town hall meetings as part of its fall local elections strategy.

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Following the party’s nationwide convention on Saturday with its coalition partners, the Law and Justice party kicked off a series of meetings with voters at the start of the campaign for the local elections which take place in November this year. Already in the upcoming weeks, major political leaders will travel around their constituencies to discuss both national and local issues – a formula which contributed to the party’s 2015 election victory.

The party’s support dropped over ten percent in polls recently from nearly 50 percent, which will mean this fall’s local elections will be a major test for the government, especially in light of the main opposition parties uniting in an electoral coalition on Saturday to harness the anti-government vote for the elections.

The party leader Jarosław Kaczyński’s antidote for the downswing in the polls was to promise to restore public trust by clawing back the unpopular year-end bonuses government ministers were awarded. Saturday’s party convention all heralded a vote attracting series of policies, including promises of tax cuts for small businesses and new child support programmes.

Starting off the roadshow in the town of Ścianka in Western Poland, which has a population of 17,000, Mr Kaczyński highlighted the government’s achievements. “We have put an end to the defeatist logic of old, we made a series of promises and we showed voters that we can deliver on those promises”, MR Kaczyński said. He added that the result of that was “a full budget, implementation of major social contracts as well as important arms deals”.

Mr Kaczyński also outlined the series of grassroots meetings. “We want an extensive dialogue with Poles, we want to show you in brief what has already been done and what is to be done in the near future”, Mr Kaczyński said, adding that party leaders and government ministers would hold about 700 such meetings in total.