Referendum On Migration Might Be A Tour de Force for Poland’s Governing Party

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki (Photo: Krystian Maj / KPRM / / Wikimedia Commons)

The Polish government wants a referendum on the country’s participation in the EU’s migrant relocation scheme, with voting most likely taking place alongside this autumn’s parliamentary elections, conservative Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki confirmed on Monday.

For this to be possible, a draft amendment that would enable it to conduct a referendum on the same day when parliamentary, presidential or EU elections are held was submitted by the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party on Monday.

“I can confirm we plan the parliamentary elections and a referendum on migrant relocations to be held at the same time, also to reduce the costs,” Morawiecki said, according to RMF FM.

He said the referendum would include one simple question but refused to reveal its exact wording. He also did not rule out the possibility of including other questions on other issues.

Asked by journalists why the government wanted to combine the referendum and the elections despite its earlier decision to postpone the local elections – initially set to be held together with parliamentary elections – he pointed to the costs of organising a referendum.

Morawiecki did, however, seem to point to the referendum only containing one question, as he said such referendums cause less trouble. He also cited the 2014 case where multiple errors caused by inattention occurred in the local elections as there were too many voting bills to fill in. A referendum with only one question causes less trouble, according to Morawiecki.

This way, the parliamentary elections and the referendum on relocations will probably take place this October or early November, and the postponed local elections will be held next Spring. No specific dates have been set yet.

According to EURACTIV, combining the referendum with the elections, PiS counts for a double victory. Not only does it lead in the election polls, but most Poles also support the party’s view that Poland should not receive any asylum-seekers as part of the EU relocations scheme.

As much as 74% of Poles oppose the relocations, and 26% believe the government should accept asylum-seekers under the EU-planned relocations system, according to the newest poll by the Pollster Institute that was published in the Super Express.


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