In the first round of Poland’s 2020 Presidential Elections, the incumbent Andrzej Duda, from the ruling Law and Justice Party, received 43% of the vote. If this result suggested an early consolidation of conservative voters’ enthusiasm, the second round of voting revealed an evenly divided electorate, with Duda winning reelection with just 51% of the total against Warsaw mayor Rafał Trzaskowski. What does this result tell us about the current state of national politics in Poland and the Law and Justice Party’s claims to a popular mandate to alter democratic institutions? Does it suggest an erosion of populist politics in Central Europe, or is it rather an affirmation of the ruling party’s Euroscepticism and judicial reforms? Professors Anna Grzymala-Busse (Political Science, Stanford) and Brian Porter-Szücs (Professor of History, U-M) will walk us through this dynamic landscape, discussing what it reveals about Poland’s present and what it might portend for its future.
Panelists: Anna Grzymala-Busse, Michelle and Kevin Douglas Professor of International Studies in The Department of Political Science, Stanford University;
Brian Porter-Szucs, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor of History, U-M;
Benjamin Paloff, associate professor of Slavic languages & literatures and comparative literature, Acting Director of the Copernicus Center for Polish Studies, U-M