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Donald Tusk has bucked Europe’s populist pattern – however faces a frightening agenda as Poland’s new prime minister | World Information

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The return of Donald Tusk will not simply create ripples in Poland, however throughout Europe. There aren’t many European politicians with a really pan-continental standing – however he’s considered one of them.

Earlier than returning to Polish politics, the place had beforehand spent seven years as prime minister, Tusk had been president of the European Council.

It isn’t a straightforward job as a result of it includes making an attempt to corral the leaders of all of the members of the European Union into agreeing on a standard place, which is reasonably like herding notably skittish cats.

Tusk’s fame was excessive when he left the job, and it has steadily grown due to the underwhelming efficiency of his successor, Charles Michel, an amiable politician who has struggled to impose himself on the worldwide stage.

Tusk’s anticipated return to Brussels later this week, as a member of the council reasonably than its president, will current a captivating distinction between the 2.

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By that time, Tusk will have already got needed to set his home agenda in practice. His first job can be to attempt to unwind a number of the actions of his predecessor, Mateusz Morawiecki, who launched legal guidelines restraining the liberty of the courts.

These, in flip, led to issues over the so-called “rule of legislation” and that has led to tens of billions of euros of EU funding being held up.

Tusk must discover a approach by that, regardless of the antipathy, and extra doubtless opposition, of the nation’s President Andrzej Duda.

Duda, whose presidential time period runs till 2025, can train a veto over parliamentary selections and has already made clear that he’s in no hurry to let Tusk roll again Morawiecki’s work.

Quite the opposite, by giving Morawiecki first go at forming a majority authorities – which was at all times going to be an not possible job – he merely allowed the outgoing prime minister to make last-minute adjustments and appointments that can hinder the brand new authorities.

All it will make Tusk’s management a fair more durable juggling act, notably as a result of he’s solely prime minister as a consequence of a coalition of events largely united by the only issue that they needed to do away with Morawiecki.

That held them collectively through the election, however issues will turn out to be completely different now.

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From October: Election divides Poland

Tusk will even wish to push by a price range, loosen the shackles imposed by Morawiecki over the Polish media and reinforce a relationship with neighbouring Ukraine that, whereas sturdy, has proven indicators of pressure over the previous 12 months.

It’s a daunting agenda, however Tusk has been by the mill.

Whereas Morawiecki’s PiS stays the largest celebration within the parliament by seats, few doubt that Tusk has each momentum and motivation driving him on.

His supporters have been so enthusiastic about his accession to energy that they crowded into cinemas to look at reside protection of parliamentary proceedings.

Poles gather in cinema for a screening of Polish Parliament session in Warsaw, Poland, December 11, 2023. REUTERS/Kuba Stezycki
Poles collect within the cinema for a screening of the Polish parliament session in Warsaw

On a wider scale, there’s one other essential factor to Tusk’s triumph. European politics has not too long ago been a story of electoral victories for candidates who have been both nationalist, populist or, typically, each. Giorgia Meloni in Italy, Geert Wilders within the Netherlands. The Sweden Democrats and the Finns.

All have positioned themselves as being sturdy leaders who’re the choice to mainstream politicians.

Tusk has bucked the pattern, a extremely skilled politician who has received from the centre-right in opposition to an opponent who mixed streaks of populism, nationalism and authoritarianism.

The approaching weeks and months will not be simple for him or his authorities – not least when prime minister and president conflict – however Poland is about to enter a brand new section.

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