“Parties invite famous faces to their lists.” Which sports people won the voters’ trust?
Photo: Zbigniew Meissner/PAP
You can regularly find people associated with sports on electoral lists: players, coaches, journalists. Both they and the committees that give them places on the lists are counting on the political consumption of sports popularity. However, the stories of politicians and athletes show that a well-known name is not always enough, and in order to maintain a popular mandate, one must demonstrate political activity.
Rafał Siemaszko will be a parliamentary debutant. As a football player, he achieved his greatest successes with Arka Gdynia. It was his goal that decided Arka to win the Polish Cup in 2017, which Siemaszko meticulously reminded about in the campaign on his website. He still kicks the ball – as a playing coach in the V-league Wierzyca Pelplin.
On the list of the Civic Coalition in district no. 26 (Gdynia/Słupsk), Rafał Siemaszko was in 11th place. He got over 15,000 votes – almost twice as many as Henryka Krzywonos-Strycharska, a legend of the opposition in the times of the Polish People’s Republic. This gave him the third result on the KO list and eighth among all candidates in the district. He received the most votes in Gdynia and also in Rumia, where he played in the local Orkan.
– Starting in the place where they led their careers and were successful increases the chances of success for former athletes. Emotions are important in politics. We usually have good memories of athletes; so wherever there are fans of a given athlete, he counts on their votes – says Dr. Natalia Organista, a sports sociologist from the Warsaw University of Physical Education.
He collected nearly 21,000 votes elections Apoloniusz Tajner. Adam Małysz’s coach, and later the president of the Polish Ski Association, achieved the third result on the Coalition’s lists in district no. 27 (Bielsko-Biała).
But sports recognition does not guarantee electoral success. Over 5,000 people voted for the former ski jumper Jakub Kot, which was also the third result on the list, but he did not win a mandate in constituency 14 (Nowy Sącz).
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