Polexit: What is happening in Poland?


Disclaimer: The views expressed within this article are entirely the author’s own and are not attributable to Wessex Scene as a whole.

The idea of writing about this seems absurd to me. Yet ‘Polexit’ is just another absurd situation created by none other than the Polish ruling party, the Law and Justice Party (PIS). Just as I thought things couldn’t get worse, Polexit seems to be a possible option that PIS is currently pursuing.

Poland’s political-social discourse continues to be dominated by a highly nationalistic and rigid conservative value system with populist undertones, thus generating an ‘us’ versus ‘them’ mentality.

But what exactly happened for the idea of a so-called ‘Polexit’ to materialise in the current Polish political debate?

The challenge to the EU came from the Polish Prime Minister, Mateusz Morawiecki. Morawiecki put forward a proposal which stated that Polish national law would take precedence over EU bills proposed by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU).  Such a proposal is incompatible with the requirements of being an EU member; the EU requires member-states to compromise and allow EU laws to take precedence n certain judicial areas.

The proposal was reviewed on 7th October by the Polish Constitutional Tribunal, lead by Julia Przyłębska. Przyłębska, appointment came directly from PIS’s authority as part of their judicial reform.  Przyłębska, ruled in favour of the proposed law, and stated that the EU’s judiciary from CJEU is at odds with the Polish constitution.

The EU response was (quite literally) put in the terms ‘you can’t have your cake and eat it’. Either Poland adjusts to EU legal requirements or will face the harsh repercussions of not being part of the EU. Poland’s removal would have a catastrophic consequence on its economy, whose development heavily relies on EU funds; especially now due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Not to mention, it would leave immigrants like me in limbo, as I live in the UK.

The constitutional ruling which triggered Polexit did not meet a favourable response from Polish citizens. In fact, mass demonstrations occurred in 100 of Poland’s cities on Sunday, with more than 100,000 people attending and chanting ‘we are staying.’ The opposition rallies were attended by prominent citizens, such as Wanda Traczyk-Stawska, a 94 old veteran of the Warsaw Uprising (1944), who powerfully stated in her speech: ‘This is our Europe and nobody is going to take us out of it.’

PIS members deny that Polexit as a possibility, but still stand by the constitutional ruling which challenges the core requirement of being in the EU. Meanwhile, the situation in Poland is deteriorating. The economy is in shambles and inflation is skyrocketing. This, combined with the idea of Poland exiting the very organisation which, since 2004, is the sole reason of Poland having some level of prosperity and stability, will have far-reaching consequences. None of which would be beneficial for Poland.

I think we can all conclude; Poland’s situation won’t get better as long as the current government is still in power.


Leave A Reply