Law and Justice
Law and Justice (Polish: Prawo i Sprawiedliwość, PiS) is a polish conservative and moderately Euroskeptic party, founded on June 13, 2001 by twin brothers Lech Kaczyński and Jarosław Kaczyński. The party was founded on the wave of popularity gained by Lech Kaczyński during his tenure as a Justice minister in Polish government from July 2000 to June 2001.
Law and Justice claims to be a conservative party and is widely considered as the main force of the Polish right-wing. It opposes legalizing abortion, homosexual marriages and supports restoring the Polish death penalty. Law and Justice also highly supports progressive tax, nationalization of some corporations, universal state-owned healthcare and the concept of "social justice". It opposes privatization which it considers to be "stealing of national property" and usually justifies increasing economic regulation as fighting potential corruption.
Law and Justice won the 2005 parliamentary election. It created a coalition government with the national conservative League of Polish Families and the populist left-wing Self-Defence of the Republic of Poland. The coalition fell in 2007 in the result of allegations of corruption on the part of Andrzej Lepper, leader of Self-Defence and Deputy Prime Minister. The Sejm voted its own dissolution, and early elections were held in October 2007.
In 2006, League of Polish Families proposed to amend the Polish constitution to protect life from the moment of conception. Initially, Law and Justice supported the amendment, but then the text of the amendment was changed so that it would only claim that "human dignity is inherent from the moment of conception". After the amended bill was rejected by the Sejm, Marshal of the Sejm (speaker) Marek Jurek resigned from the office, left Law and Justice and created a new right-wing party called Right of the Republic, which is supported by less than 1% of voters (only 0,24% in 2011 election). In 2007, some of Law and Justice leaders, including Jarosław Kaczyński, stated that they are against tightening of abortion law, which means they support so-called "compromise" which allows abortion when the women's life or health is threatened, when pregnancy is a result of rape or incest and when the fetus is irreversibly damaged. Nevertheless, in 2011 Law and Justice voted in favor of totally banning abortion, but the bill was rejected anyway.
In 2011 a few prominent members were excluded from the party due to internal conflict and lack of acceptance for their ideas for reforming the party. In 2012, they founded a new party called Solidary Poland (Polish: Solidarna Polska) with Zbigniew Ziobro, former Minister of Justice, as its leader.
2015: landslide elections
In May 2015 Polish presidential election, the conservative and Euroskeptic challenger Andrzej Duda of PiS won in an upset, defeating the pro-EU incumbent. In the October 2015 general election, PiS won in a landslide, becoming the first Polish party to win enough votes to govern the country alone since the fall of communism in 1989. This landslide election frightened Europeanist leaders and politicians. It was also the first election where no left-of-center parties sat in the Polish parliament.
The PiS went to work immediately after the elections. In March 2017, PiS Prime Minister Beata Szydło stated that "I hear in Europe very often: do not connect the migration policy with terrorism, but it is impossible not to connect them." It chose to defy the European Union on various issues, such as on reforming the nation's courts to weaken globalist influence in them and decreeing that Christian principles be a factor in their decisionmaking. A CBOS poll in September 2017 found that PiS was enjoying record popular support.
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