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PiS Will Settle For Branding PO With A Scarlet Letter Instead Of Banning It From The Polls
Poland’s ruling party realized that it overstepped by bestowing its newly formed “Russian influence commission” with such unprecedented powers just months ahead of the next elections after being sharply criticized by the US and EU.
Poland’s ruling “Law & Justice” (PiS) party responded to American and EU pressure over its newly formed “Russian influence commission” by having President Andrzej Duda propose amendments that’ll remove the possibility of banning those found guilty of this from holding public office. Those two warned that they’ll swiftly react to any anti-democratic moves ahead of this fall’s elections amidst fears that this mechanism could be exploited to ban “Civic Platform” (PO) opposition leader Donald Tusk from running.
While they were deliberately vague about what they’d do in such a scenario, it’s likely that they could have refused to recognize the results, imposed sanctions against those PiS officials responsible for banning Tusk and other PO members from running, and potentially orchestrated a Color Revolution. PiS realized that it overstepped by bestowing the commission with such unprecedented powers just months ahead of the vote, which it only did in the first place out of desperation that they might very well lose.
Since banning PO is now politically unviable, the ruling party will instead have the commission brand them with a scarlet letting declaring that those “found to have acted under Russian influence does not provide a guarantee that they will properly carry out their activities in the public interest.” The opposition’s supporters, who largely back this German-backed liberal-globalist party due to its stance towards abortion, illegal immigration, and LGBT, probably won’t be swayed by this though.
The target audience is therefore those voters who back third parties or are still undecided since it’s this demographic that’ll be the decisive factor in the next elections. PiS can’t investigate PO for being suspected German influence network to maximally pressure and smear the ruling party. For that reason, “Russian influence” is for all intents and purposes a euphemism for “German influence” in Poland’s domestic political context right now.
Nevertheless, branding PO with this scarlet letter might still not be enough for PiS to eke out a victory in the next elections, in which case the latter expects to push their artificially manufactured Russiagate conspiracy theory while in opposition if voters remove them from power this fall. This suggests that Poland could experience something similar to what the US went through after Trump won in spite of the Democrats concocting a similar related conspiracy theory to discredit him ahead of the polls.
The difference, however, is that the Democrats are part of the West’s ruling liberal-globalist elite whereas PiS are faux conservative-nationalists who present themselves as the former’s ideological opponents This observation means that their Russiagate conspiracy theory likely won’t gain traction in the West and could even end up mocked by leading influencers there who might laugh at the notion of their side is infiltrated by “Russian agents” after all they’ve done to fight it these past 15 months.
If PiS’ branding of PO with the scarlet letter of being “Russian influence agents” can’t successfully manipulate the perceptions of those voters who back third parties or are still undecided to keep the incumbents in power, then they probably won’t be able to return to power through these same means. In the scenario that they lose this fall’s elections, PiS risks fading into obscurity as a discredited fringe movement if they base their opposition platform on this Russiagate conspiracy theory.