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    The possibility of POLExit after an ordinary vote was adopted… during the term of Tusk. Just after Lavrov's visit!

    The exit from the European Union by a simple majority of votes may be made as a result of an amendment to the law made in … October 2010. At that time, Donald Tusk was in power and the Civic Platform (Platforma Obywatelska) had the majority in the Sejm. The possibility of such a simple exit from the EU was voted on a month after the visit to Poland of the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov – in an atmosphere of rapprochement with Russia after the Smolensk catastrophe.

    At the Civic Platform (PO – Platforma Obywatelska) convention in Płońsk on Saturday (18 SEP), Donald Tusk (PO leader) said:

    “PiS (Law and Justice – ruling party) and Kaczyński (PiS leader) want to make Poland exit from the EU. I know that […] Yesterday was September 17 – how many more such anniversaries we are to fund to ourselves. […] The EU is bothering Kaczyński and PiS in every respect. What is holding them back is just that 80 percent of Poles that are against (leaving the EU).”

    And he added that to “remove” Poland from the EU they need a “one-night vote” and even a simple majority of votes is enough.

    “The proposal is very simple,” said Tusk.

    He explained that one provision in the constitution could be changed. He recalled that Article 90 of the Constitution of the Republic of Poland stipulates that an international agreement – based on which Poland may transfer to an international organization or an international body the powers of state authorities in certain matters – will be ratified by a 2/3 majority in parliament. Hence, the leader of the Civic Platform proposed to enter into the Constitution that terminating an agreement with the EU also requires a 2/3 majority.

    “It is a very simple project,” emphasized Tusk.

    But the provision that Poland can be withdrawn from the EU by a simple majority of votes in the Sejm was introduced … under the rule of the Civic Platform. And that was when Donald Tusk was the Prime Minister. Interestingly, it was a month after the visit to Poland of the head of Russian diplomacy, Sergey Lavrov, who took part in… a meeting of Polish ambassadors. 

    “It has been unimaginable so far. This is another sign of the Russian-Polish thaw”, wrote the Russian media about such a welcoming reception of Lavrov. 

    Lavrov himself commented:

    “I am very pleased with the participation in the conference of Polish ambassadors and with the bilateral part of my visit to Warsaw. I am convinced that we have done very useful work today, which will allow us to implement all the arrangements made by the authorities of our countries to solve all the problems that, unfortunately, remain in our relations and bring about the final normalization of Polish-Russian relations, so that they can be built on the principles of good neighbor policy and true cooperation”.

    What significant statutory changes regarding a possible exit from the EU were made in autumn 2010?

    The Act of 8 October 2010 on Poland’s membership in the EU includes, among others, art. 14 and art. 15 paragraphs 1 and 2, which say that decisions on the position of the Republic of Poland are made by “the President of the Republic of Poland, at the request of the Council of Ministers, with the consent expressed in the Act”. And the wording “in the Act” is understood as a simple majority of votes.

    As checked the Niezalezna. pl website – in the voting on the Act, which took place on October 5, 2010, the Civic Platform, the Left (Lewica), and Polish People’s Party (Polskie Stronnictwo Ludowe) were in favor of adopting the Act. Donald Tusk also voted “for”. PiS, including Jarosław Kaczyński, was against it.

    Three years ago, this problem was noticed by prof. Ewa Łętowska – politically associated with the left. In an interview with the website, she noted:

    “[…] in 2010, a change was introduced to the Act from 2000, on international agreements, which was also quite hidden in the provisions introducing another act – on the coordination of cooperation between the Sejm and the Senate in connection with EU membership. The regulations include such a change that a simple parliamentary majority plus appropriate notification by the President of a possible decision is enough. This is very dangerous because it makes the possibility of deciding on such an important matter dependent on the will of a simple parliamentary majority, which may be just a current case at some point and temporary”.

    Let’s recall: Bronisław Komorowski was the President in autumn 2010. He replaced the late Lech Kaczyński. Komorowski did not veto the Act facilitating the exit from the EU.


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