MR. PRIME MINISTER IN STRASBURG

Mirosław Piotrowski

Mateusz Morawiecki arrived at the headquarter of the European Parliament. As a Polish prime minister he presented his vision of the future of the European Union. He had already been the sixth leader of the membership country in the Union having his pronouncement in this formula. He was speaking interestingly. He reminded about Christian roots of Europe, and he outlined his proposition of its development in three points, which he reflected on more thoroughly. He did not forget to refer to the history of the Polish parliamentarism, the 100th anniversary of regaining independence by our country and express his pride in the present social and economic successes, in order to return to the problems of the Union which he called a legally international expert. In the aula I only noticed one problem. Hardly anybody was interested in what the Polish prime minister was saying.

Those who were to speak, were arranging a plan of attack in their mind in relation to the promoted thesis about a danger of violating rules of law in Poland. It was a favouring situation for them as just that day in Poland the first president of the Supreme Court got retired. What the prime minister Morawiecki was saying did not become an axis of a discussion about Europe, but a reflection point for criticism of the actions of the Polish government. At that time I recalled an anecdote how a student managed to learn only about earthworms before taking his biology exam. Not thinking much he said that an elephant has got a trunk in the shape of an earthworm and earthworms are classified into…..- and he went on about what he had learnt. It was not different in Strasburg. The vice-chief of the European Commission Valdis Dombrovskis began (Jean-Claude Junkcer did not bother, although he had always been present). Next, on behalf of two supreme fractions, two German MPs were speaking, who, with their ‘fervent care’ were reflecting on ‘the collapse of rule of laws in Poland’. Further speeches were given by a Belgium MP Guy Verhofstadt, a German MP Ski Keller, and others were divided by a defence speech of the representative of our fraction. The Polish MEP must have had a good intention but did not manage to make speakers concentrate on a suitable issue. In fact his digressions about punishing Janusz Korwin-Mikke the previous year and the alleged blocking the exhibition in the EP about Józef Piłsudski became a proverbial disservice done to Morawiecki. Antonio Tajani, presiding over the debates, perceived it as a personal tease and got angry. He dared to remind that nobody of the mentioned exhibition blocked but organizers had been late and had not met the deadline. As soon as they provide documentation there will not be any problems. What a relief….it sounds positive. But the Polish prime minister was there, waiting for a debate about Europe. Certainly, at the appointed time he refuted the charges but it was to be about Europe and its future. I will admit that I had doubts whether it was worth pronouncing in those circumstances at all. After all there is somebody who advises the prime minister in European issues. Couldn’t he elaborate a better strategy? Or prepare any favouring circumstances for the visit? Friendly guests on tribunals, more befriended euro deputies in the plenary hall, earlier talks and meetings? It was obvious that the total opposition in the EP was vigilant. I remember the last visit of the prime minister Beata Szydło in Strasburg. She was similarly encountering accusations of alleged lack of rules of law in Poland, but a political effect was quite different. It is enough to say that ministers and cooperators accompanying her were opening a bottle of champagne with joy, before the debate ended in which the prime minister had participated and MEPs of the Civic Platform dismissed its chairman Jan Olbrycht for his unsuccessful speech. This is a small difference. And, finally, one more. Before her pronouncement in Strasburg, the prime minister Szydło invited all Polish MEPs for a meeting. I would define them as effective. The prime minister Morawiecki did not meet with us, instead all our assistants received an official invitation for the meeting. Mostly those who do not come to Brussels from Strasburg.

Translated by Aneta Amrozik

Niedziela 28/2018 (15 VII 2018)

Editor: Tygodnik Katolicki "Niedziela", ul. 3 Maja 12, 42-200 Czestochowa, Polska
Editor-in-chief: Lidia Dudkiewicz • E-mail: redakcja@niedziela.pl