Robert Biedroń to join Poland’s European Coalition

Robert Biedroń, the leader of Polish progressive party Wiosna has announced that he will initiate talks with the European Coalition, an alliance of Polish opposition parties, about the possibility of a joint run during the next parliamentary elections.

Speaking at a press conference, Mr Biedroń said that he will meet opposition party leaders, including Civic Platform leader Grzegorz Schetyna, to discuss how to unite the opposition. He said that talks with certain parties were already underway. He noted that Wiosna would set no conditions to start the talks, however, stressed that the party was ready to walk away from the negotiating table if necessary.

Mr Biedroń’s statement comes after he has repeatedly stated that Wiosna would not join the Coalition. Asked about what made his party’s leaders reconsider their view, he argued that the opposition should focus not on how much they could lose, but how they could win the next general election, noting that Poland is “threatened” by a constitutional majority of the ruling Law and Justice party (PiS) if the opposition does not unite. “There is no opposition in the opposition, there is no enemy among democrats and democrats,” he added.

The European Coalition is a joint opposition bloc of Poland’s liberal-conservative Civic Platform, the agrarian-conservative Polish Peasants’ Party, the liberal Nowoczesna party and the socialist Democratic Left Alliance party, as well as other smaller groups. The bloc was formed to present a united front against PiS for the European elections in May and the upcoming parliamentary elections scheduled for autumn.

Wiosna was expected to run alone and form a third pole in Polish politics. However, following their disappointing results in the EU elections when they secured only six per cent of the vote, the party, which almost fell short of entering the European Parliament, has reconsidered its strategy and decided to start coalition talks with other parties.