Polish Premier Urges Calm as Coalition Partner Upset by EU Deal
(Bloomberg) -- Poland’s prime minister urged his junior coalition partner to stay in the government after he reluctantly agreed, against their demands, to strengthen the European Union’s ability to discipline countries in breech of the bloc’s democratic values.
The junior partner, a party led by Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro, is set to meet to determine its future path after Premier Mateusz Morawiecki ignored their “veto or death” rallying cry at Thursday’s EU summit.
Poland and fellow holdout Hungary dropped their opposition to the bloc’s $2.2 trillion spending package and voted in favor of the plan, which includes criteria linking access to the funds to rule-of-law conditions. Both countries face EU probes for democratic backsliding.
“I hope we’ll reach an agreement with our partners as there are many things we can and should do together,” Morawiecki said in Brussels, when asked about Ziobro’s reaction. The premier said he had no choice but to drop the veto, as in such a scenario “we could have ended up with a rule-of-law mechanism but without the money.”
Ziobro called Morawiecki’s decision to approve the EU budget a “mistake,” while his deputy Michal Wos said, according to newspaper Rzeczpospolita, that some members of their United Poland party want to quit the coalition, while others want to remain in because if the government collapses, they would probably all lose power.
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