The Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania and its leader, Waldemar Tomaszewski, are currently on a winning streak.
In the last local government elections, the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania and Russian Alliance coalition called “Waldemar Tomaszewski’s Block” achieved an impressive results. Both Parties gained 70 councillor seats and 8,5% of votes of the country’s population which is a third more than previous local and parliamentary election. In Vilnius district, “Waldemar Tomaszewski’s Block” took honourable first place. In Vilnius Region, the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania gained 70% of votes. The party’s leader gained 17,25% of votes in mayoral election of Vilnius, where 16% of Poles reside.
In March, The EAPL candidate also achieved the best result in direct mayoral election. Zdzisław Palewicz won the election again with 80% of votes in Šalčininkai District Municipality inhabited by 77,55% of Poles. While in Vilnius District Municipality, Maria Rekść gained 61% of votes, with 58% pupulation of Poles.
As we mentioned before, Leonard Talmond from EAPL has been elected for the chairman of Ethics and Procedure Commission in Lithuanian Parliament, while other EAPL representative, Andrzej Szarejus has been appointed a Director of Administration of Local Government of Švenčionys District.
On June 7th, the EAPL will participate in three Local government election repetitions in those local governments where electoral regulation infringement occured and therefore the election results were cancelled. In Širvintos District, the candidate for mayor is PM and Starost of parliamentary fraction of EAPL, Rita Tamašuniene, while in Trakai District, the current deputy prime minister of district, Maria Pucz. Moreover, “Waldemar Tomaszewski’s Block” appoints list of 31 candidates in Trakai District.
Andrzej Andruszkiewicz, the current deputy prime minister of Šalčininkai District applies for a Parliament seat in Varena-Eišiškes single-member constituency.
A better results in public opinion polls is another good news for the party and its leader.
According to Baltijos tyrimai company and the ELTA news agency, EAPL and its leader W. Tomaszewski gained voters support in April. Currently, the national support for the EAPL is 5%, which means 0,9% of increase compared to March. The voters support for W. Tomaszewski is 17%, which is 5% more than in March.
The fact is, the poll support record is always much lower than the real support, this can be seen in following examples. In February, „Baltijos tyrimai” asked the respondents about the support for the mayoral election candidates. According to poll results, the EAPL leader was supported by 4% of Vilnians while he actually achieved 17,25% of votes.
In 2014, this public opinion research instutution projected 2% of support for EAPL while the real support was 8%.
This year’s local goverment election wasn’t an exception. While the opinion research institutions announced 3-4%, the EAPL achieved 8,5% of support in the country.
According to political scientists, the reason for increasing popularity of EAPL is “principled attitude” and departure from ruling coalition in August last year. This move only showed, that the party was not holding tight onto seats while the coalition partners did not implement the EAPL’s postulates included in the government programme.
Growing popularity and significance of EAPL in political life augurs well before forthcoming parliamentary elections.
Tłumaczenie by Adam Adamowicz w ramach praktyk w Europejskiej Fundacji Praw Człowieka, www.efhr.eu. Translated by Adam Adamowicz within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.