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Refendum over Lisbon Treaty

Poland may hold referendum on Lisbon Treaty if Parliament fails to reach a majority 'yes' vote

INTERFAX CENTRAL EUROPE - Poland will most likely hold
a national referendum on the Lisbon Treaty if the Lower House of
Parliament (the Sejm) is not able to achieve a majority on the issue,
head of the parliamentary club of the ruling Civic Platform (PO) party
Zbigniew Chlebowski said on a public radio show Monday morning.
"Everything indicates that this [referendum] will happen," Chlebowski
said on the Radio 1 Sygnaly Dnia program. "That is if the Sejm is not
able to find the required majority, then the Sejm can very quickly make
a new ruling with regard to the ratification of the treaty, calling on
the will of the nation and thus organizing a national referendum."
The conservative opposition Law and Justice (PiS) party has threatened
to derail the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty unless the ratification
bill is amended with the party's draft declaration on Poland's
sovereignty and the supremacy of the Polish constitution over the EU's
fundamental treaties. At least six PiS MPs need to back the bill to win
the two-thirds majority necessary for ratification.
The government may consider the possibility of parliamentary elections
should the Sejm vote against the treaty, Chlebowski commented.
"This is of course a last resort and I do not want to talk about it, but
I am not hiding the fact that if this Parliament, when making the most
important decision of its tenure, [...] is not able to take a decisive
'yes' vote to ratify the Lisbon Treaty, the possibility [of
parliamentary elections] should also be taken into account."
Signed on December 13, 2007, the Treaty, which upgrades the rules and
institutions of the EU, may enter into force in 2009 only if
successfully ratified by all EU member states.
The Treaty was negotiated by Polish President Lech Kaczynski and his
twin brother Jaroslaw Kaczynski, PiS leader and then prime minister.
After the negotiations, the Kaczynski brothers hailed the document as a
So far, the document has been approved by Hungary, Slovenia, Malta,
Romania, Great Britain and France. Ireland is to date the only country
to have announced a referendum on the issue.


Lisbon Treaty


Re: Refendum over Lisbon Treaty

The Poles may save free Europe once again!
Sobieski rides ...

Re: Refendum over Lisbon Treaty

From the Financial Times!

Poland’s president in treaty tirade
By Jan Cienski in Warsaw

Published: March 18 2008 18:56 | Last updated: March 18 2008 20:32

Poland’s efforts to ratify the Lisbon treaty were thrown into further turmoil following President Lech Kaczynski’s hard-hitting anti-German and anti-gay address to the nation which warned of the dangers posed by the pact.

Mr Kaczynski and his twin brother Jaroslaw, leader of the opposition Law and Justice party, want the law ratifying the treaty to include a preamble safeguarding provisions that favour Poland. These include the ability of a smaller group of countries to block certain EU initiatives and Poland’s opt out of the treaty’s charter of fundamental rights.

Their position has surprised most Poles because the twins negotiated the treaty when Jaroslaw Kaczynski was prime minister, and at the time proclaimed it a great foreign policy success. While the overwhelming majority of Poles support the EU and the treaty, a minority, many of them rightwing and religious voters vital to Law and Justice, are opposed.

In a speech broadcast on Monday night, a stern president cautioned Poles about the treaty’s risks. The address was interspersed with clips showing a sinister pre-war map of Germany containing territory now in Poland, as well as Angela Merkel, Germany’s chancellor, talking to Erika Steinbach, a politician representing Germans expelled from Poland. The president also said the charter could allow for gay marriage, in his words “affecting the accepted moral order in Poland”, as two men were shown getting married.

Donald Tusk, Poland’s prime minister,on Tuesday described the audio-visual presentation as “unseemly”. “Scaring Poles that the EU poses a danger on the part of homosexuals and Germans is foolish, indecent, contrary to our experience and fatally harmful to Poland,” he said.

He added that his government would try to ratify the treaty in parliament and, if that failed, he would call a national referendum. A parliamentary vote is likely after Easter. The treaty has to be ratified by a two-thirds vote of the 460-member parliament, so at least six members of the Law and Justice would need to defy Jaroslaw Kaczynski and vote for the treaty.

Jaroslaw Kaczynski also warned that his brother, the president, would not be obliged to sign the bill if he did not approve of the way in which the legislature had ratified the treaty.

The initiative by Lech Kaczynski and Law and Justice to amend the ratification law is constitutionally dubious, many scholars say. In order for Poland to abandon its opt-out it would have to gain the agreement of all other EU members. Radoslaw Sikorski, the foreign minister, also told parliament on Tuesday that the treaty would not impose gay marriage or strengthen German property claims against Poland.

The fuss over ratifying the treaty has resurrected Poland’s image as a problematic EU member, an impression that Mr Tusk has tried hard to recast since taking power last October.

“Poland could pay quite a high price for this anti-European commotion,” warned Mr Tusk.


Re: Refendum over Lisbon Treaty

Update on the story from Channel 4 news.

Gay man complains over Poland slur

A gay American has officially complained to Poland after its president used images of him and his partner in a national speech to warn against homosexual marriage.

A brief video clip of Brendan Fay's wedding with his partner Tom Moulton was woven into President Lech Kaczynski's televised address to the nation on Monday.

The video, along with a photo of the couple's marriage certificate, was shown as the president warned against the dangers of adopting the EU's new treaty and its Charter of Fundamental Rights, which Mr Kaczynski says could open the door to same-sex marriage in Poland.


Re: Refendum over Lisbon Treaty

Sobieski rides ...

What does this refer to?

Re: Refendum over Lisbon Treaty

Jan Sobieski

The saviour of Western European civilization.

Re: Refendum over Lisbon Treaty

Sobieski ... slightly tongue in cheek.

I never voted for any UK party that promised to hand over final sovereignty to Europe. Moreover, I don't know anybody who did. If the powers that be want an EU constitution for an EU federal state, with an EU president, foreign policy, domestic policy, financial policy etc let them fight it out - and lose - with the electorate in the whole EU.

They won't - because they know that the lectorate are too stupid to know what is good for them. The Euro-cronies have opted for a path which rejects democracy.

On gay issues, well. It's very emotive, isn't it? But should it be foisted on Poland without Poles having a say? Do we want to slavishly re-create the social failure that is western European society?