Waldemar Pawlak

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Waldemar Pawlak
Waldemar Pawlak candidate 2010 A.jpg
Prime Minister of Poland
In office
26 October 1993 – 6 March 1995
President Lech Wałęsa
Deputy Marek Borowski
Włodzimierz Cimoszewicz
Preceded by Hanna Suchocka
Succeeded by Józef Oleksy
In office
5 June 1992 – 10 July 1992
President Lech Wałęsa
Preceded by Jan Olszewski
Succeeded by Hanna Suchocka
Deputy Prime Minister of Poland
In office
16 November 2007 – 27 November 2012
President Lech Kaczyński
Bronisław Komorowski (Acting)
Bogdan Borusewicz (Acting)
Grzegorz Schetyna (Acting)
Bronisław Komorowski
Prime Minister Donald Tusk
Succeeded by Janusz Piechociński
Minister of Economy of Poland
In office
16 November 2007 – 27 November 2012
President Lech Kaczyński
Bronisław Komorowski (Acting)
Bogdan Borusewicz (Acting)
Grzegorz Schetyna (Acting)
Bronisław Komorowski
Prime Minister Donald Tusk
Deputy Adam Szejnfeld
Preceded by Piotr Woźniak
Succeeded by Janusz Piechociński
President of the Polish People's Party
In office
29 January 2005 – 17 November 2012
Preceded by Janusz Wojciechowski
Succeeded by Janusz Piechociński
In office
29 June 1991 – 11 October 1997
Preceded by Roman Bartoszcze
Succeeded by Jarosław Kalinowski
Member of the Sejm
Incumbent
Assumed office
18 June 1989
Constituency 16 – Płock
Personal details
Born (1959-09-05) 5 September 1959 (age 55)
Model, Masovian Voivodeship, People's Republic of Poland
Political party Polish People's Party
Spouse(s) Elżbieta Pawlak
Profession Mechanician, farmer, teacher
Deputy Prime Minister W. Pawlak at the World Economic Forum on Europe and Central Asia in Istanbul 2008

Waldemar Pawlak [valˈdɛmar ˈpavlak] ( ) (born 5 September 1959) is a Polish politician. He twice served as Prime Minister of Poland, briefly in 1992 and again from 1993 to 1995. From November 2007 to November 2012 he served as Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Economy. Pawlak is the only person who held the office of Prime Minister twice during the Third Republic (i.e. since 1989), and he remains Poland's youngest Prime Minister to date.

He is also a long-time commander of the Polish Volunteer fire department, holding the rank of Brigadier General.

Early life, education and early political career[edit]

Pawlak was born in the village of Model, Masovian Voivodeship on 5 September 1959.[1] He is a graduate of the Warsaw University of Technology. While he was a student and during martial law in 1981 he actively participated in strikes.

After graduation (1984) he became a computer teacher in Kamionka (near Pacyna). His political career began in 1985, when he joined the United People's Party. After 1990, like many UPP members, he joined the UPP's successor, the Polish People's Party. He was elected from UPP office to the Contract Sejm (1989) and has remained a member of Sejm since then. He became leader (Prezes) of the UPP in 1991.

First Premiership[edit]

His first premiership (5 June - 7 July 1992) was the briefest government during this period, lasting only 33 days.[2] This was, however, a notable period, known commonly as Pawlak's 33 days (33 dni Pawlaka).[3]

After the downfall of Jan Olszewski's cabinet, Pawlak, a leader of the agrarian Polish People's Party, was named the new Prime Minister by President Lech Wałęsa with the mission to form a new coalition government including agrarians, Christian democrats and liberals.[3]

However, the Pawlak government failed to gain support from the Sejm majority and failed in a vote of confidence. Pawlak resigned, and the president replaced him with Hanna Suchocka, who won majority support.

Because the cabinet did not receive support from the Sejm, Pawlak had no official ministers at this time, only temporary chiefs of executive branches.

Second Premiership[edit]

The Polish People's Party and the social democratic, post-communist Democratic Left Alliance (SLD) won the 1993 election in a landslide, holding a super-majority and the support of the socialist-agrarian government, with Pawlak as Prime Minister again.

Józef Oleksy of the SLD became Sejm Marshal, while SLD leader Aleksander Kwaśniewski remained a Sejm Member without portfolio.

Prime Minister Pawlak and Kwaśniewski soon found themselves at bitter political odds. Kwaśniewski reportedly had an ambition to become "Prime Minister de facto", while Pawlak wanted to retain the power of his office. Both leaders used their parties to fight for power.[4]

Pawlak was initially in an informal alliance with President Wałęsa against the SLD. However, their good political relations soon dissipated.[4]

In 1995 Pawlak offered three options to Kwaśniewski. First: he would remain Prime Minister but with Kwaśniewski as Deputy and Minister of Foreign Affairs. Second: the SLD would form a government with Kwaśniewski as Prime Minister. Third: Oleksy would become Prime Minister under the present coalition. Pawlak reportedly thought that Kwaśniewski would not risk a minority SLD government without the support of the majority or the elevation of his main partisan opponent, Oleksy, to Prime Minister and therefore rather be the deputy of Pawlak. However Kwaśniewski surprised many by choosing the third option.[4]

In the political wilderness[edit]

Despite good public approval ratings Pawlak failed in his bid for the Presidency in 1995, finishing a distant fifth (after Kwaśniewski, Wałęsa, Jacek Kuroń and Jan Olszewski) and winning only 770,417 votes (4.31%).

After losing the political battle with Kwaśniewski and, after that, the presidential election, there was a movement to replace Pawlak with Jarosław Kalinowski as party leader in 1997.[3]

PSL suffered a great political disaster during the 1997 parliamentary elections and became the smallest party in the Sejm (from 132 seats in 1993 to just 27).

After the SLD won decisively in the 2001 parliamentary election Kalinowski became deputy of the new Prime Minister Leszek Miller when the PSL joined the coalition. Pawlak did not play a major role during this period.

Comeback[edit]

Further information: Cabinet of Donald Tusk

Pawlak's comeback began in 2005 when he became PSL leader again.

In the liberal Civic Platform (PO)-PSL government, formed after the 2007 parliamentary election, Pawlak became Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy under Prime Minister Donald Tusk.

Although PSL remained the smallest party represented in the Sejm, Pawlak is often cited as having achieved a major political victory. During his time in the party chair his party enjoyed better electoral results, the elimination of major competition among agrarian voters from the also agrarian dominated party (Samoobrona), and the resumption of major influence in rural areas. Additionally, PSL was put in charge of three cabinet posts in the Tusk government. (Without the PSL votes, the PO would not have a Sejm majority, even though it easily accounts for the biggest political group in the sitting parliament.)[3]

On 21 April 2010, PSL announced that Pawlak would be the party's official candidate for the 2010 presidential election. He received only 1.75% of the vote and didn't get into the second round.

Personal life[edit]

Pawlak is married and has children.[3]

Second Waldemar Pawlak cabinet[edit]

Members of Pawlak's cabinet:

  • Prime Minister: Waldemar Pawlak (PSL)
  • Deputy PM and Minister of Finance: Marek Borowski (SLD)
  • Deputy PM and Minister of Justice: Włodzimierz Cimoszewicz (SLD)
  • Deputy PM and Minister of Education: Aleksander Łuczak (PSL)
  • Minister of Construction: Barbara Blida (SLD)
  • Minister of Culture: Kazimierz Dejmek (PSL)
  • Minister of Property Conversion: Wiesław Kaczmarek (SLD)
  • Minister of Defense: Piotr Kołodziejczyk
  • Minister of Transport: Bogusław Liberadzki (SLD)
  • Minister of Interior: Andrzej Milczanowski
  • Minister of Labor: Leszek Miller (SLD)
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs: Andrzej Olechowski
  • Director of the CUP (Central Planning Office): Mirosław Pietrewicz (PSL)
  • Minister of Economic Cooperation with Foreign Business: Lesław Podkański (PSL)
  • Minister of Industry and Trade: Marek Pol (UP)
  • Director of the URM (the Cabinet Office): Michał Strąk (PSL)
  • Minister of Agriculture: Andrzej Śmietanko (PSL)
  • Minister of Communications: Andrzej Zieliński (PSL)
  • Minister of Environment Preservation: Andrzej Żelichowski (SLD)
  • Minister of Health: Ryszard Żochowski (SLD)
  • President of the Committee for Scientific Research: Witold Karczewski

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Matraszek, Marek (November 2011). "Composition of the new government after the 2011 parliamentary elections in the Republic of Poland". CEC. Retrieved 28 March 2013. 
  2. ^ www.premier.gov.pl :: Prime Ministers
  3. ^ a b c d e People of the Year, Polityka, 27 December 2007
  4. ^ a b c Agnieszka Chruścińska, Kwaśniewski jestem, 1995
This article incorporates information from the revision as of 2008-01-30 of the equivalent article on the Polish Wikipedia.
Government offices
Preceded by
Jan Olszewski
Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland
1992
Succeeded by
Hanna Suchocka
Preceded by
Hanna Suchocka
Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland
1993-1995
Succeeded by
Józef Oleksy
Preceded by
Przemysław Gosiewski
Zyta Gilowska
Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland
with Grzegorz Schetyna (2007-2009)
2007-2012
Succeeded by
Janusz Piechociński
Preceded by
Piotr Woźniak
Minister of Economy
2007-2012
Succeeded by
Janusz Piechociński
Party political offices
Preceded by
Roman Bartoszcze
Leader of the Polish People's Party
1991-1997
Succeeded by
Jarosław Kalinowski
Preceded by
Roman Bartoszcze
Presidential Candidate for Polish People's Party
1995 (5th)
Succeeded by
Jarosław Kalinowski
Preceded by
Janusz Wojciechowski
Leader of the Polish People's Party
2005-2012
Succeeded by
Janusz Piechociński
Preceded by
Jarosław Kalinowski
Presidential Candidate for Polish People's Party
2010 (5th)
Succeeded by
Most recent