THE CONSTITUTIONAL RELICS OF TRANSFORMATIONS: POLITICAL COMPETITION AND THE SHAPING OF POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS
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The existence in the Constitution of 2 April 1997 of numerous relics of the transformation process does not result from strong political competition, but rather from opportunism that has hindered actions taken to rationalize Poland's political system. The objective of the short-term solutions adopted during the 'Open Table' debates in 1989 was to contribute to the building of mutual confidence of the contracting parties. In the circumstances of a democratic State they have lost their legitimacy. However, despite that, they have become a vital element of our political system. The notion of political competition itself - perceived as an unambiguously negative aspect of democracy - deserves a different approach. Andrzej Antoszewski and Anna Grzymala-Busse show us the benefits of the competition treated as a process leading to the development systemic institutions of mutual confidence and control. The recent book of Grzymala-Busse in fact demonstrates that strong political competition reduces possibility of corruption within a political system. A systemic reflection on democratic competition should not therefore aim at its elimination or even radical limitation, but rather to exploit its potential to rationalize the system. From the analysis of the cases of constitutional relics of transformations (the position of the Senate and principles of election of Senators, the shape of the Presidency of the Republic, and the rules of appointment of the National Broadcasting Council) it follows that the applied principle of slight corrections, stands in contradiction to the postulate of rationalization of the system. The new stage of constitutional work should include, among other things, finding new principles of composition of the Senate and identifying its new role in the constitutional system of confidence-building, reduction of the prerogatives of the President of the Republic confining the operation of government, abolition of partisan formula in appointment of members of the National Broadcasting Council and freeing the public media from political control. This work should recognize strong political competition as a natural consequence of democracy and specify the principles of the building of the rules of the game credible for the participants of the competition. It should also introduce minimum rationality standards for institutional solutions reducing the consequences of political competition in the spheres that generate public confidence (the judiciary, public media, supervisory institutions).
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