Who do the new Senate districts serve? Recommended article on this topic

"Gerrymandering in the Podkarpacie region"


In the upcoming elections to the Senate we will vote in districts where one senatorial seat will be up for grabs. The Przemyśl-Krosno district, where in the previous election we could vote for two candidates, has been divided into two smaller ones - district 58 (Przemyśl) and 57 (Krosno). Are the changes beneficial for us, as voters? According to the new regulations, the country was divided into 100 new electoral districts.


The winning senatorial seat will be won by the candidate who receives a simple majority of votes. Such a voting system was pushed by the PO-PSL coalition under the slogan of improving democracy and increasing the role of citizens in parliamentary elections.

New single-member electoral districts for the Senate:











District 57 District 58


The idea was put in an attractive package, but it is worth paying attention to what is not talked about loudly. The matter concerns the way in which the existing electoral district of Przemyśl-Krosno was divided.


The title gerrymandering is a manipulation of the size and shape of electoral districts in order to achieve an electoral result favorable to oneself. The changes that have been made to the electoral law under the banner of single-member constituencies for the Senate can serve as an example of "gerrymandering". The very name "gerrymandering" comes from the United States of America. The term was formed by combining two words: the name of American politician Elbridge Gerry and salamander. Elbridge Gerry was the governor of the state of Massachusetts in the nineteenth century, who carved out a district on the electoral map in such a way as to achieve maximum electoral gains (concentrating his supporters in the new district). The new district resembled a salamander in shape, hence this type of practice came to be known as "gerrymandering."

In the previous election, Andrzej Mazurkiewicz and Stanislaw Piotrowicz won seats on behalf of Law and Justice, decisively defeating candidates from other electoral committees. What would these elections be like if they were held in today's new electoral districts? In constituency no. 57 (Krosno County, City of Krosno, Jasielsk and Brzozowski Counties) those counties where PiS dominates are concentrated, so one can say that the victory of the candidate running on behalf of this party is certain. On the other hand, the recently formed constituency number 58 resembles a crowned prince. If it had existed in 2007, Senator Stanislaw Piotrowicz (PiS), who won against Maciej Lewicki, would have lost in the new constituency No. 58 by a difference of over 6,000 votes. This was made possible by the addition to the district of Sanok, Lesko, and Bieszczady counties, where the PO is achieving good results.


Should Maciej Lewicki, running on behalf of the Civic Platform, whom Senator Piotrowicz did not give a chance in the previous election, become the "prince" in the new district? On the eve of the upcoming parliamentary elections two other questions should be asked: Are such changes introduced by those in power to increase the quality of democracy in Poland? For the sake of democracy, shouldn't regulations be introduced in Poland to prohibit constant changes in the electoral law, which are introduced only for short-term political gains?


Alicia M J



Parliamentary committees

Law and Justice



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