Press release June 22, 2020
United States: White House Visit for Poland’s President Sends the Wrong Message
Polish president Andrzej Duda's reelection campaign has involved scapegoating minorities.
In response to the scapegoating of minorities by Polish president Andrzej Duda’s reelection campaign, and Duda’s upcoming visit to the White House, Freedom House issued the following statement:
“We are concerned that the White House visit is sending a signal of political support for a candidate whose campaign has engaged in homophobic and antisemitic rhetoric,” said Zselyke Csaky, research director for Europe and Eurasia at Freedom House. “The scapegoating of minority groups is a dangerous strategy and should be condemned, not supported by the president of the United States.”
Polish president Andrzej Duda is scheduled to visit the White House on Wednesday to discuss investment and security, including a potential plan to move more US troops to Poland. Duda’s visit comes days before a tight presidential election in which he is running for a second term. Duda’s election campaign has been marred by inflammatory rhetoric, with the public broadcaster, ruling-party politicians, and Duda himself claiming that LGBT+ “ideology” is “worse than communism” and that the opposition’s candidate is supported by “foreign interests.”
The United States is rated Free in Freedom in the World 2020, and Free in Freedom on the Net 2019.
Poland is rated Free in Freedom in the World 2020, and is categorized as a Semi-Consolidated Democracy in Nations in Transit 2020.