Donald Tusk: Quick look on the new EU leader

Adrianna Brzozowska

 

Donald Tusk, elected to be a President of the EU at the end of August, today has to face his new responsibilities. Presidency of the European Council demands other kind of skills than being the Prime Minister of Poland. On the European level the most needed are language skills and the art of diplomacy, to maintain coherent cooperation among Member States.

 

Donald Tusk (Fot. Adam Stępień/Agencja Gazeta)

Donald Tusk (Fot. Adam Stępień/Agencja Gazeta)

The election

On the special meeting on the 30th of August, former President Herman van Rompuy in his speech announced that new representatives of the EU have been chosen. He stated:

” It is my great pleasure to introduce to you, in their new roles: the future President of the European Council, Prime Minister of Poland and my good friend, Donald Tusk”.

From that time on, newly elected President had to leave Polish government in favor of presiding the European Council. He has been the Prime Minister since 16th of November 2007. Former President stated that Donald Tusk impressed his colleagues with the confident way he has led his country even through the economic crisis, being the only Prime Minister of Poland being re-elected in 25 years, after the collapse of communism regime.

During the conference, Herman van Rompuy introduced also Federica Mogherini as the High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.

New responsibilities

President of the European Council is nominated in a Qualified Majority Voting (according to art. 15 (5) of the TEU) for the term of 2,5 years. He can be re-elected once.

Responsibilities have been once presented on our blog, but still I will remind. The President of the European Council chairs and drives the work of European Council, ensures the continuity of the work of Council in the cooperation with the President of the Commission, presents rapports for the European Parliament from each meeting. Besides these strictly paper work, he represents the whole Union on the World’s level. He will have to face issues concerning Ukraine – Russia dispute, which is today’s threat to our security, stagnating economy of the EU and Britain’s presence in the Union.

As we can see, when some people think it is good to be a leader, actual leadership over the European Union is quite hard job. We will be looking at the results of Donald Tusk’s presidency and how is he managing today’s key issues. We hope he will maintain cooperation among Member States at its best.

5 facts about Donald Tusk you may not know:

z_90_zlotych_50000_1988_jozef_pilsudski_polish_coins

Józef Piłsudski (source: coinz.eu)

1. Historian

Have you ever known that he actually graduated history at the University of Gdańsk? His M.A. work was about Józef Piłsudski.

2. Re-elected Prime Minister

As I mentioned before, Donald Tusk was the only Prime Minister in Poland since the end of communism, who has been re-elected! Do you think that as the President he will be re-elected too?

3. Editor over censorship

Gdańsk Solidarity logo (source: solidarnosc.gda.pl)

Gdańsk Solidarity logo (source: solidarnosc.gda.pl)

During the communism in Poland, he belonged to the Student Committee of Solidarność, then he co-established Independent Student’s Association and couple months later became a leader of „Solidarność” (eng. Solidarity movement) in a publishing house, where he wrote to a newspaper without a censorship, which led him to lose his job.

4. Grandfather in Wehrmacht

Actually for Poles that is nothing new. One of Polish politicians has stated that Tusk’s grandfather voluntarily joined the Wehrmacht, but the truth is that Józef Tusk was a railway official, who was imprisoned,  and as a former citizen of the Free City of Danzig(Gdańsk), compulsorily drafted into the Wehrmacht.

5. A Kashub

Kashubs (source: gwe24.pl)

Kashubs (source: gwe24.pl)

His family belong to the Kashubian minority, which are situated in Poland, Germany and even United States and Canada! Having their own language, they are situated in Pomerelia, north-central Poland.

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One thought on “Donald Tusk: Quick look on the new EU leader

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