The 2023 electoral campaign of Poland’s Law and Justice party (PiS) was a paradoxical blend of strengths intertwined with vulnerabilities. After all, they secured the most mandates of any party but lost the election. Ivan Krastev’s poignant remark on liberal democracy, “What went right is also what went wrong,” could describe their multifaceted strategy. This campaign witnessed a PiS that was simultaneously assertive and ambitious, yet self-undermining.
From monopolising the narrative against major rivals to leveraging their digital prowess, PiS showcased both innovative tactics and questionable manoeuvres. PiS transformed from a party keen on understanding the Polish pulse to one consumed by its own power and ensnared in a self-made information echo chamber over the past eight years, progressively detaching from reality. Let’s dive into how PiS’ once effective strategies led to their loss.