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Jarosław Kaczyński
Jarosław Kaczyński, wicepremier (cropped).png
Official portrait, 2020
Prime Minister of Poland
In office
14 July 2006 – 16 November 2007
President Lech Kaczyński
Preceded by Kazimierz Marcinkiewicz
Succeeded by Donald Tusk
Deputy Prime Minister of Poland
In office
21 June 2023 – 27 November 2023
Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki
Preceded by
In office
6 October 2020 – 21 June 2022
Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki
Preceded by Jadwiga Emilewicz
Succeeded by Mariusz Błaszczak
Leader of Law and Justice
Assumed office
18 January 2003
General Secretary
Preceded by Lech Kaczyński
Chief of the Presidential Chancellery
In office
22 December 1990 – 31 October 1991
President Lech Wałęsa
Preceded by Michał Janiszewski
Succeeded by Janusz Ziółkowski
Member of the Sejm
Assumed office
31 October 1997
Constituency 19 – Warsaw I (1997–2023)
33 – Kielce (2023–)
In office
6 December 1991 – 26 October 1993
Constituency Warsaw I
Personal details
Jarosław Aleksander Kaczyński

(1949-06-18) 18 June 1949 (age 74)
Warsaw, Poland
Political party Law and Justice (2001–present)
Other political
Solidarity (before 1991)
Centre Agreement (1991–1997)
Solidarity Electoral Action (1997–2001)
Alma mater University of Warsaw (LL.D.)
Profession Lawyer
Awards St. George's Order of Victory

Jarosław Aleksander Kaczyński (Polish pronunciation: [jaˈrɔswaf kaˈt͡ʂɨj̃skʲi]; born 18 June 1949) is a Polish politician. He has been the leader of the Law and Justice party (PiS) since 2003. He served as Prime Minister of Poland from 2006 to 2007, and has twice held the post of Deputy Prime Minister of Poland, firstly from 2020 to 2022, and a second time from June 2023 to the present day.

Jaroslaw Kaczyński as a student took part in protest during the March 1968 political crisis. Subsequently, he became involved in the anti-communist opposition as a collaborator of KOR and KSS KOR. He took part in the protests in August 1980 when he was arrested, then joined the Solidarity movement. In 1982 he became a member of the Polish Helsinki Committee. He took part in the 1988 strikes.

In 1989, Kaczyński took part in the Round Table talks. In 1989–1991, he served as a senator. In 1990, he founded the Centre Agreement party, of which he served as leader until 1998. In 1990–91 he was head of the chancellery of President Lech Wałęsa. He served as a Member of Parliament from 1991 to 1993 and continuously since 1997.

In 2001 he co-founded the PiS party with his twin brother, Lech Kaczyński, of which he became leader in 2003. Running for PiS, he served as the prime minister of Poland from July 2006 to November 2007, while his brother was the president of Poland. After PiS's electoral defeat in 2007, Kaczyński was the main leader of the opposition during Civic Platform's governments. Following the death of his brother in a plane crash, Jarosław Kaczyński ran in the 2010 Polish presidential election losing to Bronisław Komorowski.

Since the 2015 victories of PiS, both in the presidential and parliamentary election, Kaczyński is considered to be the most powerful politician in Poland and one of the most influential European leaders. In 2020, he was designated as the Deputy Prime Minister of Poland with oversight over the defense, justice and interior ministries.

Early life

Kaczyński was born on 18 June 1949, the identical twin brother of Lech Kaczyński. They were born in Warsaw. His father was Rajmund Kaczyński (1922–2005), an engineer who served as a soldier in the Armia Krajowa in World War II, and his mother was Jadwiga Kaczyńska (1926–2013), a philologist at the Polish Academy of Sciences. As children, he starred with his brother in the 1962 Polish film The Two Who Stole the Moon (Polish: O dwóch takich, co ukradli księżyc), based on a popular children's story by Kornel Makuszyński. Kaczyński studied law at the Warsaw University's Faculty of Law and Administration, where in 1976 he obtained a Doctor of Law (LL.D.) degree after completing a dissertation titled "The role of collegial bodies in governing institutions of higher education" under the supervision of Stanisław Ehrlich.

Political career

Anti-communist opposition

During his studies, he took part in the student protests in March 1968. Kaczyński began working with the Workers' Defence Committee (KOR) in 1976. KOR was formed after the workers' protests of June 1976 to defend workers against persecution by the communist authorities. In 1976, he was stopped in time while carrying out tasks for the KOR during a journey to Płock. Subsequently, the KOR was transformed into the Committee for Social Self-Defense KOR (KSS KOR), which aimed to undertake broader dissident activities. Jarosław Kaczyński worked in the Intervention Office of the KSS KOR [pl], run by Zbigniew Romaszewski and Zofia Romaszewska. Its task was to register all cases of human rights violations by the authorities, providing assistance to the repressed and those affected by the regime's actions. Kaczynski investigated cases of murders committed by MO and SB officers.

Kaczyński also joined the editorial board of the monthly magazine Głos in 1979, which was associated with KSS KOR and headed by Antoni Macierewicz.

During the communist-era, Kaczyński worked for several opposition organizations including Workers' Defence Committee, Committee for Social Self-Defense, and the Solidarity trade union. Kaczyński was also the executive editor of the Tygodnik Solidarność weekly magazine from 1989 to 1991.


In 1991, he created the conservative, Christian democratic Centre Agreement party and later became its chairman, remaining in the role until 1998. In the years 1991 to 1993 and since 1997, Kaczyński was a member of the Sejm. In the same year, he worked under direction of the president of Poland, Lech Wałęsa, as the head of his presidential chancellery. Wałęsa fired Kaczyński, who then led the protest movement against him.

2005 elections

Benedict XVI Poland 1
Jarosław Kaczyński with his brother Lech, family and Pope Benedict XVI in 2006

Kaczyński was the Law and Justice prime ministerial candidate in the September 2005 Polish parliamentary election. However, when the party emerged as winner of the election, he pledged that he would not take the position, expecting that his nomination would reduce the chances of his brother Lech Kaczyński, who was a candidate for the October presidential election. Kazimierz Marcinkiewicz was appointed prime minister.

In the following months, he was a frontbench MP and the leader of his party. He was said to have an enormous influence on the prime minister's decision-making process. Kaczyński was described as the architect of the coalition with the populist Self-Defense of the Republic of Poland (Polish: Samoobrona) and the far-right League of Polish Families party.

Prime Minister: 2006–2007

Following reports of a rift between Kaczyński and Marcinkiewicz, the latter resigned on 7 July 2006. Kaczyński was appointed prime minister by his brother, the president, Lech Kaczyński, on 10 July, and sworn in on 14 July, following the formation of a cabinet and a confidence vote in the Sejm. They were the first pair of brothers in the world to serve as president and prime minister of a country and the only twin brothers to have done so. The following 15 months were erratic and not without controversy, Kaczyński initiated a nationwide program (Lustracja) which required thousands of public employees, teachers, and journalists to formally declare whether or not they had collaborated with the security services of the former communist regime. ..... The government also modified Polish foreign relations relating to the European Union by adopting a more eurosceptical stance, where Polish governments had in the past adopted a very pro-European Union position.

At the request of his government, taxes were reduced.

2007 parliamentary election

Despite gaining votes, Law and Justice lost the parliamentary election on 21 October 2007, finishing a distant second behind the pro-European and liberal-conservative party Civic Platform. Kaczyński was succeeded as prime minister by Donald Tusk, but remained chairman of Law and Justice and became leader of the opposition.

2010 presidential election

Following the death of his brother, Jarosław announced that he would run for president against Bronisław Komorowski in the election held on 20 June 2010. Joanna Kluzik-Rostkowska ran his electoral campaign staff and the spokesperson was Paweł Poncyljusz. Kaczyński appeared to soften his image during the campaign in order to win centrist voters. The campaign's motto was Poland Comes First. He polled 36.5% of the vote in the first round, against the acting president Bronisław Komorowski's 41.5%. In the second round he lost with 47.0% of the vote to Komorowski's 53.0%.

After 2015

Dobre 2 lata rządu Prawa i Sprawiedliwości konferencja Beaty Szydło i Jarosława Kaczyńskiego (cropped)
Jarosław Kaczyński and Prime Minister of Poland Beata Szydło

In order to win over moderate voters, rather than running as PiS's candidate for president or prime minister, Kaczyński put forward more moderate PiS members in the 2015 presidential and parliamentary elections. Andrzej Duda ran as PiS's presidential candidate, while Beata Szydło was its candidate for prime minister. PiS won both elections. In the parliamentary election, PiS became the first party to win an outright majority since the end of communism. But despite being a popular leader among PiS's base, he himself remains unpopular among the wider public, with some polls showing that more Poles think Kaczyński is not trustworthy compared to Duda or Szydło. In 2017, Politico described him as the de facto ruler of Poland and as one of the most influential politicians in Poland.

In 2020, Kaczyński became deputy prime minister in the Mateusz Morawiecki government. Kaczyński announced in mid-October 2021 that he would step down as the deputy prime minister at the beginning of 2022 in order to focus on his leadership of his party, and stepped down on 21 June 2022.

On 10 April 2020, on the anniversary of the Smolensk air disaster, Kaczyński and nine other people, standing close together, visited the grave of Kaczynski's mother and the symbolic grave of twin-brother Lech at Powązki Military Cemetery, though they were closed to the public due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions. The Polish Police stated that the gathering in Powązki did not constitute a gathering in the sense of big gatherings forbidden in relation to the pandemic, this caused controversy and criticism. The former prime minister of Poland Leszek Miller described the gathering as showing contempt for ordinary people respecting the restrictions.

In May, a Polish radio station Trójka (run by state-owned broadcaster Polskie Radio) was accused of censoring "Twój ból jest lepszy niż mój" ("Your Pain is Better Than Mine"), a song by Kazik Staszewski that is critical of Law and Justice. The song was inspired by Kaczyński's actions and does not reference the party or Kaczyński by name. When "Twój ból jest lepszy niż mój" charted at number one on Trójka's weekly countdown on 15 May, the station subsequently suppressed the chart and all references to the song from its website. Station director Tomasz Kowalczewski accused the programme's host Marek Niedźwiecki of having rigged the chart in favour of Kazik's song. Bartosz Gil — who also works on the chart show — alleged that Kaczyński's claim was false, and accused him of specifically targeting the song. The following Sunday, Niedźwiecki announced his immediate resignation from the station, and also threatened legal action against the broadcaster for false claims of fraud. On 16 May, Polskie Radio music head Piotr Metz revealed that, after the chart show aired, Kowalczewski had ordered him via text message to remove "Twój ból jest lepszy niż mój" from the station's music library. Metz also resigned from the station. The station also faced threats of boycotts from members of the Polish music industry.

Political views

01 Jarosław Kaczyński przemawia podczas odsłonięcia pomnika Lecha Kaczyńskiego
Jarosław Kaczyński speaking during the inauguration of a monument to his brother Lech Kaczyński (November 2018, Warsaw)

Kaczyński's project is said to consist of a "moral revolution" culminating in the creation of a "fourth republic" drawing a radical break from the compromises surrounding the fall of Communism in Poland, as well as reverting Poland back to its conservative, Roman Catholic roots and away from a multi-cultural styled Western European mainstream. In April 2016, he stated that he is not going to run for the office of President or Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland in the upcoming elections.

Drawing from his strong, uncompromising views (especially regarding parts of the political, cultural and media environment, which he sees as remnants or heirs of the former communist networks), Kaczyński is often labelled as "polarizing".

In recent years, he was also known as an activist for animal rights, and, among other things, undertook activities aimed at banning the breeding of fur animals.

A pejorative term for ideology of Jarosław Kaczyński used by some of his political opponents is "Kaczyzm".

Kaczyński is a Eurosceptic, and he pejoratively stated that "Germany wants to turn the European Union into Fourth Reich".

LGBT views

On 21 September 2005, Kaczyński said that "homosexuals should not be isolated, however, they should not be school teachers for example. Active homosexuals surely not, in any case", but that they "should not be discriminated otherwise". He has also stated, "The affirmation of homosexuality will lead to the downfall of civilization. We can't agree to it". On 30 August 2006, during a visit to the European Commission, Kaczyński, as the Prime Minister, stated that "people with such preferences have full rights in Poland, there is no tradition in Poland of persecuting such people". He also asked the President of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso "not to believe in the myth of Poland as an anti-Semitic, homophobic and xenophobic country".

In 2019, Kaczyński characterized the LGBT rights movement as a foreign import that threatens the Polish nation. .....



  • Title "Man of the Year" by the weekly magazine Gazeta Polska, thrice (2004, 2015, 2019)
  • Title "Man of the Year" by the weekly magazine Wprost, twice (2005, 2015)
  • Title "Man of the Year" by the Federation of Regional Associations of Municipalities and Powiats of the Republic of Poland (2005)
  • Title "Man of the Year 2014" by the Economic Forum (2015)
  • Title "Man of Freedom" by the weekly magazine Sieci, twice (2016, 2021)
  • 25th anniversary award of Gazeta Polska (2018)


  • GEO St-George Victory Order BAR.svg St. George's Order of Victory (2013)


  • Order of Prince Yaroslav the Wise 1st 2nd and 3rd Class of Ukraine.png Order of Prince Yaroslav the Wise, 2nd class (2022)

Personal life

Kaczyński is a practicing Roman Catholic. He is a lifelong bachelor and has no partner or children. He lived with his ailing mother until her hospitalization. He owns no computer and is said to have opened his first bank account only in 2009. He owns a cat and has been described as a "feline enthusiast".

The communist-era Security Service (SB) files described Kaczyński as "...very uncertain about his fate. His appearance is careless. He claimed that he was not interested in material matters, women, e.g. he does not care about having a family in the future. He has a phlegmatic disposition, the appearance of a bookworm." The files also noted that he was not willing to cooperate with the SB in any capacity.

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Jarosław Kaczyński para niños

  • Polish nationalism
  • List of Law and Justice politicians
  • Janina Goss
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