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Poles Vote in Presidential Run-off Election


Voters in Poland are casting ballots in the country's second-round presidential election. The race is tight, but the vote is proceeding calmly.

The Polish presidential race is between Speaker of the Parliament and Acting President Bronislaw Komorowski, and Jaroslaw Kaczynski, the twin brother of the late Polish President Lech Kaczynski, who was killed in a plane crash in April.

Komorowski is running for the ruling center-right Civic Platform party, while Kaczynski represents the far-right Law and Justice party.

The run-off election is being held two weeks after the first round on June 20th in which neither candidate was able to secure the 50 percent needed for an outright majority. But Kaczynski polled much better than expected in the first round, coming in only five percentage points behind the Komorowski.

Up to now, support for the two candidates has been largely divided along generational lines, with younger voters tending to support Komorowski and older Poles leaning toward Kaczynski.

One young Komorowski supporter says that her main concern is keeping Kaczynski out of office. She says that for her, the plane crash made no difference in her decision, but that for many older Poles it did.

"I think for older people, people over 40, if they vote Kaczynski I think it will be mainly because of the death of his brother," she said. "He says he is not using this catastrophe, but really he is speaking about this all the time."

Early in the day, if appeared that turnout would be higher than in the first round of voting, in which 55 percent of eligible Poles took part.

But one man outside a polling station admitted that he was not very enthusiastic about either candidate. In his view, neither of them were especially charismatic or well-spoken, but he said the choice being what it was he voted for Komorowski.

Final results are expected to be announced on Monday.

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