The article examines historical circumstances and normative basis of the exercise of the duties of the head of state by the Marshal of the Sejm, or the Marshal of the Senate, in the event that the office of the head of state becomes vacant. The tragic events of 10 April 2010 have brought an end to the exercise of office by several persons holding top positions in Poland, including the President of the Republic. The author provides an analyses of constitutional practice existing in the period preceding the assumption of the office by a newly elected President in August 2010. He presents principles accepted by the legal study and confronts them with actual actions taken at that time by Marshals [Speakers] of the Sejm and the Senate. He also attempts to point out the specific nature of the events between April and August 2010. The solutions of the problem are presented by the author in the context of Polish political life, particularly the election campaign in which the person acting as the head of state were participating. Moreover, in the article legal problems are raised as to the consequences of election by the People of the Marshal of the Sejm on whom the Constitution confers the power to perform the duties of the President of the Republic. Impact of such election on the possibility of exercising the mandate of the representative is also considered, as well as problems with the assumption of the duties of the head of state after the renouncement of the seat of the Deputy by the President-elect.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.