Anna Grodzka, Poland’s first openly transgender member parliament, may soon become one of Poland’s deputy parliament speakers in the 460-member lower house, or Sejm.
Grodzka was suggested for the recently vacated post by her party’s leader, Janusz Palikot, of the left-liberal Palikot’s Movement, Poland’s third largest party.
Grodzka, confirmed to Polish television news channel TVN 24 that she intends to serve as deputy speaker, if her party supports her.
Palikot told TVN 24 that the final decision will be announced Today: ‘It’s not an official candidacy right now. We don’t have one yet. ‘
‘But from an ideological standpoint, it would be a good choice’.
The Warsaw Business Journal notes that if Grodzka will be formally nominated, the move is likely to be met with strong opposition, particularly from the right wing parties.
Krystyna Pawlowicz, MP for the right wing Law and Justice Party, for example, cannot bring herself to openly recognize Grodzka’s gender-identity.
‘It’s not like a man can stuff himself full of hormones and turn into a woman. The genetic code is the decisive factor.’
‘When I see a man next to me, how can I address him “Mrs.”?’, she told the Wall Street Journal yesterday (30 January).
Stefan Niesiolowski, from the ruling Civic Platform party said her bid was ‘inappropriate’ because she ‘hadn’t had anything to show’ for herself in the current term.
Traditionally, each party in the Sejm is allowed one deputy speaker post.
All candidates must be voted in by a majority of MPs. The question is then, if the right wing MPS can muster enough MPs to block her candidacy altogether.
If Grodzka’s candidacy were rejected, the party would have to propose another candidate.
Grodzka, 58, was elected to parliament in the October 2011 general election, along with Poland’s only openly gay Member of Parliament Robert BiedroÅ„.