As the results continue to come in from the Polish elections, two things are already clear:
Firstly that turnout has risen sharply, to 55%- which is the highest since 1989;
Secondly that the country has decisively rejected the ultra-nationalist Samo obrona- Self Defence and the ultra-Conservative Lega Polskich Rodzin- the League of Polish Families. Even more crucially, despite the benefit that the ruling PiS- Law and Justice- have gained from the demise of their erstwhile allies, it is the Liberal opposition, Platforma Obwytelska that has stormed to victory.
The Liberals were supported by the young generation of Poles, who found the backward looking pugnaciousness of Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski extremely difficult to take.
The fact that the outgoing Prime Minister is the twin of the surviving President, Lech Kaczynski, will undoubtedly make life difficult for the incoming Prime Minister, Donald Tusk. However the scale of the victory of Civic Platform is so large that Mr. Tusk can claim a real moral mandate.
Although the proto-Putinism of the Kaczynskis has now been completely rejected by the Polish electorate, particularly the younger generation. The atmosphere in the country was likened to 1989 by one well placed friend of mine:
"It is", he said, "a ray of hope".