A MANHATTAN solo attorney with politics on his mind stands prepared to give up his diverse practice – bail forfeiture, divorce, green cards, dog bites, breast implants gone awry – for the greater good of becoming president of Poland.
“I’m a guy with New York ethical standards” Warsaw-born Livius Ilasz said in an interview this week, a few days returned from the hustling abroad. “That I want to present to the Poles”
In the American context, Mr. Ilasz calls himself a “pro-Bush” Republican. But the thrust of his campaign platform – Nowa wizja Polski, or New Vision for Poland – is a conscious homage to Depression-era President Franklin D. Roosevelt, an icon of the Democratic Party.
And if he wins election in October, Mr. Ilasz, like Democratic Icon John F. Kennedy in 1960, would become his country’s youngest president at age 43.
“First I want to do what Roosevelt did. “Said Mr. Ilasz, nothing the massive public works programs of the 1930s initiatives that gave jobs to millions of desperate workers. Specifically, Mr. Ilasz said Poland needs to modernize its commercial roadways. “If there is a political party that’s wants to work with me on this project, OK, I’ll work with the extreme left or the extreme right, so long as we build good roads, he said.
“If the party is popular enough they can get money from their members,” said Mr. Ilasz, who noted that Poland’s new free market economy is stagnant at best. “There is no reason for the government to support the parties when there is poverty and people are suffering.” Mr. Ilasz, who holds dual U.S. and Polish citizenship, will return next week to stumping through precincts in Poland on a platform that includes his admittedly unpopular support for the U.S. invasion of Iraq, in which a few hundred Polish troops were initially committed but are now being withdrawn. Mr. Ilasz, who immigrated to America with hoes parents as a child,, said Polish involvement in the U.S.-led military effort is a “small price to pay” in return for some future need of suoeroiwer backup should Poland be invaded by Russia or Germany, its historical antagonists to the east and west.
He returns, as well to the scrutiny of Polish media that have not been altogether flattering.