On September 12, 2018, the European Parliament voted to initiate sanctions under Article 7 against Hungary. While the decision is definitely not a win for Viktor Orbán on a European level, it did boost his position at home.
Viktor Orbán’s right-wing populist Fidesz party won a third consecutive term in office with a two-thirds majority in the Hungarian parliamentary election of April 2018. Orbán is known for building an “illiberal state”, which he officially announced in the summer of 2014.
The number of Fidesz voters has only fluctuated, but not changed significantly since the last elections in 2014. Apart from the numbers, it is important to mention that most of the opinion polls show that their supporters are continuously getting more homogenous.
At first glance, the beginning of 2017 did not bring any significant changes in the Hungarian politics. Fidesz still leads confidently, having almost an absolute majority. Moreover, power relations between the liberal-left parties are stable. However, we may also notice a number of new tendencies.
As for the voters, Momentum also aims to attract the huge proportion of uncertain voters that wish to change the current government but cannot find a real alternative. The party’s main long-term goal is to complete the change of the regime.
We must not remain silent, we must not accept fear. The government is still in power because it made people believe that it will protect them from the immigrants, NGOs, the EU and capitalistic and imperialistic American interests. And in the meantime they make people terrified of dissent.
There is a significant, 7% decrease in the ratio of voters who support the continuation of the present Fidesz government, while the ratio of those who support Jobbik (the radical right party) or a coalition of the leftist, liberal parties has increased – shows the public opinion study by Republikon Institute in November 2016.
The actions of the Fidesz-KDNP government are pushing the public towards dangerous sentiments. According to the latest public polls, a significant number of Hungarians considers the migrants repulsive. The government campaigns are not the sole reason for this situation but they did contribute to this problem.
Just a single year has passed since the introduction of the infamous shop closure law in Hungary, but the Fidesz-led right-wing government had already withdrew the regulation that forbade most retail outlets to open and serve customers on Sundays.