Six Hungarian opposition parties from across the political spectrum held the country’s first national primary contest in order to choose the joint candidates who will take on the country’s long-serving and increasingly autocratic prime minister Viktor Orbán and his Fidesz party in the next parliamentary elections in 2022. Andrea Virág, Director of strategy at Republikon Institute, presents key takeaways from the Hungarian opposition primaries.
The pandemic can rule the agenda, but it cannot rule the ideology. This is the main lesson of the past few days in Hungary. The government has introduced restrictions and a crisis management plan, while PM Viktor Orbán has began writing the new chapter of the Hungarian ideological-cultural war in the meantime.
Hungary held its municipal elections on October 13, 2019. Although the opposition and the regnant Fidesz party applied starkly different communication strategies, one topic featured in both campaigns: antisemitism.
Looking at the results in the V4 countries (Slovakia, Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary) helps gain a better understanding of the popularity of liberals. In the 2019 European elections, liberal parties performed quite well, especially in light of the popularity of the far-right in the region.
A study by McKinsey & Company showed that 49% of the working hours in Hungary can be automated with the already existing technologies. This does not necessarily mean that these jobs will be lost forever, but they are going to be transformed.
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.
April 20, 2016, marked the beginning of a brand new chapter in the history of the Hungarian radical right-wing party, Jobbik. The party’s leader, Gábor Vona, declared emblematic party leaders Előd Novák, István Szávay, and István Apáti shall not run for the office of the party’s vice president.
Since the middle of January, the question of conscription has been in the center of public attention in Hungary. Leader of the parliamentary group of Fidesz expressed plans to change the current system but did not mention any exact agenda. The majority of opposition parties immediately objected the idea.
Hungarian citizens can be more engaged and active in politics, though it is not certain, whether the Podemos-model as a whole can be simply copied. There are differences in the political culture as well as taste, not to mention that for many the radical rightist Jobbik is also an acceptable anti-regime alternative.
Zoltán Kész’s victory shattered the two third majority of governing party Fidesz in the parliament. Using this supermajority, the government has implemented a new constitution and new laws curtailing the freedom of speech, human rights and the power of the constitutional court since 2010. Hungary has also become fearfully friendly with Russia regardless of the growing tensions between the EU and Putin.