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Former Minister of First Orbán Gov’t Launches New Party

Péter Cseresnyés 2020.10.16.

Former President of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences József Pálinkás, who was also the Minister of Education during the first Orbán government between 2001-2002, has launched a new party named Új Világ Néppárt (New World People’s Party, ÚVNP).

The new party’s program and its leadership was introduced at an online press conference on Thursday.

The party is taking a stance besides classical civil, conservative-liberal values ​​and aims primarily to address voters who are disappointed with governing Fidesz, but cannot give their support to any current Hungarian opposition parties either.

The political formation calls itself a “pragmatic People’s Party,” and wants to offer a viable alternative by the 2022 general elections for those “who want a change of government and a political turnaround in Hungary.” It also puts a great emphasis on the strengthening of women’s political participation.

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Many politicians of the party’s leadership come from a wide range of the political spectrum. Besides conservative József Pálinkás, an atomic physicist, their list includes Gabriella Lantos, a healthcare expert, Júlia Ábrahám, former member of centrist green LMP, István Szent-Iványi, a foreign policy expert politician of liberal SZDSZ and a former ambassador under the second Orbán government, and Sándor Stelli-Kis, who was once a municipal Fidesz candidate.

The New World People’s Party considers all of Hungary’s opposition parties as potential allies. In several recent interviews, József Pálinkás even admitted that he would take part in the pre-election process of the  joint opposition and would even take on the task to become the joint prime ministerial candidate of the opposition parties.

In the featured photo: PM Viktor Orbán with József Pálinkás in 2013. Photo by Szilárd Koszticsák/MTI