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Hungarian Press Roundup: Ferenc Gyurcsány’s Bid for Leadership of Opposition

Hungary Today 2020.03.10.

A pro-government and a left-wing columnist claim in unison that former Prime Minister Gyurcsány is becoming the leader of the opposition.

Hungarian press roundup by budapost.eu

Background information: in an interview with Magyar Narancs, the Democratic Coalition’s Ferenc Gyurcsány called on opposition parties to co-operate. Former PM Gyurcsány said that Fidesz can only be defeated if the opposition parties run on a joint list in the 2022 Parliamentary election. He also said that he has been contacted by three MSZP regional organizations who wanted to quit the MSZP and join the Democratic Coalition, following the same decision of two Budapest district mayors.

Magyar Hírlap’s Dániel Kacsóh writes that Ferenc Gyurcsány is becoming the leader of the opposition. The pro-government columnist thinks that Gyurcsány’s strategy is working, and the former Prime Minister is systematically weakening his contenders on the Left. Kacsóh also suggests that at the end of the day, all opposition parties will abandon their own identities and follow Gyurcsány’s lead.

In Mérce, Zoltán Gábor Szűcs believes that the opposition parties have realized the need to cooperate, while they are still competing for leadership. The left-wing liberal analyst interprets the Democratic Coalition’s effort to lure over MSZP politicians to its ranks as a clear example of intra-Left rivalry. He adds that the opposition parties are still trying to find a cohesive ideology. He finds a coherent vision a necessary but not sufficient condition for the success of the left-wing parties. In order to defeat Fidesz, opposition parties need ideas that are popular among voters – not only intellectuals and party elites, Szűcs notes. He goes on to suggest that the Left needs to follow the community organizing strategy of Fidesz – it needs to launch grassroots initiatives in order to broaden its base, and provide opportunities for the broad masses to actively engage in left-wing politics, rather than remaining passive voters.

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