The government’s assessment is that the Sargentini report did not receive the required two-thirds majority, citing the issue of whether abstentions were counted or disregarded under European parliamentary rules in the vote to open the Article 7 procedure against Hungary, according to an announcement from the head of the Prime Minister’s office on Thursday.
Under the EU’s Lisbon Treaty, a vote by two-thirds of MEPs would have been required for the report’s approval, and abstentions should have also been taken into account in the vote tally, Gergely Gulyás told a press conference. With the abstentions counted, the report would have failed to secure a two-thirds majority, he said.
The procedure cannot move forward until Hungary settles the legal dispute over the matter, Gulyás added. The cabinet will meet to discuss EU-related matters on Monday and it will decide on steps to take in connection with the report on the rule of law in Hungary drafted by Green MEP Judith Sargentini.
The minister underlined the government’s view that the report was not really about the rule of law. Instead, the issue of migration was the factor that determined its adoption, he said.