Four-fifths (80 percent) of the Hungarian population, and even three-quarters (75 percent) of left-wing voters agree that it is the patriotic duty of Hungarian MEPs to work to secure as much EU funding for Hungary as possible, according to a poll by Real PR 93.
The survey, conducted between May 2-4 among 1,000 people by telephone, shows that voters in Budapest (76 percent) and in rural areas (81 percent) both want EU money to be secured rather than withheld.
The question has been raised in Hungarian public opinion because Csaba Molnár, MEP for the opposition Democratic Coalition, recently said he felt it was his patriotic duty to stop EU money coming to Hungary, citing corruption.
But the recent polling clearly shows that the Hungarian public thinks the opposite: 80 percent see it as the patriotic duty of MEPs to help the country get as much EU money as possible. Only just under one in ten share Csaba Molnár’s view, 12 percent do not expect Hungarian MEPs to help the country to get funding, and a further 8 percent could not answer.
Similar results can be seen among sure voters: 82 percent of them see it as a patriotic duty for MEPs to work to get EU funds, and only 11 percent think it is not an absolute duty for the representatives in the European Parliament.
The survey found that it is rare to see a policy issue on which a large majority of both government party and opposition voters agree, but that on this question, both sides agreed.
Government party Fidesz’s voters are almost unanimous (93 percent) in their view that it is the patriotic duty of Hungarian MEPs to get as much EU funds for Hungary as possible. Three-quarters of opposition voters (75 percent) would also expect the same, and only 16% think the opposite, the latter proportion being insignificant among governing party voters (4 percent).
On most policy issues, there is also a significant difference of opinion between metropolitan and rural voters in general, but the issue under consideration here is another exception.
The vast majority of both groups of the population expect Hungarian MEPs to do everything in Hungary’s interest to obtain EU funds. This proportion is 81 percent in rural areas and 76 percent in Budapest, with 14 percent of those in the capital and only 11 percent outside the capital disagreeing, the survey concluded.
Hungary has been trying to get the funds it is due from the European Union for months, but new conditions and obstacles always come up in the process, further delaying the arrival of the much-needed money.
The government says the EU funds would mainly be used to raise teachers’ salaries and contends that the longer Hungary has to wait for the money, the longer it takes to give a significant pay raise to teachers. At the same time, it is also a problem that Hungarian MEPs from opposition parties often try to block Hungary from getting the EU funds, even though they should be working for the interest of their country, and getting the money is definitely in the interest of Hungary.
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