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Hungarian Press Roundup: Prospects of the Joint Opposition in the 2022 Election

Hungary Today 2020.12.28.

A pro-government pundit suggests that the opposition alliance is held together only by hatred of the Orbán government. Two centrist pundits debate the opposition’s vision.

Hungarian press roundup by budapost.eu

Magyar Nemzet’s Ottó Gajdics thinks that the recently consolidated opposition alliance has created an ideological hodgepodge that is unlikely to prove attractive to any opposition sympathizers. The pro-government commentator suggests that left-wing voters are unlikely to be happy with the participation of Jobbik, a party once accused of both anti-Semitic and anti-Roma rhetoric. Similarly, national radicals have strong feelings against an opposition alliance ‘led’ by their nemesis, former PM Ferenc Gyurcsány’ (in fact the alliance will only choose a leader by November 2021, and Gyurcsány is not a candidate). Gajdics claims that the opposition is united only by their “contagious Orbán-phobia” and hatred.

On Azonnali, Martin Bukovics calls the 14 points outlining the joint opposition vision, ‘hot air and bullshit’. The centrist analyst finds it disappointing that the opposition parties discuss only very broad issues, and give no hint how they will reform the health care system and education, what their foreign policy path will be, and how they will relate to migration and Roma integration.

In a response to Bukovics, Rafael Petróczi finds it reasonable that the opposition does not yet want to put its cards on the table. One and a half years ahead of the election, it would be a strategic mistake for the opposition to outline its program, as this would allow the governing party to target it and adjust its own rhetoric, Petróczi suggests. He is also concerned, however, that the opposition may not prove capable of formulating a clear position on the main policy issues. The preliminaries to be held before the election will give an opportunity for the opposition to design a cohesive program tailored to the views of voters dissatisfied with the Fidesz government, Petróczi believes. In an aside, he suspects that the economic crisis following the pandemic will help the opposition to defeat Fidesz.

Featured photo by Zoltán Balogh/MTI