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Iconic Socialist Politician Szanyi Quits MSZP

Ábrahám Vass 2020.01.06.

Tibor Szanyi, a former MEP, state secretary and deputy leader of the Socialist party (MSZP), announced he was leaving the party in a tweet on Monday, arguing that MSZP is not left-wing enough.

In his mysteriously-toned tweet, Szanyi wrote that “Epiphany, or the celebration of the good witch, is the end of something or the beginning of something else. I discontinue my membership and duties in MSZP. There is an organizational vacuum on the Hungarian left and I want to address that. Who is there is there; who is not there is not there. The friendship is eternal.”

He later explained to Index that in his view, there is no real left-wing party at the moment in Hungary, only neoliberal one(s), even though many young people do have left-wing feelings and commitment. He added that for 15 years, he had been saying that MSZP was not left-wing enough.

Szanyi has indeed become very critical of the Socialists. And he geared up his criticism after the EP elections, when due to the party’s historically bad performance (6.61%) he didn’t make it to the European Parliament, although he was placed second on the list. In two open letters written after the EP elections, he wrote about suspicious dealings, outside bargaining, and a party where “leaders, in fight for less and less scraps, trample on the shoulders of membership.”

As a result of his harsh remarks, his membership was temporarily suspended in June, while he was withdrawn from his post as deputy leader in July.

He argued to Azonnali, a site with links to green LMP, that by now it had become obvious that he “failed to turn the party to the left. The last drop in the glass, which was already full anyway, was that the party visibly refuses to face and learn from the lessons of its descent since 2006.”

In September, he established an eco-socialist movement called Igen (Yes), but denied for now that he would like to turn it into a party any time soon. His “task” now would rather be to mould groups on the left into a community, he argued.

featured image via Tibor Szanyi- Facebook