Election 2018 – Leftist PM candidate Karácsony: Orbán cabinet lies, intimidates
Gergely Karácsony, the prime ministerial candidate of the Socialist-Párbeszéd opposition alliance, said on Saturday that Hungary’s government is capable only of lies and intimidation, referring to accusations that he planned to dismantle Hungary’s fence at the southern border.
“I do not want to tear down the fence,” Karácsony told a press conference, adding that the barrier was an important means for protecting Hungary’s border.
He also said the Socialist-Párbeszéd alliance did not support the mandatory introduction migrant quotas or economic migration.
Neither would the alliance back locating migrants in barracks or private homes. At the same time, he noted that during the refugee crisis, the Fidesz government had accommodated refugees in barracks.
He also denied supporting the idea of supporting the setting up of an Islamic prayer room in his Budapest district of Zugló, where he is the local mayor, noting that local councils do not have any powers when it comes to issues concerning religion.
He said he rejected these lies and said he would sue for libel if a retraction was not forthcoming.
Karácsony also dismissed a report suggesting he had once said he hated the Socialists more than Fidesz.
He also denied that a Karácsony government planned to increase taxes. Instead, his alliance’s tax reforms would lead to tax cuts for 90 percent of the electorate, the PM candidate added.
Referring to Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s Friday radio interview in which he suggested that certain citizens were “blacklisted”, Karácsony said Orbán was only capable of making threats and lying about his opponents.
Karácsony insisted that the Hungarian economy‘s rate of growth merely reflected the amount of inflows of EU money.
The other countries in central and eastern Europe are leaving Hungary behind, he added.
Karácsony told journalists that further announcements were expected on opposition electoral cooperation by the so-called “democratic opposition parties”. He asked for patience, adding that the Jobbik party had refused to enter talks but work was yet to be done as far as the other opposition parties were concerned.
Asked about what had changed since Gyula Molnár, the Socialist Party chairman, had said no further cooperation talks would take place and no decision reversals were on the agenda, Karácsony nosaid voters had a justifiable expectation that any outstanding issues should be resolved on the question of tactical withdrawals in individual constituencies.
Asked about his shadow cabinet and the accusation that several people in it were linked to US financier George Soros, the PM candidate noted that
Orbán was a former “Soros scholar”, and “I cannot imagine anyone who is more of a Soros agent than he”.