The upcoming general election in Hungary will determine the country’s future for the next few decades, Bernadette Szél, the green LMP party‘s candidate for prime minister, said in a speech on Saturday.
Szél said that like one-time conservative premier József Antall, she wanted to be the head of government for all 15 million Hungarians, and this meant being prime minister not only for the Hungarians living beyond the country’s borders but also for the hundreds of thousands who have emigrated. Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, she added, was only interested in the 2 million voters who backed his ruling Fidesz party.
The LMP co-leader insisted that currently governance was absent in Hungary and instead propaganda determined policy.
She warned that if the current Fidesz government were to lose the confidence placed in it, the opposition benches would not await its members but rather the gates of prison.
Szél said the cornerstone of LMP’s manifesto was to guarantee “normal wages”. She savaged the government’s policy on support for families, saying Hungary had not overcome its demographic crisis and that the number of workers living in poverty had doubled since 2010. She vowed to allocate 20 percent of the budget to education and raise wages in health care significantly.
She also insisted that LMP devoted attention to women’s issues, adding that “the time when male politicians dictate to women about their place in the world is over.”
The LMP co-leader also berated “the government’s propaganda” as proof of the administration’s failure, since “by now no one says that Hungary is performing better; all they talk about is [US billionaire] George Soros, danger and outrage.”
“The truth, however, always trumps lies,” she said.
Szél also sought to put distance between LMP and the other opposition parties, saying that Fidesz was glad to have them as its opposition. She vowed not to strike “unprincipled” compromises with them or to “fall in with the other opposition parties’ tricks”.
Ruling Fidesz said in a statement that Szél had earlier worked at a “Soros NGO organising migration that believes migrants are better than Hungarians”. “She continues to serve Soros’s interests in the European Parliament as well as in Hungary,” the statement said.