President János Áder has returned a recent law that sought to restrict political advertisements to parliament for re-consideration.
The legislation, passed with a simple majority on Wednesday, was part of a government bill which sought to prevent all political advertisements on billboards outside of the official campaign period.
In his letter to parliament, Áder said the law did not establish a legal norm while it contained passages which were either controversial or could not be interpreted or implemented. He called on parliament to re-consider it in its entirety.
“Hungary is an independent and democratic state governed by the rule of law and a fundamental requirement is legal certainty,” Áder said, adding that legal texts should be clear and reasonable, expressing “recognisable” norms for legal application.
Parliamentary Speaker László Kövér told commercial Inforadio later in the day that the ruling parties would not give up on their original proposal and make efforts to secure a two-thirds support for the bill.
Kövér said that the legislation, stripped of its crucial parts, has become “a meaningless heap of letters”, adding that “all Áder could obviously do” was to send it back.
In defence of the original proposal, Kövér said its restrictions were aimed at shortening political campaign periods as well as preventing parties from becoming indebted to various business circles.
Kövér also said that parliament could be convened for an extraordinary session during the summer to discuss the billboard legislation.
Photo: Balázs Béli