Hungary to extend EP voting rights to diaspora and politicians may legally buy votes

Some 80,000 Hungarian citizens who live outside the European Union will be given voting rights for the upcoming 2019 European elections to elect a new European Parliament. Zsolt Semjén announced the proposed amendment to Hungary’s electoral laws, which also included one other change: politicians will be permitted to give various gifts to voters during election campaigns and this will no longer be considered illegal vote buying.

It is not uncommon that municipalities run by Fidesz hand out smoked ham to residents if the campaign falls close to Easter or that residents are gifted with 10,000 forints per adult (approximately $45) weeks before the vote, as happened in Hódmezővásárhely. In 2014, the town of Siófok handed out free smartphones to residents of voting age during the municipal election campaign. In the same municipal election year, in Budapest’s Erzsébetváros, Fidesz party activists gathered in a public square to distribute one litre of milk per resident, for the nominal fee of 7 forints (approximately 3 cents), while later in Terézváros a Fidesz politician handed out free eggs, as well as free milk. In Újbuda, the local Fidesz mayor sweetened the mood of the campaign by distributing free chocolate pastries to locals. It was in the spring of 2014, in the weeks before the national elections, that the Fidesz-run 5th District of Budapest provided each resident with an Easter ham for free.

Fidesz politician István Bajkai distributes free milk in 2018.

Hungary’s amended electoral law will soon codify that such gifts in exchange for votes are entirely legal. Fidesz continues to find that the approach taken by the Kádár regime, of paying off the population with perks and gifts in exchange for their political passivity or loyalty, was the best fit for Hungarian society and Viktor Orbán has enthusiastically resurrected elements of pre-1989 Hungary. Most municipalities are currently led by Fidesz politicians and the ability to legally buy voters may help boost Fidesz fortunes in 2019 local elections.

In the case of the EP vote next spring, Fidesz intends to marshal the party loyalty of some 80,000 Hungarians abroad. Hungarians in Romania will be able to vote in EP elections as residents of Romania, but by extending the vote, tens of thousands of Hungarians in Canada, the United States, Australia, Israel and elsewhere may also cast a ballot. In each of these countries, Fidesz is the undisputed favourite for local Hungarian passport holders. For instance, in the 2018 national elections, 96% of Hungarians living abroad and voting by mail-in ballot cast their votes for Fidesz.

The current state of affairs strongly suggests that Fidesz will be effectively uncontested in EP elections next spring. Yet even with such a solid footing, the ruling party will leave nothing to chance. And in this case, that means once again amending the nation’s electoral laws to suit the needs of the current party.

21 Comments

  1. Hey that is something new. They learn fast from the western liberal left. That is sure progress.
    Just as I listed the phone numbers and addresses this past week on KMH to recive $ 40 million in free prescription drugs, free cell phones, and Obama gave all 250 free minutes per month.

    Just why would any one think Hilary promised to pay off everybody’s college debt? And many have over $ 50,000. A nationwide total of about $5 trillion. And why the US has a $ 4 trillion debt ?
    Food stamp, housing subsidies, Madicaid, and minor things like the 790,000 DACA children from central america Obama took in contrarily to laws and the Constitution. Now they are to finish college. Free,free , they selling books all over that lists all the “free things”, and it is just about a ‘best seller’,

    Look at this way, at least the ‘ little people’ benefit on it, not Meszaros and friends. Yet, no guarantee they vote as others might hope.

  2. “Fidesz continues to find that the approach taken by the Kádár regime…”

    Historically anti-democratic , paternalistic traditions and “approaches” that are haunting in contemprorary Hungary cannot be entirely blamed on the Kadar-regime. Hungarian society and politics was similary, or even more paternalistic and brutally opressive before 1945, in Horthy’s “kingdom” or during the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy. Regarding historic role models today’s ruling regime is a disgusting mixture of both Horthy’s and Kádár’s regimes. The latter is mostly because Kádár’s rotten intelligence services that remained mostly untouched and transformed from the primary tool of mass opression to the tool of nefarious, cinical manipulation of public life between 1989 and 2010, to be reorganized again after 2010 by Orbán’s regime to fulfill its role of mass opression when it becomes necessary… And of course because there is a considerable overlap between the pre and post ’89 politcial, economical, cultural ruling classes in general, not only regarding the domestic and foreign intelligence apparatuses. Considering ideological, cultural examples, admittedly the pre ’45 reactionary traditions serve as inspiration for the ruling regime, which by the way succesfully managed to have most of the “anti-communist” Hungarian diaspora standing behind it. Not to mention the current regime’s socio-ecinomic policies, which are diametrically opposed to that of the Kádár-regime ( which of course could have have its own short-comings along with its more egalitarian, progressive policies ), just like the current regime’s chauvinistic, reactionary ideology, inciting rethoric… So it is not only about Kádár…

  3. Soros and his NGOs have been doing that for years. Recently, Soros’ group paid for protesters against Mr. Kavanagh.

    • It is completely unneccesary to pay even a single cent by Soros or anyone else, to have masses of people being disgusted by the likes of Kavanaugh and who picked him…

    • And furthermore it is quite characteristic, that reactionaries instinctly assume, that someone represents a political case of any kind, beacuse he or she is bought by someone… And they are ok with it, because they believe that everyone as a human being is worth as much they own and as high their social status are. Whereas many NGO-s help those in need materially or because their human or civil rights are being violated without expecting anythung in exchange front those that they help… I wonder which approach stands closer to the spirit of the Bible to which they
      quite often like to refer…

    • Let’s have more “Soros is the anti-christ” stories; I hear from reliable Seppo sources, (yeah, I know that’s an oxymoron), that Soros eats aborted baby brains for breakfast.

      Anyone repeating the “Soros paid anti-Kavanagh protesters” is either incredibly gullible, stupid, dishonest or a combination of these. Which are you?

      • Hungarian Free Press says:

        Phil S. Stine,

        I just deleted Bendeguz79’s opus on Soros and Kavanaugh and abortion, before it appeared under this article. The level of imbecility is astounding.

  4. Or I would rather end the previous comments: it is not all about Kádár even if Orbán’s basically conservative/(neo-)liberal ( which
    ideological stance is called “left-liberal” in the language of mainstream Hungarian political discourse ) pseudo and “half” oppoistion likes to claim the opposite…

  5. Just how could politicians buy votes, when the voters can NOT sell their vote.

    Let them spread their lies, or hand out their gifts if they are that crazy, as long the voters are smart enough and vote according to their own conscience.

    That can be double loss for the politicians, lost votes and all the gifts wasted.

    Ha ha . that’s a way to beat them !

  6. Phil S. Stine says:

    I had thought that some of writers on this site were being a bit unfair to you; that you weren’t the Fidesz apparatchik/stooge they cast you as. Just some old Hungarian guy who uses google translate in order to communicate in English ( it really is atrocious, mate) . I now see that I was wrong in that assessment, not about you being old and, (let’s be kind and say) semi-literate but about your status as a useful .. er, intellectually challenged individual.

    Obama did not create a programme to provide free phones to people on welfare; the “Obamaphone” is an urban myth that only the incredibly gullible would believe.

    There are government programmes which subsidize providers who supply telephone services to welfare recipients as well as low-income earners; instituted in 1984 under Reagan to cover land-line rentals, expanded in 1996 under Clinton, further expanded in 2008 to extend to mobile (cell) phones.

    Welfare is not the same as handing out free phones, hams or envelopes containing 500 Baht notes (as per Thaksin Shinawatra when he ran for the Thai presidency); any more than a promise of tax cuts.

    If Trumpistan wants to reduce it’s debt it could look to removing its military from Europe, its fleet from the Asia Pacific and it’s spy station from Pine Gap.

  7. Hey Stein;

    When a politician initiate a government program that make the taxpayers to pay for something that you receive, is that not a “free for you”???

    Like robbing Peter to pay Paul ?
    Whatever way you may prefer to call it ?!

  8. Well Stein;
    on your last sentence even Trump ,as well as myself , and many millions of americans totally agree with you.
    Trump wants Europe to re-imburse the US the cost of defending them since 1945, and start defending themselvs.
    The forces should have been removed back in 1945, and they all should have enjoyed the Red Army’s presence there.
    And NO aid by the american taxpayers !!!

    He that can hate and insult should be man enough to be able to take care of oneself.

    • Have I ruffled your slimy seppo sensibilities kis ember? The US saved our arses, saved us from the Red Army? Last I looked Hungary was occupied by the Soviets for near 50 years; and now Orban is cozying up to them once again. The US helped a lot during ’56, egged the revolution on with implied promises of support, then stood back and watching it be crushed.

      We don’t have a time machine, so going back to ’45 is a bit silly even for one such as you, but I hope you and and other like minded individuals are lobbying your genius president to pack up and p off now.

      Trump wants a lot of things he wont get. As to military spending, the EU collectively outspends Russia by quite way, and has more troops (excluding the US . Only one nation is collectively dumb enough to spend more than China, Russia and the EU combined.

      Build that wall, build it all the way around.

  9. Hey Stein;
    While you spreading your hate, you are missing out on what’s really going on in Russia in regard to Europe.
    Russia has violated the 1978 ground-based short and medium rage balastic misle treaty.
    Yes, those that are aimed at Europe only.
    Even Obama announced that in 2014, but could not care less.
    Just why do you think Russia aims them at Europe ?
    US proposed missle-defense, but Europens are affraid of it on their soil
    While Russia is arming like never before?!
    Like the new T-14 Armata tanks, the SU 57 stealth fighters, new submarines and rockets, etc.
    While you can hear loudly the demands to restore the old Soviet empire.
    Is that going to make you a happy camper, or they are going to catch up with you ?

    Like they say,’ every dog will have its days’ !

    P.S.
    Hey ,you went to war against your beloved commerads, and they won, you lost.
    Or ‘liberated you ‘, your glorious system simply collapsed under its own mighty weight.
    Do not cry, even if you miss it too much.
    Russia is working on rebuilding the former empire. You will be happy again !
    Enjoy your hate !

  10. Hungarian Free Press(?)Oct.21, 11;09 pm.

    NO, NO ,.NO, you forgot the IX Commandment again !

    I did NOT write of abortion at all !

    Just mentioned that the pro-abortion groups were opposed to Kavanaugh’s nomination. They’re too worried of “Raw v. Wade” ruling.

    But I sure pointed to Nickolas Deak, the CIA, project MK ULTRA, Operation Ajex, Massodeck, Lona Lynn, Fusion GPS, Strozk, Dr.Negels, CIA brainwashing , etc.

    Just try to Google any one of those, you’ll be surprised what you will find out.

    • Hungarian Free Press says:

      Please help us out and google “Raw v. Wade” for us. Please also learn how to spell and how to write before commenting.

  11. HUNGARIAN FREE PRESS

    That seems to be your fixation. Hm?
    But just when are you going to fair and reasonable?
    All liberals suppose to have learned that some time ago, or you deny your own being !

    You can just search that as it is written;

    “Raw v. Wade”

    You will receive hundreds of pages, and you can pick what you prefer to read.

    It was the US Supreme Court’s Rule on abortion rights.

    • Hungarian Free Press says:

      It is not written “Raw v. Wade.” Learn how to spell. Moving forward, I will automatically delete your comments whenever they include more than three typos or spelling/grammatical errors.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *