Politics

László Lengyel. Photo: MTI / László Beliczay

Interfering in personal lives of Hungarians will lead to Orbán’s demise

Political scientist László Lengyel gave an excellent interview this weekend to Hungary’s left-centre Népszava daily. The chat, with Népszava’s Tamás Bihari, began with a comparison to Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book and to the king of the jungle, Shere Khan. Mr. Lengyel had previously referred to Viktor Orbán as a tiger, and as the merciless king of the jungle. “Between 2010 […]

by · April 4, 2015 · Politics
Mr. Balázs Fürjes (right) Hungarian Government Commissioner, Eugene F. Megyesy, Jr., Hungarian-American lawyer and advisor of Mr. Orbán, Ambassador Szapáry and Senator Menendez (left wearing striped tie) at the Rubik’s exhibition.

Senator Menendez – corruption charges and Hungarian friends

New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez was indicted on federal corruption charges. A 61-year-old Democrat, Mr. Menendez was charged with eight counts of bribery, conspiracy, fraud, and making false statements on government documents. He is the first senator to face federal bribery charges since another New Jersey Democrat, Harrison Williams was indicted in 1980, almost a quarter century ago. Menendez has […]

by · April 3, 2015 · Politics
TEK has effectively been spying on President János Áder.

The Hungarian president no longer trusts Orbán’s secret service

The Orbán regime’s infamous Counter Terrorism Centre (Terrorelhárítási Központ, TEK) has reportedly fallen out of favour with President János Áder. The president, who is a Fidesz politician previously charged with developing the country’s new, controversial electoral system, recently decided to engage the Operational Police (Készenléti Rendőrség) for his personal security needs, even though this is a role that would normally […]

by · March 28, 2015 · Politics
Mr. Orbán drives away... Photo: Facebook.

Calls for Orbán’s resignation: In Quaestor scandal, all roads lead to Fidesz

The usually splintered Hungarian left-centre opposition is now rallying around the possibility of holding a vote of non-confidence in parliament, after it surfaced that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán ordered government ministries and departments to withdraw funds from the recently collapsed Quaestor brokerage firm, days before it went bankrupt. Mr. Orbán claimed that it was after the Buda Cash scandal that he […]

by · March 27, 2015 · Politics
Viktor Orbán in Sopron, on March 25th, 2015. Photo: Facebook.

Hungary’s Orbán set to launch new media empire

This week’s issue of Heti Válasz, a right-wing print publication that is apparently going to be spared the purge that is currently unfolding in the world of pro-Fidesz newspapers, television stations and news sites, confirmed that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán is looking to build a broad alternative media base to that currently offered by mogul and Fidesz oligarch Lajos Simicska, […]

by · March 26, 2015 · Politics
Federal Chancellor of Austria Werner Faymann (far left), Prime Minister  Bohuslav Sobotka of the Czech Republik, and Prime Minister of Slovakia Robert Fico in Slavkov on 29 January 2015.

A new regional alliance – without Hungary

The 25-year-old Visegrad Group, also called the Visegrad Four, is supposed to be an alliance of four Central European states – Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland andSlovakia – for the purposes of furthering European integration and advancing political, military, and economic cooperation. As it turns out the Visegrad Four is dead.  In the last couple of months it has become clear that the Visegrad Four members fundamentally disagree on how to approach […]

by · March 19, 2015 · Politics
Roundtable

Montreal’s Concordia University hosts roundtable on demise of rule of law in Hungary

Kim Lane Scheppele from Princeton University, former government minister and Central European University professor András Bozóki, and Professor Emeritus András Göllner will lead a roundtable discussion at Concordia University on Tuesday, March 3rd, 2015 at 5:30 PM, on challenges to the rule of law in Hungary under the current Orbán government. The talk will be held at 1455 de Maisonneuve […]

by · March 1, 2015 · Politics
Mr. Orbán's State of the Nation address on February 27th, 2015. Photo: Facebook.

Orbán’s state of the nation speech defiant, militant and illiberal

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán gave what was by all accounts a strongly defiant speech, in which he responded to his government’s massive defeat in a Veszprém by-election last Sunday by noting that the right just had to “fight” harder, in order to ensure that what he  thinks is an international smear campaign against his regime does not have a impact […]

by · February 27, 2015 · Politics
Zoltán Kész during a visit to Montreal in 2014. A sports enthusiast, Mr. Kész was watching a hockey game at the Bell Centre.

Opposition win in key Veszprém by-election much larger than anticipated

An unpublished Ipsos opinion poll commissioned two weeks before a critical by-election in a traditionally centre-right Veszprém riding suggested that Zoltán Kész–the independent candidate supported by most of the left-centre opposition–stood a semi-realistic chance of beating Fidesz in a constituency that it had long held. The leaked poll found that Fidesz’s candidate, Lajos Némedi, was ahead of Mr. Kész by […]

by · February 22, 2015 · Politics
Lajos Simicska

The stunning implosion of a Hungarian oligarch

It’s been an absolutely astonishing day in the world of Hungarian politics; after all, it rarely happens, that the country’s wealthiest businessman and a close friend of nearly 35 years of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán is humiliated in public, and then goes on a whirlwind expletive-laden media tour, in which he repeatedly calls Mr. Orbán a prick and claims that […]

by · February 7, 2015 · Politics