Election ’14: New Fidesz website; LMP flash mob; new party for Szili
The campaign season kicked into full gear over the weekend, it seems, as several major parties – and one brand-new one – sought to appeal to voters in various fashion from grassroots activism to website creation.
A roundup of the weekend’s formal and informal stumping follows.
The Life of Gordon
Now online is Gordon Élete (or “Gordon’s Life”), a website dedicated to “All that [Together 2014-Dialogue for Hungary (E14-PM) party president] Gordon [Bajnai] would hide.” A production of Fidesz youth group Fidelitas, GordonElete.hu is a nicely designed, interactive website displaying the would-be prime minister’s more questionable political moves since his time in communist youth leagues in the 1980s.
In announcing the website launch on Sunday, Fidelitas reminded that “During his tenure as prime minister [in 2008-09,] the economy shrank by 7%, while he carried out IMF dictates in a servile way, destroyed the family support system and cut salaries.”
Naturally, E14-PM party members were affronted by the ‘site, alleging the information presented is based on lies and innuendo. A party statement of Sunday assures that each point made on Gordon’s Life will be refuted in turn and legal action may be forthcoming.
LMP flash mob against nuclear energy plans
Kecskemét hosted a two-day meeting of the LMP party’s national council, during which a “flash mob”-style demonstration was held in the town square. The environment-emphasizing party sought to call attention to “economic- and environment protection-related dangers of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s nuclear energy expansion,” saying the PM is dead wrong about the resource’s virtues; according to LMP, nuclear among the most expensive forms of energy creation.
LMP co-president Bernadett Szél commented that the planned extension for the Paks nuclear power plant will increase the national debt by one-third.
(Meanwhile half a world away, a new agreement to bring more nuclear-plant technology to Hungary was signed in South Korea…)
Szili announces new party
Work got underway for the new political party Community for Social Fairness (KTI), which was announced by former Speaker of Parliament and prominent MSzP politico Katalin Szili last week. KTI was formed from a composite group of smaller parties and community associations.
KTI appears to be appealing to the moderate Hungarian voter with a planned slate of 160 candidates to run for parliament in the 2014 elections, as Szili described the political spectrum in the country by saying “The parties that call themselves left-wing are democratic but not sufficiently nationalistic, while the right-wing parties are nationalistic but not democratic enough.”
MSzP congress features masked men, party platform description
Finally, Main opposition party MSzP held its party convention on Saturday, an elaborate five-hour affair with the theme “The true face of Fidesz.” The anti-Orbán show kicked off with masked youth handing out information to attendees and featured talks by party leaders.
Party president Attila Mesterházy introduced the major party planks for the election platform, which includes a restructuring of pension payments, more streamlined use of European Union funding, programs to address in-country poverty and a larger budget for higher education.
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