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Gyurcsány fighting for a place in the alliance

September 30th, 2013

Left and liberal commentators go to war over Ferenc Gyurcsány and his DK’s importance in next year’s elections, with some claiming that support is increasing for his inclusion in the opposition alliance, while others point out that the former prime minister is a very difficult partner.

A Median poll last week found that among both Socialist and Together-PM supporters (the two parties in the existing opposition coalition) there is about 60% support for the statement that the coalition could win more easily if former Prime Minister Gyurcsány was included. Among undecided voters this support is somewhat over 50%.

Galamus, the left-liberal news portal most vocal in its support for Gyurcsány runs a series of op-ed pieces on Gyurcsány’s role in the Hungarian political landscape. Founding editor Zsófia Mihancsik claims that in the light of the poll results, the MSZP and Bajnai have to give up trying to “brainwash” the majority of their supporters who regard Gyurcsány as an asset in the elections and should instead convince the remaining less than a third (who dislike him) that the DK deserves an equal place in the coalition. This would also mean that they have to make a better offer than “four unwinnable districts”.

Also on Galamus, Gábor Körösi rejects the idea that Gyurcsány should restrain himself and help the coalition without burdening it with further campaigning against the MSZP and Together. Instead, he suggests, the DK should stand the number of candidate (27) required to have a national list and then convince its supporters to vote for the MSZP candidate in their constituencies, while voting for the DK national list.

On Hirhatár, the unofficial DK media outlet, Zoltán Szabó, a former MSZP MP and now a leading figure in Gyurcsány’s party (print edition) which speculated that Gyurcsány’s main objective is to beat the flailing Bajnai group in the polls and get better offers from the MSZP before the 2014 elections, so that he can form his own group of MPs in parliament. Szabó argues that it is quite normal for a party to wish for better results than those of its competitors. There was also no secret in the fact that the DK wants a broad opposition coalition to beat Orbán – and voters support Gyurcsány’s inclusion in that coalition. DK has three options, he writes, but withdrawal from the race “would be far too unorthodox”, while rivalry with other opposition forces would naturally weaken the position of candidates. Therefore – he explains — DK is striving to strengthen its presence nationwide to ensure that the other two opposition forces will cooperate with it.

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