“The end of the alliance”, runs the front page headline of the leading left-wing daily. Népszabadság believes the partners are still busy building their own futures rather than laying the groundwork to succeed at the elections this autumn.
On Tuesday, Together-PM announced that they would run in the municipal elections in Budapest on their own. The Socialist leaders did not manage to convince some of their local chieftains to accept the deal struck with Together-PM and the DK on joint candidates in 3 of the 23 districts of the capital, and although the MSZP negotiator, Ágnes Kunhalmi tried to play down the rift, and although even without a formal pact, local agreements will be possible in most cases where the left stands a chance, the number one left-wing daily believes that what has happened is a huge blunder for the Left. (For more on the issue see e.g. Budapost, August 12.)
In its front page editorial, Népszabadság accuses the three parties concerned of playing dangerous games. Together-PM knew for certain that Ágnes Kunhalmi “could never put that pact through” with a few local Socialist leaders. The feud will create an opportunity for the parties to the controversy to improve their positions in the left-wing competition, which means that they already have 2018 in mind, rather than the next elections in October. “That is understandable, if we take the parties’ interests into account”, Népszabadság remarks bitterly, before warning them that they should have the interests of the electorate in mind. “You can have one eye on 2018. But first you have to survive 2014”.