Entries RSS Feed Share Send to Facebook Tweet This Accessible version

Áder will not be a “signing machine”

April 20th, 2012

By choosing János Áder as his candidate for the presidency, PM Viktor Orbán has shown that he still cares for his one-time co-founders of Fidesz, even if they have sometimes disagreed with him in the past. By implication, he has also accepted the idea that the President will not necessarily support the government on all issues.

In Heti Válasz, András Bódis goes so far as to suggest that the Prime Minister will have “a real counterweight” in the person of the future president.

Under the Hungarian Constitution the role of the head of state is largely ceremonial, but he has the right to reject putting legislation into force either by asking Parliament to reconsider its decision or by submitting it to the Constitutional Court for revision.

Bódis recalls that President Pál Schmitt, who was forced to resign in the wake of a plagiarism scandal (See BudaPost, January through April) did not on a single occasion refuse to sign a law during the 18 months of his presidency, although over 300 bills were passed during that period (several of which have already had to be amended since). Now Heti Válasz has been told by unnamed Fidesz officials that János Áder has warned them in private that he will not be “a signing machine” and that he will replace the leading officials in the presidential palace.

Mr Áder had a major conflict with Viktor Orbán after Fidesz lost two elections in a row and was then accused by Magyar Nemzet of betraying the party chairman and planning to form a new party. His subsequent job as Member of the European Parliament is described by Bódis as “voluntary exile”.  Heti Válasz also publishes a list of 51 early Fidesz members who have been given more or less important assignments by the Orbán government, even though some have collided with the Prime Minister at some time in the past.

Áder, Bódis points out, is therefore no exception. Fidesz is widely believed to favour 100 per cent loyalty, over personalities with a will of their own, but the commentator believes Áder’s nomination for President means that “by now it has become more important to have capable people with a faultless past on the team”.

Tags: , ,