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Might Jobbik be banned?

May 26th, 2014

A liberal analyst wonders whether Fidesz will ban far-right Jobbik after a prominent politician of the movement was accused of spying for Russia. By banning the far-right party, Fidesz could in the short run increase its own constituency, but it would thereby lose the strategic advantage of claiming the centre of the political spectrum, challenged from both sides.

In Magyar Narancs, Attila Ara-Kovács speculates what the next step for Fidesz could be after ‘using the secret services’ to accuse Jobbik MEP Béla Kovács of spying for Russia (see BudaPost May 20). The liberal pundit contends that it would hardly create much uproar in Europe if Fidesz decided to ban Jobbik after the spying incident. Ara-Kovács surmises that parties which fear the increasing popularity of the far-right would close their eyes to the banning of Jobbik, even though it would be a deeply undemocratic measure. The far-right in western Europe would be unlikely to protest, since both the French Front National and Geert Wilders’ Party for Freedom in Holland openly distance themselves from Jobbik. By getting rid of its far-right challenger, Fidesz could possible increase its support at the municipal elections next autumn, Ara-Kovács believes. In the long run, however, this step would be risky, since Fidesz could no longer claim that it stands for moderate centrist values which are under attack both from what the governing party likes to call radicals on the right and the left, Ara-Kovács concludes.

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