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PM withdraws from Left coalition talks

February 17th, 2017

A leading left-wing pundit excoriates all left-wing parties for pursuing their individual interests instead of co-operating to defeat the incumbent government in next year’s election.

Párbeszéd Magyarországért (Dialogue for Hungary), a small left-wing party supported by less than one per cent of respondents in most public opinion polls, declared that it would not discuss electoral co-operation with the Socialist candidate for Prime Minister, because László Botka wants to become the joint nominee of the Left without facing a primary. Mr Botka was confirmed as the Socialist candidate three weeks ago (See BudaPost, January 20). He said he would negotiate with potential allies one by one. He announced that he would start with LMP whose leaders have said however that they plan to run on their own. He is a known adversary of DK leader Ferenc Gyurcsány, who accused him of plotting behind his back (See BudaPost, February 7).

In a bitter Népszava column, György Sebes predicts that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán will sail easily to victory in 2018 because the left-wing parties have already laid down their arms. He describes them as a group of people who never stop foaming at the mouth against each other, which is a disheartening sight for their followers in what would be an uphill struggle anyway. In defiance of their own names, the two small parties (Dialogue and Together) refuse to talk and follow their separate ways, he remarks. Sebes characterises the stance of the Democratic Coalition as insisting on a prominent role for its leader, Ferenc Gyurcsány. As for the MSZP, he criticises it for expecting the others to accept its superiority. The left-wing parties are incessantly dogged by ill fortune, Sebes writes, but it is to some extent their own fault.


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