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Over 70 parties registered in view of the April elections

February 17th, 2018

A left-wing columnist castigates those leftist personalities who have suddenly decided to run on behalf of new political organisations, competing with the already divided opposition parties.

As of February 15, 78 parties had registered with the National Electoral Bureau and are now trying to gather 500 signatures for their candidates in their constituencies. They include dozens of so called ‘business parties which are suspected of simply trying to get hold of the millions in state subsidies for candidates and parties, but new parties have also been set up with apparently political ambitions. They include former Socialist Cabinet Minister Katalin Lévai’s ‘With Momentum for Hungary based on a nationwide pensioners organisation, and the practically defunct Smallholders Party whose frontrunner is jurist Tamás Lattmann who a few months ago was put forward by a group of supporters as a potential left-wing candidate for Prime Minister.

In Népszava, György Sebes excoriates both Ms Lévai and Mr Lattmann for ‘playing into the hands of Fidesz’. He does not accuse them of doing so consciously, but thinks they should have found the wide interest shown towards them by the pro-government media suspect. Sebes shows some understanding towards Ms Lévai who at least has remained a left-winger with her new pensioners’ party. As for Mr Lattmann, he says the jurist has made a sharp turn from a left-wing contender to leading the electoral list of a traditionally conservative party. The columnist warns that opposition votes risk being scattered among the many new parties thus ensuring the victory of the government’s candidates. Alternatively, voters may get ‘fed up with it all’ and stay at home on election day.

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