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Fidesz likely to retain its EPP membership

November 8th, 2018

As the leaders of Europe’s Christian Democratic parties meet to elect their candidate for the Presidency of the European Commission, a left-wing commentator believes that Hungary’s governing party has no reason to fear expulsion from the European People’s Party before next year’s European Parliamentary elections.

Népszava’s Tamás Rónay is convinced that the European People’s Party will not expel Fidesz from its ranks any time soon, despite proposals to that effect by former Finnish Prime Minister Alexander Stubb, who is one of two choices to become the top EPP candidate at the next European Parliamentary elections. He believes Fidesz does not comply with basic democratic principles but is unlikely to be punished. The clear favourite for the post and potential new Chairman of the European Commission is Bavarian politician Manfred Weber who wants to keep Fidesz within the EPP, arguing that this is how European Christian Democrats may keep Fidesz in check. The Helsinki summit will adopt a declaration of principles, including a belief in liberal democracy. Rónay predicts that Mr Orbán will sign it, although he describes his own democracy as illiberal. At any rate, Rónay writes, Mr Orbán has achieved one thing: everyone is talking about him.

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