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Parliament to vote against conditioning EU rescue package on the rule of law

July 14th, 2020

A left-wing commentator thinks the government clearly fears being shamed by the European Union for rule of law infringements. A pro-government commentator suspects political bias behind rule of law investigations.

In 168 óra, Győző Mátyás ridicules PM Orbán’s statement that rule of law comparisons may be highly subjective, and Hungary might rank higher on a rule of law scale than Germany. (In his biweekly radio interview Mr Orbán said Constitutional Court judges cannot be members of political parties in Hungary, unlike in Germany.) Mátyás severely criticises the bill submitted by the government side which would instruct the government not to vote for the EU Budget if recovery funds are made conditional on respect for the rule of law. He compares the position of the government to that of a lone driver going the wrong way up a motorway, into the incoming traffic.

In Magyar Hírlap, Dániel Galsai suspects that the ‘independent experts’ the European Commission would employ to determine whether the rule of law is respected in any given member country could by definition not be independent. Judgements on the rule of law, he writes, are highly dependent on political and ideological convictions and affiliations. Hungary has already been condemned by the European Parliament on the basis of falsehoods, Galsai continues, and the government understandably mistrusts such procedures.  “You don’t play cards with card-sharps, especially if they also want to set the rules”, he concludes.

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