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Momentum voted out of the EP and the Budapest City Hall

June 14th, 2024

A liberal analyst finds it paradoxical but also natural that the European elections are about domestic rather than continental issues.

On 444, Attila Tóth-Szenesi recalls that Momentum had 8 percent of the electorate behind it a few years ago and even early this year could hope to send two MEPs to Brussels, just as it did in 2019. Their message was that as resolute adversaries of the government, they also represented an alternative to the Democratic Coalition, the main element of the opposition until this spring. The sudden appearance of Péter Magyar and his new TISZA party abruptly changed that landscape. Opposition-leaning voters saw in TISZA a fresh force, promising what the former opposition parties had been unable to produce for 14 years – a change in government in the foreseeable future. At that point, Tóth-Szenesi writes, Momentum had the disastrous idea to build their EP campaign on the successes of their two MEPs in Brussels over the past five years, and asked voters to give them another five. ’Fleeing to Brussels’ was a tragic mistake, he believes, since they were the main faces of their party, and their job should have been to build a larger constituency for Momentum at home. Another tragic mistake was for Momentum to centre its campaign on their performance in the European Parliament. People were totally uninterested in that, Tóth-Szenesi finds, and, instead of the almost 10 percent Momentum got five years ago, it was only supported by 3,7 percent of the electorate. Even in Budapest, he adds, where Momentum is stronger than elsewhere, it failed to reach the 5 percent threshold and was thus voted out of the City Council.

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