Abstract. Further parliamentary elections in Hungary could abruptly change its foreign policy against Brussels. Viktor Orbán is making attempts to deal with Russia in order to implement “HUGXIT”.
Keywords: Hungarian political system, political opposition, election campaign, electoral technology
It is worth mentioning that Hungary has managed to deal rapidly with all necessary foundational reforms in late 80`s – early 90`s. Owning to all those efforts Hungary managed to get rid of authoritarianism in favor of a democratic political regime with a multiparty system and free election. Those reforms made integration in NATO (1999) as well as in EU (2004) possible for Hungary1. An important factor of Hungary’s democratic movement was the rebirth of the political elite. The processes of lustration and renewal of the state apparatus has become the key features of the Hungarian political system. Lustration processes presupposed the removal from public positions representatives of the former socialist regime, as well as strict restricttions for them to participate in the country’s political life for the future (elections, appointments to public office, etc.), action of a competitive political environment. That is why 65 parties of entire traditional political spectrum representatives were created in Hungary at the initial stage of a democratic society formation (1989`s-1990`s)2. It is clear that during the latest stage of Hungary’s political evolution some parties ceased to exist by joining to other political forces, but the main parties retained both political positions and their influence on society, e.g. – FIDES, the Hungarian Socialist Party, Christian Democrats, etc.3 At the same time, the migration crisis, the negative influence of socio-economic shocks (the 2008 financial recession and the COVID-19 pandemic) as well as the Trianon agreement consequences has moved Hungarian society in direction of radicalization despite Budapest’s clear focus on the development of democratic institutions. Together with that a significant number of Hungarians support the idea of “traditional family values” protection, which is often in conflict with EU policy of tolerance in society promotion. All these issues strengthened public support of ultra-conservative and center-right political forces, especially the FIDES party led by V. Orbán.
As the next parliamentary elections in Hungary approaches (April 2022) the Prime Minister of Hungary Viktor Orbán’s election campaign preparatory phase is already gaining momentum. The issue of preserving the status quo has never been that acute for the Hungarian society. On the one hand, there are clear attempts by the Hungarian opposition to come out of the shadows. For this purpose, “old and mortal foes” have forgotten previous quarrels to create new political alliances. On the other hand, there is stable and unshakably calm “Fidesz” with its own strategic vision of nation well-being.
But how firm it is?
Looking back at the year 2018, we can see clearly that the focus of pro-government structures was shifted towards Hungarians living abroad during the previous election campaigns. In pursue for the necessary support Orbán’s cabinet organized the issuance of citizenship to foreign Hungarians in Romania, Slovakia, Serbia and Ukraine (in comparison with 9.75 million population of Hungary the indicator of 2.4 million of foreign Hungarians in those countries is quite significant) and dramatically increased subsidies for the implementation of the Hungarian population support programs. The educational institutions, religious formations, representatives of small and medium-sized businesses, individuals were determined as the primary beneficiaries for the implementation of the official Budapest’s main goal – support and preservation of Hungarian culture in the region and the formation of a foreign electorate committed to the policies of the current Hungarian leader.