2020. szeptember 25. 13:19

First of All, We Must Prepare for a Change of Government

First of All, We Must Prepare for a Change of Government
The most important thing is to prepare for a change of government: the opposition as a whole and all opposition parties themselves must increase their support, and not to the detriment of each other, said the co-presidents of MSZP Bertalan Tóth and Ágnes Kunhalmi in ATV’s Straightforward Talk on Monday.

There is a realistic chance for a change of government, but this requires that the joint list from the opposition, "which we believe in and recommend", get 2.5-3% more than Fidesz, said Bertalan Tóth.

Now we are still lagging a few per cents behind; MSZP has to work very hard to increase its own base among uncertain leftists. They are addressed by a number of left-wing program elements formulated at the party’s weekend congress, to which the congress has given a “very serious” mandate, equipped with which they shall be going to opposition talks.

Yet one of their first agenda items is the elimination of fear and the restoration of legal certainty, freedom and the rule of law, he confirmed.

“It is often said that voters are not excited about democracy, the rule of law and legal certainty, while, in fact, their daily lives are poisoned by the lack of these,” he pointed out. As an example, he said, people’s fear is well-justified when the government does not comply with a judicial ruling, attacks independent courts, liquidates the bases of free voices, or if a police car appears in front of the house one morning because of a Facebook post.

Tóth said: he himself “does not feel fear”, “we are a community because we stand by each other,” but voters can feel it every day.

Kunhalmi highlighted that the past 30 years have shown that a democratic turn alone is not enough to “raise and retain masses” if not coupled with a social turn.

This will require a sustained pay rise “in this decade,” a sustained rental housing construction and energy renovation program, extending the extremely successful housing estate program of socialist governments to family homes. It is also necessary for the masses to be able to re-enter the world of education, obtaining a “normal” skilled worker certificate, a high school diploma, a language exam, “and whoever can handle it intellectually, a degree too.”

“I only said four things. That’s plenty enough to get a government through in four years,” she noted.

The social turn is about letting those in need get more out of the common assets, because “this system exploits the majority,” Bertalan Tóth pointed out.

“The government has appointed a narrow elite who get their share from the common treasures, slicing the common cake in a way that certain social strata do well but the majority does not. Let’s take a look: what was the first thing they did during crisis management? Rescuing the oligarchs. Lőrinc Mészáros (…) laid off hundreds of people and the government honoured his move with billions of forints in exchange.”

As a response to the principle that "the government only pays for work,” Kunhalmi noted, "Yes, but what is work worth without pay?"

She asked: how is it that among the 28 member states of the European Union, Hungary was the 23rd in terms of GDP per capita in 201, and, almost a decade later, in 2018 again, and by 2020 it could only move one position upward because the British have left the EU.

She continued: the "System of National Cooperation" does not provide a real solution, Hungary cannot break out, it stumbles in the same place.

On the internal debates of the party, the co-presidents said congress had given them a “liberating” 86% authority, and greater to officials.

“The internal debates, I think, are over. Everyone who wishes to take part in this has a responsibility. This is how it has been so far, and this is how it will continue to be in the future,” said Tóth. Kunhalmi added, “We have the unity, that 86% and almost the same level of participation simply meant, ‘Kids, we don’t look back.”

As regards the dissolution of the Pest County organisations, they said it did not mean that there were no more offices, party member or activists. "The reorganization and the election of officials in Pest County will start with a completely clean sheet", the schedule of which will be decided by Tuesday's board meeting.

Kunhalmi added that the MSZP leaders and organizations of the other 18 counties indicated that they would help reorganize and prepare Pest County for the 2022 elections.

Tóth said,“Everyone will work to have as many left-wing MSZP candidates as possible in the 12 constituencies in the pre-elections, and then we will prepare for the parliamentary elections in Pest County as well, and (…) in the other 18 counties and the also in the capital. The task, I think, is given.”