PM Orbán discusses election results and future plans in interview with Index

PM Orbán sat down for an interview with Index following Hungary's EP and local elections. During the discussion, he covered topics ranging from the election results and campaign strategies to future political dynamics and policy directions.

PM Orbán began by acknowledging the success of the Fidesz-KDNP alliance in the recent EP elections, emphasizing the significant peace-supporting victory they achieved. He pointed out that the high voter turnout demonstrated strong public support for the government's efforts to keep Hungary out of the war, highlighting that over 2 million people voted for the Fidesz-KDNP list, the highest result ever in an EP election.

Despite not achieving the 50 percent mark that some polls predicted, PM Orbán remained positive, noting that receiving 44-45 percent of the votes was still a commendable result. The prime minister acknowledged the competitive nature of the election, where they had to defeat both old and new opposition forces.

"We defeated both the old and new opposition by a significant margin," he noted. He also addressed the surprising performance of the Tisza Party, led by Péter Magyar, which garnered around 30 percent.

Reflecting on the campaign for local elections, PM Orbán admitted that some areas, such as Budapest, required more robust community-building efforts from Fidesz. He praised Alexandra Szentkirályi for leading a strong campaign in the capital, despite the challenges posed by the city's political landscape.

"Alexandra Szentkirályi conducted a campaign that Fidesz has not seen in Budapest for a long time. We are very proud of her," the prime minister stated.

He also commented on the internal dynamics within the party, acknowledging that there were some unresolved issues that had impacted their performance in places like Győr, where past controversies had resurfaced.

"In Győr, the Borkai issue caught up with us, which is why we lost the mayoral seat," he admitted. However, he expressed pride in their victories in traditionally challenging areas such as Miskolc, Salgótarján, and Tatabánya.

"Winning in places like Miskolc and Salgótarján is a significant political challenge and a testament to our hard work," he said.

Discussing the relationship between the government and Budapest's administration, PM Orbán noted the financial difficulties faced by the city and expressed readiness to assist the newly elected officials in addressing these issues. "We aimed for change in Budapest, but we respect the decision of its residents," he said, responding to questions about Gergely Karácsony's re-election and the financial challenges facing the capital.

"Budapest is on the brink of financial collapse, and we are prepared to help," the prime minister said.

Addressing the speculation about a potential split within Fidesz due to the rise of the Tisza Party, PM Orbán dismissed these concerns, emphasizing the party's unity and strength. "There is a clear order to our work, and our unity is our strength. We are the largest party by far, and I look to the future with optimism," he asserted.

Looking ahead, PM Orbán discussed the broader European political context, highlighting the need for a right-wing shift in Europe. He expressed optimism about the potential for a significant conservative alliance within the European Parliament, which could reshape the political landscape.

"If the ECR and ID can finally unite and Fidesz joins them, we could form the second-largest faction in the European Parliament," he said.

PM Orbán concluded the interview by reiterating his commitment to working hard for the Hungarian people and maintaining the country's stability and prosperity. "The key to our success is humble work. We have won many battles because we have worked hard for it, and we will continue to do so," he stated.

Acknowledging the challenges ahead, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán remained optimistic about Fidesz's future, driven by continuous hard work and dedication.

Cover photo credit: Index.hu