Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has said “Hungary’s government and its head” cannot be in the position to support a European Commission presidential candidate who has announced that he does not want the vote of Hungarians.
Asked to comment on ruling Fidesz’s decision to withdraw support for Manfred Weber’s candidacy at a joint press conference held with Vice-Chancellor of Austria Heinz-Christian Strache, Orbán said Weber indicated he did not want to become commission president with the help of votes from Hungary. “This is a serious position and a violation of the principle to always respect voters,” Orbán said. The government does not consider any of the candidates in the EC presidential campaign to be suitable and “we are looking for a suitable candidate”. Orbán said hopefully the European Council would eventually have more members who belong to the right wing of the EPP or the parties to its right. As regards Fidesz’s EPP membership, he said the party did not see a place for itself in an EPP whose majority comprised “pro-migration forces”. “This was why we had to suspend our membership rights, to wait and see in which direction the party turns after the election,” Orbán said, adding that Fidesz would hold off on making a decision about its EPP membership until after the EP election.