Almost a year to date of his last appearance in the European Parliament, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán faced his critics again in a heated plenary session. With state default potentially looming, infringement proceedings underway in Brussels, and Fidesz’ popularity continuously dropping, the stakes were much higher than last January. Over the past weeks, Orbán has gradually retreated from his position of not ceding any ground on controversial legislation, and by the time he arrived in Brussels he claimed to have almost comprehensively succumbed to external pressure. While this did not stop him from lambasting his opponents, his sometimes combative approach apparently did not harm the impression that Hungary was ready to play ball with the international institutions that are necessary to keep the country’s finances afloat.
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Policy Solutions is a progressive political research institute based in Budapest. It was founded in 2008 and it is committed to the values of liberal democracy, solidarity, equal opportunity, sustainability and European integration. The focus of Policy Solutions’ work is on understanding political processes in Hungary and the European Union. Among the pre-eminent areas of our research are the investigation of how the quality of democracy evolves, the analysis of factors driving euroscepticism, populism and the far-right, and election research.
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