Fidesz compiled list of potential supporters based on their personal interests in 2014 campaign

April 5, 2018

Fidesz prepared guide to its Sopron candidate on how to recruit intelligentsia for the campaign in 2014
Fidesz supporters in downtown Budapest participate in the “Peace March” on March 15, 2018 | Photo: Facebook/Orbán Viktor

Fidesz collected personal information about priests, teachers and “the proletariat” in a document that lists potential supporters and hints on how to recruit them for Fidesz’s 2014 campaign in Sopron, Hír TV reports.

The document which Hír TV acquired lists local opinion leaders (mostly clergy) and their potential relevance to Fidesz’s Sopron campaign. The list includes priests, pastors, entrepreneurs and other members of the local intelligentsia.

The two most frequent entries in the “relevance” column of the document are “they meet a lot of people” and “they are connected to a lot of people,” but the creators of the list also felt it important if someone “has connections with people in their 30s”, “is very pro-Fidesz” or “often talks with affluent, influential people.”

One of the most puzzling entries in the list is “old János” whose social status according to the document is that he is “the man constantly standing about in Church street.” Old János’ relevance in Fidesz’s campaign, according to the creators of the document, is that he is “one of the main figures of the plebs, and speaks with many of them. It makes a difference what [gossip] he spreads.”

Tactics to recruit people for Fidesz’s campaign include:

  • “winning them for whispering support through indirect conversation”
  • “banter”
  • “you should eagerly buy shirts at her [shop] and start a conversation based on this”
  • “make a cool introduction [of yourself], spontaneously, uprightly”
  • “You must bump into him accidentally. He hates politics. You must prove you’re cool. Literature is his passion.”
  • “ask their opinion”

According to the conservative news channel, the tone and tactics discussed in the document resemble those of the domestic counter-intelligence of the Hungarian People’s Republic (1949-89).

Hír TV contacted some of the persons who were included in the document. Vicar István H. told the news channel that he was aware his name was on the list and confirmed to Hír TV he had been successfully recruited for the 2014 election campaign. Another person who had been included in the list and had been characterized as “very pro-Fidesz” denied that he had ever been contacted by anybody from Fidesz or had any knowledge of any list.

Renowned for its ability to quickly and effectively mobilize its activists and supporters, Fidesz reportedly maintains a detailed data base of its supporters — the so-called “Kubatov list,” named after long-time Fidesz party director Gábor Kubatov to mobilize its supporters.  The list is believed to contain voter information prohibited by law.

Hír TV contacted both Kubatov and Prime Minister Viktor Orbán to comment on the existence of the document.  As of Wednesday evening neither of them had replied.