With only weeks to go before Hungary’s general election, the country’s state media television broadcaster, M1, is giving all opposition parties with a national list the opportunity to showcase their party platform to the nation. Each party has five minutes to do so. However, to date the time has been used to excoriate Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and the Fidesz-KDNP government.
On Tuesday Jobbik’s Ádám Mirkóczki spent the five minutes hammering Hungary’s public media for orchestrating character assassinations against opposition politicians, failing to invite opposition party representatives to speak, and deliberately misinforming the public.
On Wednesday, Momentum’s Miklós Hajnal chose to read off questions posted to the party’s Facebook page from its followers:
“Three weeks before the general election, opposition parties and voters have virtually no opportunity to engage Viktor Orbán. The Hungarian prime minister avoids public debates….He avoids debates and interviews on independent television stations and in independent newspapers. For this reason, I would like to use this opportunity to convey the questions of Hungarian citizens,” Hajnal said, adding that his party called on people to pose questions to the prime minister via Momentum’s Facebook page.
“Because this [channel] is paid for with our money…I would like to use this opportunity to read off some of these questions,” he continued.
- Márton asks how much longer Fidesz must be in power until they make public the state security archives.
- László wants to know why there are different voting rules for Hungarians who live abroad.
- Éva asks what message the Viktor Orbán of today would have for Viktor Orbán of 1989, and what the Viktor Orbán of 1989 would say to Viktor Orbán of today, seeing what kind of man he has become.
- Péter wants to know which problem Orbán thinks is bigger: people leaving Hungary or immigration to Hungary — especially considering that the 500,000 young people who have left Hungary have not come back.
- Zsófia wants to know whether the money spent on propaganda billboards and stadiums might have better been spent on education and health-care. Why is building stadiums more important than ending poverty?
- Ilóna demands to know who Viktor Orbán thinks he is to use the March 15th national holiday to make threats.
- Richárd doesn’t understand how the once democratic, anti-Russia, Western and European value-promoting politician became a pro-Russia politician who undermines the West and makes friends with eastern dictatorships.
- Julianna wants to know why Viktor Orbán thinks that single-parent households are not families?
- Ákos is interested in knowing whether Viktor Orbán thinks he may have done something wrong if after three terms in government, the government passes out 10,000 forint food vouchers to pensioners during the campaign.
- Kristóf wants to know where all the young people and democrats have gone from Fidesz.
- Nórbert doesn’t know where the pre-2010 Viktor Orbán is who fought against what the Viktor Orbán of today is doing.
- Szilárd would like to know whether Viktor Orbán the Christian believes he is also entitled to absolution.
- Bálint wants to know whether Viktor Orbán ruined the power or the power destroyed Viktor Orbán.
Then Hajnal asked his own questions, including:
- Where did the trillions of forints from the private pensions go?
- On what grounds were the tobacco sale concessions decided?
- On what grounds did Fidesz decide who gets agricultural lands?
- On what grounds were Hungary’s electoral districts gerrymandered?
- Why is Hungary spending billions of forints on national trading houses when all they do is generate losses?
- Why was Népszabadság shut down?
- Who sent the bald-headed goons to the National Election Office?
- Why does Viktor Orbán’s daughter represent Hungary at international meetings?
- How is it possible that all the county newspapers now belong to either Andy Vajna or Lőrinc Mészáros?
- Why is it that a huge stadium and narrow-gauge train were built for Viktor Orbán’s hometown of Felcsút?
- Why are there development projects for the Olympics if Hungary is not hosting the Olympics?
- Why did the cost of the FINA World Championships grow to four times the original estimate?
- How is it possible that, of the 20,000 people who received residency through the settlement bond program, only 20 applicants were rejected?
- Why is Paks 2 being financed with Russian money, and why did the government classify the contract?
- Why is the Budapest-Belgrade rail line being built with Chinese money, and why is the rail line even necessary?
- Why did Lajos Kósa’s mom get a pig farm?
- Why is there still no criminal complaint in the Elios scandal when even the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) said that Viktor Orbán’s son-in-law stole 13 billion forints?
- Why does János Lázár have a castle?
- How could a former member of Fidesz be the Prosecutor General?
The host then informed Hajnal that he still had 50 seconds on the clock. Hajnal responded by thanking the interviewer for the opportunity to speak.
“If only every Hungarian citizen could pose such questions [to the prime minister]. I will gladly accept the prime minister’s response. Naturally, be it in the form of a letter, as he typically does, or on a billboard. Thank you for your attention,” Hajnal said.
“You still have another 30 seconds, let’s take advantage of that,” the host said.
“No, I do not wish to avail myself of the opportunity,” Hajnal said. And then he just walked off the set.