Hungary’s Fidesz shouldn’t rebuild European right from scratch, says Polish MEP

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Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán recently announced his plan to attempt to reorganize the European Right along with Poland and Italy, but there are still doubts from other leading conservatives about what the best course of action is to create a strong Christan-conservative movement at the European level. 

Orbán has signaled that he has already contacted Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and the leader of the Italy’s League party, Matteo Salvini, about potentially organizing a new party in the EU parliament. Fidesz recently left the European People’s Party following years of dispute about the direction of the party and conflict between Fidesz and key leaders in the party’s power structure, including Germany’s Manfred Weber and Poland’s Donald Tusk. 

Law and Justice party (PiS) MEP Ryszard Czarnecki stated on the Polish Radio 24 public station that a cooperation of political groups which support the idea of a ‘Europe of Fatherlands’ is needed. He noted, however, that fulfilling such an initiative will face many difficulties.

Czarnecki explained that PiS currently cooperates with the Brothers of Italy (FdI) party in the European Parliament, which is in competition with the League in Italy despite the two parties being closely aligned. Moreover, the current Italian government of Mario Draghi was supported by the League, which joined a coalition with Draghi, but the FdI decided to remain in the opposition.

“Yet, I believe that through good faith and finding of what unites us and rejecting what is divisive, we will find a common political denominator on the international forum. I think we should converse and search for a good solution. As PiS, we are always open to discussion and ready to cooperate for the good of Poland and Europe,” he said.

Both FdI and the League are eager to have Fidesz MEPs join their competing factions in the European Parliament, with Hungary’s contingent of MEPs surely to boost the political weight of any party they ultimately choose to call home. 

Czarnecki is also of the opinion that the issue of whether the European right should be united under a new political party or expand the current European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) in the European Parliament is secondary and purely technical.

He pointed out that it takes a lot of time and effort to establish a new formation within the European Parliament and there might not be enough time for that. Therefore, he stated that it would be better to base the new alliance on the ECR.

The MEP also underlined that it would be better for Polish interests to develop the ECR, which would enable PiS to have real influence over one of the three biggest groups in the European Parliament.

“This would increase our area of influence and translates into the ability to care for Polish interests even more,” he said.

Czarnecki stated, however, that the decision to support Orbán’s proposal lies with PiS leadership and the party’s leader, Jarosław Kaczyński.

“In terms of the actual date, I think this is a matter of weeks, not months,” he added.

Title image: PiS MEP Ryszard Czarnecki in Polish Radio studio, source:

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