Disciplinary rules should be tightened, says House Speaker

Disciplinary regulations in Parliament may need tightening, Speaker of the House László Kövér said in a radio interview in the wake of recent opposition action inside Parliament building.

Kövér said the protests of the opposition parties in Parliament on Wednesday were "the most important event of the political autumn".

On Wednesday opposition MPs blocked access to the dais of the speaker of the house in an attempt to prevent the amendment of the labor law that increased the annual allowed overtime to 400 hours, from a previous 250 hours. The amendment eventually passed with 130 votes for, 52 against and one abstention.

Kövér qualified the event as a "mindless, irrational disturbance bordering on anarchy", adding that even before Wednesday's events they were pondering how to change house rules. In accordance with current regulations, Kövér imposed fines on the leaders of the opposition protest but said that should these means become a permanent fixture in the opposition's arsenal, tighter rules may be needed.

He said that while he cannot guarantee that stricter rules would prevent such events in the future, those perpetrating them "should then at least feel some pain".

Kövér said that the irregular behavior of the opposition MPs stemmed from their frustration, leaving them unable for calm deliberation and strategic thinking, that they were "in a very difficult intellectual position" and lacked truly helpful advisors.

He said the difficulties of the opposition were not a phenomenon unique to Hungary as the left was on the brink of moral and political collapse across most of Europe.

 

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