Hungarian Conservative

EPP Leader Weber Welcomes Péter Magyar with Open Arms — KDNP Threatens to Leave

Manfred Weber, President of the European People's Party (L) and Péter Magyar, Vice-President of Tisza party in Budapest on 14 June 2024.
Manfred Weber/X
Manfred Weber, President of the European People's Party, stated that the door is open for new opposition leader Péter Magyar’s party to join the European Parliamentary political group, but that he is not the sole decision-maker. The Hungarian Christian Democratic People's Party (KDNP) has announced that it will leave the EPP if the Tisza party joins the group.

Manfred Weber, President of the European People’s Party (EPP), travelled to Budapest on Friday, where he held talks with Péter Magyar, Vice-President of the Tisza party, placed second in the European Parliament elections, and Zsolt Semjén, Hungarian Deputy Prime Minister and President of the Christian Democratic People’s Party (KDNP)—one of the governing parties in Hungary.

‘The door is open for the Tisza party, but the decision is not in my hands; it will be decided next week by the European People’s Party’s parliamentary group,’ Weber said at a press conference after his meeting with Magyar, according to hvg.hu. The EPP president stated that he was only in Budapest for a ‘fact-finding mission,’ but noted

that Tisza was keen to join the EPP and that its MEPs have the competence to do so.

‘I hope that this is the beginning of a beautiful European friendship,’ commented Péter Magyar.

Magyar promised that they would be constructive in this cooperation and would be in Brussels next week to negotiate. He added, however, that they would sometimes be critical, as there are very sensitive issues concerning Hungary in the European Parliament. Nevertheless, they are ready for a constructive debate.

When asked if they would support the re-election of the current European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen, the Tisza Party vice-president said they would like to hear her future plans first. However, he added that they would, of course, be part of a club in Brussels and would act accordingly.

According to the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Manfred Weber could impose three conditions on Magyar: adherence to the rule of law, respect for European values, and unconditional support for Ukraine. The latter is perhaps the most interesting, given that, while little is known about the party’s programme and foreign policy stance,

Péter Magyar has previously suggested that Ukraine should reconsider its strategy and seek peace.

This position is completely at odds with the EPP’s policy on Ukraine.

It is not surprising, however, that Weber invited Magyar and his party to the EPP despite knowing this. The German politician’s relationship with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán had completely soured after Orbán refused to support Weber’s candidacy for Commission President in 2019. Since then, Weber has continuously attacked every decision of the Hungarian government and Viktor Orbán. Fidesz left the EPP in 2021, but its coalition partner, KDNP remained.

Demonizing Viktor Orbán: Manfred Weber in Vicious Campaign Mode

On Friday, Weber also held talks with Hungarian Deputy Prime Minister Zsolt Semjén, who stated that the KDNP would leave the European People’s Party if Tisza were allowed into the political group. Weber remarked that they had always had a fruitful relationship with the KDNP and that the decision on their possible departure was entirely up to them.


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Manfred Weber, President of the European People's Party, stated that the door is open for new opposition leader Péter Magyar’s party to join the European Parliamentary political group, but that he is not the sole decision-maker. The Hungarian Christian Democratic People's Party (KDNP) has announced that it will leave the EPP if the Tisza party joins the group.

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