Hungarian Conservative

Katalin Novák and Judit Varga Show Accountability Long Gone on the Left

Hungarian mother and her son watch the television as Hungary's President Katalin Novak (C) announces her resignation in the Presidential Palace of Budapest, Hungary, on 10 February 2024.
Ferenc Isza/AFP
Katalin Novák and Judit Varga have resigned in the wake of the scandal surrounding the presidential pardon. Such accountability would be deemed unthinkable on the left, where politicians continue to evade responsibility.

‘As Head of State, I am addressing you for the last time; I am resigning from the office of President of the Republic,’ Katalin Novák said on Saturday evening. The scandal surrounding the head of state, which arose because the president pardoned the former deputy director of the children’s home in Bicske, has been growing for days. Endre K. was convicted because he knew that the director of the home had molested several children but did nothing; he also wrote a false confession on behalf of one of the children. He wanted to have the child concerned sign the false confession in his office, in the presence of the paedophile director.

Breaking: President Katalin Novák Resigns from Her Post

Katalin Novák has spent her entire career as a Fidesz MP, and as a civil servant and politician in various ministries of the Orbán governments.

From 2001 to 2003, Katalin Novák worked as a Foreign Ministry adviser. After the birth of her children, she became a ministerial adviser in the cabinet of Foreign Minister János Martonyi in 2010. From 2012 to 2014, she worked as Chief of Staff to Minister Zoltán Balog at the Ministry of Human Resources, while in 2013⁠–⁠14, she was Ministerial Commissioner for Francophone Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. From 2014 to 2020, she served as State Secretary for Family and Youth Affairs at the Ministry of Interior, and from 2017 to 2021, she was the Vice-President of Fidesz. In the 2018 parliamentary elections, she was elected from the 4th place on the Fidesz⁠–⁠KDNP national list, where she became the President of the HungarianFrench Friendship Group.

In the autumn of 2020, she was appointed Minister without Portfolio for Families in the fourth Orbán government. In December 2021, Viktor Orbán announced that she would be nominated to succeed János Áder as President of Hungary, after which Novák resigned from her ministerial post.

Katalin Novák’s career as President of the Republic began in the shadow of war. She often

called for peace and advocated for families and childbearing.

Her position will be temporarily filled by László Kövér, President of the Hungarian Parliament.

After the amnesty scandal broke out, Viktor Orbán announced that the government had submitted a constitutional amendment to make it impossible for a perpetrator of a crime against a minor to receive a pardon.

In addition to Katalin Novák, Judit Varga also resigned from her seat in Parliament. The former Justice Minister countersigned the pardon decision. I have continued the practice of more than 25 years of the Minister of Justice taking note of the President’s pardon decision. I take political responsibility for countersigning the President’s decision. I am retiring from public life, resigning from my seat in Parliament and from the EP list,’ Judit Varga wrote on Facebook.

Judit Varga Resigns Following President Novák’s Announcement

Judit Varga has spent the majority of her career duelling with the European Commission. In 2018, she was appointed Secretary of State for EU Relations, a position in which she had to defend Hungary’s anti-migration position; participated in the development of the government’s legal arguments to refute the allegations of the Sargentini report; and later represented the Hungarian government in the Article 7 proceedings.

After resigning from her position as Minister of Justice in spring 2022, Judit Varga became the leader of the Fidesz-KDNP European Parliamentary election list. With her resignation, this position also became vacant.

‘The hypocritically attacking left is still led by the same Ferenc Gyurcsány

who spearheaded a cavalry charge against his compatriots in 2006 and lives in a villa stolen from a Jewish family.

Nobody on the left has apologized for ratifying voters, for damaging street lights, for insulting voters, just as there are no consequences for corruption in Budapest, for the rolling dollars, for antifa bloodshed, and essentially nothing that comes to light about them,’ Máté Kocsis said. In his opinion, the decision of Katalin Novák and Judit Varga is a testimony to this moral difference.

The resignations of Pál Schmidt and József Szájer, among others, support Máté Kocsis’ words. The former left the post of President of the Republic after his doctorate was revoked due to plagiarism. József Szájer resigned from his post as a MEP because of the scandal surrounding him after he violated the curfew during the COVID-19 epidemic in Brussels.

In contrast, the left seems to lack an understanding of the concept of responsibility. Consider Ferenc Gyurcsány, who remained in power for almost three years after the Öszödi speech. As a left-wing prime minister, he plunged the country into chaos and crisis, and only a change in government offered a way out.

Left-Wing Leaderships Plunge Europe into Chaos
Katalin Novák and Judit Varga have resigned in the wake of the scandal surrounding the presidential pardon. Such accountability would be deemed unthinkable on the left, where politicians continue to evade responsibility.