Hungarian Members of the European Parliament affiliated with Hungary’s ruling Fidesz-KDNP coalition have expressed criticism towards the European Commission (EC) for what they perceive as a lack of response to violations of the rule of law in Poland under the government of Donald Tusk. The Hungarian MEPs argued that the EC’s silence represents a double standard, contrasting it with the commission’s previous criticism of Hungary on the rule of law and media freedom issues.
In a written question to the EC, the Hungarian MEPs emphasized their belief that if similar events had occurred in Budapest under Prime Minister Viktor Orban, Commissioner Jourova would have taken immediate action.
“We can all easily imagine what would have happened, what action Commissioner Jourova would have taken immediately, if all this had happened in Budapest, under Prime Minister Viktor Orban,” Hungarian MEPs wrote on Friday, as quoted by MTI news agency.
They urged the EC to ensure uniform standards for measuring respect for the rule of law across all Member States, irrespective of the government in power.
The criticism comes in the wake of recent developments in Poland, including the arrest of former interior minister Mariusz Kaminski and his deputy Maciej Wasik, who were sentenced to two years in prison for their involvement in an anti-corruption case dating back to 2007. The Hungarian MEPs also noted the EC’s lack of comment on these events and the recent changes in Poland’s public media outlets.
Balazs Hidveghi, a Fidesz MP, accused Brussels of maintaining a double standard, claiming that the issue of rule of law and democracy is weaponized against governments and politicians disliked by the Brussels elites. The Hungarian opposition declined to comment on the legal situation in Poland.