Thursday, November 12, 2020

Hungary's Government Goes Further Right

  Hungary's  far-right government signalled its intention to pass a range of new legislation, including to make it harder for opposition political parties to join forces and to change the constitution to enshrine the defence of so-called “Christian values”. For years, Viktor Orbán’s government has relied on an anti-migration agenda to rally its base, and some analysts suggest LGBT people may be the new target. In Poland, the ruling populist Law and Justice (PiS) party has made the fight against so-called “LGBT ideology” central to its political messaging.

The proposed constitutional amendment, submitted to parliament by the justice minister, Judit Varga, late on Tuesday, is the latest assault on LGBT rights in the country, where legal recognition for gender changes was ended in May.

“Hungary protects children’s right to identify as the sex they were born with, and ensures their upbringing based on our national self-identification and Christian culture,” the amendment states. The constitution already stipulates that marriage must be between a man and a woman, but the amendment says that in a parent-child relationship “the mother is a woman and the father is a man”. The amendment would ensure that only heterosexual married couples can adopt children. Single people could gain exemptions by special ministerial permission.

 The political changes could also prove significant. The new rules would make it harder for parties to run joint lists in elections without fully uniting.  Opposition parties had announced their intention to run unity candidates against Orban's Fidesz party in parliamentary elections in 2022.

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