A liberal MEP admits in a newly leaked video that the rule of law concept is not defined in the EU. This means that the “rule of law ballon” has burst open and the only question is how embarrassing this fiasco is for the Hungarian opposition’s allies in Brussels, according to Hungary’s justice minister.
New details have leaked from an online discussion that was also attended by MEP Anna Donath of the Hungarian Momentum party. The liberal politician is heard saying that “as long as the European Union fails to come up, at least in vision, with things about what it [the Union] means by the rule of law and why this is important [to the Union], and why the disbursement of funds is tied to rule of law criteria, the narrative promoted by Fidesz, the narrative of Judit Varga – who formulates her arguments in legal terms – will, unfortunately, remain valid, moreover, they are right after all”.
Justice Minister Judit Varga responded to the new revelation on social media.
“Anna Donath says that Fidesz and Judit Varga are ‘unfortunately’ right. I thought we’ve heard it all, but I was wrong. In the final segment of the leaked footage, MEP Anna Donath of Momentum says, among other things, that, ‘if we speak about the rule of law in legal terms, then Fidesz and Judit Varga are right’. We can draw several conclusions from this sentence, which is tantamount to a confession,” the minister writes in her post.
She points out that “on the one hand, it has become clearer that Hungarian opposition parties and the fake NGOs that maintain close ties with them are constantly trying to conflate and politicise rule of law related issues, because if we examine them in legal terms, it immediately becomes clear that they are in fact fake news, and the narrative of the opposition collapses.
On the other hand, the witch-hunt pursued by Brussels against Hungary has become even less credible than before, startgin from the Article 7 procedure all the way to tying the payment of EU budget funds to the rule of law. “
Ms Varga adds that due to the latest confession of Ms Donath, “the rule of law balloon that Momentum and the entire Hungarian opposition have been blowing for years just burst open.”
“The only question now is how embarrassing this fiasco is for Momentum’s allies in Brussels and whether they can continue to inflate this air castle based on lies with a straight face,” Judit Varga asks.
V4NA has previously written to the president of the European Parliament, the leaders of the EP political groups and the chair of the EP Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) to inquire if they happen to have an exact definition for the rule of law concept.
Our portal has received a substantive response from the office of EP President David Sassoli, which states that the “rule of law is one of the common values upon which the European Union is founded and part of the common constitutional traditions of all Member States. (…) The rule of law means that all members of a society – governments and politicians included – are equally subject to the law (…) irrespective of political majorities.” However, even they were unable to pinpoint the paragraph which must be interpreted this way.
Dacian Ciolos, the president of Momentum’s Renew Europe party group, did not bother to respond, which comes as no surprise after Ms Donath’s confession that there is no uniform definition for the rule of law.
This was also confirmed by legal experts, who told V4NA that there may be differences in the way rule of law is perceived from country to country.