Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orbán recieved a warm reception during a conservative conference in Texas on Thursday.
During his speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Dallas, Texas, Orbán blasted the governing US Democrats telling the American conservatives that they “hate you and slander you and the America you stand for.”
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Orbán’s address was made under something of a cloud, after the Hungarian leader was alienated by his EU neighbours, who accuse him of undermining democracy. He has also been under sustained attack from the establishment media for a July speech where he said Hungarians did not wish to follow “post-Western” liberal governments’ immigration policies because they “do not want to become peoples of mixed-race.”
“The globalists can all go to hell,” Orbán said to enthusiastic applause. “I have come to Texas.”
Breitbart reports: These comments were heavily emphasised by media outlets such as the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) in their coverage of the CPAC speech — the fact that Orban subsequently clarified that the basis of his stance on immigration “is not biological… it is not a racial issue, it is a cultural issue” and that “it is beyond the pale for any political issue to be approached on a biological basis” was not reported — but he appeared to quickly win over his American audience.
“It’s fantastic to be here in Texas, the Lone Star State of the great United States of America. If I am correct, Lone Star State means that independence, freedom, and sovereignty are the dearest values in this part of America… My country, Hungary, is the Lone Star State of Europe,” he began in English, earning cheers.
He added that, as an “anti-Communist, old-fashioned freedom fighter, raised under Communist rule,” giving a speech in “the Land of the Free, where the Spirit of Liberty shines brighter than at any other place on Earth” was something he had “never dared to dream of” in his youth — but went on the excoriate the modern-day Joe Biden administration and the Democratic Party in no uncertain terms.
Paying lip service to his government’s “respect for the government of the United States” and his team’s status as “guests” in the country, the Hungarian statesman nevertheless stressed that “there is another side of the coin” and that the Biden administration was had “put Europe and especially Brussels under ideological pressure.”
“This is not good for us. It’s bad,” he said, alleging that in previous years the administration of Biden’s former boss, Barack Obama, had gone so far as to “[try] to force us to change the Fundamental Law [constitution] of Hungary, and delete Christian and national values from it.”
“Do you get it? The leading power of the free world wanted to force us to change our constitution according to a globalist liberal concept,” he claimed, saying that, as a result of his government resisting these efforts, “we are not the favourites of the American Democrats.”
“They did not want me to be here, and they made every effort to drive a wedge between us. They hate me and slander me and my country as they hate you and slander you and the America you stand for,” he declared — an astonishing broadside, considering Hungary’s status as a NATO ally of the United States, and indicative of just how irretrievably broken the Hungarian government considers its diplomatic relationship with D.C.
Donald Trump, whom Orbán met earlier in the week, by contrast received warm words, with the Hungarian saying he was “grateful” that the former President had endorsed him during his country’s recent elections.
Orbán suggested the Biden Administration had tried to apply pressure to Hungary the same way the Obama Administration had, suggesting that his country’s opposition to a Global Minimum Tax — Hungary is a low tax economy, with a flat personal income tax of 15 per cent and a flat corporate income tax of nine per cent — was the reason D.C. recently terminated a tax treaty with Budapest.
“It was good for U.S. investors. There are 1.700 U.S. companies operating in Hungary,” he said, speculating that the move was “the revenge of the Left” for testing the Global Minimum Tax initiative and pointing out that “the U.S. Treasury somehow forgot that they have a very similar [tax] treaty with Russia. But not with Hungary anymore. Funny, isn’t it?”
He also addressed the Russian invasion of Ukraine, an issue on which his views may be less popular with some American conservatives, proclaiming “full solidarity” with the Ukrainians and noting that his country of 10 million has taken in close to one million Ukrainian refugees — but expressing disagreement with what he described as “the globalist leaders’ strategy [which] escalates and prolongs war and decreases the chance of peace.”
“Without American-Russian talks there will never be peace in Ukraine. More and more people will die and suffer, and our economies will come to the brink of collapse,” he said, adding: “I cannot tell you what to do; it is your sovereign decision. I can however tell you one thing: only strong leaders are able to make peace.”
“We in the neighbourhood of Ukraine are desperately in need of strong leaders, who are capable of negotiating a peace deal. Mayday, mayday! Please help us! We need a strong America with a strong leader,” he concluded — appearing to indicate that he does not believe the current President fits this description.