“Gordon Bajnai makes Fidesz, Hungary’s ruling populist party, nervous. A mild-mannered businessman, he seems an unlikely David against the government’s Goliath. He served as prime minister between 2009 and 2010, as a non-party technocrat leading a Socialist administration. That government was trounced in the polls and Fidesz won an unprecedented two-third majority.
He announced his return to politics at a rally on October 23rd, the anniversary of Hungary’s failed 1956 uprising, at the head of Together 2014, an umbrella organisation that aims to draw support from the centre-right to centre-left. The next election, scheduled for 2014, will decide Hungary’s fate for a generation, he says. Either the country will return to 'normality' or the Fidesz will continue its process of state capture, slicing up the country for the benefit of its friends while waging endless wars against imagined enemies. Mr Bajnai’s message resonates: one poll gave Together 2014 16% support, making it the largest opposition grouping, four points more than the Socialists, while Fidesz had 22%
Larger problems may loom with Together 2014’s choice of allies. Milla, or One Million for Press Freedom in Hungary, may have more than 100,000 fans on facebook. But as Gellért Rajcsányi, a conservative blogger, argues, the movement is chaotic and its leader, Péter Juhász, is rooted in the movement to legalise marijuana, a fringe cause in Hungary.
Milla also forced a controversial documentary (link in Hungarian) about conflicts between Roma and non-Roma off public television. Meanwhile, insiders describe a government administration that is increasingly chaotic. Laws are sloppily drafted, laden-down with last minute amendments then rushed through Parliament as private members’ bills, rather than government business, to prevent proper scrutiny.”