Chairman of the far-right parliamentary Jobbik (Better) party Gabor Vona. (photo credit: AFP PHOTO/Peter Kohalmi)
The leader of Hungary’s far-right Jobbik said Saturday he was determined to distance the party from radical elements and move it to the center in a bid to win general elections in 2018.
“We will win the election, take a deep breath and rebuild our country,” Gabor Vona told the party’s congress in Budapest.
Jobbik, once considered a fringe, racist party, has been successfully shunning its bad image and Vona has toned down the party’s rhetoric, which once stigmatised Roma as criminals.
In 2012, one Jobbik politician said Hungary should draw up lists of Jews who pose a “national security risk”.
Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s ruling Fidesz party leads the opinion polls, but Jobbik has picked up disillusioned voters, securing its place as the EU member’s second-largest party.
According to a Tarki poll last month, Fidesz has 23 percent support and Jobbik has 14 percent, with 40 percent of voters undecided.
“In 2018 people will have to choose between Fidesz and Jobbik,” Vona said…