On today’s episode, we talk mostly about the EPP slowly admitting they realise Orbán’s a bit shit. We also talk about a weird La Lega funding scandal, that seems very legit if you ask me.
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AfD wins case against spy agency
“The Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution”, the not at all sinister sounding German domestic spy agency, apparently aren’t allowed to announce they’re looking into the AfD (www.dw.com )
France is planning a 5% “digital tax”
The French finance minister is apparently planning a 5% tax to promote ‘fiscal justice’. This is largely due to the EU not pushing forward with something similar (www.bloomberg.com. )The problem being that some EU countries (cough, Ireland and Luxembourg) do quite well out of the current system
The second referendum campaign is just kind of embarrassing
God damn you fucking nerds!
Moldovan parliamentary election
The general takeaway of this election, The Party of Socialists is still the biggest party but there still needs to be a government formed. The newly implemented voting system is terrible.
€3M from Russia to La Lega
##Report: Russia offered Italy’s Salvini €3m for EU election
Russia was preparing to help Italian far-right deputy prime minister Matteo Salvini contest the European Parliament elections in May with a clandestine €3m funding boost for his League party, Italian weekly L’Espresso reports. The money was to come via a cushy oil deal brokered by a Russian state firm and Salvini’s aide, Gianluca Savoini, in Moscow last October, L’Espresso said in a teaser ahead of further revelations due Sunday.
Main article in L’Espresso
People involved: Gianluca Savoini, president of the Lombardy-Russia Cultural Association, and Claudio d’Amico, a senior foreign policy adviser to the party. They own Orion LLC. a Moscow-based company.
At the weekend, the Italian magazine L’Espresso published a series of cases where senior figures in and around Lega were linked to businesses based in Russia, and, more significantly, allegations that the party was in talks to secure funding through an oil deal brokered by Savoini.
The League has never hidden its desire to forge close economic and ideological links with Russia.
League representatives have frequently travelled to Russia and appeared regularly on state-controlled media there.
In 2017, a formal “cooperation and collaboration” agreement was signed between Russian president Vladimir Putin’s ruling United Russia and the League, aimed at boosting business, legislative and cultural ties between the two countries.
People are starting to notice Orbán isn’t a Christian Democrat
Orbán has gotten used to getting his way nationally - having fun spending the tax payers’ money on “information campaigns”. In a repeat of last year for the Hungarian elections they’re doing it again but this time against the current EU administration, which is run in a grand coalition with Orbán’s own EPP party… The anti-Junker ads are a curious decision. Everyone should refer to the 2018 “stop Soros” ads which apparently cost the government €8m (english.atlatszo.hu )in the run up to their national elections. This is also generally money spent for air time and billboards controlled by Orbán friendly media (Politico have a fun chart www.politico.eu. )The content is equivalent to low effort memes (www.nytimes.com )Currently they’re running basically the same idea but with Junker included as a Soros co-conspirator in his anti Hungarian people immigration agenda.
/s In a shocking turn of events the EPP notice /s.
We’re now on 5-8 parties officially having said they’ve asked for Fidesz expulsion or suspension:
- Flemish Christian Democrats (Belgium)
- Walloon Humanist Democratic Center (Belgium)
- Luxembourg’s Christian Social People’s Party (Junker’s party, Luxembourg)
- CDS-People’s Party (Portugal) (www.politico.eu )
- Swedish Moderate Party late last month also indicated they’d be on board (www.politico.eu )
- Swedish Christian Democrats
- National Coalition Party (Finland)
Current count is at 10ish according to Politico (www.politico.eu, )but mostly parties with small seat numbers.
Christian Democratic Appeal from the Netherlands have said there needs to be a conversation but it’s unclear whether they’re asking for expulsion.
They need 7 parties to ask for expulsion for it to come to an EPP internal vote - “A proposal for the exclusion of a member may only be submitted by the Presidency or seven Ordinary or Associated Member Parties from five different countries.” (www.epp.eu. )So this may happen, but whether they get a majority to vote them out is questionable.
The EPP internal structure is controlled based on previous EU election results so… yeah maybe www.epp.eu
There’s some powerhouses on the list of people who would probably vote against expulsion. Tajani (EU parliament president, Forza Italia) has been pretty pro Orbán previously and their block would probably vote against. PP from Spain are pretty gross lately. Les Republicans have been conspicuously quiet on it… So maybe not
Orbán seems to think this is good fun
Originally the news late in the week was they’d take the posters down on March 15th (as originally planned). Now they’ve revealed they’re just going to replace them with Vice President Frans Timmermans posters ( www.dw.com. )Now Timmermans isn’t in the EPP, but he’s part of the grand coalition ruling majority being in the S&D… so… I don’t know, maybe some people will find that fine in the EPP…
Merkel says posters bad, Orbán very bold (www.dw.com )
The Hungarian government’s website says that the response from the commission to the ads is a “confession” (www.kormany.hu. )Also who knew the Hungarian government had an English version?
They’re making the Left is evil argument
Orbán is basically saying that criticism of him is just going to help the left wing (www.politico.eu, )which is a curious message from someone who is running ads saying the effective leader of his EU party is a puppet of Soros…
Maybe the EPP could just do with out him?
They’d be giving up the juicy 13 seats of their coalition. They’d still be the largest party by a sizeable majority on current polling… I don’t think Orbán’s bullshit is worth it. Thought the current narrative is they’re going to take a massive hit in seats from the last parliament so maybe not… (https://www.politico.eu/article/new-politico-2019-european-parliament-election-seat-projection/)