Hungarian election panel clears questions of LGBT referendum

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07/29/2021

BUDAPEST (Reuters) – Hungary’s National Election Committee (NEC) approved on Friday the government’s list of questions on LGBT issues it wants to put on a referendum as part of what Prime Minister Viktor Orban has called an “ideological war” with the European Union. Orban, a nationalist who has been in power since 2010, proposed a referendum on ruling party legislation that limits schools’ teaching about homosexuality and transgender issues, stepping up a culture war with the EU. An NEC spokesman confirmed that the panel had approved the government’s questions. Facing a tough election next year, Orban has increasingly sought to promote social policies that he says safeguard traditional Christian values against Western liberalism. The European Commission has launched legal action against Orban’s government over the new law, which came into force this month, saying it is discriminatory and contravenes European values of tolerance and individual freedom. Orban aims to hold the referendum by early 2022 before a parliamentary election, where six opposition parties will unite against him for the first time.

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