Hungary’s Judit Varga Will Lead Orbán’s Party in EU Elections, Report Says


Hungarian Justice Minister Judit Varga will run in the European Parliament election next year as the ruling Fidesz party’s lead candidate, government-affiliated media reported Tuesday.

Varga, whose portfolio includes EU affairs, is a well-known personality in Brussels for her confrontational rhetoric, social media posts criticizing EU institutions and deep loyalty to Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán.

But she is also regarded in EU circles as a polyglot who knows Brussels well and as someone the relatively isolated Hungarian government can still dispatch to sit down with European officials. 

A lawyer by profession, Varga worked at the European Parliament as an adviser for Hungarian MEPs between 2009 and 2018. She was then plucked out of obscurity and made a minister of state for EU relations, the beginning of a meteoric rise through the ranks of Orbán’s associates, culminating in her appointment as justice minister in mid-2019. 

Over the past years, she has been at the forefront of Hungary’s fight with the EU, vocally defending policies that most EU governments see as undermining basic democratic norms and working to convince European institutions to unfreeze EU funds earmarked for Hungary. 

Varga’s office did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday morning. 

But a senior Hungarian official, granted anonymity to discuss internal matters, confirmed that a Brussels job could be in the making for the minister. 

Asked if Varga will run in the election and whether Orbán’s intent could be to nominate the minister for a commissioner post, the senior official said: “I think this is a realistic scenario.”