Tamás Sulyok Elected as New Hungarian President


New Hungarian president Tamás Sulyok wants to build trust through mutual listening and understanding free of prejudices. He said in the Parliament on Monday that he was a supporter of the widest possible transparency in certain areas of authority, such as awards and pardons. The Parliament elected Tamás Sulyok as the President of the Republic on Monday. The president of the Constitutional Court, who was the only candidate for the position, received 134 supporting votes in the secret ballot.

147 representatives took the ballot. Of the 139 valid votes, Tamás Sulyok received 134, five voted no, and seven were invalid. Before the vote, representatives of DK, Momentum, MSZP, Jobbik and Párbeszéd left the meeting hall. After the speaker’s announcement of his election, Tamás Sulyok took an oath as head of state. Tamás Sulyok will take office on March 5th, he will be the seventh president of the republic after the regime change. In his speech after his election, the new head of state, who is the president of the Constitutional Court, promised that he would also work for a fair balance of constitutional fundamental rights and values ​​from the seat of the president of the republic. He said that the basic condition for the existence of the state and the nation is mutual trust between individuals and social groups. Mutual trust without prejudice is the basis of the nation’s unity, he added.

Tamás Sulyok also stated that, for him, fundamental constitutional values ​​are national constitutional identity and statehood based on popular sovereignty. Those who are struggling, those who are in a difficult situation through no fault of their own or are unable to take care of themselves, those who are suffering, the elderly, the sick, the lonely can always count on my attention and support, he emphasized. “With all my actions, I want to express the unity that we, Hungarians, are a proud, European people with more than a thousand years of history and are determined to enforce the law by all means, and we are able to do all this out of conviction, guided by emotions and interwoven with humor,” he said.

He said that for him all power can only be interpreted within the framework of the law. According to his conviction, law carries values, so its central function is the fair balancing of competing values. “For me, political approaches became perceptible mainly when and to the extent that they could be interpreted within the legal framework defined by public law” he said. He explained that, basically and primarily, he could and still can detect public law and constitutional problems from the big system that is usually described with the word politics. Tamás Sulyok also spoke about how the legally correctly defined concept of the rule of law is being lost, how it is being transformed from an “ideal to an idol” in current Europe during the purely utilitarian political approach.

“It is the basic form of movement of my Hungarianness and human existence. My mother tongue, my culture, my family, my work, i.e. everything is connected here,” he said, emphasizing that “whoever is Hungarian is also European.” He said that he wanted a Europe where values ​​are more important than interests, where work of a legal, rather than political, nature takes place in the EU institutions. He went on to say that there are no European values ​​independent of the member states, but a European value system that is common to the member states can develop from the constitutional values ​​of the member states. Tamás Sulyok described the national constitutional identity as basically having a constitutional content, to which legal, cultural and worldview aspects are also connected. He said, “the fears of our predecessors, that after Trianon we would dissolve in the melting pot of other nations, were perhaps never more realistic than in our days”. He added: “identity is closely linked to the traditional social environment that has developed in the Carpathian Basin in the last millennium, and whose preservation is one of the basic conditions of national existence. The identity of the nationalities living with us is an integral part of the national identity”, he emphasized. According to the point of view of the new president of the republic, sovereignty is conceptually indivisible, therefore the member states of the European Union, including Hungary, do not transfer sovereignty to the union, but powers, and do all this because exercising them together is more effective than if the member states exercised them themselves.

“I am equally firmly convinced that there is currently no unified European political nation, but only the political nations of the member states can be interpreted as state-forming factors,” he said. He pointed out that, among others, this is the reason why the European Union is not a state, as the European Court of Justice already established in 2013. Tamás Sulyok said that both the Constitutional Court and the presidential institution of the republic are outside the branches of state power, and he considers this outside the center of gravity. “As President of the Republic, I intend to operate as a lawyer within the framework defined by the Basic Law, within the powers defined there, faithful to my principles and according to the values ​​of the Basic Law”, he stated. He indicated that he is a supporter of the widest possible transparency in certain powers – for example, in the case of awards and pardons. He summarized his legal career by saying that it ranged from the most free legal practice to the noblest job as a constitutional judge. He considered it important to emphasize that he learned the love and respect for the law from his father and two brothers, and passed this on to his two children, who also chose the legal profession. He thanked his wife, Zsuzsanna, for standing by his side and supporting him for fifty years.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *