Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

The EU executive on Tuesday launched a never-used procedure against Hungary that could see the Hungarian government stripped of EU funding for falling short on anticorruption and flouting democratic standards.

The move comes two days after Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban won re-election with an overwhelming majority, claiming his victory as a win over liberal values defended by Brussels.

The nationalist and ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin is frequently accused in Brussels of backsliding on democratic norms.

The European Commission "will now send the letter of formal notification to start the conditionality mechanism," European Commission head Ursula von der Leyen said to applause at a plenary session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France.

The latest clash with Hungary is over its public procurement system, conflict of interests and corruption and could see Budapest lose EU cash if endorsed by a super-majority of the 27 member states.

This seems to me to be a more fruitful (and more rapid) way of sorting the sheep from the goats.

Given Poland's current colossal effort in supporting Ukrainian refugees, it would be tempting to give the Polish government a pass on similar issues;  but that would be inconsistent, and a mistake.  Give Poland a huge subsidy for the current crisis, but hit them with the same treatment as Hungary on the rule-of-law etc issues.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Apr 7th, 2022 at 01:24:07 PM EST

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