Putin ally calls for Trump reelection to “bring us peace”

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán on Thursday called for Donald Trump to return to the White House during a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Budapest.

“Come back, Mr. President, make America great again and bring us peace!” Orbán said, according to a translation from the Associated Press.

Orbán was a vocal supporter of Trump during his presidency. The Hungarian leader visited Trump at the White House in 2019 and spent time with him at his Bedminster, New Jersey, golf course in August 2022. More recently, Orbán encouraged Trump to “keep on fighting” in a tweet posted ahead of the former president’s April 4 arraignment in New York City on 34 criminal counts.

In addition, Orbán has long been a staunch ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin. He is considered by many to be the most pro-Kremlin leader of a European Union nation and has shown his loyalty to Putin by trying to thwart the EU’s sanctions against Russia as punishment for the Ukraine war while also trying to undermine NATO’s military support of Kyiv.

President Donald Trump speaks to the media during a meeting with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán in the Oval Office on May 13, 2019. On Thursday, Orbán said Trump needs to return to the White House.
Mark Wilson/Getty

During his remarks at CPAC, Orbán reiterated his admiration for Trump, saying that “if President Trump were president now, there would be no war affecting Ukraine and Europe today.”

Orbán also expressed his views on such topics as LGBTQ+ rights and migration while describing his country as a haven of conservatism and denouncing liberalism as a “virus.”

“Hungary is actually an incubator where experiments are done on the future of conservative policies,” Orbán said, according to the AP. “Hungary is the place where we didn’t just talk about defeating the progressives and liberals and causing a conservative Christian political turn, but we actually did it.”

When asked about what—if any—political benefit Trump may receive from Orbán’s endorsement, GOP strategist John Feehery told Newsweek the effect would likely be minimal.

“I think only a tiny sliver of the electorate knows who Viktor Orbán is,” Feehery said. “Among Republican primary voters, it is probably a net positive.”

Newsweek reached out to Orbán’s office via email for comment.

Last summer, Orbán delivered a well-received speech at CPAC in Dallas, in which he railed against globalists and communism and spoke out against gay marriage. His remarks Thursday in his home country covered much of the same ground.

“The woke movement and gender ideology are exactly what communism and Marxism used to be,” Orbán said. “They artificially cut the nation into minorities in order to spark strife among the groups.”

The CPAC in Budapest also featured noteworthy comments from Tucker Carlson, who addressed the crowd in a video seemingly recorded before he was fired from his show on Fox News.

“I wish I was there in Budapest. If I ever get fired and have some time and can leave, I will be there with you,” Carlson said in the video.

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