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Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán addresses a keynote speech during a session of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at the Balna cultural center of Budapest, Hungary on May 19, 2022. (Photo: Attila Kisbenedek/AFP via Getty Images)

Authoritarian Viktor Orbán to Speak at US Conservatives' Annual Summit

"Seems bad that the U.S. conservative movement has so wholeheartedly embraced a foreign autocrat who successfully dismantled democracy in his home nation," said one observer.

Julia Conley

Further solidifying the U.S. Republican Party's ties to Hungarian authoritarian leader Viktor Orbán, the American Conservative Union has invited the prime minister to speak at right-wing political activists' annual conference in August.

Orbán will join allies of former President Donald Trump including Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) and Fox News host Sean Hannity—and likely Trump himself—at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) from August 4-7, three months after "CPAC Hungary," the group's auxiliary meeting in Budapest where the prime minister advised conservatives to take control of the U.S. media to increase their power.

"They're just not even pretending to care anymore" about the implications of openly associating with an autocrat, said Ryan Cooper of The American Prospect.

Orbán won his fourth term as prime minister in April on what one progressive called a "dark day for democracy." After becoming prime minister in 2010, he began to muzzle independent media outlets, resulting in rampant disinformation and fawning coverage of Orbán leading up to the election, as well as little coverage of his opponent.

He also rewrote election laws in order to become Hungary's longest-serving prime minister and has led the government's attacks on LGBTQ+ rights, banning schools from presenting information about gender identity and homosexuality—as right-wing state leaders in the U.S. have in recent months.

The ACU told right-wing outlet The Daily Caller that Orbán is being welcomed to Dallas because "the fight against socialism is a global one."

A primary driver of the prime minister's collaboration with the Republicans, however, appears to be helping corporations and the wealthy maximize their profits. As Common Dreams reported last week, Orbán's government is coordinating with the GOP to defeat a 15% global minimum tax pushed by President Joe Biden.

"Seems bad that the U.S. conservative movement has so wholeheartedly embraced a foreign autocrat who successfully dismantled democracy in his home nation," said former management consultant Carlos F. Camargo.

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