The European Union (EU) should act more forcefully against the ruling parties in Hungary and Poland, since democracy in these countries is eroding, our re:constitution Fellow Edit Zgut-Przybylska argues in her article in Foreign Policy.
She sheds light on the covert methods authoritarian governments employ to bolster their hold on power and weaken democratic institutions, such as vote-buying, media espionage, and clientelist corruption. She contends that while the EU has taken some action—withholding funds from Hungary and pursuing legal action against Poland—these steps are insufficient. To confront the democratic backsliding in these member states, the EU needs to adopt a comprehensive and long-term strategy that includes effective conditionality enforcement, an indefinite suspension of funds, and legal action, she argues, adding that the EU must play tough to protect democracy in Poland and Hungary.
Read the full article here.