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Is Hungary in for an "anyone but Orbán" election?

Viktor Orbán, Hungary's far-right populist prime minister, likes to shock people. It's part of his political appeal. Orbán has proudly proclaimed that he is an "illiberal" leader," creating a frenzy in Brussels because Hungary is a member of the European Union.

It's been over a decade since the 58-year old, whom some have dubbed the "Trump before Trump" became prime minister. In that time he has, critics say, hollowed out Hungary's governing institutions and eroded the state's democratic characteristics.

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Fighting for democracy in Hungary and Hong Kong

Former Obama adviser Ben Rhodes sees parallels between Hungary's politics and what happened in the US under Trump, and believes the EU has been too lenient towards Prime Minister Viktor Orbán's autocratic tendencies. Rhodes, who met with democracy activists in Hungary and Hong Kong when researching his book, "After the Fall: Being American in the World We've Made," observes that Hungary's opposition groups have been strengthened by banding together to form a united front against corrupt politicians. There's less reason for hope in Hong Kong, says Rhodes, and one reason is that the US never made it a priority. "At every stage of the last 30 years, a commercial interest, or a security interest, or a geopolitical interest was always above what our interests were on an issue like Hong Kong," Rhodes tells Ian Bremmer on GZERO World.

Watch the episode: Is American democracy in danger?

Authoritarianism’s enduring appeal: Anne Applebaum discusses

Across the world, from the Philippines to Hungary to Venezuela, nations have embraced authoritarian rule in recent years, in many cases with significant popular support. What is the enduring appeal of authoritarianism, what has the pandemic done to accelerate its growth, and how susceptible is the United States to its sway? Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Anne Applebaum joins Ian Bremmer on GZERO World to investigate the allure of these anti-democratic movements and to shed light on their unlikely champions.

Viktor Orban's authority in Hungary; uptake of contact-tracing apps

Carl Bildt, former Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Sweden, with the view from Europe:

Will Hungary's move to end "rule by decree" minimize Viktor Orban's authority?

Well, the answer to that one is no. They have evidently felt the need for some facelift on the nature of what is going on in Hungary. They've done that. But it doesn't change anything of the substance. He's ruling in an increasingly authoritarian manner in his country.

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Populism Ain’t About the People

Trump. Brexit. 5Star. Marine Le Pen. Something, to coin a phrase, is happening here. But what’s not happening, says Princeton Professor and populism scholar Jan Muller, is the will of “the People.”

Unless we’re talking swamp people…

+Kim Jong-Un and the Heartbreakers + Quitaly + Colombi-uh?

Let’s get to it.

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