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A Hungarian party would send sixty representatives to the European Parliament in sixty months

YOU can be an EU representative if you want to – according to the campaign rhetoric of a lesser Hungarian party: “you” meaning anyone who joins them. They will select who goes by drawing lots. If the party wins a seat, they will send not one but sixty representatives to Brussels… one after the other. Each of their representatives is going to have one month of stay and then resign… but during that time they must vote by the decisions of the internet community who delegated them. That is true democracy á la IDE, that is the Party for Internetional Democracy.

“Have a nice time in Brussels for a month and for a six figure salary!” – reads a campaign brochure of the party. Wages in Hungary average around a net sum of 350 euros a month, one-tenth of the salary that a EU rep gets. And for them in Brussels, it is plus daily allowance, accommodation and travel expenses. HUF 1 million – and you don’t even have to speak foreign languages. Just ask for an interpreter, it can also be provided for.

The system is, that if IDE wins a seat, they will send the first person on their list to Brussels, who can spend there one month then resign and give the seat to the next person on the list, who will spend one month in Brussels as well then resign and so forth.

“Nothing forbids a representative to resign after one month and thus make the next person on the party list eligible for the post.” – they say. The IDE campaign criticizes the practice of established parties to award EU seats to their apparatchiks for their past services. They say, it’s an opportunity that should be open to anyone. And drawing lots is the best way to decide who goes.

They also argue that it is no problem if teir representatives are not the best qualified, since it is not the representatives themselves who are to decide on the issues. The party holds an online voting and their representative votes accordingly. That way they could alloy the direct and representative forms of democracy.

Should IDE get into the European Parliament, that may be very fresh air into democracy on three counts:

Never before have representatives gained their seats by drawing lots!

Never before have representatives been required to resign after one month!

Never before have representatives been bound by the outcome of online voting!

IDE, the Party for Internetional Democracy has been a registered party in Hungary since 2004 and is listed in the official register of the parties running for seats in the European Parliament. (See the website of the Országos Választási Bizottság/ National Election Committee: www.valasztas.hu; http://www.valasztas.hu/ep09vt/p1.jsp)

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