The time of constitutional debate is over, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán stated on Thursday, after a meeting with head of the Constitutional Court Péter Paczolay.

He emphasised that the era of debate surrounding the new Fundamental Law was adequately deep and long, adding that there is no democracy without debate. The Prime Minister’s statement came after the Constitutional Court’s Tuesday decision to reject Ombudsman Máté Szabó's appeal to annul the Fourth Amendment.

Photo: Gergely BotárPrime Minister Orbán called the Constitutional Court the number one protector and guardian of Hungarian constitutionality, and stated that a strong and sovereign Hungary could not exist without strong constitutional safeguards, namely the Court. He added that this body must continuously monitor whether Hungary's legislation is in line with the country's international obligations. Chief Justice Paczolay and the Prime Minister both spoke about the importance of Parliament in incorporating the Court’s decisions.

Prime Minister Orbán stated that procedural regulations governing the Constitutional Court's operation would not be passed by Parliament without consultation and agreement from the Court itself. He pointed out that discussion between heads of constitutional bodies is an essential precondition of a democratic state’s stability and harmonious functioning, adding that this is why he previously also met with the Head of the Curia, Hungary’s Supreme Court and the Chief Prosecutor. He emphasised that the Government will restore the Court's power to rule on budget and tax-related issues once public debt falls below 50%.

Photo: Gergely BotárChief Justice Paczolay expressed his delight that the meeting, at which the parties were able to discuss Hungarian constitutionality, including issues related to the Court, had taken place. He shared his experiences so far on the new procedural regulations, which in his opinion facilitate efficient decision-making within the institution.

(Prime Minister’s Office)