Hungarian president János Áder's inaugural speech in the Hungarian National Assembly
Mister Prime Minister!
Distinguished National Assembly!
When taking office five years ago, I finished my speech with the following words. “I stand ready to do my share of the huge work awaiting the nation”
In the past years, I have placed the representation of Hungarian interests and values, the recognition of performance, normativity and the responsibility for future generations in the focus of my work in office.
The summary lying in front of you is testament to what I have could achieve from the work I have undertaken.
There is still ample work left undone. It would be an honour if you could assist me in my work with your suggestions, insights on these issues.
My intent was originally to touch on these issues and to discuss the 5 years lying ahead of us. However, looking at the political discourse of the past months, I thought it better to talk about the one year ahead of us. It is my conviction that if this goes on like this, we will destroy everything we have managed to build together since 1990. We question everything. We completely disregard every – even tacit – agreement we have made. We go beyond all limits.
If we do not intend to allow this to happen, then we can find historic precedents to lend us the strength required for action. 1867. The reconciliation. We have to go back “only” 150 years in time.
It would be good to agree on at least 3 things.
1. We are all citizens of Europe.
2. We all belong to the Hungarian nation.
3. We all long for an honourable, honest and peaceful life.
Let us look at the first question: We are all citizens of Europe and will remain so. In 1990, we all agreed – regardless of party affiliations –on our intent to join the European Union.
In order to ensure that this consensus prevails over and beyond the daily arguments, let me offer you the thoughts of Ferenc Deák. In 1867, when the harmonisation of the interests of the Habsburg Empire and the Hungarian nation was the task at hand, Deák argued in Parliament with the following words:
„thus one objective is to ensure that the Empire stands firm on its feet, an objective we do not wish to subordinate to any other consideration. The other objective is to preserve the constitutional status, the rights and the laws of Hungary … to relinquish more of these than what the firm standing of the Empire would require, would neither be just, nor would it be purposeful.”