Hungarian NGOs call for invalid votes on the government’s anti-LGBTQI referendum
President János Áder announced the date of the government's anti-LGBTQI referendum, which will take place on April 3 along with the parliamentary elections. NGOs are asking voters to vote invalidly so that everyone can live in safety and equality in Hungary.
On July 21, 2021, Judit Varga, Minister of Justice, proposed five questions for a referendum to the National Election Committee on behalf of the Government. The referendum is the government’s response to an infringement procedure started by the European Commission, to prove that the homophobic and transphobic propaganda law passed in June has social support. However, according to the Háttér Society and Amnesty International Hungary’s poll in August, the majority of society does not believe the government’s homophobic lies.
The referendum is particularly vicious for two reasons. Firstly, the wording of the questions suggests that the mere knowledge of sexual and gender minorities harms children. Secondly, it violates the dignity of the LGBTQI community. The questions are intentionally manipulative, as they weaponize parents’ concern towards their children for political purposes. This is the second time that the Fidesz-KDNP government is building their election campaign on the hatred of a vulnerable minority.
14 NGOs are asking all voters now to vote invalidly in the referendum. The easiest way to do so is to cross both “Yes” and “No” for each referendum question.
“Invalid questions must be answered invalidly. Each invalid vote will help preventing the referendum to reach the necessary number of participants for the validity threshold. Let’s prove it once again that Hungarians want to live in a tolerant society, let’s reject the government’s hateful and alienating policies,” said Dávid Vig, director of Amnesty International Hungary.
“We all have acquaintances who themselves belong to the sexual or gender minority: our nephew, aunt, friend, coworker, teacher or teammate. We want to live in a society where their safety is equally important, where there won’t be atrocities against our loved ones on the street, on public transport, or at work,” said Luca Dudits, executive board member of Háttér Society.