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Anti-LGBTQ+ Politician Caught in All-Male Orgy Resigns Post

József Szájer

Jozsef Szajer, who represented Hungary's right-wing ruling party in the European Parliament, had crafted the nation's ban on same-sex marriage.

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An anti-LGBTQ+ Hungarian politician has resigned from the European Parliament after being caught in what's being described as an orgy involving 25 men.

Jozsef Szajer, who has spoken proudly of writing a ban on same-sex marriage into Hungary's constitution, acknowledged Tuesday that he had been at what he called a "house party" last Friday in Brussels, Belgium, The Guardian reports. Police had raided the event for violation of Belgium's COVID-19 restrictions, banning gatherings of more than four people.

Szajer was caught "shimmying down a drainpipe" in an attempt to escape police, the publication notes. He had no identifying documents with him and had drugs in his backpack, according to a police report. He said the drugs were planted on him and that he had not taken any, and he was released with a warning after officers escorted him home and he produced his diplomatic passport. Police, however, "have opened a case against those present for violating lockdown rules, as well as against Szajer for possession of drugs," The Guardian reports.

He resigned Sunday from the European Parliament, without explanation. Then in his Tuesday statement, he said he had made a "misstep" that was "strictly personal," Politico reports. He apologized to his family but did not address the nature of the party. "I ask everyone not to extend [criticism] to my homeland, or to my political community," he added.

Party host David Manzheley told a Belgian newspaper that Szajer came as the guest of an invitee. "I always invite a few friends to my parties, who in turn bring some friends along, and then we make it fun together," he said. "We talk a bit, we drink something -- just like in a cafe. The only difference is that in the meantime we also have sex with each other." The guests were "completely naked" when police arrived after receiving a complaint, Manzheley said.

Szajer, 59, is a high-ranking member of Hungary's ruling Fidesz Party, which has right-wing ideology, and represented it in the European Parliament. He is a close ally of Prime Minister Victor Orban. He is married to a woman, but a source told The Guardian that it was an "open secret" that he is not completely heterosexual.

When Hungary revised its constitution in 2011, it included a section restricting marriage to male-female couples. Szajer spoke proudly of writing the document on his iPad. A reporter asked him how such a limited definition of marriage could be appropriate in the 21st century, and he responded, "It depends how we interpret the 21st century. I don't think that the traditional concept of marriage has changed just because we came into another millennium."

Under Orban, Hungary has continued to enact anti-LGBTQ+ laws, and last month, Justice Minister Judit Varga proposed a constitutional amendment mandating traditional gender roles, endorsing "children's right to the gender identity they were born with," and stating that only married heterosexual couples can adopt children. The pending amendment has drawn condemnation from European authorities.

Orban said Wednesday that Szajer had left Fidesz, and the prime minister denounced his associate's behavior, The Guardian reports. "What our representative, Jozsef Szajer, did has no place in the values of our political family," Orban said. "We will not forget nor repudiate his 30 years of work, but his deed is unacceptable and indefensible."

Some supporters of the party, however, downplayed the incident. TV host Zsolt Jeszenszky contended liberals were making "a huge political deal out of a sex scandal," and he and others suggested Szajer was set up, according to The Guardian.

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Trudy Ring

Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.
Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.