Hungarian officials take issue with Biden's ambassador for pushing 'gender progressive issues'

Since his arrival the ambassador "has been accused of violating diplomatic conventions, meddling in the judiciary and trying to silence conservative voices."

Joshua Young North Carolina

In July 2022, David Pressman, a "gay human rights lawyer" was confirmed as Joe Biden's new ambassador to Hungary, a NATO country whose Prime Minister, Viktor Orban, has led his nation, called a "citadel of traditional Christian values," in a renewal of socially conservative values.

The New York Times reports that after Pressman began his service in the country in September, he "has been accused of violating diplomatic conventions, meddling in the judiciary and trying to silence conservative voices."

Pressman, who was moved between the jobs of US ambassador to the United Nations for Special Political Affairs, Director for War Crimes and Atrocities on the White House National Security Council, and assistant secretary of Homeland Security all during the Obama administration, brought his husband and two children with him when he began his ambassadorship in Budapest.

 In an article titled "A US Ambassador Finds Himself on Hostile Ground in Hungary," the outlet reports that during Pressman's confirmation, a group of Hungarians rose a flag across from the US Embassy that read "Mr. Pressman, don’t terrorize Hungary with your cult of death."

On the Hungarian news portal PestiSracok, commentators noted Pressman's credentials included being an "an expert on LGBT rights" and said the Biden pick was "an obvious diplomatic provocation."

As The Post Millennial Editor-at-Large Andy Ngo has reported, Hungary has banned the medical gender transitions of children, a harmful practice that the Biden administration has supported in the name of "gender-affirming care." 

Pressman said that most Hungarian officials have even started to greet the American envoy by saying, "Ambassador, it’s wonderful to meet you. I know you want to speak about gender progressive issues."

Pressman said that "They always want to have the conversation about a culture war. We want to have a conversation about a real war that exists next door." Pressman explained that he would then lobby the country into taking a stronger stance of allyship and engagement with Ukraine in the ongoing war against Russia, something Hungary has cautioned against.

Pressman's predecessor, the Trump-appointed David B. Cornstein, was more welcomed and had said of Orban he was a "very, very strong and good leader."

The governing Fidesz party shares similarity to the modern American conservative movement, especially in condemning "wokeism and gender ideology."

As the New York Times reports, "Some Republicans have questioned Mr. Pressman’s suitability for the Budapest job" given the country's values, and have openly worried that his activity in the country will push their allegiance further towards China or Russia.

Pressman has also been accused of interfering in the Hungarian judiciary as he met with two judges from the National Judicial Council upon his arrival and Hungarian news outlet Origo said it was an "unprecedentedly serious interference in the judiciary."


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