After his defeat in Canada’s 2015 federal election, and since 2018, Stephen Harper has chaired the Munich, Germany-based, far-right International Democrat Union.

The IDU’s membership consists of 84 full and associate members from 65 countries, including the Conservative Party of Canada, the US Republican Party (GOP), the UK’s Conservative and Unionist Party (Tories), the Austrian People’s Party, Israel’s Likud Party, Germany’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU), the New Zealand National Party, India’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Orbán’s Fidesz Party in Hungary, and others.

Is it ironic then — or simply another authoritarian lie — that the IDU’s stated goals are to “bring together legislators, political professionals and thought leaders to build relationships, to share best practices for campaigning and governing and to support the global struggle for freedom and democracy?”

On July 6, 2023, Stephen Harper tweeted »

As @IDUalliance Chairman I was pleased to meet with Fidesz Party Leader @PM_ViktorOrban today in Budapest.  We discussed the IDU’s strong support for Ukraine and the importance of centre-right parties strengthening their collaboration.

Press Progress »

Orbán has been widely-denounced by human rights organizations for his government’s anti-immigrant policies, removing the “right to asylum” and, according to Amnesty International, criminalizing efforts to assist refugees. The government has also passed several anti-LGBTQ+ laws — including bans on material which “encourages” or “popularizes” homosexuality.

In 2018, political science professor Achim Hurrelmann described Fidesz’s ideologyto Maclean’s as “anti-migration, emphasizing the Christian roots of Europe and being very much against diversity.”

Prior to tweeting a photo with Harper, Orbán posted a video celebrating an alliance with Poland’s far-right government to resist the European Union’s “mandatory migrant quotas.”