The Fidesz–Christian Democratic People’s Party (KDNP) electoral alliance won 66.8 percent of the 199 seats in Hungary’s National Assembly on just under 45 percent of the party votes cast in the national election held on April 6, 2014.
Hungary’s 2014 National Assembly election was the first held under the new Electoral Law that Fidesz-KDNP adopted in 2011, which nearly halved the number of representatives in the legislature and eliminated the second round of voting, among other changes (see National Assembly Election Procedure).
Voter participation was 61.24 percent, the second lowest in the seven National Assembly elections held in Hungary since the transition from communism to democracy in 1990 (source in Hungarian).
A total of 18 parties and party alliances qualified to appear on the ballot in the 2014 National Assembly election under the relaxed requirements for participation contained in the new Electoral Law, up from 10 parties in 2010.
Four of these parties and party alliances surpassed the five-percent threshold of votes cast necessary to gain representation in the National Assembly: Fidesz-KDNP; the socialist-liberal Change of Government (Kormányváltás) alliance (1); the radical-nationalist Jobbik party; and the green Politics Can Be Different (Lehet Más a Politika, or LMP) party.
The Fidesz-KDNP alliance won 133 of the 199 seats in the National Assembly, while Change of Government won 38 seats, Jobbik won 23 seats and Politics Can Be Different won 5 seats.
The Fidesz-KDNP alliance therefore won 66.8 percent of the seats in the National Assembly on 44.9 percent of the party-list votes, while Change of Government won 19.1 percent of the seats on 25.6 percent of the party-list votes, Jobbik won 11.6 percent of the seats on 20.2 percent of the party-list votes and Politics Can Be Different won 2.5 percent of the seats on 5.3 percent of the party-list votes.
Candidates from the Fidesz-KDNP electoral alliance won 96 of 106 individual voting-districts, while those from the Change of Government party alliance won the remaining ten districts—eight down the center of Budapest as well as one district in the city of Miskolc and one district in the city of Szeged.
Candidates from the Change of Government electoral alliance won second place behind Fidesz in 55 individual voting-districts, while those from Jobbik won second place behind Fidesz in 41 individual voting-districts and those from Fidesz won second place behind Change of Government in the remaining 10 districts.
Jobbik candidates won second place behind Fidesz in 41 of 88 individual-voting districts located outside the city of Budapest.
The 133 representatives elected to the National Assembly as part of the Fidesz-KDNP electoral alliance will form separate party caucuses in the 2014–2018 parliamentary cycle—117 as part of the Fidesz caucus and 16 as part of the KDNP caucus.
The Hungarian Socialist Party, which gained representation in the legislature as the main party in the Change of Government electoral alliance, will form the second largest caucus in the National Assembly with 29 representatives, while Jobbik will form the third largest caucus with 23 representatives and Politics Can Be Different will form the smallest caucus with five representatives. Nine representatives elected to the National Assembly as part of the Change of Government electoral alliance will sit in the legislature as independents, either unable or unwilling to unite with one another in order to meet the minimum of five representatives necessary to form a coalition under such circumstances—four from the Democratic Coalition, three from Together 2014 and one each from Dialogue for Hungary and the Hungarian Liberal Party.
The 55 representatives from the Hungarian Socialist Party, Jobbik and Politics Can Be Different caucuses and the 11 independent representatives will sit in opposition to the Fidesz-KDNP governing alliance in the 2014–2018 parliamentary cycle.
Four candidates won election to the National Assembly who have served as representatives in the legislature continually since Hungary’s transition to democracy in 1990, all of them from Fidesz: Prime Minister Viktor Orbán; National Assembly Speaker László Kövér; Fidesz National Assembly caucus Chairman Lajos Kósa; and Zsolt Németh. One other has served as National Assembly representative in all seven parliamentary cycles since 1990, though not continually since that time: National Economy Minister Mihály Varga of Fidesz.
The 14 parties appearing on the ballot that did not surpass the five-percent threshold necessary for representation in the National Assembly won the remaining 4 percent of the party-list votes. The communist Workers’ Party (Munkáspárt) and the Homeland Is Not For Sale (A Haza Nem Eladó) party representing foreign-currency-denominated loan debtors won the most party-list votes among the 14 parties that did not qualify for representation with 0.6 percent and 0.5 percent of the votes cast, respectively.
Fidesz-KDNP won 95.5 percent of the 128,429 votes cast by mail in the 2014 National Assembly election, while Jobbik won 2.3 percent, Change of Government won 1.2 percent and LMP and other parties each won 0.5 percent. Just 6,851 Hungarian citizens cast votes at embassies and other officially designated locations abroad in the first round of the 2010 National Assembly elections, suggesting that a significant majority of those who voted by mail in 2014 did so pursuant to the stipulation in the new Electoral Law enabling Hungarian citizens to cast party-list votes even if they have no address in Hungary after they became Hungarian citizens under expedited procedures for Hungarians living abroad to obtain Hungarian citizenship introduced shortly after Fidesz-KDNP came to power in 2010 (source in Hungarian).
Just under 60 percent of the votes cast by mail in the 2014 National Assembly election arrived from Romania and Serbia, each of which contain large Hungarian national-minority populations. The two other countries located next to Hungary in which large Hungarian national-minority populations reside—Slovakia and Ukraine—do not permit dual citizenship, thus Hungarians living in those countries did not vote by mail in large number (a total of 1,541 votes arrived by mail from “countries prohibiting dual nationality”).
Fidesz-KDNP won one seat in the National Assembly as a result of votes cast by mail in the 2014 election pursuant to changes in the Citizenship Law in 2010 and the Electoral Law in 2011, thus providing the party alliance with the 133rd seat needed to command a two-thirds super majority in the legislature at the beginning of the 2014–2018 parliamentary cycle.
Fidesz-KDNP won a further six seats in the National Assembly as a result of the unique change to electoral procedure in the 2011 Election Law stipulating that votes for winning candidates in excess of those needed to win elections in individual electoral-districts be counted as “fragmentary votes” (töredékszavazat) added to votes for parties on the national party-list in addition to those cast for losing candidates in individual electoral-districts as previously (source in Hungarian).
Thus without the Fidesz-KDNP-approved changes to the electoral system contained in the new Election Law, the party alliance would have won 126 seats in the 2014 National Assembly election, or 63.3 percent of all seats in the legislature.
Fidesz-KDNP also benefited to an unquantifiable degree from the party alliance’s redrawing of electoral districts and relaxation of the conditions that need to be met in order qualify for participation in National Assembly elections as part of the 2011 Election Law (see Crunching the Numbers).
1-The Change of Government alliance was composed of the following parties: the Attila Mesterházy-led Hungarian Socialist Party; former prime minister Ferenc Gyurcsány’s Democratic Coalition (Demokratikus Koalíció); former prime minister Gordon Bajnai’s Together 2014 (Együtt 2014); the liberal-green LMP splinter party Dialogue for Hungary (Párbeszéd Magyarországért); and the Hungarian Liberal Party (Magyar Liberális Párt).
The data in this article is based on that contained on the Hungarian-language website of Hungary’s National Election Office (Nemzeti Választási Iroda).
Last updated: May 25, 2016.