Under Orbán and Magyar, the left-liberal opposition has finally collapsed

Fidesz-KDNP did very well in this year’s EP elections, despite many analysts’ assessments, with a record turnout, the left-liberal opposition has virtually disappeared, with 83% of voters voting for a right-wing political party.

Fidesz wins big again

Many are now clinging to the fact that the higher turnout meant that Fidesz „only” got 44% of the vote, which is significantly below not only the preliminary estimates but also the previous EP election results for the governing parties (detailed results). However, it should be noted that never before have so many people voted for Fidesz-KDNP EP list as now. Moreover, the governing parties won 3105 of the 3177 municipalities (including the 23 districts of Budapest). Péter Magyar’s Tisza won 65 municipalities, while Mi Hazánk and Megoldás Mozgalom (MEMO) won 1 and 1. In four municipalities, Fidesz-KDNP and Tisza lists received the same number of votes. Fidesz-KDNP also managed to gain significant majorities in all types of settlements: in villages and municipalities they were strong again, and they also gained majorities in small and large towns, although in these two types of settlements Tisza came up second.

Share of votes obtained by each party by municipality

Even so, if we see all the settlements of Hungary as 100 units, out of 100 settlements, 98 settlements were won by Fidesz-KDNP, 2 by Tisza. By the same logic, in 94 out of 100 municipalities Tisza came second, in 5 other parties were second and in 1 Fidesz. On this basis, it can hardly be said that Fidesz-KDNP had a bad result.

first place

second place

If we put the same numbers on a map, we see that almost all of Hungary is orange, even at the settlement level. The only exceptions to this are several districts of Budapest, agglomeration towns, a few county capitals (Nyíregyháza, Szolnok, Szeged) and a few medium-sized towns where Tisza has overtaken Fidesz.

Has Fidesz got weaker?

There is a map circulating on social networking sites showing that the percentage of votes cast for Fidesz-KDNP in the municipalities has fallen dramatically. We have put this data on a map and it does show this, but the map is somewhat misleading. It is true that if we compare the percentages obtained by Fidesz-KDNP in 2019 and now, the percentage of votes cast for the governing parties has generally decreased in the South Transdanubia region (Baranya county) and North-Eastern Hungary.

This map, however, hides the fact that the absolute number of votes cast for Fidesz-KDNP increased in 2788 municipalities, and this resulted in more than 271,000 new votes for the governing parties. It does not appear that Fidesz failed to mobilise, but it falls short of analysts’ preliminary expectations, which sometimes predicted as many as 2.2-2.5 million Fidesz voters. The map and graphs below show this.

In which municipalities has Fidesz-KDNP’s support decreased and increased?


On the basis of the above, it cannot be said that Fidesz-KDNP underperformed, in fact, it received almost 230 thousand more votes than in the previous EP elections. This is a significant result considering the economic downturn of the last two years at the mid-point of the government’s term.

The traditional left-liberal opposition has collapsed

Compared to Fidesz-KDNP’s almost 230,000 plus voters, the traditional or old opposition (DK, MSZP, Párbeszéd, Momentum, Jobbik, LMP) has lost almost 800,000 voters in five years. DK-MSZP-Párbeszéd lost 53% of its voters, Momentum 51%, Jobbik 80% and LMP 47%.

In which municipalities has support for traditional opposition parties decreased and increased?


There is no region or type of municipality in Hungary that does not bear witness to this brutal defeat, as the opposition has also suffered a huge defeat in areas where previous elections have shown that they have a particularly strong base.

It is hard to say whether this opposition will ever be able to stand up from this, or whether its voters will continue to migrate towards the now burgeoning Tisza, or perhaps other political formations.

Mi Hazánk and MKKP have also improved

The far-right Mi Hazánk came third not only in the local elections but also in the European Parliament elections, with almost three times the number of list votes they won in 2019 and an increase of votes of 3,108 municipalities. The Hungarian Two-Tailed Dog Party’s (MKKP) EP result is seen by many analysts as a disappointment compared to the two seats it was predicted to win. Nevertheless, MKKP also managed to improve.

Tisza has taken the place of the opposition

In just a few months, the previously not-known Péter Magyar and his party Tisza, managed to mobilise a dizzying number of voters in their first election. Tisza not only took a significant number of voters from the old opposition parties, but also managed to mobilise an equal number of previously non-voters/out-of-party voters.

Change in the number and proportion of EP votes cast for each party

This means that Tisza has now taken over second place from the traditional opposition (DK-MSZP-Parbeszéd, Momentum, Jobbik, LMP) in 2906 municipalities where one of these parties came second in 2019 in the respective municipality.

Hungary is heading right

It was clear from the elections of the past 14 years that Hungary was shifting to the right, but the results of this year’s EP elections show that the three parties that received the most votes, Fidesz-KDNP as the authoritarian-populist right, Tisza as the centre-right and Mi Hazánk as the far-right, are on the right of the spectrum. This does not mean, of course, that the voters of all three parties are right-wing, and in particular Tisza has a large number of left-wing or liberal voters. That said, it is worth noting that together with Jobbik and smaller parties such as Gábor Vona’s Second Reform Era (2RK) and Péter Márki-Zay’s All Hungary People’s Party (MMN), 83% of Hungarian voters voted for parties with right-wing ideologies and policies in this year’s EP elections. The figure was only 62 percent in 2019.

Change in the number and proportion of EP votes cast for the right and left

In this year’s election, there were a total of 925 municipalities where the number of votes cast for right-wing parties doubled, and only 29 municipalities where the total number of votes cast for them decreased or remained unchanged. Obviously, the bigger jumps were in the villages of South and South-East Transdanubia and North-East Hungary, as it is easier to grow from a smaller number of voters to a larger one.

text, charts, maps: Bátorfy Attila
data: NVI/Átlátszó.hu
date: 2024. június 12. 
english translation: Krisztián Szabó