The opposition Socialist Party (MSZP) won a by-election in northern Budapest’s 4th district (Újpest) on Sunday. Imre Horváth, the Socialist candidate, garnered 50.6% of the votes in the election, followed by the ruling FIDESZ candidate with 30.7% and radical nationalist Jobbik with 9.8%. The by-election was held after Péter Kiss, the district’s Socialist representative, died recently.
Socialist chairman József Tóbiás said that “voters have expressed their protest and signalled that this kind of government cannot continue”. He added that his party would work to “increase society’s rightful anger and transform it into creative energy in parliament”. Spokesman of the FIDESZ group, Bence Tuzson, said “nothing has changed, as expected”, adding that the Socialists had merely retained their mandate. The leftist Democratic Coalition said that the result should be “encouraging for all democrats” as it demonstrates that “Orbán’s regime can be toppled.”
However, according to pollster IPSOS the ruling party alliance keeps its towering lead against its opposition rivals. The camp of FIDESZ faithful fell from 35% of all voters at the start of October to 30% at the beginning of November. The opposition, however, did little to capitalise on the ruling party’s loss. The Socialist Party lost a percentage point with support of 11% while radical nationalist party JOBBIK gained a point to reach 13%. Green party LMP also added a point to stand at 4%, while the leftist Democratic Coalition (DK) and EGYÜTT could count on 2% each.
via hungarymatters.hu photo: Imre Horváth’s press conference (mszp.hu)