Electing Members of the National Assembly

The Fundamental Law sets down that Hungary is an independent, democratic state governed by the rule of law. Hungary's form of state is a republic, its form of government a parliamentary republic. The government is answerable to the National Assembly and governs the country with the confidence of a majority. Legislative power rests with the National Assembly, consisting of 199 Members in a single chamber.

The National Assembly holds sessions in the House of Parliament situated in Budapest on the bank of the Danube. The keys to the building having been handed over in 1902, it has long been rightfully considered one of the most beautiful parliament buildings in the world – borne out by the hundreds of thousands of visitors every year. The important work of legislation takes place within its walls. Indeed, the work carried out here is worth a closer look, as the decisions of the National Assembly and the laws enacted here determine everyday life in Hungarian society.

Electing Members of the National Assembly

Before 2014, Hungary's (blended) electoral system was among the most complicated in Europe; it saw the election of Members of the National Assembly six times as of 1990. The system was reformed by Act CCIII of 2011 on the Election of Members of the National Assembly with provisions first implemented during the 2014 general elections. That spring, Hungarian citizens elected 199 Members of Parliament to a four-year term, voting directly by secret ballot based on universal and equal suffrage.

The 2014 vote saw the election of

106 Members in individual constituencies and

93 Members on national lists.

The following parties won mandates in the 2014 parliamentary elections:

Fidesz–Hungarian Civic Alliance (Fidesz) and the Christian Democratic People's Party (KDNP) (joint list)

133 Members

MSZP-EGYÜTT-DK-PM-MLP (joint list)

38 Members

Jobbik, the Movement for a Better Hungary (Jobbik)

23 Members

Politics Can Be Different (LMP)

5 Members

 

Election results for parliamentary parties, 1990–2014

Party

MDF

Fidesz

KDNP2

FKgP

MIÉP3

Jobbik

MSZP

SZDSZ

LMP4

1990

First-round results (%)

24.73

8.95

6.46

11.73

10.89

21.39

Total mandates

165

22

21

44

33

94

1994

First-round results (%)

11.73

7.01

7.03

8.82

1.58

32.99

19.73

Total mandates

38

20

22

26

0

209

70

1998

First-round results (%)

2.80

29.48

2.31

13.15

5.47

32.92

7.57

Total mandates

171

148

0

48

14

134

24

2002

First-round results (%)

41.07

0.75

4.37

42.05

5.57

Total mandates

188

0

0

178

20

2006

First-round results (%)

5.04

42.03

0.02

2.20

43.21

6.50

Total mandates

11

164

0

0

190

20

2010

First-round results (%)

2.67

52.73

16.67

19.30

7.48

Total mandates

0

263

47

59

16

20145

Election results (%)

44.36

20.46

25.89

5.24

Total mandates

133

23

38

5

 

117 MDF Members won in individual constituencies as joint Fidesz-MDF candidates.
2The KDNP did not nominate a list of candidates in 2002.
3MIÉP was established in 1993 and first ran in 1994.
4The LMP was established in 2008 and first ran in 2010.
5Single-round elections as of 2014.

New electoral law

In December 2011, the National Assembly enacted a new law (Act CCII of 2011) on the election of Members of the National Assembly, which was to be applied for the first time during the next general election held on 6 April 2014. Voters thus elected a National Assembly, now with 199 Members, that was smaller than before. 106 Members won seats in individual constituencies, and 93 did so on national lists of candidates. A national list may be a party list or a nationality list. For the first time, citizens of a particular nationality in Hungary were also able to elect a nationality representative. 13 nationalities, each with its own country-wide self-governing body, enjoyed the opportunity to nominate candidates on a nationality list. In addition, this was the first time that Hungarian citizens without a permanent residence in Hungary (and residing beyond its borders) were able to vote for a party list. Also, in a departure from previous practice, parliamentary elections are now held in a single round, rather than in two.