Municipal elections in Hungary: Opposition takes Budapest and major cities

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In Sunday's municipal elections in Hungary, opposition candidates won several surprise victories, taking the Lord Mayor of Budapest and a majority the capital's general assembly. Meanwhile, governing party Fidesz remained strong in small communities.
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In Budapest, opposition candidate Gergely Karácsony took 50.86% of votes for Lord Mayor, while incumbent István Tarlós had 44.1%. As for individual districts, the opposition took Districts 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, 13, 14, 15, 18 and 19, with Fidesz candidates winning in Districts 5, 10, 12, 16, 17, 21 and 22. Independent candidates won in Districts 20 and 23. In the Budapest General Assembly, the unified opposition will have a 18-15 majority.

Fidesz also lost several major cities, with the opposition taking over seven cities with county rights (Eger, Miskolc, Érd, Tatabánya, Dunaújváros, Pécs and Szombathely) while retaining the three that already had opposition mayors (Salgótarján, Szeged and Hódmezővásárhely). Fidesz candidates, or independents with Fidesz support, were elected in 13 cities with county rights.

As for county assemblies, Fidesz again won a majority in all 19 county assemblies (elected by towns outside of Budapest without county rights) and its candidates will be mayors in virtually all smaller towns and villages. As Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said on election night,

We can count on the Hungarian countryside and the Hungarian countryside can count on us.

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