Hungarian Opinion: First Round of Opposition Primary Concludes, Dobrev Wins

  • 4 Oct 2021 5:27 AM
  • BudaPost
Hungarian Opinion: First Round of Opposition Primary Concludes, Dobrev Wins
A pro-government commentator claims that the opposition primary is a stunt orchestrated by Ferenc Gyurcsány. A liberal columnist commenting on the preliminary results thinks that if Klára Dobrev wins in the second round as well, the opposition is unlikely to defeat Fidesz in the April election.

The first round of the opposition primary ended on Tuesday. The electoral committee of the opposition planned to announce the results by Wednesday afternoon, the final vote count was finally announced after midnight on Thursday evening. 634,000 votes were cast, nearly twice as many as opposition parties had expected.

Klára Dobrev came first with 34.8 per cent,  followed by Gergely Karácsony 27.3 per cent and Péter Márki-Zay 20.4 per cent. The two remaining candidates will not make it to the second round due in mid-October.

Opposition voters also chose their single candidates in all the 106 individual constituencies. DK won the highest number of nominations (33), while Jobbik came in second (with 29 candidates).


Magyar Nemzet’s Ottó Gajdics thinks that the opposition primary is a joke. The pro-government commentator emphasizes the problems, firstly the crash of the online voting system on 18 September, then the slow count – the opposition was unable to count all the votes as planned by Wednesday afternoon.

Gajdics suggests that the primary is just a stunt orchestrated by former PM Gyurcsány, who holds the strings in the background and orchestrates the opposition’s strategy in order to win back power through proxies.

On 444.hu, Péter Magyari is not at all surprised by Klára Dobrev’s victory in the first round of the primary. The liberal pundit recalls that the Democratic Coalition has been the most popular opposition party, and therefore it could mobilize voters to supports its candidate.

He nonetheless thinks that in the 2022 April election the opposition will have little chance to defeat Fidesz if it is led by Ms Dobrev, so the main question in the second round of the primary will be if she can be defeated by Gergely Karácsony or Péter Márki-Zay.

Dobrev wins first round of opposition primary

A left-liberal author ponders Klára Dobrev’s chances of winning the second round of the opposition primaries, and then of a Dobrev-led opposition defeating Fidesz in April 2022. A pro-government columnist believes that the primary has helped to entrench Ferenc Gyurcsány’s alleged control of the Left.

In the first round of the opposition primaries, the Democratic Coalition’s Klára Dobrev came in first in 85 of the 106 voting districts and won the first round. Péter Márki-Zay, who received 20.4 per cent and came in third hinted that he may step back and support Gergely Karácsony in the second round.

In Heti Világgazdaság, Tibor Lengyel assesses Klára Dobrev’s chances of defeating Fidesz in April 2022. The left-wing liberal analyst points out that Dobrev may have achieved a landslide victory in the countryside, but she lost in Budapest where in several districts she was defeated not only by Karácsony, but by Márki-Zay as well.

While she is the most divisive and rejected candidate on the Left, as a female, Dobrev may attract voters who are fed up with what Lengyel sees as the governing parties’ ‘male chauvinist’ rhetoric. He goes on to add that Dobrev’s firm English knowledge and experience in the EP may also secure her some advantage over Karácsony, and the strong network of the Democratic Coalition also represents a huge asset for her.

Lengyel suggests that Dobrev’s uncompromising tone and determination could attract voters, but she will also have to say something about her family’s involvement in the Communist dictatorship as well as her spouse Ferenc Gyurcsány’s record in the 2006 atrocities.

Magyar Hírlap’s Ferenc Brém-Nagy sees the first round of the opposition primary as a decisive victory for Ferenc Gyurcsány, who may thus entrench his ‘leading role’ on the Left.

The pro-government columnist writes that Gyurcsány atomized and divided the Left and kept it in that state, until he became the strongest voice in the opposition and achieved a position from which he is now spearheading the unification of the left-wing parties that lost their identity in the past decade.

Brém-Nagy claims that the primary was a devastating blow for both Momentum and Jobbik, placing Ferenc Gyurcsány in even greater control of the Left than hitherto.

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MTI Photo: Zoltán Máthé

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