Breaking - Hungarian Elections 2018: latest updates
Stay tuned for regular updates as Hungary's 2018 general elections unfold
*** 11:59 p.m: Jobbik leader resigns ***
Gábor Vona, The leader of the Jobbik party, has confirmed he will resign.
He said his party had performed well, but failed to meet their objectives.
“Once again Fidesz has sadly won,” he said. He added that he will keep his promise to resign if the election was lost and will stand down on Monday.
*** 11:35 p.m: Prime Minister Viktor Orbán declares victory ***
*** 11:30 p.m: Nézőpont: The results send a clear message to Brussels ***
"The results reassure us that the government’s policy over the last 8 years was right and it also sends a clear message to Brussels," said Nézőpont analyst Csaba Fodor on Kossuth Radio.
*** 11:20 p.m: Preliminary results are in ***
Preliminary results show the ruling party has gained a two-third majority.
Fidesz received 49.51 percent of the votes on a national party list, compared to 44.37 percent at the close of the vote in 2014.
So far, 69.14 percent of ballots have been counted and the Fidesz-KDNP alliance won 134 seats in parliament (91 in individual constituencies, 43 from the national list), which is a two-third majority. Jobbik came second with 27 mandates, DK obtained 9 mandates, LMP won 7 seats.
*** 11:17 p.m: 16 seats are already taken - all of them are Fidesz-KDNP ***
According to state television channel M1, the governing Fidesz-KDNP alliance has already secured 16 seats in Hungary’s National Assembly. Although the results are not final in these districts, the number of ballots counted is high enough to assume a win.
*** 10:55 p.m: Last voters set to cast their ballots ***
The last 10 voters are expected to cast their ballots in Budapest’s sixth district over the next couple of minutes. Once the last votes have been cast, the announcement of the first preliminary results may begin.
*** 10:50 p.m: An amazing 84.97% turnout in overseas London vote ***
Out of the 9,707 people eligible to vote in London during the 2018 Hungarian election, 8,248 people placed their vote - meaning an amazing 84.97% turnout.
*** 10:24 p.m: Leaked results show Fidesz is performing better than ever ***
Although there have been no official results released just yet, leaked interim results show Fidesz is performing better than ever before in the 2018 election.
According to news portal Index, Fidesz has surpassed all expectations in voting districts in the countryside.
"The end is still far away, however, parties claim that in the villages Fidesz proved to be stronger than ever,” the news portal reported.
Figures show that in Veszprém, where in 2014 the interim election was won by an independent candidate, villagers preferred to vote for the ruling party.
*** 10:11 p.m: The governing parties secured massive support, Fidesz VP said ***
Just before sealing the last ballot box and without knowing the results of the election, Fidesz Vice President Szilárd Németh said he’s sure that a sizeable majority has voted for the governing parties.
*** 9:50 p.m: Government Spokesperson says high election turnout is a celebration of democracy ***
Government Spokesperson Zoltán Kovács has said the high election turnout is really a celebration of democracy.
"Hungarians have sent a clear message that Hungarian democracy is alive and kicking," he said.
During an exclusive interview with Abouthungary.hu, he revealed the election results should be made available by about midnight tonight.
“The future in in the hand of the Hungarian electorate, which will be clear in a couple of hours,” he said.
Watch the full video here.
*** 8:45 p.m: National Elections Office says results can be expected only after all polling stations are closed ***
Hungary’s National Elections Office has said that results can be expected only after all polling stations are closed.
On their official wesbite, the office said that it will not communicate the preliminary results until all the votes are counted.
Queues still persist in London and Újbuda, Budapest, said Ilona Pálffy, president of the National Elections Office in Budapest.
The last polling station is expected to close at around 10 p.m. in Budapest.
*** 8:30 p.m: Left-liberal news portal Index predicts solid Fidesz majority ***
Although some electoral districts will not be decided this evening due to the high number of those who are voting at a polling station other than their permanent residence, the prominent news portal still forecasts a strong Fidesz majority of 58 percent.
According to a set of predictions published by left-liberal news portal Index, the Fidesz-KDNP alliance is expected to win 116 out of 199 seats in Hungary’s National Assembly. In this scenario, the governing parties would prevail in three-quarters of the individual electoral districts.
*** 7:48 p.m: G. Fodor Gábor says Fidesz-KDNP will very likely win an absolute majority ***
G. Fodor Gábor, noted political commentator and editor of the news site 888, dismisses the comparisons to the 2002 elections, when Fidesz lost the elections in a similarly high voter turnout. Today's landscape is completely different from 2002, he said, and the ruling parties will likely take more than 40 percent of the vote
*** 7:36 p.m: Fidesz group leader says it may very well be the highest turnout ever ***
Fidesz group leader Gergely Gulyás has thanked Hungary for the especially high turnout in the 2018 general election.
“Hungarian democracy is strong, this is what the high turnout signals. We thank all those who have voted, this way the next government can have a strong legitimacy,” Gergely Gulyás, Fidesz group leader, said.
“It may very well be the highest turnout ever. The parliament of Hungary will then be especially strong,” he added.
He said that the ruling party’s goal is to secure an absolute majority, “but anything on top of that is an honor,” he said.
*** 7:21 p.m: High turnout could spell trouble for MSZP-Dialogue and DK parties ***
The high turnout in Hungary’s 2018 general election could mean trouble for the MSZP-Dialouge and DK parties, it has been claimed.
Bánk Levente Boros, the director of Médianéző which is part of Nézőpont Group, says that in the case of an extremely high turnout, the result of the MSZP-Dialouge list may fall below 10 percent, the percentage needed for joint lists.
He says the DK party may also be at risk of reaching their 5 percent threshold. The same may also apply to LMP, but probably not so much, he added.
Boros made the claim during an interview with M1 television. He added that he was surprised by the extremely high turnout and said the numbers are close to those seen in 2002.
He says there are several different factors at play, but the main reason could be that people decided to take advantage of the good weather and went out to vote.
*** 6:55 p.m: Everything is going just fine, say polling stations outside Hungary ***
The elections are running "flawlessly" in polling stations outside Hungary, MTI has reported after reaching out to voting offices around the world.
The highest number of Hungarians are situated in London, the United Kingdom, where almost 10,000 have signalled their intent to cast votes.
According to sources, 45 percent of voters in London have already cast their ballots and the queue has been long most of the day.