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Publicus: two-thirds of Hungarians say their gov’t serves Putin’s interests

picture of Viktor Orbán and Vladimir Putin

Left-leaning Publicus Institute conducted a poll commissioned by MEP István Ujhelyi on what Hungarians think about their country’s foreign policy and relationship with other countries.

The institute interviewed 2,006 Hungarians in a nationwide, representative study between February 3-14, prior to the outbreak of war between Russia and Ukraine.

The key results of the poll were the following:

  • 67% of those polled agreed at least somewhat with the position that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and his government were destroying European unity in the interests of Russian President Putin, thereby threatening the security of Europe and Hungary. Nine out of ten opposition voters felt this way, but only one in ten Fidesz voters said it was true.
  • 53% said that the current foreign policy pursued by the Hungarian government primarily serves the interests of Russia. One year earlier, only a quarter of respondents agreed with this sentiment.
  • 84% held peace and cooperation among Member States as very important among the EU’s values.
  • 82% agreed that Hungary traditionally belongs to the West in terms of its values, and so must maintain a westward orientation.
  • 71% disagreed at least somewhat that it would be in Hungary’s interest to forge closer ties to Russia and distance themselves from the European Union and the United States.
  • 88% of respondents agreed at least somewhat that Hungary’s membership in NATO meant security for the country, and that cooperation in the Western defense alliance was of paramount importance.

The full results of the poll are on Publicus’ website.


Corruption not a major problem, say 98% of Fidesz voters

picture of woman shrugging

Only 18% of opposition voters believe corruption is the biggest problem today, according to a new Republikon poll as reported by Népszava. A higher proportion, 20%, said the cost of living was too high, and just over 20% said that wages were too low.

By comparison, 30% of Fidesz voters said that the cost of living was too high, and 23% were troubled by low pay. Barely 2% of them felt that a high level of corruption existed.

A high proportion of opposition supporters think the quality of health care in Hungary is low, and 10% of them called the destruction of democratic norms in Hungary as the country’s most serious problem. However, far fewer of them mentioned the migration of skilled labor aborad as a problem compared to Fidesz voters.

Interestingly, around 2-3% of supporters of the opposition coalition mentioned that we do not do enough to protect the environment and combat climate change, while 7-8% of Fidesz voters felt the same way. Similar proportions of both camps felt that pensions were too low, between 8-12%. They also agreed on the extent of societal differences between men and women, with 2-3% of them stating that the biggest problem today was that these differences were too great.

The poll also measured how much voters in each camp agreed to statements on a five-point scale. As to whether corruption had become much more significant since 2010 than before, political opposition supporters gave the statement 4.5 points, while Fidesz voters only scored it 2.3.

However, many among the latter group said that there was corruption in the country, but it was outweighed by the positive aspects of a Fidesz government. Pro-government voters gave 3.5 points to this statement on average, while it was only 2.7 for those identifying as opposition supporters.

[Magyar Hang]

Young Hungarians not buying government claim that West is in decline

picture of Euros

The vast majority of young Hungarians still believe that they can thrive much better in Western European countries, according to a new Median poll commissioned by HVG.

An overwhelming majority of young people believe that the quality of life in the West is far better than in Hungary in almost every respect, from economic development to the quality of human relations to the fight against corruption, the poll shows. The data also reveals that although Hungarians between 18-29 years old have a lot in common with the opinions of those aged between 30-39, Fidesz’s two-million-strong voter bloc still comprises a huge group.

Three-quarters of people in Hungary believe that their country is far behind the West in terms of quality of life, which means that even pro-government voters question the reality of Viktor Orbán’s mantra that “the West has lost its appeal in the eyes of Central Europe.”

The most satisfied with their lot are those who are unable or unwilling to criticize government measures. They typically have at least 8 years of education, a monthly household income of less than 100,000 Ft. (US $307), mostly live in small towns, and are retired, meaning they are most vulnerable. “These are the ones who have suffered over the last 10–12 years,” economist Péter Ákos Bod told HVG.

The middle class has also benefited significantly from government policies and has not experienced the austerity that other groups have had to endure. One might conclude that the affluent are then united in their enthusiasm for the Orbán government and the poor are in opposition, but the poll shows that this is far from the case.


Party preferences mostly static in latest Republikon poll

picture of poll results

Support for Fidesz and the united opposition parties declined slightly in November, with the popularity of DK and Jobbik declining slowly for the past few months, according to the latest monthly poll from the Republikon Institute.

The institute’s survey shows that the Momentum also weakened slightly last month, while smaller parties appear to be gradually catching up.

Among the general population, support for government party Fidesz stands at 31%, a decline of one percentage point. Likewise, DK, Jobbik, and Momentum also lost one point each, with DK now at 11%, Jobbik at 8%, and Momentum at 6% of those polled.

MSZP and Dialogue both retained their previous levels of support at 5% and 3%, respectively, while LMP and Our Country also continue to have 2% support each among the general population.

The Hungarian Two-Tailed Dog Party (MKKP) gained a point to capture 3% of those polled. But those who would vote for non-specified “other parties” polled at 3% as well. Undecided voters, meanwhile, grew from 24% to 26% among the general population in the latest Republikon Institute poll.

The political institute found that after the opposition’s primary elections in the fall, Hungary’s larger political parties had lost some support, to the gain of smaller parties and the group of undecideds. As previous polls have shown, the entire opposition camp taken as a whole continues to poll higher than government party Fidesz.

Republikon’s party preference poll was conducted by telephone with 1,000 Hungarian adults between November 17-23, balanced by gender, age, education, and location, and with a margin of error of 3.2%.


Závecz: opposition just barely ahead of Fidesz

picture of united opposition

A new Závecz Research poll shows that both the Fidesz and opposition camps have grown significantly in the past month, with the opposition barely ahead by a whisker.

While ruling party Fidesz had 34% support in October, it now stands at 37%. The Democratic Coalition (DK) is in second place with 12%, a point lower than its previous showing of 13%. The third strongest party remains Jobbik, but its support has fallen from the 11-12% range to just 9% now.

The Hungarian Socialist Party (MSZP) is unchanged with 6% support from the total electorate, and Momentum moved slightly higher to 5% from a low point of 4%. Bringing up the rest, LMP, Dialogue, Our Country, and the Two-Tailed Dog Party are all at 2% support.

Those not supporting any party at all fell from 25% to 21% of the electorate.

November was a month of voter activism, with new supporters lined up behind the joint list of both the ruling Fidesz-KDNP and the joint opposition. The governing coalition increased its supporters by an estimated 300,000 voters and now stands at 39% support. This increase was disproportionately from voters with just an elementary education and from those in small towns.

The opposition also grew its voter base, expanding their camp from 39% to 41% in the past month alone with roughly 150,000 new supporters. This gain largely came from small and medium-sized cities, as well as from high school and college graduates.

However, the two camps are essentially tied when it comes to likely voters who have to choose between the two, with the united opposition getting 49% support and the government parties at 48%.


Poll: opposition parties have 4-point advantage over Fidesz

A new poll conducted by ZRI Závecz Research Institute shows that the united political opposition enjoys a 4-point lead over ruling party Fidesz ahead of next year’s elections.

Based on the data, the political balance was upset by the opposition’s primary elections for a joint prime ministerial candidate. Until now, the advantage the opposition held over the ruling governmental party has only been 1-2 percentage points, which Závecz claimed was well within the margin of error.

In September, 38% of poll respondents preferred the opposition compared to 37% for Fidesz, while in October the opposition parties saw their lead expand to 39%, while support for the government has shrunk to 35% in the latest poll. [Telex]