Hungary News Politics & International

Péter Márki-Zay wins run-off to challenge Viktor Orbán in 2022

Budapest, Hungary – The mayor of Hódmezővásárhely Péter Márki-Zay comfortably won the second round of Hungary’s opposition primaries against DK’s Klára Dobrev and is set to lead the Opposition’s list in the 2022 elections.

Péter Márki-Zay gained 57% of the votes compared to Klára Dobrev’s 43% in the second round of the Hungarian Opposition Primaries. Márki-Zay’s comfortable victory is largely the result of a high turnout and his strong performance in Budapest and Csanád-Csongrád, his home county. 662,353 people voted, a slight increase from the first round.

Graph by

Péter Márki-Zay generally performed well in the more affluent areas of the country, including Budapest (where Klára Dobrev only managed to win one constituency), West Hungary, and Central Hungary, while Dobrev won most of the underdeveloped counties with strong performances in the North East and the South West of Hungary.

Momentum’s interim leader Anna Orosz and Gergely Karácsony both spoke at Márki-Zay’s event in central Budapest on Sunday night. Orosz stated that the Hódmezővásárhely mayor’s victory shows that people want to renew the opposition. Budapest-mayor Gergely Karácsony, who withdrew from the contest in favour of Márki-Zay despite coming second in the first round, said that Viktor Orbán was the only loser in the primaries.

Country-wide results map by

In his speech, Péter Márki-Zay stated that this victory was the victory of “the small versus the big.” He also seemed to be particularly grateful to young voters, who turned out disproportionately in his favour. “It is not me who won this election primarily, but young people! If I look at the crowd tonight, the average age is, once again, below 40. You won! It is not me Viktor Orbán has to be terrified of, but you, young people!”

Márki-Zay continued by saying that “Not only do we want to beat Viktor Orbán, we also want to build a new Hungary. We want to bring a new culture to the country. A culture where love will rule. We will embrace all Gypsies, all Jews, all gay people, everyone living with disabilities, every right and left-wing person, and all urban and rural people with love! And yes, we will even embrace all Fidesz voters with love!”

He also called on the crowd to applaud Klára Dobrev, who conceded and congratulated Márki-Zay at around 8pm on Sunday, before the final results came in. She stated that she wholeheartedly congratulates Márki-Zay, who is now the United Opposition’s candidate for Prime Minister.

Budapest results map by

The United Opposition is set to hold a rally, introducing their 106 constituency candidates, led by Péter Márki-Zay on October 23 to mark the 65th anniversary of the Hungarian uprising.

By Ábel Bede

Ábel Bede was born in Budapest and has two degrees in History from Durham University. He specialised in Central Europan history and has been contributing to Kafkadesk since 2019. Feel free to check out more of his articles right here!

Coordinated by Ábel Bede, Kafkadesk's Budapest office is made up of a growing team of freelance journalists, editors and fact-checkers passionate about Hungarian affairs and dedicated to bringing you all the latest news, events and insights from Hungary.