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HUNGARY
Orszaggyules (National Assembly)

This page contains the full text of the PARLINE database entry on the selected parliamentary chamber, with the exception of Oversight and Specialized bodies modules which, because of their excessive length, can be only viewed and printed separately.

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GENERAL INFORMATION ABOUT THE PARLIAMENTARY CHAMBER

Parliament name (generic / translated) Országgyülés / National Assembly
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Structure of parliament Unicameral
Affiliation to the IPU Yes
Affiliation date(s) 1889 - 1950
1954 -
LEADERSHIP
President László Kövér (M) 
Notes Sworn in on 6 Aug. 2010, re-elected on 6 May 2014.
Secretary General György Such (M) 
COMPOSITION
Members (statutory / current number) 199 / 198
PERCENTAGE OF WOMEN


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Women (current number) 20 (10.10%)
Mode of designation directly elected 199
Term 4 years
Last renewal dates 6 April 2014
(View details)
CONTACT INFORMATION
Address Magyar Országgyülés
Kossuth tér 1-3
1357 BUDAPEST
(Export mailing lists)
Phone (361) 441 43 44
441 50 67
Fax (361) 441 41 83
441 59 72
E-mail ipu@parlament.hu
Website
http://www.parlament.hu

ELECTORAL SYSTEM

Parliament name (generic / translated) Országgyülés / National Assembly
Structure of parliament Unicameral
LEGAL FRAMEWORK
Electoral law 30 October 1989
Last amendment: 26 November 2012
Mode of designation directly elected 199
Constituencies - 106 single-member constituencies
- one nationwide constituency (returning 93 members elected under the proportional representation system)
Voting system Mixed: Mixed: Mixed Member Proportional System (MMP)
- First-past-the-post system for 106 constituency seats
- Proportional representation for 93 members elected under national lists: Parties polling more than 5% of the vote are entitled to obtain seats. Two parties with a joint list have to obtain at least 10% and joint lists of three or more parties 15%. Seats under the national list are distributed in proportion to the votes cast and the surplus votes of the parties (see below) according to the d’Hondt formula.

Parliamentary seats can also be obtained indirectly by party candidates via the so-called “surplus votes” cast in single member constituencies. They comprise the votes cast for party candidates who lost and the votes cast for party candidates which have effectively not been needed to obtain seats (the difference in the number of votes between on the most successful and second candidates in a given constituency).

Each elector residing in Hungary casts two votes, one for an individual candidate and one for a party list. Voters having no domicile in Hungary may vote for a party list. Voters who register as members of a national minority (see note) shall cast their ballot for the list of the respective minority rather than for national parties.

Note: The 13 national minorities officially recognized in Hungary are Armenian, Bulgarian, Croatian, German, Greek, Polish, Roma, Romanian, Ruthenian, Serbian, Slovakian, Slovenian and Ukrainian. For the minority list, only a quarter (1/4) of the votes required for a "normal" party mandate is needed to obtain the first mandate. National minorities that do not win seats may delegate spokespersons to the parliament.

Vacancies arising between general elections are filled through by-elections (in single-member constituencies), while vacancies on national list seats are filled by the party concerned from among the candidates appearing on its original list.
Voting is not compulsory.
Voter requirements - age: 18 years
- Hungarian citizens (regardless of place of residence) or refugees, immigrants, persons with permanent resident status, and European Union citizens who have a residence or a domicile in Hungary

- disqualifications: insanity/mental illness, guardianship, holders of temporary entry permits, undocumented immigrants, persons barred from public affairs by court decision, imprisonment, institutional medical care pursuant to criminal procedure
CANDIDATES
Eligibility - qualified electors
- age: 18 years
- Hungarian citizenship, including naturalized citizens
- ineligibilities: insanity/mental illness, guardianship, holders of temporary entry permits, undocumented immigrants, persons barred from public affairs by court decision, imprisonment, institutional medical care pursuant to criminal procedure
Incompatibilities - President of the Republic
- members of the Constitutional Court
- certain other public or State offices
- judges
- membership of the armed, police or security forces
Candidacy requirements - party or independent candidatures
- support of at least 500 electors is required per candidature (for single-member constituencies)
- national lists are reserved for parties contesting seats in at least 27 constituencies in at least nine counties and Budapest.

LAST ELECTIONS

Parliament name (generic / translated) Országgyülés / National Assembly
Structure of parliament Unicameral
BACKGROUND
Dates of election / renewal (from/to) 6 April 2014
Timing and scope of renewal The ruling coalition, the Hungarian Civic Union-Christian Democratic People's Party (FIDESZ-KDNP), led by Prime Minister Viktor Orban took 133 seats, securing a two-thirds majority in the new 199-member National Assembly (previously, the National Assembly had 386 seats). The coalition led by the Hungarian Socialist Party (MSZP) took 38 seats, and the far-right Jobbik, 25 seats.

During the election campaign, Prime Minister Orban promised a further reduction in the flat rate of tax from the current 16 per cent. The MSZP, led by Mr. Attila Mesterhazy, proposed to raise income tax for high earners up to 30%. Jobbik, led by Mr. Gabor Vona, also opposed a flat rate tax and pushed for a 5% tax rate on basic products and reduced taxes on families with more than two children. On 5 May, President Janos Ader asked Mr. Orban to form a new government.


The 2014 elections were the first to be held under the new electoral system adopted in November 2012. A first-past-the post system replaced the previous two-round system for the 106 seats elected by majority vote. The remaining 93 seats are elected under the proportional representation system using party lists.

In 2014, Hungarians citizens abroad were allowed to vote for the party lists for the first time. In May 2010 the National Assembly modified the law on Hungarian citizenship and introduced a simplified naturalization procedure for people with Hungarian origin and knowledge of the Hungarian language. Most of them live in territories that Hungary lost after World War I under the Trianon Treaty of 1920. Some 550,000 people with Hungarian origin obtained Hungarian citizenship prior to the 2014 elections, of whom nearly 200,000 registered to vote in the 2014 elections.
Date of previous elections: 11 & 25 April 2010

Date of dissolution of the outgoing legislature: N/A

Timing of election: Upon normal expiry

Expected date of next elections: April 2014

Number of seats at stake: 199 (full renewal)

Number of candidates: 1,531 (1,136 men,395 women) under the majority system and 1,706 (1,276 men, 430 women) under the proportional representation system (national lists)*
*875 candidates, including 189 women, ran under both systems.

Percentage of women candidates: 25.8% for the majority system and 25.2% under the proportional representation system

Number of parties contesting the election: 54 parties or coalitions for the proportional representation system. In addition, there were 13 lists representing minorities.

Number of parties winning seats: 4 (2 coalitions and 2 parties)

Alternation of power: No

Number of parties in government: 2

Names of parties in government: Hungarian Civic Union (FIDESZ) and Christian Democratic People's Party (KDNP)

Date of the first session of the new parliament: 6 May 2014

Name of the new Speaker: Mr. László Kövér (FIDESZ)
STATISTICS
Voter turnout
Round no 16 April 2014
Number of registered electors
Voters
Blank or invalid ballot papers
Valid votes
8'047'769
4'967'881 (61.73%)

Notes
Distribution of votes
Round no 1
Political group Candidates Votes % of votes
Hungarian Civic Union-Christian Democratic People's Party (FIDESZ-KDNP)
MSZP-EGYÜTT-DK-PM-MLP
Movement for a Better Hungary (Jobbik)
Politics Can Be Different (LMP)
Distribution of seats
Round no 1
Political Group Total of seats Single-member seats Proportional
Hungarian Civic Union-Christian Democratic People's Party (FIDESZ-KDNP) 133 96 37
MSZP-EGYÜTT-DK-PM-MLP 38 10 28
Movement for a Better Hungary (Jobbik) 23 0 23
Politics Can Be Different (LMP) 5 0 5
Distribution of seats according to sex
Men

Women

Percent of women
180

19

9.55%
Distribution of seats according to age
Distribution of seats according to profession
Comments
Sources:
National Assembly (07.05.2014, 17.06.2014, 26.06.2014, 01.01.2015)
National Election Office: 30.05.2014
http://www.valasztas.hu/hu/ogyv2014

MSZP-EGYÜTT-DK-PM-MLP comprised the Hungarian Socialist Party (MSZP), the Together-Party for a New Era (Együtt 2014), the Democratic Coalition (DK), the Dialogue for Hungary (PM) and the Hungarian Liberal Party (MLP).

The following parliamentary groups were present in the National Assembly at the first session on 6 May 2014:
- FIDESZ: 117 members (8 women)
- KDNP: 16 members (1 woman)
- MSZP: 29 members (4 women)
- Jobbik: 23 members (2 women)
- LMP: 5 members (2 women)
- Independent: 9 members (2 women)

PRESIDENCY OF THE PARLIAMENTARY CHAMBER

Parliament name (generic / translated) Országgyülés / National Assembly
Structure of parliament Unicameral
APPOINTMENT AND TERM OF OFFICE
Title Speaker of the National Assembly
Term - duration: 4 years (term of House); elected on 18 June 1998
- reasons for interruption of the term: resignation, dissolution of the Parliament, incompatibility (performing other earning profession or public office) declared by the Parliament, loss of mandate according to the relevant law, death
Appointment elected by all Members of the Assembly during the sitting of the Parliament and after the Members' mandates are validated, and after they are sworn in
Eligibility - any member may be candidate (the candidature is proposed by the senior Chairman on the basis of the motion of the faction leaders) and a formal notification is required
- notification of candidatures are submitted at the constituent meeting before the election
Voting system - formal vote by secret ballot
- one round of voting, except when the candidate does not have the required majority - if there are many candidates, only the two who have obtained the largest number of votes may be elected - the process is then repeated until one Member obtains a majority
Procedures / results - the most senior Member of Parliament presides over the Assembly during the voting
- the most senior Member supervises the voting and the four youngest members count the votes
- the most senior Member announces the results after the counting of the votes
- the Parliament is entitled to challenge the results
STATUS
Status - ranks second after the Head of State
- represents the Assembly with the public authorities
- represents the Parliament in international bodies
- is ex officio chairman of the House Committee and of the Meeting of Committee Chairmen
- is member of the Defence Council
- in the absence of the Speaker, the Deputy Speakers can assume his/her role and functions
Board - the House Committee of the Parliament is regulated by Standing Orders of the Parliament
- is composed of the Speaker, the Deputy Speakers and the faction leaders (10 members) whose term of office corresponds to the term of House
- meetings are convened by the President, but any faction leader can request it
Material facilities - monthly allowance
FUNCTIONS
Organization of parliamentary business - convenes sessions
- proposes the programme and agenda on which the Parliament decides
- organizes the debates and sets speaking time
- examines the admissibility of bills and amendments, but the Parliament may decide to refuse his/her proposals
- nominates the standing committee which gives opinion on the bill or other motion, on the proposal of the Meeting Committee Chairmen
- proposes the setting up of committees of enquiries
Chairing of public sittings - opens, adjourns and closes sittings
- ensures respect for provisions of the Constitution and Standing Orders
- makes announcements concerning the Assembly, with the Clerk from time to time
- takes disciplinary measures in the event of disturbance, and lifts such measures
- establishes the list of speakers, gives and withdraws permission to speak
- establishes the order in which amendments are taken up and selects which amendments are to be debated
- calls for a vote, decides how it is to be carried out, verifies the voting procedure and cancels a vote in the event of irregularities
- checks the quorum
- authenticates the adopted texts and the records of debates, with the Clerk
- interprets the rules or other regulations governing the life of the Assembly, with the House Committee
- has discretionary power to give the floor outside the agenda and thus organizes impromptu debates,


Special powers - approves the draft budget of the Parliament
- appoints and dissmisses the senior officers of the Parliament
- represents the Parliament in the conduct of foreign affairs or defence, as a member of the Defence Council
- is responsible for relations with foreign Parliaments
- is responsible for security, and in this capacity, can call the police in the event of disturbance in the Chamber
Speaking and voting rights, other functions - takes the floor in legislative debates, as a member of the Assembly, the Deputy Speaker chairing the sitting on this occasion
- provides exceptionally guidelines for the interpretation or completion of the text under discussion
- takes part in voting, but only in the event of equality of votes
- intervenes in the parliamentary oversight procedure in his capacity of Member
- signs the laws together with the President of the Republic
- gives his opinion to the Head of State in the event of dissolution of the Parliament, emergency, hostility and declaration of war, if the Parliament is prevented from working

PARLIAMENTARY MANDATE

Parliament name (generic / translated) Országgyülés / National Assembly
Structure of parliament Unicameral
NATURE
Nature of the mandate · Free representation (Art. 20 (2) of the Constitution of 20.08.1949, with amendments up to and including 1997, SO 13 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
Start of the mandate · When the MPs take the oath (Art. 28 (1) of the Constitution, SO 8 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary). Procedure (SO 2 to 8 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
Validation of mandates · Validation by the chair of age (oldest Member) and the notaries of age (the four youngest Members), and a committee of five Members, or the Committee on Immunity, Incompatibility and Scrutiny of Mandates (SO 6 and 7 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
· Procedure (SO 6 and 7 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
End of the mandate · On the day when the newly elected Parliament meets. This also applies in case of early dissolution (Art. 20 A (1) (a), and 28 (6) of the Constitution; for early dissolution, see also Art. 28 (2) to (5), and 28 A (1) and (3) of the Constitution).
Can MPs resign? Yes · Yes, of their own free will (Art. 20 A (1) (d) and (3) of the Constitution)
· Procedure (Art. 20 A (3) of the Constitution): MPs may resign by making a statement to this effect to the Parliament (letter addressed to the Chairman).
· Authority competent to accept the resignation (Art. 20 A (3) of the Constitution): a statement of acceptance by Parliament is not required for the resignation to be effective.
Can MPs lose their mandate ? Yes (a) Definitive exclusion from Parliament by the latter:
- Declaration of a conflict of interest (incompatibility) (Art. 20 (5) and (6), Art. 20 A (1) (c) and (2) of the Constitution, SO 130 and 131 (1) and (2) of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary). Procedure.
- Loss of mandate by judicial decision
(b) Death (Art. 20 A (1) (b) of the Constitution)
STATUS OF MEMBERS
Rank in hierarchy · Within Parliament:
1. The Speaker
2. The Deputy Speakers
3. The Notaries
4. The Chairpersons of committees
5. The Deputy Chairpersons of committees
Indemnities, facilities and services · Diplomatic passport
· Basic salary (see also Art. 20 (4) of the Constitution): HUF 114,075
+ Additional allowance (see also Art. 20 (4) of the Constitution): for certain positions
· No exemption from tax
· Pension scheme
· Other facilities:
(a) Secretariat for MPs and factions (see also SO 144 and 145 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
(b) Assistants (see also SO 146 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
(c) Accommodation
(d) Postal and telephone services at work free of charge
(e) Travel and transport
(f) Others
Obligation to declare personal assets Yes
Parliamentary immunity - parliamentary non-accountability · The concept does exist (Art. 20 (3) and (6) of the Constitution, SO 130 and 131 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary, S. 4 of the Law on the Legal Status of Members of Parliament).
· Parliamentary non-accountability applies to words spoken and written by MPs both within and outside Parliament.
· Derogations: disclosure of State secrets, slander, defamation and civil law responsibility (S. 4 of the Law on the Legal Status of Members of Parliament); offence (SO 54 (2) of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary; see Discipline)
· Non-accountability takes effect on the day when the mandate begins and offers, after the expiry of the mandate, protection against prosecution for opinions expressed during the exercise of the mandate.
Parliamentary immunity - parliamentary inviolability · The concept does exist (Art. 20 (3) and (6) of the Constitution, SO 130 and 131 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary, S. 5 of the Law on the Legal Status of Members of Parliament).
· It applies to criminal proceedings, covers all offences and protects MPs from arrest and from being held in preventive custody, from the opening of judicial proceedings against them and from their homes being searched.
· Derogations: in case of flagrante delicto, MPs can be arrested without approval of Parliament.
· Parliamentary inviolability does not prevent MPs from being called as witnesses before a judge or tribunal.
· Protection is provided during the candidature, from the day of election to the end of the mandate, and between early dissolution of the House and the election of a new Parliament. It also covers judicial proceedings instituted against MPs before their election.
· Parliamentary immunity (inviolability) can be lifted
- Competent authority: the National Assembly, for minor offences also the Member concerned; for candidates, the National Election Board
- Procedure . In this case, MPs can be heard. They do not have means of appeal.
· Parliament cannot subject the prosecution and/or detention to certain conditions.
· Parliament cannot suspend the prosecution and/or detention of one of its members.
· In the event of preventive custody or imprisonment, the MPs concerned cannot be authorised to attend sittings of Parliament.
EXERCISE OF THE MANDATE
Training · There is a training/initiation process on parliamentary practices and procedures for MPs.
· It is provided by the political parties.
Participation in the work of the Parliament · It is compulsory for MPs to be present at plenary sittings and committee meetings (SO 13 (3) and 44 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary; see also SO 138 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary).
· Penalties foreseen in case of failure to fulfil this obligation: for MPs who are absent from more than one third of the monthly votes, reduction of the indemnity by the difference between the non-attendance unaccounted for and one-third of the monthly votes.
Discipline · The rules governing discipline within Parliament are contained in SO 19 (1), 54, and 55 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary.
· Disciplinary measures foreseen:
- Warning for irrelevance (SO 54 (1) of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
- Call to order (SO 54 (2) of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
- Order to discontinue the speech (SO 54 (3) to (6) of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
- Interruption of the sitting (SO 55 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
· Specific cases:
- Offence (SO 54 (2) of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary): call to order
· Competent body to judge such cases/to apply penalties: the Speaker (SO 19 (1) of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
· Procedure:
- Warning for irrelevance, call to order, order to discontinue the speech, offence (SO 54 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
- Interruption of the sitting (SO 55 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary)
Code (rules) of conduct · This concept does not exist in the country's juridical system but there are some relevant provisions (Art. 20 A (1) (c) and (2) of the Constitution, SO 130 and 131 (1) and (2) of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary, for the declaration of interests, see Obligation to declare personal assets).
· Penalties foreseen for violation of the rules of conduct (Art. 20 (1) (c) of the Constitution): loss of mandate
· Competent body to judge such cases/to impose penalties: the National Assembly
· Procedure (Art. 20 A (2) of the Constitution, SO 130 and 131 (1) and (2) of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary).
Relations between MPs and pressure group · There is one legal provision in this field (SO 141 of the Standing Orders of the Parliament of the Republic of Hungary; register of national interest groups and social organisations).

This page was last updated on 3 February 2015
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