The Fidesz – Hungarian Civic Union (Hungarian pronunciation: [ˈfidɛs]; in full, Hungarian: Fidesz – Magyar Polgári Szövetség) is a major national conservative political party in Hungary. At the 2010 election in Hungary, Fidesz-Christian Democratic People’s Party (KDNP) won a two-thirds majority of seats by gaining 52% of the votes, with Fidesz winning 227 seats and KDNP winning 36.
President – Viktor Orbán
Vice Presidents – Lajos Kósa (executive), Mihály Varga, Zoltán Pokorni, Ildikó Pelczné Gáll
Founded – 30 March 1988
Youth wing – Fidelitas
Ideology – National conservatism
Political position – Center-right to Right-wing
Liberal International (1992 – 2000),
International Democrat Union,
Centrist Democrat International
European Parliament group – European People’s Party
Website – http://www.fidesz.hu/
Currently Fidesz is considered a conservative party on social issues and nationalist on issues of European integration and relations with the International Monetary Fund.
The party was founded in 1988, named simply Fidesz (Fiatal Demokraták Szövetsége, meaning the Alliance of Young Democrats), originally as a youthful libertarian, anti-communist party. Fidesz was founded by young democrats, mainly students, who were persecuted by the communist party and had to meet in small, clandestine groups. The movement became a major force in many areas of modern Hungarian history. The membership had an upper age limit of 35 years (this requirement was abolished at the 1993 congress).
Fidesz received 8.95% (1990), 7.02% (1994) – after its disappointing result in the 1994 elections, Fidesz changed its political position from liberal to conservative. In 1995, it added “Hungarian Civic Party” (Magyar Polgári Párt) to its shortened name. The conservative turn caused a severe split in the membership. Péter Molnár left the party, as well as Gábor Fodor and Klára Ungár, who joined the liberal Alliance of Free Democrats.
Fidesz gained power in 1998 under leader and Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, who governed Hungary in coalition with the smaller Hungarian Democratic Forum (MDF) and the Independent Smallholders’ Party (FKGP). In 2000, Fidesz joined the European People’s Party and had its membership in the Liberal International terminated.
Fidesz narrowly lost the 2002 elections to the Hungarian Socialist Party, by 41.07% to the Socialists’ 42.05%. Fidesz had 169 members of the Hungarian National Assembly, out of a total of 386. Following the defeat, the municipal elections in October saw huge Fidesz losses.
In the spring of 2003, Fidesz took its current name, “Fidesz – Hungarian Civic Union”.
It was the most successful party in the 2004 European Parliamentary Elections: it won 47.4% of the vote and 12 of its candidates were elected as Members of the European Parliament (MEPs).
In 2005, Fidesz and the Christian Democratic People’s Party (KDNP) formed an alliance for the 2006 elections. Despite winning 42.0% of the list votes and 164 representatives out of 386 in National Assembly, they were beaten by the social-democratic and liberal coalition of Hungarian Socialist Party (MSZP) and the Alliance of Free Democrats (SZDSZ).
On October 1, 2006, Fidesz won the municipal elections, which counterbalanced the MSZP-led government’s power to some extent. Fidesz won 15 of 23 mayoralties in Hungary’s largest cities—although its candidate narrowly lost the city of Budapest to a member of the Liberal Party—and majorities in 18 out of 20 regional assemblies.
In the 2009 European Parliament election, Fidesz won a landslide victory, gaining 56.36% of the vote and 14 of Hungary’s 22 seats. This predicted a landslide in the 2010 parliamentary elections, where they won the outright majority in the first round on April 11, with the Fidesz-KDNP alliance winning 206 seats, including 119 individual seats. In the final result, they won 263 seats, of which 173 are individual seats. Fidesz holds 227 of these seats, giving it an outright majority in the National Assembly by itself.
After winning 53% of the popular vote, which translated into a supermajority of 68% of parliamentary seats, giving Fidesz sufficient power to revise or replace the constitution, the party embarked on an extraordinary project of passing over 200 laws and drafting and adopting a new constitution—since followed by nearly 2000 amendments.
Electoral results – percent of parliamentary seats
1990 – 5,44 % (opposition)
1994 – 5,18 % (opposition)
1998 – 38,34 % (government)
2002 – 48,71 % (opposition)
2006 – 42,49 % (opposition)
2010 – 68,13 % (government)
Source: fidesz.hu, Wikipedia