Election commissions shall be independent bodies serving voters, subject only to the law, and their primary task shall be determining the election results, ensuring the fairness and legality of elections, ensuring impartiality and, if necessary, restoring the legal order of elections.
Election commissions are:
a) the National Election Commission,
b) territorial election commissions,
c) parliamentary single-member constituency election commissions,
d) local election commissions,
e) polling station commissions.
The seven members and three alternate members of the National Election Commission shall be elected by Parliament for a term of nine years on the proposal of the President of the Republic.
I. General Powers and Responsibilities
The National Election Commission
- may issue guidelines to election bodies with a view to ensuring the uniform interpretation of legislation related to elections,
- decides on the registration of nominating organisations,
- decides on the timeframe for broadcasting political advertisement of nominating organisations in the linear media services of public media service,
- adjudges on lodging objection regarding the work of election offices at foreign representations,
- adjudges all objections that do not fall in the competence of parliamentary single-member constituency election commission, or that of the territorial election commission and acts that are not possible to determine where they were committed,
- adjudges appeals against decisions issued by parliamentary single-member constituency election commissions or territorial election commissions,
- adjudges complaints submitted regarding the participation of media content providers, the press and cinemas,
- initiates procedures by the body with the relevant authority, if it discovers a breach of the law.
II. Special Powers and Responsibilities by Type of Response
In the Elections of Members of Parliament
- decision on the registration and refusal of national lists and candidates on the list is made by the commission,
- it determines the order of the national lists by drawing lots,
- approves the content of the ballot paper of party and national minority lists
- adjudges the amount of state-aid paid for the national minority self-governments putting lists,
- determines the number of voters as national minority voters on the central electoral register,
- controls the counting of postal ballots and determines its result,
- determines the result of voting by list and while doing this
- determines which lists of the nominating organisations have reached the % of electoral threshold set by law,
- determines which national minority lists are entitled to favourable mandates,
- determines which candidates of the national lists obtained mandates,
- determines who became the spokesperson of a national minority,
- gives the letters of appointment to spokespersons of national minorities and to representatives winning seats from national lists,
- publishes a notice about the result of tallied votes on a national scale,
- calls the by-elections of Member of Parliament and determines their out-off dates.
In the Elections of Members of the European Parliament
- decides on the registration or deregistration of lists and candidates on them,
- draws lots to determine the order of lists,
- approves the content of ballot papers for the Election of Members of the European Parliament,
- supervises the counting of votes cast at foreign representations and determines the result of the elections at foreign representations,
- determines the result of the elections, including
- determining which lists of nominating organisations have reached the electoral threshold laid down in the laws,
- determining which candidates of the lists have won seats,
- gives the letters of appointment to the representatives winning seats,
- publishes a notice about the result of the elections.
In the Elections of Representatives and Mayors of Municipalities
- adjudges all objections not falling within the competence of the local election commission and the territorial election commission and if it is not possible to determine where they were committed,
- adjudges appeals against decisions of territorial election commissions.
In the Elections of Representatives of National Minority Local Self-governments
- sets the date of the Elections of Representatives of National Minority Local Self-government,
- adjudges on the registration or deregistration of the lists and of candidates on them,
- determines the order of the national lists by drawing lots,
- approves the content of the ballot paper or party and national minority local self-governments,
- adjudges appeals against decisions regarding specifically the Elections of National Minority Local Self-governments
- determines the result of the elections of Representatives of National Minority Self-government and
- determines which lists of the nominating organisations have reached the electoral threshold laid down in the laws,
- determines which candidates of the lists have won seats,
- gives the letters of appointment to the representatives winning sets,
- sets the date of the by-elections of representatives of national minority local self-governments.
In the national referendum
- Takes a decision to certify the proposed referendum question,
- publishes a notice about the resolution to certify or to reject the question on its official website,
- publishes a notice in the Official Gazette of Hungary about its resolution to certify or to reject the question,
- arranges checks in respect of the admitted signatures and establishes the number of valid signatures,
- adjudges appeals related to the collection of signatures,
- approves the content of the ballot paper for the national referendum,
- supervises the counting of votes cast at foreign representations,
- determines and publishes the result of the referendum.
European Citizens’ Initiative
- adjudges appeals regarding the collection of signatures,
- issues a certificate of the online collection system,
- verifies the supporting statements,
- issues a certificate about the number of valid supporting statements.
Elections to the European Parliament
Hungary may claim 21 representative’s seats of the European Parliament. The seats are elected by a closed list, proportional system. In the elections, the whole country forms one constituency.
The right to vote shall be vested with:
a. each Hungarian citizen of full age (18 years as a basic rule) domiciled in the territory of Hungary; and
b. citizens of full age of other member states of the European Union domiciled in the territory of Hungary (hereinafter referred to as Union citizen) provided that they make a statement that they intend to exercise their right to vote in Hungary.
The right to vote is only restricted by what are referred to as the natural grounds for disfranchisement. Under the Fundamental Law the following shall not have the right to vote:
- persons who are under guardianship or conservatorship that precludes legal capacity on the basis of a final court verdict,
- persons who are subject to a final court verdict forbidding them to participate in public affairs,
Furthermore, citizens of full age of other member states of the European Union domiciled in the territory of Hungary cannot vote if they have been barred from exercising this right pursuant to rule of law, court or other authorities‟ decision of the state of their citizenship. Hungarian franchised citizens will be automatically enrolled in the electoral register based on the state registration systems. Union citizens domiciled in Hungary had the opportunity to request their enrolment into the electoral register of Hungary the latest until the 16th day before Election Day.
The polling station commission verifies the existence of franchise exclusively on the grounds of the electoral register.
Voters may cast their ballots at the polling station of the polling district of their domicile. If voters stay away from their domicile but inside the country on ballot day, they may vote by requesting absentee voting not later than by 2nd day before Election Day (switching to polling station in a different settlement).
Voters also may cast their ballots at foreign representations of Hungary. This is conditional upon the voter meeting the requirements of suffrage in accordance with the above, and such voters shall request in advance to have themselves entered in the register at the given Hungarian foreign representation.
Entry in the electoral register of foreign representations may be requested personally, through a proxy, by registered mail at the local election office according to the voter’s domestic address, or by the client gate web by the 8th day before Election Day. Voters enrolled in the register of foreign representation will be deleted from the local electoral register of their domicile.
If voters change their mind after enrolment into the register of a foreign representation and wish to change the place of their voting abroad or intend to vote in Hungary, they may request the head of the election office of their domicile until the same deadline to be deleted from the register of the foreign representation and apply for being enrolled elsewhere or back to the polling district of their domicile.
Members of the EP are elected from national lists. Only political parties registered in Hungary are entitled to set up lists. These can contain maximally three times more candidates, as there are reserved seats for Hungary in the EP, therefore a maximum of 63 candidates per party may be put forward per list.
Each political party registered by the National Election Commission has to collect at least 20 000 valid recommendations (supporting signatures) from the voters to put forward a list for the EP election. One voter may recommend multiple lists, but each one only once. The supporting signatures shall be collected solely on official recommendation collection sheets; it is prohibited to duplicate them.