The leader of the Socialist Party called the result of Sunday’s European Parliament election “a failure” for the opposition. Bertalan Tóth, who was the Socialist-Párbeszéd alliance’s list leader, noted at a press conference that the two parties’ joint campaign had resulted in a single mandate. However, the party’s board has decided unanimously to press ahead with the autumn local elections without any changes. Tóth insisted that in many localities in which opposition election deals were already in place, today’s results suggested that opposition cooperation could unseat Fidesz. “This is a responsibility that the Socialist leadership undertakes, and it will not resign,” he added. Tóth said he would not take over his EP mandate, and the party board would decide on Saturday who should receive it.
Socialist-Párbeszéd MEP candidate Benedek Jávor lamented what he called a “serious defeat” for the opposition alliance in the European Parliament election, based on preliminary results. The party alliance is projected to win just one seat in the EP. Jávor said the opposition had failed to succeed in its goal of putting a dent in the ruling Fidesz-Christian Democrat alliance’s “surge”. He said the Socialist-Párbeszéd alliance bore the brunt of the defeat compared with other opposition parties.
In response to a question, Jávor could not say how the result would affect the relationship between the Socialist Party and Párbeszéd, adding however that he did not think their cooperation was to blame for the defeat. Asked if the Socialist Party’s leadership should resign in light of the election outcome, Jávor said this was up to them to decide. Jávor said the two parties had made a rational decision when they formed their alliance, adding that they had had reason to expect to win three seats.