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The majority, 54% of Hungarian adults wants Prime Minister Viktor Orbán to remain in his post, while 34% supports Budapest Mayor Gergely Karácsony, who is challenging to become the opposition’s prime ministerial candidate, a survey conducted by the Századvég Foundation showed. The survey was conducted at the end of August over the phone, on a representative sample of 1,000, after analysts saw Karácsony as the likely winner of the opposition’s nomination contest, Századvég said. The pollster asked respondents to pick the candidate they thought performed better in solving key issues in Hungary. Fully 69% of respondents saw Orbán as a decisive and strong leader, while 19% said the same of Karácsony. Karácsony also trailed Orbán in his perceived performance in supporting families (30% and 61%, respectively), in child protection (24% to 57%), and improving the lot of pensioners (31% to 57%).
Similarly, 57% of respondents said they saw Orbán as more competent in improving the country’s economy in the wake of the pandemic, while 32% credited Karácsony with more abilities in the field. Fully 52% thought Orbán is better equipped to organise a health-care response to potential future epidemics, while 20% thought Karácsony was better suited to the task, it said. Karácsony is likely to raise taxes and introduce austerity measures according to 55% and 52% of respondents respectively, while 24% presume Orbán would raise taxes and 29% that he would tighten the belt, Századvég said. Regarding foreign policy, 59% thought Orbán was better at protecting Hungarians’ interests abroad, while 30% expressed the same opinion about Karácsony, Századvég said.