Not only is István Tarlós leading the race for the  Budapest Mayoral Elections (supported by 52 percent of decided voters), but he is considered to be a probable winner compared to his challengers, according to a Budapest survey, completed on Saturday and conducted by the Nézőpont Institute.

It is a particularly disappointing figure for Gergely Karácsony that 43 percent of those who call themselves „left-wing sympathizers” expect the victory of Tarlós and only 41 percent predict the victory of the opposition parties’ candidates.

The exact number of candidates to fight the Budapest mayor election 13 October, will be decided on Monday. It is already foreseeable that Tarlós will have more and more challengers who are left far behind him in judging his suitability for the position. While 56 percent of Budapest voters consider the incumbent István Tarlós particularly suitable, and only 34 percent of them have doubts about this, in the case of Gergely Karácsony, we can see the opposite rate. 32 per cent of Budapest residents consider Karácsony – who won’t seek reelection as mayor in Zugló – to be suitable as Mayor of Budapest, while 53 per cent of them – the absolute majority of Budapest residents – clearly doubt this. In addition to the candidate of the opposition parties, only 11 percent of these voters considered Róbert Puzsér –who has long been a challenger for Tarlós –,  6 percent of them Gyula Thürmer, and the remaining 1 percent Krisztián Berki – who always wishes to be in the limlelight – as suitable candidates.

As voters consider him much more suitable to be Mayor of Budapest, it is not surprising that István Tarlós also has a significant advantage in the competition for Budapest Mayor candidates. He has a support of 52 percent among decided voters, while Gergely Karácsony would gain 42, while Róbert Puzsér would receive 6 percent of the votes. All the latter could be seen as a minimal increase in the case of István Tarlós and a similar decrease in the support of Gergely Karácsony.

In addition to judging the suitability of candidates, the likelihood assumed by voters will be significantly influencing which candidate may sit in the The Municipality of Budapest Mayor’s Office. Three-fifths (60 percent) of Budapest residents expect István Tarlós to win, while less than one-fifth (18 percent) thinks Gergely Karácsony can become mayor. Róbert Puzsér can also hope for more votes compared to the number of people who believe his breakthrough is possible (1 percent). “88 percent of voters of the ruling party is confident about Tarlós’ reelection and only 3 percent think that Karácsony – supported by the Democratic Coalition (DK), MSZP and Momentum – will prevail.” However, it is indeed a meaningful sign, that left-wing opposition sympathizers are more likely to see Tarlós’s victory. 43 per cent of the latter say there will be no change in the Budapest Mayor’s office, and only 41 per cent think that Gergely Karácsony may become the late successor of Gábor Demszky.


The public opinion poll of the Nézőpont Institute was conducted between August 29 and September 7, 2019 in Budapest, including 1000 telephone interviews. It is a representative sample of the capital population over the age of 18, based on gender, age and education, with a maximum sampling error of 3.2 percent.