Judicial Watch Team Observes Hungary Elections – Praises Election Day Processes
(Washington, DC) Judicial Watch announced today that it sent a six-member team to observe Election Day procedures during the April 3, 2022, Hungarian parliamentary and referendum national elections. A Judicial Watch report on the Hungarian election concluded that the administration of the vote on Election Day was efficient, orderly, and unremarkable.
The team was led by attorneys who previously worked for the Department of Justice’s Voting Section monitoring state and federal elections in the United States. The team also included lawyers who had monitored elections for Judicial Watch.
Judicial Watch’s representatives observed voting in 52 precincts at 27 locations in and around Budapest. The Judicial Watch team did not observe any meaningful problems throughout the day. Despite a high national turnout rate approaching 70%, lines were usually brief and only rarely exceeded 15 minutes. The Hungarian electoral practice of including representatives of every party of any size at each voter registration desk appears to have contributed to a low-controversy environment. In some ways, according to the report, the administration of the vote was more effective, and less chaotic, than what team members had observed in previous elections in parts of the United States.
Judicial Watch’s monitoring methodology emphasizes ballot access, meaning the ability of citizens to easily register and cast an equal vote in an election. It particularly focuses on recording specific Election Day problems concerning unlawful electioneering, arbitrary variations in the rules for voting, aggressive voting assistance, unusual ballot handling, voter intimidation or confrontations, and voter “turn aways.”
Judicial Watch noted that its methodology contrasted with the approach adopted by other international observers, who often criticized the Hungarian elections based on value judgments about matters like media bias, negative campaigning, campaign finance policy, and the prevalence of women candidates. The report stated that these “are matters more appropriately addressed by editorial boards, not election monitoring teams.”
“The transnational Left swarmed Hungary in order to try to create controversy about the election of their ideological opponent, Viktor Orban. By contrast, Judicial Watch’s expert election observer team found virtually no issues in the conduct of the elections in Hungary,” stated Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.