MP's bracing for third vote
Tuesday, June 7, 2005, 12:51
The third round of the presidential elections, which is widely expected to be a decisive one, is taking place at 1 p.m. Neither of the two candidates have withdrawn from the ballot, and the major political forces have not announced a change in their voting policy either. This means that the odds remain in favor of former Constitution Court president László Sólyom, jointly nominated by right-wing parties Fidesz and the Hungarian Democratic Forum (MDF). Sólyom is running against Speaker of the House and Socialist candidate Katalin Szili, who is not supported by minor governing party Free Democrats Alliance (SzDSz). The result of the voting may largely depend on party discipline, since the headcount of the parliamentary party groups supporting each candidate differs by a very slight margin.
According to the official result of the second round, Sólyom beat Szili to 185:178. A House Committee meeting initiated by the Socialists determined that the round was valid, newswire MTI reported. MSzP had concerns about the legitimacy of the vote as certain independent representatives have shown their ballots to the press, while some members of opposition leader Fidesz did so among each other, according to a report by the Hungarian Radio.