Press release: The message from Hungary was clear – this LGBTIQ referendum is invalid

Brussels, 4 April 2022

Yesterday, on Sunday, 3rd April, Hungarians took to the polls to vote on the parliamentary elections and on a referendum on the rights of LGBTIQ persons. 

While the Fidesz party managed to win a majority in the parliamentary elections, the referendum was invalid as it did not gather the necessary votes to reach the threshold (50% of voters voting either ‘yes’ or ‘no’). The message of the voters is clear: this referendum is invalid and should have never been put forward.

Malin Björk MEP (Left), Vice-President of the LGBTI Intergroup and European shadow rapporteur on the rule of law situation in Hungary, comments:

Despite the worrying result of the elections, which gave Orbán yet another 2/3 majority, Hungarians have resolutely voted against the validity of this sham referendum. The government wanted to draw legitimacy from voter turnout for its anti-LGBTIQ legislation, but the voters’ invalidation of this scapegoating is clear: there is no majority support in Hungary for discrimination, inequality and ostracization of LGBTQI people.

Gwendoline Delbos-Corfield MEP (Greens-EFA), LGBTI Intergroup Member and European rapporteur on the rule of law situation in Hungary, concludes:

The situation in Hungary is dire. The voters have voted in favour of yet another Fidesz-led government in a context where corruption is rampant, rule of law and democracy are deteriorating further and attacking human rights became normalised. Yet, the voters have also spoken against this referendum, giving a slight ray of hope. The message for the rest of Europe is clear: the government’s stance on LGBTIQ rights is the government’s alone and it draws no support from the population.

Background information:

Hungary is currently the subject of an Article 7 TEU procedure, started by the European Parliament in 2018.[1]

On 15 July 2021, the Commission initiated infringement procedures against Hungary due to the ‘anti-LGBTIQ’ law adopted in Parliament.[2]

[1] European Parliament (12 September 2018), “Rule of law in Hungary: Parliament calls on the EU to act”, accessible at

[2] European Commission (15 July 2021), “EU founding values: Commission starts legal action against Hungary and Poland for violations of fundamental rights of LGBTIQ people”, accessible at