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DPP bigwigs undeterred by unfavorable China policy poll

DPP bigwigs undeterred by unfavorable China policy poll

Taipei, March 13 (CNA) Both incumbent and previous leaders of the opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) were undaunted by the findings of a poll it released Friday showing Taiwanese people are more in favor of the ruling Kuomintang's (KMT's) China policy than the DPP's. The survey shows that the KMT was far ahead of the DPP in terms of support for six out of seven indicators regarding Taiwan's approaches in handling relations with mainland China. The DPP wins greater public support only in its social policy, but lags in all other areas, such as economic policy and "attitude" toward cross-strait exchanges. While acknowledging the importance of the "right attitude" toward cross-strait exchanges and indirectly attributing her defeat by the KMT's Ma Ying-jeou in the 2012 presidential election to this, former DPP chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen said the DPP might give the public a "fresh image" if it shows itself to be aggressively pushing for exchanges with China. She said the DPP's China policy had given an impression of "not being stable enough," even inviting worries that it might incur "unpredictable dangers." However, she added that the party should not talk lightly about changing its "basic stance." Tsai was referring to another survey which indicated that the DPP's "basic stance" in regard to Taiwan's independence and unification with China was actually closer to "public mood." The survey found that on a scale of zero to 10, with zero meaning unification with China and 10 meaning de jure independence for Taiwan, the KMT scored 3.33 and the DPP scored 6.90 -- closer to the public mood which stood at 6.20. Su Tseng-chang, the party's incumbent chairman, said he has always stressed the importance of maintaining "consistency and stability" when it comes to the DPP's China and foreign affairs policies. "Only by maintaining consistency and stability will the people and the international community have confidence in us," Su said. Frank Hsieh, another DPP heavyweight who had been a premier under the Chen Shui-bian administration during 2000-2008, was a bit less self-assured than Tsai and Su. He said the DPP needs to do something to make up for its shortfall in terms of people's trust in executing cross-strait policy. Calling it the party's "last mile" toward regaining ruling power in the 2016 presidential election, Hsieh said the DPP should hold a debate on China policy when it holds election for the next chairman in May. Hsieh, along with Tsai and Su, are all possible candidates for that post which could serve as a springboard for winning the party's nomination for the 2016 presidential race. (By Justin Su and S.C. Chang)


Updated : 2020-11-30 23:06 GMT+08:00