Alexa
  • Directory of Taiwan

Chu wants to keep direct presidential elections

Chu wants to keep direct presidential elections

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Kuomintang leadership candidate Eric Liluan Chu wants to keep direct presidential elections even after constitutional changes, reports said Saturday.
Chu shocked observers last month when he said he favored replacing the existing mixed presidential-parliamentary system with a purely parliamentary system. Because of widespread consternation among the public over the likelihood of losing the right to pick a president only 20 years after it started, Chu now reportedly favored keeping the direct elections.
The New Taipei City mayor is the only candidate for the election of a new KMT chairman on January 17, and is also favored as the party’s presidential candidate for 2016, even though he has declared he did not want to run.
According to Saturday’s United Evening News, Chu wanted to follow the model of France’s Fifth Republic and allow the president to hold the power over foreign relations and defense, and in Taiwan’s case, also relations with China. The three basic rights would be written into the Constitution, allowing for a clear separation of powers between president and premier, the newspaper wrote.
Under this formula, direct elections for the president could continue. Taiwan’s first such election took place in 1996, and the prospect of seeing the introduction of a ceremonial head of state not elected by the people reportedly distressed a significant cross-section of the public. Opposition critics said Chu was planning to undermine the powers of the president to be elected in 2016 and preparing himself to become a powerful prime minister later on.
At a campaign rally for his chairmanship bid in Kaohsiung Saturday, Chu praised the parliamentary or Cabinet system as a cure for Taiwan’s present “unbalanced” political structure. He also reiterated proposals to allow absentee voting, to lower the minimum voting age to 18 and to lower the threshold for political parties to win seats.
The Legislative Yuan still has to set up a special committee to prepare proposals for constitutional reform. The next presidential election in 2016 has been mentioned as the most likely date for a referendum on the proposals, to be introduced in 2010 if they were approved.


Updated : 2021-09-19 17:36 GMT+08:00