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KMT candidate says talks on replacing her damaging for party

KMT candidate says talks on replacing her damaging for party

Taipei, Oct. 7 (CNA) Ruling Kuomintang (KMT) presidential candidate Hung Hsiu-chu (???) expressed regret Wednesday that the KMT will discuss a proposal to replace her, saying that a resolution made earlier that day to address the issue plunges the party into "another precarious situation." The KMT Central Standing Committee passed unanimously the resolution to call an extraordinary party congress to deliberate the proposal to replace her. In a 900-word statement on the theme of "the KMT belongs to all people," Hung said she respects the Central Standing Committee's authority to convene an extraordinary party congress, but asserted that its motives are unjust and that its assessment is wrong. She said the resolution "will undoubtedly push the party into another precarious situation," and that it is truly regrettable that the KMT leaders and Central Standing Committee members are attempting to force her out of the Jan. 16, 2016 presidential race at a time when her supporters around the island are making efforts to solicit votes for her in the 100 days leading up to the election. "This truly baffles me," she said. Hung noted that the KMT suffered a drubbing in local elections late last year, but said that instead of engaging in soul-searching, it has indulged in defeatism instead. Some within the party have said that the KMT could suffer a setback with her as the party's standard-bearer, but Hung cited some figures to offer a different perspective. She said that in the Nov. 29 mayoral elections last year, the KMT lost around 1.3 million votes in cities south of Chiayi, including 450,000 votes in Tainan and 550,000 in Kaohsiung. In the last legislative elections in 2012, the KMT only managed to take three out of 20 seats in cities and counties south of Chiayi. "There are reasons why the party has suffered such dire losses, but so far, it has yet to reflect upon itself, but instead continues to indulge in defeatism and passing the buck," Hung said. This defeatist attitude meant that no party heavyweights were willing to come forward to take part in the party's primary, she went on. Hung reaffirmed that her participation is aimed at setting the nation on the right path and changing the party, saying that if the party neither changes nor reforms, people will not be willing to vote for KMT candidates. Meanwhile, KMT Chairman Eric Chu (???)said prior to the Central Standing Committee meeting that by no means did he want to see the present conundrum, but added that when the party encounters difficulties, he has to speak the truth. Chu noted that Hung was nominated by the party congress July 19, since which time she has worked hard, which the party regards in a positive light. Following recent meetings with Hung amid persistent calls to replace her because of her dismal support rating in opinion polls compared with the front-runner, Tsai Ing-wen (???) of the main opposition Democratic Progressive Party, Chu said that "I can acutely understand" her unhappiness with the situation. But he said he has to fully and sincerely report to her about the difficulties faced by the KMT legislative candidates. The Legislative elections will be held on the same day as the presidential vote, with all 113 seats up for grabs. Chu also touched on the cross-Taiwan Strait policies mentioned by Hung, which he described as deviating from the long-held party line and from the mainstream viewpoint in Taiwan. Hung's "one country, common interpretation" and "eventual unification with China" ideas have been controversial, putting KMT legislative candidates at risk of criticism. In a related development, KMT Central Standing Committee member Chiang Shuo-ping(???) , one of the main authors of the Hung replacement proposal, also said that Hung's cross-strait policy shows a tilt toward a minor party -- the unification-oriented New Party. (By Claudia Liu and Lilian Wu)


Updated : 2021-09-20 10:13 GMT+08:00