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DPP sues KMT over pork allegations

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Democratic Progressive Party’s Changhua County office sued the Kuomintang Wednesday after banners appeared in the streets claiming that opposition presidential candidate Tsai Ing-wen wanted to open up the import of pork from the United States containing ractopamine residues.
Shortly after winning re-election in 2012, President Ma Ying-jeou pushed for the legalization of US beef with residues of the leanness agent. His support was widely blamed for his disastrous fall in his opinion poll ratings to 13 percent and below.
With Taiwan hoping to join the Trans Pacific Partnership, US pressure to also open up the import of pork was likely to grow, leading to candidates for the January 16 presidential election to accuse each other of being too conciliatory toward Washington.
In several towns in Changhua County recently, banners appeared bearing the message “Casting a ballot for Tsai Ing-wen amounts to supporting the opening to US pork with leanness drugs.” The banners had a bright green background – the color of the DPP – but also bore the name of the KMT in small lettering.
The county’s DPP office sued its KMT counterpart for violation of the Election and Recall Act, but local ruling party officials said that the legal case showed the banners worked, so it would continue to display them.
DPP officials said the statement was completely false, since during a recent presidential debate, Tsai had emphasized that it was far too early to discuss the opening or not to US pork with ractopamine residues. The presidential candidate said she would stand by public health and defend Taiwan’s interests as much as possible, DPP officials said.
Negative campaigning by linking candidates to negative issues has been fairly prevalent over the past few months, with some DPP banners describing votes for certain KMT candidates as votes for the unpopular incumbent president.

Updated : 2022-05-21 01:26 GMT+08:00