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Taiwan Presidential Election 2020: Tidbits from Aug. 1 to 25, 2019

Tidbits about presidential nominees and potential candidates

Taiwan Presidential Election 2020: Tidbits from Aug. 1 to 25, 2019

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Taiwan Presidential Election 2020: Tidbits from Aug. 1 to 25

Last updated: (GMT+8) 01:15 Aug. 30, 2019

Election Tidbits about Tsai Ing-wen, Han Kuo-yu, Ko Wen-je, and Terry Gou
**Continuously updated Traditional Chinese version

Tidbits about presidential nominees and potential candidates

Han Kuo-yu Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) presidential nominee [ Chinese version ]Han Kuo-yu

  • Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu said in a Facebook post on Sunday (Aug. 25), “The behavior of self-directed ‘mud-slinging anonymous letters’ has caught me between tears and laughter and driven me to the brink of my patience. My love and tolerance has come from my heart and are sincere. Since there are people who cannot understand what love and tolerance is, I will not waste my truthfulness and good will on them. I can only defend justice and dignity through legal procedures.”
  • On Aug. 22 morning, a 90-strong delegation of Japanese lawmakers of the Liberal Democratic Party visited Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜). The dignitaries and officials of the Kaohsiung City government waited 25 minutes before the mayor finally arrived.
  • KMT presidential nominee Han Kuo-yu said on Wednesday (Aug. 21), “If I am elected Taiwan president, I’ll restart the fourth nuclear power plant on the premise that the people agree with it and that there is no safety concern.” However, experts responded that because of the nuclear waste and fuel rod issues, it is impossible to restart the fourth nuclear power plant. One said that “Mayor Han’s precious office hours shouldn’t be wasted on the pseudo agenda of the fourth nuclear power plant.” New Taipei City's KMT Mayor Hou You-yi has also expressed the issue is a nonstarter.
  • KMT(Chinese Nationalist Party) presidential nominee Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu said on Aug. 20 that his car is "possibly rigged with a tracker,” questioning whether the national machine was keeping an eye on him. However, law enforcement points out that attaching a tracker to a vehicle is an offense against that cannot be prosecuted without a written complaint by the victim. They asked Han to submit related information to police or a prosecutor's office for investigation, and warned him that, if no such offense had been committed, then the false accusation could embroil him in a malicious accusation lawsuit.
  • KMT(Chinese Nationalist Party) presidential nominee Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu engaged in a live video streaming event on Facebook Monday (Aug. 19), showing off a stack of official documents as tall as he is and challenging Premier Su Tseng-chang to a document handling contest.
  • The live streaming event was inspired by an earlier incident. On Aug. 15, Han Kuo-yu mentioned that he handled 10 documents a day, but the statement was met with mockery from the premier, who said the stack of documents he handled every day is taller than a person.
  • The microphone that KMT presidential nominee Han Kuo-yu was using to make a speech during his visit to a Mazu temple in Hukou, Hsinchu County, on Sunday morning (Aug. 18) was out of order and no sound came out. At noon, when he visited the party’s Hsinchu County headquarters, he spoke into the microphone and said, “Sound does come out of this microphone. I feel touched.” He then said jokingly, “Finally I got a microphone that works. When I visit another temple later on, if the microphone turns out to be a lemon again, then I’ll have a good reason to suspect that the Democratic Progressive Party is behind it.”
  • Recently, several members of the Kuomintang (Chinese Nationalist Party) have come up with accusations about its presidential candidate Han Kuo-yu’s personal life, leading to the KMT’s Central Standing Committee voting on August 14 to “immediately expel party members who launch malicious attacks and slander the reputation of the party’s presidential and legislative candidates, influencing the party’s image.”
  • Former Kaohsiung County Magistrate Yang Chiu-hsing launched a strong verbal attack on Kaohsiung mayor and KMT presidential nominee Han Kuo-yu in a Facebook post on Aug. 12, describing him as “untrustworthy, unvirtuous, incapable, not getting along well with others, greedy, and enjoying power politics.” In response, Han said, “The accusations are absolutely not true.”
  • Former KMT(Chinese Nationalist Party) legislator Chen Hung-chang criticized Han Kuo-yu on Aug. 11, asking, “How could the KMT nominate a person as a presidential candidate who spends his days playing mahjong, partying, and womanizing?” On Aug. 12, Han took to Facebook to snap back, saying, “The political circle is full of baseless smears and slanders that are not held accountable. Therefore, from today on, I will remain temperate, kind, courteous, and restrained, but I won’t be magnanimous again.”
  • In response to requests for comment on recent remarks by former KMT legislator Chen Hung-chang that Han Kuo-yu spent his time as a lawmaker “playing mahjong, partying and womanizing,” Han said, on Aug. 11, “That was me 20 years ago, but I am a different person now.”
  • While on the campaign trail in Nantou County on Aug. 11, Han Kuo-yu was also asked by media to comment on Taiwan-based beverage shops in China being told to pledge their support to the “one country, two systems” framework and express their opposition to Hong Kong’s protests. Han declined to comment, saying only “Thank you.”
  • On Aug. 10, Chinese Unification Promotion Party president Chang An-lo said his party would not nominate a candidate to contend in Taiwan's 2020 presidential race but would instead back KMT nominee Han Kuo-yu.
  • Han Kuo-yu said on a political talk show the other day that “The biggest secret of the election is that those who garner the most votes win, and those who garner the least votes lose. It’s as simple as that.” The remarks have been ridiculed by many netizens, with sentences like: “The biggest secret of a sibling relationship is that the elder brother is older, and the younger brother is younger” and "The biggest secret of the stock market is that shares will trade higher or lower tomorrow."
  • On Aug. 5 Han Kuo-yu said in an interview that “if the turmoil in Hong Kong continues, it would be a loss for both Hong Kong and Taiwan.” Senior Huang Chuang-hsia, “How on earth did Han’s comment align with that of the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office, Hong Kong Liaison Office, and Hong Kong's Chief Executive Carrie Lam?"
  • On Aug. 5, Han Kuo-yu was interviewed over China’s ban on solo travel to Taiwan. Han said that cross-strait exchanges must be peaceful and prosperous “There is no need to create imaginary enemies,” causing turmoil on both sides, he said. Han also urged the Chinese authorities "not to consider the Democratic Progressive Party as representative of all Taiwanese people." "Most Taiwanese are kind and crave peace, economic growth, and sound education."
  • On Aug. 5 morning, Han Kuo-yu was asked about his feelings when he and his wife were confronted by a Chinese tourist who gave him a “thumbs-down” gesture in Taoyuan last Saturday, and was also accused of “selling out his own country.” Han rebutted that there were about 30,000 people on the scene and 29,998 people among them supported him, which he said is a fact deserved to be reported for fairness.
  • When asked on Monday (Aug. 5) about China’s recent ban on solo travel to Taiwan, Han Kuo-yu said exchanges between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait must be based on the principle of peace and prosperity, adding, “There is no need to create an imaginary enemy” and cause turmoil. He called on Chinese authorities “not to equate Taiwanese with the Democratic Progressive Party, as most Taiwanese are kindhearted, peace-loving, and hope for better economic development and education.”
  • While attending a Marine Corps veterans dinner party on Sunday night (Aug. 4), Han Kuo-yu said he got so drunk that he “almost couldn’t stand up.” Media reported that Han ended up having to cancel his scheduled administrative duties on Monday, for which he was criticized online. Netizens made sarcastic comments describing the mayor as someone who “campaigns on holidays and rests on workdays,” or “idles away his time while grabbing whatever benefits he can get.” Another said, “It doesn’t make any difference whether he is on duty or not.”
  • On Saturday morning (Aug. 3), while on a short pilgrimage to Taoyuan, Han was chastised by a Chinese man from Shanghai and his Taiwanese wife. They gave the thumbs down to Han. The Taiwanese woman called out to the mayor, saying, “Han Kuo-yu, kneel at China’s Taiwan Affairs Office. Aren’t you embarrassed?” The Chinese man said, “Look at Hong Kong! Loser! I am a Chinese visitor! I’m telling you, the suffering we Chinese endure in China will be the fate of Taiwanese. If you go on like this, you will dig your own grave!”

Tsai Ing-wen (Democratic Progressive Party’s presidential nominee) [ Chinese version ]Tsai Ing-wen

  • In response to Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je’s comment during an interview on Aug. 23 that he was still “waiting for Tsai to hand over her administration examination paper,” President Tsai Ing-wen told reporters on Sunday (Aug. 25), “My scorecard is handed over to all people instead of any political parties or specific politicians.”
  • On Aug. 23, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) hosted a public memorial ceremony at Taiwushan Cemetery (太武山忠烈祠) in Kinmen for the first time since being elected. “The spirit of 823 is that Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen, and Matsu are one. When we commemorate that day, do not forget the spirit of 823, which is to protect our country without any room for compromise.”
  • On Aug. 22, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said in a Facebook post, “Would you place all your eggs in a basket or in different baskets?” The importance of spreading the risk cannot be overstated, said Tsai, adding that Taiwan should seek to diversify tourism and avoid over-reliance on revenues from Chinese tourists.
  • Ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) presidential nominee President Tsai Ing-wen said during a reception for international guests on Wednesday, “In the face of China, Taiwan will not provoke, but will staunchly defend national sovereignty and the rights of people. Taiwan is willing and capable of strengthening cooperation with Indo-Pacific countries to make a greater contribution to the peace and stability of the region.”
  • Reacting to the U.S. Department of State’s approval of sales of 66 F-16V fighter jets and related military equipment, Tsai Ing-wen expressed her thanks on Twitter and Facebook Wednesday, saying, “The peace and stability of Taiwan Strait and the region are more assured by the continuing support for Taiwan’s national security.”
  • Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) presidential nominee President Tsai Ing-wen said during a meeting with Japanese politicians on Tuesday, “We are concerned about the development of the situation in Hong Kong, and staunchly safeguard Taiwan’s democracy and freedom, hoping ‘Tomorrow’s Hong Kong can be today’s Taiwan.’”
  • During a meeting with Christopher Pyne, Australia’s former defense minister, on Aug. 19, President Tsai Ing-wen said, “We are concerned about Hong Kong’s ‘anti-extradition’ movement and support the people of Hong Kong’s pursuit of democracy and freedom, but we are also worried about Hong Kong’s worsening situation. So, we are concerned, but we will not intervene.”
  • On Sunday (Aug. 18), Taiwan President and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) presidential nominee Tsai Ing-wen said that KMT presidential nominee Han Kuo-yu should have managed his city’s affairs well before discussing the management of national affairs.
  • On August 16, the KMT slammed President Tsai Ing-wen for visiting temples. Tsai responded by saying that one should not devalue Taiwan’s positive religious culture just for the elections’ sake.
  • On the afternoon of August 15, President Tsai Ing-wen said: when you look at what is happening in Hong Kong, the elections in 2020 will be the Taiwanese choosing to continue with their free and democratic lifestyle, or choosing to take a road that will gradually lead to being unified.
  • On Wednesday (Aug. 14), media asked Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen to respond to the accusation made by China's Taiwan Affairs Office spokesman Ma Xiaoguang that Taiwan’s ruling Democratic Progressive Party has reached its black hand into Hong Kong, attempting to fan the flames of the situation in the city and make a mess out of it. Tsai said that as a member of the democratic camp, Taiwan must express its position of support for Hong Kong people fighting for democracy and freedom, adding, “We support, but will not intervene.” Tsai called out to the Chinese and Hong Kong authorities, “Don’t shift the responsibility for the worsening situation to non-existent outside force, don’t refuse to talk with the people, and don’t make a wrong judgment and cause a historic regret.”
  • While on a worship tour in the Greater Taipei area on Aug. 11, Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen made the following remarks to reporters, “I plead with the public to give Tsai Ing-wen four more years, and our Taiwan will be very different. The economy will turn better, the social care will become better, the national defense will become stronger, and Taiwan’s sovereignty will be safeguarded. As long as I am in power, there is no need to worry that Taiwan will become the second Hong Kong.”
  • On Aug. 10, President Tsai Ing-wen attended a rally held in support of her reelection campaign by a group of dentists in southern Taiwan. She said during the rally that in the face of the U.S.-China trade war, the international situation is changing, and with it, Taiwan's situation. It is built on a solid foundation of more than three years of hard work, not on a baseless slogan, she said. Taiwan's economy has successfully transformed, and it is now time to call for the people to come together, the president added.
  • President Tsai Ing-wen told the media on Tuesday morning (Aug. 6), “We have strictly abided by financial discipline. In the past two years, we have had budget surpluses. This year was the first time in 22 years when making the general budget proposal for the following year that we achieved a balanced budget.”
  • On the message Taiwan’s Yi Fang Fruit Tea posted on Weibo on Monday (Aug. 5) swearing support for the "one country, two systems" framework and condemning the anti-extradition bill protests in Hong Kong, Tsai told reporters on Tuesday morning (Aug. 6), “As for fruit tea, we certainly hope it’s natural, which is best, but if it’s mixed with a political flavor, it won’t taste good.” She added, “Politics is invading every corner of our lives, so we need to pay extra attention.
  • When asked on Tuesday morning (Aug. 6) when she would meet with former Premier William Lai, Tsai said, “I think we have no problems regarding unity, so it’s not necessary to formally hold any kind of meeting.” When asked if a Tsai-Lai ticket is still possible, Tsai said, “The DPP’s unity is not in question. We’ll have the best ticket when the time comes.”
  • After Ko accused people around Tsai of being corrupt on Monday afternoon (Aug. 5), Tsai responded that evening by citing Ko’s previous remarks, “Criticizing others will not make yourself better.” She asked for Ko to apologize to the people who have made contributions to society by working for the country, saying accusations should be backed up by substantial evidence.

Ko Wen-je (potential candidate) [ Chinese version ]Ko Wen-je

  • In response to President Tsai Ing-wen’s comment on Sunday (Aug. 25), “My scorecard is handed over to all people instead of any political parties or specific politicians,” Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je told reporters, “All people in Taiwan would like to know what President Tsai’s Taiwan values are.”
  • On Friday night (Aug. 23), during an exclusive interview with a television host who has been at the scene of the Hong Kong protests, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je said, “Even though your next door neighbor is a raucous psycho, you don’t need to have a brawl with that person. You’d better just close your door and do your own thing." “Hong Kong’s anti-extradition protests are expected to have a tragic ending before Oct. 1,” he reiterated.
    “In fact, Chinese President Xi Jinping only has to take a step back to settle the unrest, as a change of ideas usually makes a big difference in politics.”
    Ko went on to say, "I think China is about ready to replace Hong Kong with the model of Shanghai and Shenzhen, and soon Hong Kong will be overtaken by ‘one country, one system.’”
  • On Aug. 23, Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) said during a television interview that the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) has been contacting him through private channels. Kosaid he is waiting for President Tsai to hand in her “transcript on governing the country” by September 17, the deadline for registration as a presidential candidate. Ko said he does not need to run for the presidency if President Tsai can lead Taiwan to a better future; otherwise, he will be supporting Terry Gou (郭台銘) if Gou is willing to run for president.
  • Ko Wen-je, Terry Guo, and Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) attended a concert together on Aug. 23 to prove that analliance between them is still plausible. Ko said that when it comes to forming such an alliance, what matters most is not whether they would win the election but how to safeguard Taiwan in the foreseeable future. Ko said that Taiwan is facing a difficult and dangerous time as the U.S.-China trade war and Hong Kong anti-extradition bill protests continue. Ko added that politics in Taiwan has centered on the ideological quarrel between the blue and green coalitions since 1994. Not wanting the 2020 election to be yet another contest of fear and hatred, Kosaid he wants to add another option: “hope.”
  • It’s said that former Foxconn chairman Terry Gou’s rationale for delaying making an announcement about whether he will join the presidential race is based partially on his religious belief that it’s ominous to make such an announcement during ghost month. To which, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je jokingly said on Wednesday, “I studied western medicine, so it’s not a taboo to me.”
  • Ko Wen-je’s falling out with Want Want China Times Group chairman Tsai Eng-meng shows no signs of easing. On Wednesday, Ko said it’s not him who attached the label of “red media” to Tsai's China Times and CTI Television, adding, “Who in Taiwan does not consider his media to be red media? With such media in Taiwan, do we still need to have enemies?”
  • In response to Want Want China Times Group chairman Tsai Eng-meng requesting him to define his “relationship with China’s Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO),” Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je said during a media interview on Tuesday (Aug. 20) that his relationship with TAO is that of an adversary because they have to constantly play offense or defense with regard to the hosting of the annual Taipei-Shanghai Twin City Forum. Ko then asked, “What’s Tsai Eng-meng’s relationship with the TAO?”
  • As Hong Kong’s anti-extradition protests become increasingly intense, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je said during a television interview on Monday, “Three individuals methods of handling things can provide perspective for China President Xi Jinping to deal with the Hong Kong issue: The ex-president of the former USSR Mikhail Gorbachev, former Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Kuan Yew, and former Taiwan President Chiang Ching-kou. I recommend Chiang’s way of handling the Hong Kong issue because Gorbachev caused the Soviet Union to disintegrate and democratize, while Lee ruled tiny Singapore with an iron fist. China’s territory is much bigger, and it’s advisable to learn from Chiang, who gradually loosened his grip (on controlling the people of Taiwan) and let Taiwan’s core values of democracy and freedom become a clue for China to search for.”
  • During the same interview, Ko Wen-je added, “The U.S. would not like to see Han Kuo-yu emerging victorious from the 2020 Taiwan presidential election.”
  • During an exclusive TV interview on Saturday, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je said, “China Times and CTI Television Chairman Tsai Eng-meng said to me, 'Why can’t media have their own political stance?’ But when a medium dedicates 70 percent of its content to promoting the KMT’s Han Kuo-yu, it might as well change its name to the Han channel.” Ko added, “If late China Times founder Yu Chi-chung knew what is going on, he would come out of his grave and cry out, ‘How could China Times become such a mess?!'”
  • In the morning of August 16, Ko Wen-je said he and Terry Gou were “the lion and the tiger,” meaning their personalities fit well together. He said Gou did in fact mention having Ko as his running mate, saying he would only serve one term while Ko could combine the position of vice president with that of premier, but Ko said “no, thanks.” “If I have to serve as vice president, then I just come out and run.”
  • According to a new opinion poll published on August 15, if Taipei City Mayor Ko Wen-je runs for president, he might make it impossible for President Tsai Ing-wen to be re-elected.
  • On Wednesday (Aug. 14) night, Ko was asked the question, “The Chinese Communists’ oppressive rule has made young people feel like they don’t have a country. How can Ko Wen-je protect Taiwan and become a leader that defends Taiwan?” Ko uttered some opinions in response to the question, including a comment targeting Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen. He said, “Talking too much is useless, and writing Facebook posts cannot save the country.”
  • U.S. President Donald Trump said in a tweet, “Our Intelligence has informed us that the Chinese Government is moving troops to the Border with Hong Kong. Everyone should be calm and safe!” Reacting to Trump’s warning tweet on Wednesday (Aug. 14), Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je, a potential candidate in Taiwan’s 2020 presidential race, called on Beijing “not to make it into another Tiananmen Square incident.” He said Beijing should think carefully at this point in time because a crackdown like the Tiananmen Square incident would undo 20 years of progress for China.
  • On Aug. 12, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je said that he once told former Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou, “You must make your presidential campaign winnable before anybody can help. If not, helpers will be at a disadvantage facing the prospect of being purged by Tsai Ing-wen.”
  • Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je, a potential candidate in the 2020 Taiwan presidential elections, commented on Kaohsiung Mayor and KMT presidential nominee Han Kuo-yu during an exclusive media interview on Monday (Aug. 12). “Han Kuo-yu has made a mess of the KMT,” Ko said, adding, “KMT’s old bigwig system has been ruined.” Referring to Han’s personality, Ko said, “Abilities can be trained, but it’s hard to train character.”
  • “Looked at from the perspective of election strategy, Ko Wen-je’s chance of winning the election is the highest,” Ko said of himself, adding, “But, I haven’t given [joining the presidential race] any thought.”
  • On Aug. 11, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je was asked by media about his take on Taiwan-based beverage shops in China being recently coerced by the Chinese Communist Party or the Chinese people to pledge their support to the “one country, two systems” framework and to express their opposition to Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protests. Ko said this is an example of how China has been trying to impose its political agendas upon the economy. In civilized countries, people have the freedom to express their views; and more importantly, they also have the freedom of not wanting to express their views, the mayor said. “China’s economic growth deserves our admiration, but the big gap between its economic development and political development will not be sustained forever, and sooner or later, mishaps will occur,” Ko said, adding, “The democratic development in Taiwan over the past 30 years can serve as great inspiration for China.”
  • At noon on Aug. 6, Ko Wen-je established the Taiwanese People's Party and held a founding meeting. In an afternoon interview, Ko said: For the 2020 legislative election, the Taiwanese People's Party will certainly nominate candidates to fill all of the non-divisional legislator seats, which is 34 seats, because we must aim high. Ko also believes that the non-divisional legislator seats are the main goal for the Party, not the regional legislators. Taiwanese People’s Party will field candidates that either have a good chance of being elected or are simply used to prevent others from being elected.
  • Taipei mayor and potential presidential candidate Ko Wen-je admitted on Tuesday (Aug. 6) that he committed a faux pas the previous day by saying, “People around President Tsai Ing-wen are corrupt” – but even so, he hasn’t apologized. Instead, Ko said, “It’s my way of talking whether you like it or not.” He continued by saying, “Today, I am criticizing you! Where have all the 10,000 cartons of cigarettes gone? Actually, all Taiwan’s people have been watching and have their take on the issue. It’s been three weeks, let’s see how she is going to handle it. I bet she will use the same tactics used to handle the Mega Bank and Ching Fu scandals to deal with the cigarette smuggling scandal, by just saying, ‘Refer it to the justice system.’ However, this is not what people expect. They would like to see an attitude of self-examination. Improper use of national resources is also a form of corruption. That’s what I would like to talk with her about.”
  • On Tuesday, Shen Jung-chin, associate professor at York University in Toronto, Canada, wrote an article, stating: “There are three qualities that President Tsai Ing-wen has, which Ko Wen-je can’t stand at all.” First, Ko believes Tsai was born with a silver spoon in her mouth and believes she can’t understand how Ko has to work hard to achieve results. Second, Ko, who grew up as a mama’s boy and is adored by his wife, looks down on women. He will not willingly accept a woman who is ranked higher than him, especially if he feels the woman is not as capable as he is. He thinks he should be the one occupying the highest office in the land. Third, even though Tsai has made great strides in international diplomacy, she has not been good at choosing aides, which has provided fuel for Ko’s jealousy and ambition to replace her.
  • Following Ko’s accusation of corruption against the people around Tsai on Monday (Aug. 5), lawyer Huang Ti-ying (黃帝穎) wrote in a Facebook post on Monday night (Aug. 5) that Article 241 of the Code of Criminal Procedure stipulates: “A public official who, in the execution of his official duties, learns there is suspicion that an offense has been committed must report it. Huang said Ko is a public official and has an obligation to report a criminal offense. If he fails to report the offence, he will thereby commit the offense of sheltering criminals, Huang said, adding that if Ko cannot provide evidence after filing a claim, he would then stand accused of making false accusations. If Ko is afraid of filing such a claim, he is a crook, in just the same way he handled the Taipei Dome case, Huang added.
  • After Ko criticized the people around President Tsai for corruption, the Presidential Office demanded an apology from Ko. When asked by the media on Monday afternoon (Aug. 5) about the demand for an apology, Ko said, “I didn’t criticize her on purpose, but she should reflect on what happened. What am I going to apologize for?”
  • During a media interview at Noon on Aug. 5, Ko talked about the frequent failed bids for the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport Third Terminal project. He said he suspected that political influence has been involved in the bids, and then lashed out at Tsai, saying, “I supported you (President Tsai) in 2016, but how could you turn the country into such a mess. You weren’t corrupt, but everyone around you was.
  • When asked on Monday (Aug. 5) whether he would throw his hat into the presidential election ring, Ko reiterated that he didn’t want to put himself through it. Despite traveling around Taiwan as if preparing for an election bid, he insisted that it was merely a learning journey to observe and study.
  • On Sunday (Aug. 4). When asked about his secret meetings with Terry Gou and Wang Jin-pyng, Ko Wen-je said, “Everybody is their worst enemy. In terms of game theory, only No.1 and No. 2 can survive within an electoral district because No. 3 will quickly become marginalized. I believe that after the election, Taiwan’s political territories will be reformed. Three Kingdoms only existed in Chinese history once. If looked at from the perspective of a mathematical model, the triangle is not a stable structure. In game theory, two is a more stable structure.
  • Commenting on the rumor that if the Gou-Ko ticket wins the election, Gou would serve as president first, followed by Ko, he said that during his more than 10-year tenure as a National Taiwan University Hospital surgeon, he had seen so many people lose their loved ones that he did not listen to rumors any more. “It’s better to do the right thing. If we put fame and gain first, Taiwan’s future would be worse.”
  • On Saturday (Aug. 3), Ko pleaded with the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) not to stop him from filing the application to found the “Taiwanese People's Party.” Ko said, “Founding the party is an idea that popped into my mind when I was having lunch, and currently no party platform or constitution has been determined. When the time comes, I will use the internet to register party members, but even the website hasn’t been completed yet.”

Terry Gou (possible candidate) [ Chinese version ]Terry Gou

  • On August 29, Foxconn Technology founder Terry Gou was visiting the Middle East at the invitation of Softbank founder Masayoshi Son. Advisers at Gou’s office revealed that he had met an advisor to the Saudi royal family and the minister of commerce, and would visit funds and energy traders in order to understand energy purchases and other related policies.
  • Media reports said on Wednesday (Aug. 28) that Foxconn billionaire Terry Gou has joined hands with Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je, the chairman of Taiwan People Party; former Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyn; and People First Party Chairman James Soong, and that Gou will announce his presidential bid in mid-September.
  • Foxconn Technology founder Terry Gou (郭台銘) wrote on his Facebook page Tuesday (Aug. 27) that he had once heard the text of a coffee commercial going “you have to waste your time on something beautiful.”
    “At the Young Coffee Shop, I talked to social workers caring for young sufferers of early onset dementia. Their stories are heartbreaking, as we usually use time to record memories and to lose them, but early onset dementia victims lose what they should remember or should forget bit by bit,” Gou wrote.
  • Media reports have suggested that Foxconn founder Terry Gou visited tarot card master Su Jen-tsung in June to have his fortune told. In response, Gou said in a Facebook post on Monday, “Several months ago, Su asked to have a meeting with me, via my fans, saying he had been through a lot, including a serious illness, and that meeting with me was his lifetime wish. Out of consideration for the love I have for my fans and out of respect for someone who is older than me and not well, I met with Mr. Su for 30 minutes. However, photos of my warm, private meeting with Mr. Su and his family were leaked by ill-intentioned people. Mr. Su didn’t mention anything related to the election results.”
  • As many people have recently urged Foxconn founder Terry Gou to join the 2020 Taiwan presidential race, Gou’s office issued a statement on Sunday, saying, “Terry Gou has not made any decision regarding whether to join the race or not. Many heavyweights and good friends in the financial and industrial sectors have voiced their support for Gou to join the presidential race. However, it’s a big decision for him to make. As he is a very practical person, he always thinks carefully before making any decisions. Moreover, Gou always believes, ‘each man is the architect of his own fate.’”
  • On the evening of Aug. 23, Terry Guo said on Facebookthat “The meaning of 823 to the country is to “resist annexation” with our lives. Do not let some certain politicians exploit “resisting annexation” in the election, which is very important.”
  • On the morning of Aug. 23, Terry Guo attended a concert with Wang Jin-pyng and Ko Wen-je. When asked if he will leave the Kuomintang (KMT) to run for president or form an alliance with Ko, Guo said only that his “resolution to defend the freedom and democracy of theRepublic of China will never change.”
  • On Aug. 22, Foxconn founder Terry Gou’s campaign office announced that Gou will attend a music event on Aug. 23 morning commemorating the Second Taiwan Strait Crisis, which began on Aug. 23, 1958. He is expected to meet Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) at the event, hosted by Taipei City Government.
  • It’s said that former Foxconn chairman Terry Gou’s rationale for delaying making an announcement about whether he will join the presidential race or not is based partially on his religious belief that it’s ominous to announce his presidential bid in the ghost month. To which, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je jokingly said on Wednesday, “I studied western medicine, so it’s not a taboo to me.”
  • In the evening of August 16, Terry Gou wrote on Facebook that “politics is not dividing the spoils, and certainly not about protecting one’s power. I want to put the national interest before the party interest, the wellbeing of the people before personal benefits. Terry Gou is not seeking fame or fortune, and does not need to be patted on the head and to be given a posting. When we talk about major national issues, I demand realism, and I want to seek benefits for the 23 million people of Taiwan.”
  • On Aug. 15,Former Kaohsiung County Magistrate Yang Chiu-hsing said Terry Gou had a lot of potential. It was quite a feat for Taiwan to have such a world-class entrepreneur, willing to contribute by leading Taiwan. If Taiwan loses this opportunity, then Taiwan will not be rewarded, Yang said.
  • Former Foxconn chairman Terry Gou made his first public appearance on Wednesday (Aug. 14) after coming back from an overseas trip following his defeat in KMT’s presidential primary, while attending a summer activity hosted by Yongling Hope Elementary School. Gou said he made his first public appearance here after coming back from an overseas trip, because children are the hope of the country’s future, reiterating his policy of “the country helping raise children ages 0 – 6.” He urged the public to have more children, and told the schoolchildren who were present to ask their parents for more brothers and sisters when they go home.
  • On Aug. 11, Han Kuo-yu said he was confident that former Foxconn billionaire Terry Gou will stay with KMT and support him. In response to Han’s remark, Gou’s camp said that for the past 20 plus years, Gou has made the largest financial contributions to the KMT for the party’s development and elections. According to Gou’s camp, asking whether Gou will stay with the party is an act of belittling Gou.
  • In response to questions by the media as to whether former Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou, who lost in the KMT presidential primary, and former Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng will join forces to launch a presidential bid, Gou's office on Aug. 10 said, "Currently, Gou has no plans with regard to the presidential election."
  • There has been growing concern over whether Gou will leave the KMT to join the presidential race as an independent. One KMT insider said party members hope that Gou will pledge his support to Han for the "greater good" and announce that he will not leave the party to pursue his own presidential bid. One of Gou's aides said the Foxconn billionaire had participated in the KMT's presidential primary because he wanted it to emerge victorious in the presidential election, which should ultimately achieve three wins -- "a win for Kaohsiung, a win for Taiwan, and a win for the Republic of China.”
  • Ko Wen-je just established the "Taiwanese People's Party" and has been actively currying favor with Terry Gou, who lost in the presidential primaries of the Kuomintang (KMT). On Aug. 7, Wu Den-yih, the chairman of KMT, spoke on the matter and said , "He (Ko Wen-je) has been wooing Gou, and we are also doing the same thing to win over Mr. Gou! "
  • A basket of flowers sent by former Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou to celebrate the foundation of the “Taiwan People's Party” (TPP) arrived at noon on Tuesday (Aug. 6) and bore the couplet: “Taiwan’s peace and prosperity is the general consensus,” and, “Remember to regain the original quality of conscience.” The TPP was founded by Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je. Gou is considering joining the Taiwan 2020 presidential election as an independent candidate.
  • Terry Gou went abroad after he lost the KMT presidential primary. Since returning, Gou has not met up with the KMT’s party bosses. He did, however, meet up with former Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng. It is also thought that before meeting Wang, Gou met with Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je, who recently announced the founding of the “Taiwanese People's Party.” Gou is said to have declined Ko’s invitation to join the party and said he was instead inclined to join Taiwan’s 2020 presidential race as an independent.

Presidential candidate qualifications

  • According to Article 20 of the President and Vice President Election and Recall Law, an elector who has lived in Taiwan for more than six months, domiciled in Taiwan for more than 15 years, and is more than 40 years old, is qualified to register as a candidate for president or vice president. Anyone who restores their Taiwan nationality, or acquires nationality by naturalization, or are residents of China, Hong Kong or Macao, may not be registered as the candidate for president or vice president.
  • According to Article 22 of the law, the DPP(Democratic Progressive Party), KMT(Chinese Nationalist Party), PFP(People First Party), and NPP(New Power Party) are qualified to directly recommend a ticket for the presidential election.
  • As provided under Article 23 of the law, those who apply to be registered as candidates for president and vice president by way of joint signature should register, and the number of joint signatories, within the period set forth in the article, should reach 1.5 percent of the total voters in the latest legislative election. For example, the electorate in the latest legislative election was 18,692,217, the applicant must have 280,384 joint signatories to qualify as a candidate.

2020 Taiwan presidential election

  • Polling Day: Jan. 11, 2020
  • Election session: The 15th election for president and vice president of Taiwan, the country’s seventh direct presidential election and vice presidential election
  • Electoral system: A universal, direct, secret, single non-transferable, and plurality voting system
  • Date of inauguration: May 20, 2020
  • System and stipulations related to Taiwan’s president
    In 1996, for the first time, the president of Taiwan was directly elected to a four-year term with a term limit of two terms. Taiwan’s political system is a semi-presidential system. The powers vested in the president of Taiwan, as provided by the Constitution, can be categorized into five major areas: diplomacy, military, executive power, legislation, and justice.
  • Candidates: There are two ways to produce candidates. One is through nomination by a political party, and the other is through being co-signed by the voters.