Taiwan's KMT presidential candidate selects ex premier as running mate

Han `deeply worried about Taiwan’s future prospects,' pledges to work with Chang San-cheng for benefit of country

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Han Kuo-yu and Chang San-cheng

Han Kuo-yu and Chang San-cheng (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Kuomintang’s (KMT) presidential candidate Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) has picked former Premier Chang San-cheng (張善政) as his running mate for the key elections in January.

Han made the announcement on Monday (Nov. 11) morning at a press conference in Taipei. Declaring Chang as the best choice, Han said the decision had been made some time ago, but declined to elaborate on his decision-making process.

“We both love the Republic of China and are deeply worried about Taiwan’s future prospects,” said Han. He pledged to work with Chang for the benefit of the country.

Chang emphasized that he has been an independent politician and is against political wrangling between the KMT and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP). “I hope Han’s government will focus on what’s right or wrong in a matter instead of the politics involved in it,” Chang said.

Chang then blasted President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) government for being incapable of making progress, squandering the nation’s resources, and sabotaging democracy, among other things.

“Han has shouldered the expectations of many people,” Chang said. He added that as Han’s running mate he would help him fulfill his goals. “I am willing to take on the responsibility.”

Han did not touch on policy issues during the press event, saying he would discuss them at a later time. Nevertheless, he said a president should take responsibility for cross-strait relations, national defense, and foreign affairs. The vice president, meanwhile, would work with the premier to boost the nation’s economy.

Chang would work hard to make people rich given his expertise in technology and innovation, according to Han. He also added that his government would take care of minority groups in Taiwan.

Tsai is yet to announce her running mate, though many believe it will be the former premier, William Lai (賴清德). Presidential candidate registration with the election agency is scheduled to start Nov. 18 and carry on until Nov. 22.