TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Young, rising Democratic Progressive Party star Enoch Wu (吳怡農) lost what local media called "the duel of the two hunks" (雙帥對決) with Kuomintang (KMT) candidate Wayne Chiang (蔣萬安) on Saturday (Jan. 11).
In a fierce battle for Taipei City's No. 3 District, Wu lost to Chiang, the great-grandson of Taiwan's postwar strongman ruler Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石), by 13,245 votes, with a final tally of 99,539 votes to Chiang's 112,784. Kimyung Keng (何景榮) from the Taiwan People's Party (TPP) and Tien Fang-yu (田方宇) from the Stabilizing Force Party lagged far behind with only 5,730 votes and 1,209 votes, respectively.
Starting at 4:30 p.m., Wu's supporters gathered at Wu's campaign headquarters eagerly awaiting the results of the contest. To the disappointment of his fans, Wu took the stage at 8:30 p.m. to break the news that he had been bested by Chiang.
Choking back tears, Wu expressed his gratitude to all of his supporters. Wu said that he lost the election because he "didn't work hard enough and was not good enough," but he pledged to work hard and learn from it, reported CNA.
Wu said that he called Chiang to congratulate him on his win. He said that they exchanged words of encouragement for each other and agreed that race had been run in a very positive way.
At 11:48 p.m. that night, Wu posted a concession statement on Facebook, in which he congratulated his opponent and pointed out that his performance had improved by over 20,000 votes from his previous run for office four years ago. Wu wrote that a senior politician once said that there are a hundred reasons to win an election, but there is only one reason to fail: the candidate did not try hard enough. "I didn't finish the task with this last step."
There was a huge outpouring of support for his post, with 178,000 likes, 15,000 comments, and 3,100 shares within 12 hours. Word of encouragement soon flooded in, with many supporters called on Wu to run for Mayor of Taipei.
Wu, 39, graduated from Yale with a degree in Economics, before working in Asian investment management at Goldman Sachs. In 2013 at the age of 34, Wu left finance, relinquished his U.S. citizenship, and served in Taiwan's special forces to fulfill his obligation as a Taiwanese citizen.
After retiring from the military in 2014, Wu worked as a journalist and served in the National Security Council and the Cabinet. In September of 2019, Wu announced his bid for the Taipei's 3rd District.
Wu looking dejected during concession speech. (CNA photo)