TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Chairman of the Kuomintang (KMT)-affiliated China Broadcasting Corporation Chao Shao-kang (趙少康) has caused a stir in Taiwan’s main opposition party in recent days after releasing his “dream team” (夢幻名單) line up for next year’s local elections.
The move has supposedly ignited the “battle-ready blue” (戰鬥藍) faction, with Chao pushing forward personalities who exhibit a more aggressive campaigning style over milder incumbent candidates, according to a report by SET news network.
Chao has said Chiang Wan-an (蔣萬安) — the great-grandson of Chiang Kai-shek — is too gentle, and should be swapped out for Taipei city councilor Lo Chih-chiang (羅智強) or former Kaohsiung mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜).
Chao also wants to deploy pro-unification firebrand Chang Ya-chung (張亞中) for the Taoyuan City race. The move is seen as challenging the authority of recently-elected chairperson, Eric Chu (朱立倫), who has the final word over which party members will be fielded in which electorates.
Yet, Chao has denied this was his intention in releasing the list. Meanwhile, pundits on Taiwan’s political talk shows have been quick to break down what the list means for the KMT’s strategy.
On the Sanlih E-Television (SET) network show “Just Wanna Complain” (94要客訴), independent Kaohsiung city councilor Huang Chieh (黃捷) said radical factions have taken over the KMT.
“If the pain the KMT tasted in Kaohsiung wasn’t enough, and they want to taste that same pain again in Taipei, I don’t mind,” she said, supposedly referring to the successful recall of Han Kuo-yu in Kaohsiung last year. “But what a dream list is for the KMT is actually a delusional list in the eyes of the general public,” she went on.
Also, the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) Taipei city councilor Wang Shih-chien (王世堅) said the list speaks to a sentiment that is widespread among KMT supporters — that Chiang is too weak in fighting for the KMT’s position or blocking the DPP's bills in the country’s legislature.
Lo, on the other hand, fights bravely on the frontlines for the KMT and this is why the so-called “battle-ready blue” faction prefers him.