Sun, May 18, 2014 - Page 8 News List

The Liberty Times Editorial: Use the power at the ballot box

Wang, who has said in public that his biggest regret was that he accepted the Control Yuan presidency, has followed suit and done what he can to trample on those Control Yuan members that Ma discarded. Are they trying to set an example for the new Control Yuan nominees?

While all this has been going on, the Cabinet announced that it will hold a national conference on trade and the economy in July.

Taiwan’s current political stalemate is no longer only about the economy and trade.

While the opaque handling of the service trade agreement has angered the public, the problem with the agreement is that our lame-duck president is using his party to lead the government and force its legislators to do his bidding, which has put him on a collision course with public opinion.

In September last year, Ma tried to get rid of Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平), thereby interfering directly with the legislature and destroying the balance between the executive and the legislative branches of the government.

At that time, Central Election Commission (CEC, 中央選舉委員會) Chairwoman Chang Po-ya (張博雅) abandoned administrative neutrality by rapidly canceling Wang’s party membership.

Although the KMT lost the lawsuit filed by Wang, Chang was nominated for the Control Yuan presidency. The public can decide for themselves whether this was a political reward.

Lest we forget, to protect the construction of the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant in Gongliao District (貢寮), New Taipei City, and the pan-blue legislators, the KMT brazenly refused to amend the Referendum Act and lower the quorum threshold while raising the threshold for recalling legislators in order to protect “Ma’s pawns.”

Ma continues to play his power games despite an approval rating of only 9 percent and tramples all over the true masters of a democratic country. Why is he able to do this? The problem clearly lies with the workings of the constitutional framework.

As long as the constitutional articles that benefit the KMT are not amended, the KMT can continue to ignore public opinion and still maintain a legislative majority, allowing Ma to use the power and money provided by the party to continue his authoritarian rule regardless of how low his support drops.

The Sunflower movement hit the nail on the head with its call for a civic constitutional conference.

However, lame-duck Ma will not voluntarily give up power and hand it back to the masters of the nation. Instead, Ma will hold a national conference on trade and the economy to cover up the infection in the Constitution, yet another trick aimed at deceiving the public.

Ma continues to take advantage of the public, and what can we do? If a revolution or a coup is not the rational solution, then we should display the power of the citizenry and occupy the legislative chamber via the ballot box, restore its democratic functions and reorganize constitutional order.

Translated by Perry Svensson

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