Wed, Nov 14, 2001 - Page 1 News List

DPP-KMT coalition proponents claim support of the public

POLITICAL EVOLUTION Two pro-localization KMT legislative candidates say a stable KMT-DPP alliance would be both healthy for Taiwan and would earn the parties respect

By Stephanie Low  /  STAFF REPORTER

KMT lawmaker Chen Horng-chi (陳鴻基) and Taipei City Council deputy Chen Hsueh-fen (陳雪芬), who have openly called for a KMT-DPP coalition, said yesterday that their proposal is consistent with public expectations of the KMT.

Faced with speculation that they were among a band of KMT politicians who reportedly would defect to the DPP after the elections, the two pro-localization politicians dismissed the claims as being unfounded.

The pair, who are running for legislative seats in Taipei City II and I constituencies, respectively, also denied the proposal was raised to boost their election prospects.

"What we are thinking about is what we should do when Taiwan is in crisis, rather than how to win the current election," Chen Horng-chi said.

Chen said the recent development, in which leaders of the ruling and opposition parties have traded invectives against each other during run-up to the elections, is worrisome to many people.

"If this situation continues, a reconciliation will be impossible after the elections," Chen said.

The two politicians first unveiled their proposal on Monday when they published an advertisement in a local newspaper.

They argued in the ad that "Taiwan's only chance for survival lies in getting the two largest parties -- the KMT and DPP -- to work together to form a `super-stable Cabinet.'"

They said "only a strong government can resist the Chinese communists' intimidation tactics, tackle the economic crisis and restore the public's faith in the government."

According to Chen, the KMT leadership has considered cooperation with the PFP a matter of course, but the party should now slow down to reconsider its decision and take a path that best suits public demands to sustain Taiwan's future development.

"If the KMT's development lies in the continuation of the so-called opposition alliance, I think the KMT will become pathetic," Chen said.

"The KMT should think about the future of Taiwan and the people's aspirations for the party," he added.

Chen promised that he would join other politicians with similar ideals to continue to push for localization reform within the KMT.

Chen Hsueh-fen urged the party to support like-minded pro-localization politicians and listen to their opinions, because this is what makes the KMT a pluralistic party.

"Otherwise, what is the difference between the KMT and the PFP?" she asked.

Without elaborating, KMT Chairman Lien Chan (連戰) yesterday dismissed the proposal as the "personal opinions" of two candidates.

DPP Secretary-general Wu Nai-ren (吳乃仁), meanwhile, said that the DPP had not ruled out the possibility of cooperating with any political party after the elections.

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