The Supreme Court yesterday ruled that the re-election of President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) and Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) was valid, dismissing one of two lawsuits by pan-blue-camp lawyers claiming that Chen and Lu were unfairly elected.
The Taiwan High Court ruled against the pan-blue camp's election lawsuit last November. The decision was then appealed to the Supreme Court. Yesterday's verdict cannot be appealed.
"The court rejects the plaintiff's three claims because the pan-blue camp has failed to provide adequate evidence for any of the arguments presented to the court," Judge Shih Chao-hsiung (許朝雄) said.
The judge said pan-blue-camp claims that the pan-green camp had attempted to influence or manipulate the result of the presidential election by staging an assassination attempt on March 19, the eve of the election, were not backed up by any evidence.
He also referred to pan-blue-camp claims that two Kaohsiung-based underground radio stations had reported that Chen and Lu had been the victims of a conspiracy by the pan-blue camp and the Chinese Communist Party.
But he said that there was no evidence to show that Chen and Lu had ordered the stations to do this.
The judge said pan-blue lawyers had also claimed Chen and Lu avoided the public after the shooting in order to win more voter sympathy. But he said that the matter had no bearing on the law relating to presidential elections.
Shih said the pan-blue-camp lawyers had contended that Chen and Lu had staged the assassination attempt, then launched a so-called "national security mechanism" to influence the election.
The lawyers claimed that military and police personnel, allegedly mostly pan-blue supporters, were thus deprived of the ability to vote.
But Shih said the increased security measures implemented by the Ministry of National Defense were lawful. In addition to this, he said, no evidence had been presented to the court showing that Chen had ordered the activation of a "national security mechanism."
On the allegation that Chen used the referendum on the day of the presidential election to unfairly influence the result of the election itself, the court said that Chen had never required the Cabinet to hold the referendum concurrently with the election, and that it had just been a suggestion.
He said the Central Election Commission decided to hold the referendum with the presidential election. The court therefore could not conclude that Chen had tried to influence the election.
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