President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) should be ashamed for trying to get party heavyweights to “save” him, People First Party (PFP) presidential candidate James Soong (宋楚瑜) said yesterday.
“A leader has to provide for the safety of people, instead of having people ‘save’ him,” Soong said.
“Ma has been going around asking [KMT] heavyweights to support him, but if the president can’t even reassure these party heavyweights, how can the public feel safe with him?” he asked.
Soong’s remarks came in the wake of comments by former KMT chairman Lien Chan (連戰), who on Wednesday said it would be disrespectful to Soong to suggest that the PFP chairman drop out of the elections now, but added that he hoped pan-blue voters would concentrate their votes on the KMT. There was also as a recent spate of ads placed by other party heavyweights such as Lin Yang-kang (林洋港) rooting for Ma.
“This election isn’t about saving someone who didn’t do [his job] well, but saving the public so they can save their jobs and businesses,” Soong said, while canvassing for votes at the Yonghe Traditional Market in New Taipei City (新北市).
“The issue is not about whom to save and whom to dump; it’s about dumping the incompetent and the risky and saving the security and stability of Taiwan,” Soong said.
On the eve of the 24th anniversary of former president Chiang Ching-kuo’s (蔣經國) death, Soong also paid tribute at his mausoleum in Touliao (頭寮), Taoyuan County, before canvassing for votes there.
“I am very capable and I have the people in my heart,” Soong said, adding that he was heavily influenced by Chiang’s spirit of love for the people.
“Mr Ching-kuo once said that ‘if I have something to eat, then the people have something to eat,’” Soong said, adding that if he were elected president, he would adhere to the same principle.
Translated by Jake Chung, Staff Writer