Mon, Jun 08, 2015 - Page 1 News List

Wang Jin-pyng hints at making bid for president

READY, WILLING:Wang seemed to have altered his stance on making a bid, saying yesterday that he would be able to ‘shoulder the duty’ if called upon

By Alison Hsiao  /  Staff reporter

Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng, standing, speaks at the founding of a Chinese traditional religious association at the Fo Guang Shan Temple in Kaohsiung yesterday.

Photo: CNA

Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) yesterday said that he was committed to doing his duty if he is “drafted” by the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) to run for president.

However, a party official said that a draft is unnecessary at this stage, as the KMT’s presidential primary is still in process.

Just weeks after holding a news conference at which Wang expressed an “apology” to supporters for his decision not to run in the KMT presidential primary, when asked yesterday by reporters how he would feel about being drafted into making a bid, his response seemed to indicate a change in attitude.

“As Taiwanese [we] care about the survival and development of Taiwan, and as a KMT party member, [I] would shoulder the duty with full commitment if it is the party’s decision,” he said.

As for the proposal made by some KMT lawmakers that the party’s rules on nominating legislator-at-large candidates be revised to allow Wang to remain in the legislature, Wang said he “had not heard about it.”

According to the Central News Agency, KMT Secretary-General Lee Shu-chuan (李四川), in response to Wang’s remarks, said there is no question of a “draft” at this stage, since the primary mechanism is in process, and the party would nominate Deputy Legislative Speaker Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱), the sole runner in the primary, if she crosses the 30 percent threshold in a party poll as required by the KMT’s primary rules.

When asked how she views Wang’s sudden change of attitude, Hung yesterday said that she is glad that someone is now willing to take on the responsibility, “but do not forget that we still have to go through the [primary] mechanism; there can be a further step only when the procedure has been completed.”

The party ballot is scheduled to be conducted on Friday and Saturday, and the results are to be released on Sunday or Monday next week at the earliest, KMT officials said.

In related news, Chinese-language media reported that former Taipei mayor Hau Lung-bing (郝龍斌) intends to enter the legislative race in central or southern Taiwan, where allegedly few or no candidates have thrown their hats in the ring.

KMT Chairman Eric Chu (朱立倫) said he has not verified the news with Hau, “but if it is true, it would be a good thing.

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