Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Su Jia-chyuan (蘇嘉全) yesterday won the ninth legislative speakership election in a widely predicted landslide victory, becoming the nation’s first non-Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) speaker.
The voting, which began at 10:30am, was presided over by DPP caucus whip Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘), after outgoing legislative speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) offered him the role.
Out of respect for Wang — the nation’s longest-serving speaker with 17 years in the post — lawmakers allowed him to cast the first ballot.
Photo: Chang Chia-ming, Taipei Times
New Power Party (NPP) Legislator Hsu Yung-ming (徐永明) said that his party would support Su and DPP Legislator Tsai Chi-chang (蔡其昌) for deputy speaker, but his motion to require legislators to sign their ballots was overruled by Ker as contrary to Legislative Yuan rules.
The rules state that writing characters other than a candidate’s name on speakership ballots invalidates a ballot.
Su won with 74 votes: 68 from DPP lawmakers, five from NPP legislators and one from independent Legislator Chao Cheng-yu (趙正宇), who joined the DPP caucus as the new legislature took office.
Photo: Chang Chia-ming, Taipei Times
Outgoing KMT caucus whip Lai Shyh-bao (賴士葆) received all 35 KMT votes.
People First Party (PFP) Legislator Lee Hung-chun (李鴻鈞) won four votes — three from PFP lawmakers and one from Non-Partisan Solidarity Union Legislator May Chin (高金素梅), who has joined the PFP caucus.
Tsai was elected deputy speaker in an afternoon vote, winning 74 votes to KMT Legislator-at-large William Tseng (曾銘宗), the former Financial Supervisory Commission chairman, who received 35 votes, while Chin won four. Tsai is the first non-KMT deputy speaker.
“Today is the day the Republic of China’s ninth legislature is sworn in. It also marks the first political party alternation in the legislature. I would like to thank everyone for their support for us. We will not forget the public’s expectations of us and we will work diligently,” Su said in his inauguration address.
Su said that he and Tsai would endeavor over the next four years to prove to voters and fellow legislators that they made the right choice.
The ninth legislature is to be a legislature of the people, one marked by openness, professionalism and the absence of “backroom deals,” Su said.
“In an effort to ensure the neutrality of the speakership and put an end to the longstanding political wrangling in the legislature, Deputy Speaker Tsai and I will immediately tender our resignations from all party posts to DPP Chairperson [and president-elect] Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文),” Su said.
Only an open and transparent legislature can regain public trust, Su said, pledging to allow the public to decide major governmental issues through the use of online petitions and to open the legislature to citizen journalists.
Su also promised to unite lawmakers from different parties and join hands in pushing for bills conducive to public welfare and doing what is right for Taiwanese.
He ended his speech by announcing the appointment of Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) Secretary-General Lin Chih-chia (林志嘉), a five-term lawmaker, as the legislature’s secretary-general.
The DPP caucus met yesterday morning before the speaker election and agreed that all caucus members had to display their ballots before placing them in the ballot boxes, in an effort to prevent anyone voting across party lines.
DPP spokesperson Yang Chia-liang (楊家俍) said the policy was a manifestation of responsible politics and that the DPP caucus also planned to push for an amendment mandating that such elections be conducted in a similar manner.
Additional reporting by Abraham Gerber and CNA
SOLIDARITY WITH TAIWAN: MOFA thanked US lawmakers for introducing the bill, which aims to clarify the content of UN Resolution 2758 and questions Beijing’s claim to represent Taiwan in international organizations A bipartisan coalition of US congressmen on Monday introduced legislation that aims to counter China’s claim to represent Taiwan in international organizations. “For too long, Beijing has distorted policies and procedures at the UN and related bodies to assert its sovereignty claims over Taiwan, often to the detriment of global health and security efforts,” US Representative Gerry Connolly said in a news release. “This bipartisan legislation ensures that we stand in solidarity with this critical US partner,” he said. Connolly cosponsored the bill with the three other chairs of the Congressional Taiwan Caucus — US representatives Albio Sires, Mario Diaz-Balart and Steve
STANDING TOGETHER: The allies highlighted the importance of cross-strait peace in Japan’s first statement with the US on Taiwan since it switched diplomatic recognition The US and Japan on Friday vowed to stand firm together against an assertive China, and to step up cooperation on climate change and next-generation technology as US President Joe Biden made his first summit a show of alliance unity. Waiting nearly three months for his first foreign guest due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Biden told Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga that his country enjoyed “our iron-clad support” on security issues and beyond. “We’re going to work together to prove that democracies can still compete and win in the 21st century,” Biden told reporters, affectionately calling the Japanese leader “Yoshi.” A joint
F-5E CRASH: The body, which was found in a reef crevice near Nanren Fishing Port in Manjhou Township, was wearing Captain Pan Ying-chun’s uniform and name tag The body of a fighter pilot who had gone missing following a mid-air collision last month was yesterday found near a fishing port in Pingtung County, the air force said. A search-and-rescue team found Captain Pan Ying-chun’s (潘穎諄) body in a reef crevice near Nanren Fishing Port (南仁漁港) in Manjhou Township (滿州), the air force said. Pan was one of two pilots involved in the accident in which two single-seat F-5E jets collided as they were changing formation during a training mission. The other pilot, Lo Shang-hua (羅尚樺), ejected from his aircraft after the collision, but he did not have any
NARROWING DOWN: After searches at 23 locations and questioning 109 people, prosecutors say that mishandling at a construction site might have caused the crash Prosecutors yesterday indicted seven people in connection to the Taroko Express No. 408 derailment in Hualien County on April 2, in which 49 people died and more than 200 were injured. Among the indicted were Lee Yi-hsiang (李義祥), the driver of a crane truck that fell onto the tracks and into which the train crashed; his Vietnamese assistant, Hoa Van Hao; and workers at United Geotech Inc (聯合大地工程) and Tung Hsin Construction (東新營造), which undertook construction work near the site of the crash, Hualien prosecutor Chou Fang-yi (周芳怡) said. Lee, who owns Yi Hsiang Industry (義祥工業社), was indicted for negligence resulting in