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Sun, Aug 19, 2001 - Page 3 News List

Taichung mayor officially quits DPP after snubbing

By Joyce Huang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Taichung City Mayor Chang Wen-yin, left, announces at a press conference yesterday her withdrawal from the DPP. She was accompanied by former party chairmen Shih Ming-te, middle, and Hsu Hsin-liang, right.

PHOTO: HU WEI-SHI, TAIPEI TIMES

One of the DPP's founding members, Taichung City Mayor Chang Wen-yin (張溫鷹), yesterday publicly bade farewell to the party in preparation for her bid for re-election in December's Taichung mayoral race.

"With effect from today, I regrettably announce that I have quit the DPP -- the party with which I grew to maturity over almost 20 years," Chang said yesterday at a press conference in Taichung.

Then, apparently overcome with emotion, Chang stopped speaking and asked a colleague to read her statement, which said "[I] will stick to what is the right thing to do."

"Only action, not words, can demonstrate one's love for Taiwan. Since when has getting rid of those who belong to different factions been the party's founding spirit?" the statement asked, apparently signifying Chang's resentment of the ruling party's selection of Michael Tsai (蔡明憲), a member of the party's "New Tide" faction (新潮流系), as its candidate for Taichung mayor.

Accompanying Chang at yesterday's press conference were former party chairmen Shih Ming-te (施明德) and Hsu Hsin-liang (許信良), two former DPP chairmen and key members of the party's "Formosa" faction (美麗島系). Both Shih and Hsu have already withdrawn from the party.

Praising Chang as a politician who sticks to her principles, Shih said "Chang may be alone, but she won't be lonely."

Shih also said that he felt sorry for the party when he saw (during the party's primary elections) graffiti aimed at smearing Chang's political reputation by "groundlessly" accusing her husband of embezzlement.

Shih recalled Chang's words when she lost the primary election in April, saying that Chang felt that she "had not only lost the re-election bid, but had also suffered insults to her family." He said that he therefore respected Chang's decision.

Echoing Shih's view, Hsu said that it was Chang's sense of duty that had motivated her to make yesterday's decision -- though he had not encouraged her to follow in their footsteps by withdrawing from the party.

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