The large number of media reports on public figures' infidelities has the public questioning the impact of sex scandals on politicians' careers.
\nAccording to a survey by the TVBS poll center on Aug. 12, 61 percent of people believe that a politician's personal life should be a model for the public, and only 28 percent think that it is no one else's business.
\nHowever, people were divided on whether it is more important for a politician to manage his marriage well or do his job well.
\nForty-five percent percent of those surveyed thought that it doesn't matter whether a politician has a happy marriage, saying it is more important that he performs his job well. Still, 44 percent disagreed with that statement.
\nThe results help explain why involvement in an extra-marital affair has become a moral stigma leaving politicians open to attacks from rivals and why allegations of sex scandals crop up during election campaigns.
\nChin Heng-wei (金恆煒), editor in chief of Contemporary Monthly, has attributed the phenomenon to the profound influence of traditional Confucianism, which sets a high moral standard for politicians, on Chinese people.
\n"No matter how much liberal thought has been introduced to this modern society, some deep-rooted traditional values continue to exist. It is this latent cultural factor that makes negative publicity related to sex so forceful in election campaigns," Chin once said at a discussion on the topic held by the Taiwan Media Watch Foundation (
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