Thu, Jul 31, 2003 - Page 3 News List

First lady Wu solicits women's vote

FIRM SUPPORT Wu Shu-chen told the women of Hualien that DPP candidate You Ying-lung deserved their votes and would live up to their expectations

By Chang Yun-ping and Brian Hsu  /  STAFF REPORTERS

The election fever in Hualien yesterday reached its highest pitch as first lady Wu Shu-chen (吳淑珍) led team of women to drum up support for DPP candidate You Ying-lung (游盈隆), putting their popularity to the test against a national-renowned TV "hooligan" star who campaigned for rival pan-blue candidates.

Wu Shu-chen's competition in the popularity contest was rising soap-opera star Chin Yan (秦楊), who recently became a national celebrity because of a hooligan character he played in a TV series. Chin is known by most people as Liu Wen-tsung (劉文聰), the name of the character he plays on TV.

Chin's appearance at campaign activities held by pan-blue candidate Hsien Shen-shan (謝深山) and independent KMT candidate Wu Kuo-tung (吳國棟) grabbed the attention of most TV news channels, making him the focus of attention across the country last night.

Though looking lackluster after losing spotlight to Chin, the first lady still attracted a lot of people to an election campaign held for DPP candidate You.

Wu Shu-chen was accompanied by Yang Bao-yu (楊寶玉), wife of Premier Yu Shyi-kun; Chan Hsiu-ling (詹秀齡), wife of Taipei County Commissioner Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌); and Yu Fang-chih (游芳枝), wife of Kaohsiung City Mayor Frank Hsieh (謝長廷).

While encouraging women in Hualien to take part in public affairs by making their own decisions on who to vote for, Wu Shu-chen urged the female population to throw its weight behind You, who she dubbed the youngest as well as the best educated of the three major players in the campaign.

Yang, Chan and Yu compared Hualien County with DPP-administered cities and counties, saying that Hualien has been called a "backward state" because it has been ruled by the KMT for too long.

"No competitors could compete with the KMT in the past, which meant the KMT administrators were not motivated to make any improvements," Yang said.

Wu Shu-chen called on Hualien residents to allow for a transition of power in Hualien to allow the DPP to improve the remote east coast county's sluggish development.

"The people of Hualien have allowed the KMT's administration to govern for 50 years. Why can't you give You just two years. I can assure you that You Ying-lung won't disappoint," Wu Shu-chen said.

"You is one of the most courageous men I've ever met. Though he has failed a few times in this election before, he is very brave to come back for another attempt. Courage is one of the most precious qualities of a person," the first lady said.

During last weekend's large-scale campaign rallies by political leaders from across the spectrum, the women's vote was actively sought by all candidates.

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