Thu, Jun 03, 2004 - Page 4 News List

Wang Jin-pyng not ruling out legislator-at-large bid

By Huang Tai-lin  /  STAFF REPORTER

Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) said yesterday that he would not rule out the possibility of registering for the party's legislator-at-large nominations for the year-end legislative elections.

Although Wang said that a nomination was "an expectation expressed by most legislators and grass-roots supporters," it is generally understood that his electoral outlook in his hometown constituency in Kaohsiung County has suffered due to the pan-blue camp's protests in the wake of the presidential election. Many pan-blue supporters in the center and south of the country have criticized the protests.

If Wang secures a nomination from the KMT as legislator-at-large, he would be guaranteed a seat in the Legislative Yuan without the need to campaign.

When Wang arrived at the party's weekly Central Standing Committee meeting yesterday, he was crowded by reporters for comment. He said that he has not yet decided whether to register for the nomination.

An operational timetable for the party's primaries for the year-end legislative elections was drawn up during yesterday's committee meeting.

According to KMT spokesman Alex Tsai (蔡正元), the party will accept registrations for the party primaries from June 8 to June 14. Opinion polls will be conducted from July 3 to July 16. The results of the opinion polls are slated to be announced on July 18, when party members are to cast their primary votes.

KMT Policy Committee Convener Tseng Yung-chuan (曾永權), an incumbent legislator representing a constituency in Pingtong, is in a similar situation. Tseng is reportedly also vying for a spot on the party's legislators-at-large nomination list.

The committee yesterday also approved the decision to appoint KMT caucus whip Liao Feng-teh (廖風德) as director of the party's Organization and Development Affairs Committee after the resignation of Ting Shou-chung (丁守中).

Ting came under heavy fire for the party's poor performance in the presidential election. Since his resignation was approved last week, Ting has expressed interest in running in the year-end legislative elections.

Liao said yesterday that he would not run in any election during his tenure as the director of the Organization and Development Affairs Committee. He said that he would strive to build a stronger understanding within the party that it belongs to all its members, and said he plans to push for a fair democratic system.

Citing dwindling financial reserves in the KMT, Liao said that he is in favor of having party staff work on a volunteer basis, rather than employing full-time personnel.

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