Sat, Dec 11, 2004 - Page 3 News List

Pan-blues will win majority, pan-blues say

By Caroline Hong  /  STAFF REPORTER

Some workers yesterday test the computer system at the Central Election Center, formed by the Central Election Commission (CEC) at Taiwan Police College in Taipei, in order to prepare for the vote-counting today.

PHOTO: WANG MING-WEI, TAIPEI TIMES

Given party estimates, the pan-blue alliance hopes to win a total of 109 seats in today's legislative elections, said pan-blue camp party officials yesterday, effectively predicting that it will win a majority in the legislature today.

Speaking to reporters at the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) headquarters yesterday, KMT Secretary-General Lin Fong-cheng (林豐正) said that according to the party's most conservative estimate, 56 of the KMT's 74 legislative candidates for regional and Aboriginal seats in the legislature will win today.

As a result, the KMT and the New Party, whose candidates are running under the KMT banner, expect to gain 13 legislator-at-large seats and three overseas representative seats, Lin said.

According to the KMT's most conservative polls, its ally the People First Party (PFP) should win at least a total of 36 seats today, including Aboriginal, regional and overseas seats. In addition to the party's expectations that the New Party will win at least one seat, the total for the pan-blue camp should be 109 seats, Lin said yesterday.

More optimistically, however, Lin said, the party believes that in actuality the party will win at least 60 regional seats, giving it at least one more at-large seat.

Without naming candidates, Lin told reporters that the party was seeking to help its weaker 18 regional candidates pull up their support. When pressed by reporters however, Lin admitted that the party was focusing on only 12 to 13 of the candidates in its last-minute efforts to canvass support.

PFP Vice Chairman Chang Chao-hsiung (張昭雄) also announced yesterday that the party expects to win at least 32 to 24 seats today, adding that the Chinese Nationalist Party's (KMT) vote-allocation strategies have confused voters in this year's elections.

Speaking to local and foreign media at a press conference yesterday, Chang said that according to the party's internal polls as of Thursday night, the PFP should win at least 32 at-large and regional seats today. Optimistic estimates have the party winning 41 seats, Chang said.

Chang talked yesterday about factors influencing the PFP's and the pan-blue alliance's election chances today, ranging from vote allocation among the blue camp and the lack of issues in this year's legislative election campaign.

"In this year's election, vote-allocation plans in the pan-blue alliance missed an important consensus: that voters who voted for the PFP, the KMT and the New Party three years ago should vote for those parties again this year," Chang said.

Although all three parties had agreed to the consensus at the beginning of this election cycle, the KMT "deliberately" forgot to mention the consensus when announcing vote allocation plans for New Party and KMT candidates, which has confused voters, Chang said.

Each party has its own considerations however, Chang said yesterday.

The PFP is optimistic about its chances today, however, said Chang. When compared to the pan-green alliance, which has nominated 122 candidates, and the New Party/KMT with its 74 candidates, the PFP has nominated a conservative number of candidates, with 41. As a result, said Chang, the PFP's chances of having a large number of its candidates win seats are high given the party's campaign efforts.

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