Mon, Dec 19, 2005 - Page 3 News List

Ma not a presidential shoo-in yet: KMT spokeswoman

CNA , SAN FRANCISCO

Victory for Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) in the 2008 presidential race is not a sure thing despite the KMT's landslide win in the Dec. 3 local government elections, KMT spokeswoman Cheng Li-wen (鄭麗文) said in the US on Saturday.

Cheng made the observation while attending a rally with the producer and a co-hostess of a talk show on Taiwan's Videoland OnTV channel at the invitation of supporters of the pan-blue alliance of the KMT and the People First Party in San Francisco.

In her analysis of the political situation in Taiwan after the KMT's resounding election victory, Cheng cautioned pan-blue alliance supporters that it was too early to be complacent about the election results.

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) will surely stage a comeback in the presidential election, she said.

The KMT spokeswoman said that although the DPP suffered a humiliating defeat in the Dec. 3 elections, its candidates still managed to win 41 percent of the popular vote -- only 9 percent less than KMT candidates.

Cheng said it would be wrong for pan-blue alliance supporters to believe that Ma could win the 2008 presidential race easily as long as he does not make any serious mistakes in the run-up to the election.

She said that the Dec. 3 elections were only local and that "clean government" had been made a central issue, whereas the presidential election will certainly be fought on different fronts, with heated debate on such issues as cross-strait relations.

Cheng added that the Dec. 3 elections were only a prelude to the KMT's "battle of honor," and that the party must rebuild its partnership with the people and manage that relationship assiduously in order to win back the power it lost as the ruling party in 2000.

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