Thu, Sep 28, 2006 - Page 3 News List

Pan-blues threaten to topple Cabinet

ROUND AND ROUND The KMT and PFP said they would file a no-confidence motion in the premier to facilitate yet another recall motion if the second presidential recall failed

By Shih Hsiu-chuan  /  STAFF REPORTER

Pan-blue lawmakers yesterday vowed to bring down the government through a no-confidence vote in Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) should the second recall motion against President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁), scheduled to be put to a vote next month, fail.

People First Party (PFP) Spokesman Lee Hung-chun (李鴻鈞) and Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) caucus whip Tsai Chin-lung (蔡錦隆) made the threat.

"The rationale behind toppling the Cabinet is that this would enable us to form a new legislature so that we could introduce another recall motion to depose Chen Shui-bian," Lee said.

solidarity

Tsai called on Su to convince Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers to support the second recall.

"If the recall passes, there is no need to file the no-confidence motion. If not, Su deserves to step down as he will have disregarded public opinion demanding Chen's resignation," Tsai said.

The pan-blue camp needs at least 24 votes from the pan-green camp to have the recall approved by a two-thirds majority of the legislature's 220 seats, assuming all 11 independent lawmakers vote in favor.

DPP lawmakers, however, said they doubted the pan-blue lawmakers' resolve.

"It's highly unlikely that we will support the recall. I suggest that they file the no-confidence motion right now," DPP caucus whip Chen Chin-jun (陳景峻) said.

Chen said the party would recommend that the president dismiss the legislature if Su was forced to resign.

"Let us have a legislative election at the same time as the year-end mayoral/city councilor elections so that we can resolve all the political turmoil at the same time," Chen said.

"Actions, not words," DPP Legislator Lin Chung-mo (林重謨) said to pan-blue lawmakers, referring to the fact that the KMT and PFP, which together hold 112 legislative seats, don't need the support of outsiders to pass a no-confidence vote.

"I know that many lawmakers spent between NT$300 million [US$9.1 million] and NT$500 million to get elected. They are reluctant to give up their legislative seats," Lin added.

KMT recall

Meanwhile, KMT lawmakers yesterday held a caucus meeting to finalize the party's version of the recall motion, which will soon be submitted to the legislature for review, together with the PFP's recall motion, which is already on the legislative agenda.

As the legislature's regulations require that the preliminary review of a recall motion be completed within 15 days of its first reading, it is expected that the recall motion will be put to the vote in the middle of next month.

KMT Chairman Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) announced that the party's second recall motion would be known as the "Referendum on Recalling A-bian."

Ma agreed with several Central Standing Committee members that the title would serve to highlight the goal of the motion, which he said was to put the president's fate in the people's hands.

Meanwhile, although KMT legislators are collecting signatures to push for a vote of no-confidence in the Cabinet, Ma declined to confirm that the KMT would take the step if its second attempt to recall Chen failed.

Additional reporting by Mo Yan-chih

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