President Chen Shui-bian's (陳水扁) idea of establishing a "Second Republic" is not a new concept, unless it includes the enactment of a new Constitution, analysts said yesterday.
Chen brought up the idea of a "Second Republic" at a birthday party held for former presidential adviser Koo Kwang-ming (辜寬敏) on Sunday.
Without elaborating on what he meant, Chen said he wished people would spend some time thinking about whether a "Second Republic" was a good idea and if it was suitable for Taiwan.
Koo was first to suggest the idea of a "Second Republic," proposing to freeze the Constitution of the Republic of China and enact a new one. Former president Lee Teng-hui (
Chen's proposal, however, was not well received by either his own party or the opposition.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Ma Ying-jeou (
The Taiwan Solidarity Union questioned Chen's motive, saying that the proposal was a political consideration and merely a slogan aimed at getting pro-independence voters to support the Democratic Progressive Party's (DPP) candidates for the year-end Taipei and Kaohsiung mayoral elections.
DPP Legislator Lin Cho-shui (
The "Generation Forum," a group of young party members established by former director of the DPP's Information and Culture Department Jou Yi-cheng (
Political leaders who propose constitutional reform that ignores reality would be considered by the group as an attempt to sabotage the constitutional re-engineering project, the statement said.
Chen Yi-shen (
"Since then, Taiwan has recognized China as a separate nation and has itself been an independent nation," he said.
Chen Yi-shen called Chen's proposal "weird," because if a new constitution was enacted, it should be called the "Taiwan Constitution" rather than the "Second Republic" Constitution.
Taking into consideration the fact that the DPP does not enjoy a legislative majority, Chen Yi-shen said that the odds of passing legislative amendments touching on politically sensitive issues were slim unless the precondition for the "four noes" pledge no longer existed
The "four noes" refer to the pledges the president made in his first inaugural speech.
According to the pledges, as long as China does not threaten to use military force against Taiwan, Chen promised that he will not declare independence, hold referendums on the nation's statehood, enshrine the "state to state" concept in the Constitution, change national symbols nor seek to abolish the National Unification Council and unification guidelines.