People First Party (PFP) lawmakers yesterday urged Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜), who announced on Saturday that he would quit politics, to change his mind.
"It would be a loss to Taiwan and the Taiwanese people if Soong were to leave politics," PFP Secretary-General Chin Chin-sheng (秦金生) told a press conference
Calling Soong "indispensable" to the country and the party, Deputy Legislative Speaker Chung Jung-chi (
Soong, running as an independent candidate, picked up a paltry 4.14 percent of the votes in Saturday's Taipei mayoral election and subsequently announced that he was quitting politics.
Chang Chao-hsiung (
A group of PFP lawmakers had a long talk with Chang yesterday morning, in a bid to urge him to reconsider his decision.
Chang, however, didn't give them a positive answer.
After visiting Soong at his house, PFP spokesman Lee Hung-chun (李鴻鈞) yesterday said this was not an appropriate time to push Soong on the matter.
"I actually didn't talk to him too much [about our wish that he change his mind]. We should give him some time to take a rest for his emotions to subside," Lee said, adding that he saw little indication that Soong would reverse his decision.
The PFP had previously said that the party would form an alliance with the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) to nominate candidates for next year's legislative election and for other matters.
"[The alliance] is still the direction that we want, but the possibility of forming it depends on the KMT's attitude," PFP caucus whip Cheng Chin-ling (鄭金玲) said.
Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) yesterday expressed regret over Soong's decision to bow out of the political limelight.
"I am sorry to see him end his political career. It will be a great loss to politics," Wang said, adding that he had asked one of Soong's aides to convey his regret over Soong's defeat on the night of the election.
When asked whether he would be prepared to join forces with KMT Chairman Ma Ying-jeou (
While the PFP may disband if Soong sticks to his decision to quit politics, Wang said that he believed "Ma knows how to handle the relationship with the PFP and the PFP will adjust accordingly."
As the PFP secured two seats in Saturday's election for Taipei City councilors and four seats in the Kaohsiung City council polls, Wang said the party still stood a chance in next year's legislative election.
"No matter what decision the PFP will eventually make, the KMT must respect their free choice," he said.
Wang also said that he would arrange to meet with Ma in the next couple of days to discuss President Chen Shui-bian's (
Chen has said he would consider renominating the members if the KMT does not insist on increasing the legislative confirmation threshold from a simple majority to two-thirds.
‘RELIABLE PARTNER’: US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar praised the ‘Taiwan model,’ saying that the nation brought its spirit to its COVID-19 response The first memorandum of understanding (MOU) on health cooperation between the Ministry of Health and Welfare and the US Department of Health and Human Services was yesterday signed at the Centers for Disease Control in Taipei. The memorandum was signed between the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the US, by AIT Director Brent Christensen and Taiwan Council for US Affairs Chairperson Jen-ni Yang (楊珍妮). US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar and Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) witnessed the signing of the memorandum, designed to enhance the nations’
Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) yesterday tweeted a welcome to Somaliland’s first representative to Taiwan, Mohamed Omar Hagi Mohamoud, who arrived on Friday. Mohamoud had “braved Chinese pressure” to take up his new post, Wu wrote. “The fact ‘sovereignty & friendship aren’t for sale’ deserves international recognition,” referring to a Somaliland media report earlier this month that Somaliland President Muse Bihi Abdi had rejected an offer by the Chinese government in exchange for ending its rapprochement with Taiwan. Wu also thanked the US National Security Council (NSC) for praising Taiwan-Somaliland ties. A council tweet on July 10 praised Taiwan
‘A RICH STORY’: People need to visit Taichung to experience real gourmet food, the transportation minister said, as 21 restaurants there made it to the Bib Gourmand list Seventy-five restaurants and street vendors in Taipei and Taichung made the Michelin Guide’s Bib Gourmand list this year, including 47 that were listed last year, the Tourism Bureau said yesterday. Insepctors from the Michelin Guide started rating restaurants and street vendor food in the nation’s capital in 2018. For the third edition this year, inspectors would evaluate the gourmet scenes in Taipei and, for the first time, Taichung. Before revealing the list of Michelin-starred restaurants, the guide first discloses its Bib Gourmand list, which contains restaurateurs and food vendors that serve high-quality three-course meals at a total cost of NT$1,000
POLICY PROPOSAL: Shorter quarantines with stricter test requirements would help keep the number of undetected asymptomatic cases low, preventing flare-ups of COVID-19 National Taiwan University (NTU) College of Public Health vice dean Tony Chen (陳秀熙) yesterday said a classification for foreign countries based on COVID-19 infection risk should be introduced, and the mandatory 14-day quarantine shortened to five days with two mandatory tests for travelers from high-risk countries. New imported cases and foreign nationals testing positive after returning home from Taiwan has sparked public debate on whether the government should expand COVID-19 testing to all inbound travelers to better detect asymptomatic cases locally, he said. Taiwan has so far done a good job detecting most COVID-19 cases at its border, due to strict border