Thu, May 10, 2007 - Page 3 News List

Survey gives 24 lawmakers failing grade

ALL BARK, NO BITE? The Taipei Society used four benchmarks to rate the performance of legislators, with several big-name policians among those who scored the worst

By Ko Shu-ling  /  STAFF REPORTER

Twenty-four legislators from across party lines received a failing grade for their overall performance in an evaluation report made public by a politics watchdog yesterday.

The Taipei Society imposed four benchmarks in evaluating the performance of legislators in the third and fourth sessions of the latest legislative term. They were attendance, conduct, secondary employment and bill propositions.

Seven Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislators received a failing grade for their overall performance. They included Wang Shih-cheng (王世堅), Chau Lai-wang (曹來旺) and Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘).

The Non-Partisan Solidarity Union (NPSU) also had seven legislators with a failing grade for overall performance. They included Yen Ching-piao (顏清標), Lin Pin-kun (林炳坤) and Lee Ho-shun (李和順).

Yen scored zero for attendance, after he attended only three committee meetings during the third session and none in the fourth.

Other NPSU members who failed to attend any committee meetings during the fourth session were Lee, May Chin (高金素梅) and Yang Chung-tse (楊宗哲).

The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) had five legislators receiving a failing grade. They included Tsai Chin-lung (蔡錦隆), Chen Hsiu-ching (陳秀卿) and Lee Chuan-chiao (李全教).

Four People First Party (PFP) legislators were also on the list. They were Lin Hui-kuan (林惠官), Feng Ting-kuo (馮定國), Lin Chung-Te (林春德) and Lu Hsueh-chang (呂學樟).

Huang Cheng-Che (黃政哲) was the only Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) member to receive a failing grade for his overall performance.

KMT Legislator Chiu Yi (邱毅) topped the improper conduct chart. He was followed by Wang, DPP Legislator Lin Kuo-ching (林國慶), DPP Legislator Lin Chung-mo (林重謨) and Independent Legislator Li Ao (李敖).

In terms of holding a second job, the DPP led the way with 14 legislators holding jobs ranging from hospital owner to director of the board of a communications company. It was trailed by the KMT (11), the PFP (7), NPSU (7) and the TSU (2).

President of the Taipei Society Hawang Shiow-duan (黃秀端) said the publication of the evaluation report was an attempt to sway the legislative primaries of political parties as the year-end legislative election will adopt a new electoral system.


However, she remained skeptical of the assessment's accuracy because it may not reflect the true situation within the legislature.

"For example, some legislators sign their names then immediately leave committee meetings," she said. "And some propose many bills or legal revisions but it is hard to judge their quality."

Some legislators also have a second job, but the society is so under-staffed and inadequately funded that Hawang said they found it hard to find out whether the jobs presented a conflict of interest with any committees the legislators sit on.

Chen Chien-fu (陳建甫), executive director of the Civil Alliance to Supervise the Legislature, said they planned to team up with non-governmental organizations to conduct more regular and systematic evaluations of the performance of legislators.

He said they were thinking of pairing an evaluator with each volunteer to carry out intensive observations while the legislature was in session and use the evaluation results to appeal to constituents.

"Our goal is to use the assessment reports during the next legislative elections to convince constituents who deserves their support and who doesn't," he said.

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