Sun, Oct 07, 2007 - Page 3 News List

ANALYSIS: Debate lingers over Hsieh `normal country' victory

DOUBLE-EDGED SWORD The DPP leader must act on requests made by pro-independence groups and communicate better with the president, analysts said

By Flora Wang  /  STAFF REPORTER

The first thing for Hsieh to do after he resumes public appearances is to respond to the requests made by the pro-independence groups, Houng said, referring to a statement issued by 11 chief figures of the nation's pro-localization groups that was published in the Chinese-language Liberty Times (the Taipei Times' sister newspaper) yesterday.

They urged Chen and the DPP to change the name of the nation's flagship carrier, China Airlines, to Taiwan Airlines and to work toward "achieving the `Republic of Taiwan' within the remainder of the president's term."

`NO DIFFERENCE'

"The controversy of the `normal country' resolution has made the people feel there is no difference between the DPP and the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT)," the statement said. "We suggest that Hsieh, who is running for election, take the initiative to communicate with pro-localization groups so as to reach a consensus on Taiwan's future."

Nevertheless, Yang Chun-chih (楊鈞池), an associate professor of government and law at National University of Kaohsiung, downplayed the importance of the pressure brought by pro-independence groups against Hsieh, saying the pressure would constitute nothing but "noise" for the candidate.

Yang said there is a general and steady tendency for the likelihood of an alliance of Hsieh, Chen and the DPP's former New Tide faction to arise after the national congress.

"It is only a matter of time before the three parties of the alliance will finalize an approach through negotiation," Yang said.

However, Yang said Hsieh's campaign message remains "chaotic" and "unclear," adding that Hsieh should coordinate with Chen to sharpen his message.

Shih, however, said that such coordination would be difficult.

He said Hsieh's handling of the resolution controversy was a reflection of his "problematic personal style."

This style, Shih said, had prevented Hsieh from fully taking authority from the president.

Given the complex relationship that has existed between Hsieh and Chen since they competed for the right to become the DPP candidate in the 1994 Taipei mayoral election, Hsieh must enhance his communication with the president in order to fully take control of the DPP, Shih said.

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