Sat, Jan 10, 2009 - Page 3 News List

Punishment proposed for DPP whip

By Flora Wang  /  STAFF REPORTER

A suggestion that Democratic Progressive Party deputy caucus whip Kuan Bi-ling’s (管碧玲) legislative authority should be suspended as punishment for an altercation between Kuan and Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱) yesterday won approval at the Legislative Yuan’s Disciplinary Committee.

When asked for comment, KMT Legislator Chiu Ching-chun (邱鏡淳), head of the committee, said the committee would refer its ­suggestion to the legislature’s plenary session.

The committee, composed of 15 KMT lawmakers, reached the decision after a closed-door meeting earlier yesterday.

Kuan’s authority could be suspended for three to six months if two-thirds of the legislators attending the plenary session endorse the suggestion.

The Legislators’ Conduct Act (立法委員行為法) lists suspension of an official’s authority as the most serious punishment the committee can mete out. The committee can also choose to punish a legislator by having him or her issue an oral or written apology or by preventing the official from attending four to eight legislative sessions.

Kuan was referred to the committee for punishment on Dec. 26 after the 61 legislators present during the plenary session that day voted 36 to 25 in favor of a proposal initiated by the Education and Culture Committee.

The Education and Culture Committee initiated the proposal after Kuan slapped Hung across the face during a review of the National Science Council’s budget request on Oct. 22.

Kuan slapped Hung after the KMT legislator damaged one of Kuan’s assistant’s eyes while trying to push a poster aside. The legislature did not refer Hung to the Disciplinary Committee after the incident.

When asked for comment, Kuan questioned the legitimacy of the Disciplinary Committee’s decision, calling it the KMT’s “revenge.”

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