Sun, Mar 15, 2009 - Page 3 News List

Kang beats convicted vote-buyer’s wife in Miaoli vote

OUT OF THE GAME Lee E-tin lost his legislative seat in December after the High Court branch in Taichung rejected his appeal against a vote-buying conviction

By Mo Yan-chih  /  STAFF REPORTER

Supporters congratulate independent candidate Kang Shih-ju, wearing a red jacket, in Miaoli County yesterday after he won a legislative by-election.

PHOTO: PENG CHIEN-LI, TAIPEI TIMES

Chen Luan-ying (陳鑾英), the wife of former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) legislator Lee E-tin (李乙廷), yesterday narrowly lost to independent candidate Kang Shih-ju (康世儒) in a Miaoli by-election for Lee’s seat.

Kang, chief of Zhunan Township (竹南), gave up his KMT membership to run in the by-election. He declared victory yesterday after winning 41,688 votes to Chen’s 40,099 votes.

Lee’s election to the legislature was annulled in December after he was found guilty of vote-buying.

After yesterday’s results were in, Kang said at his campaign headquarters that the public had voted for an end to corruption. He vowed to combat corruption and work for the interests of Miaoli residents.

“The result of the by-election show that voters in Miaoli County renounce corruption and support me for my integrity and long-term efforts to develop Miaoli County,” Kang said.

Chen, accompanied by Lee, conceded defeat shortly afterward at her campaign headquarters. Chen and Lee blamed her defeat on the low turnout rate. They said they would not seek a recount.

Kang failed to win the KMT’s nomination for the legislative election last year and left the party after it again passed him over for the by-election, choosing Chen instead.

The KMT later formally revoked Kang’s membership after he said he would run in the by-election as an independent candidate.

Chen was leading yesterday before votes in Zhunan Township were counted.

Kang won 19,000 votes to Chen’s 6,200 votes in the township, securing the victory.

Cold weather yesterday resulted in a lower voter turnout than expected. Voter turnout was about 40 percent, the Miaoli County Election Commission said.

Miaoli is viewed as a pan-blue stronghold and the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) did not have a candidate in the by-election.

Lee, who was elected as a first-term lawmaker in January last year, lost his seat on Dec. 10 after the Taichung branch of the High Court rejected his appeal of a Miaoli District Court ruling that convicted him of buying votes and annulled his election victory.

Meanwhile, a separate legislative by-election will be held on March 28 in Taipei City’s Da-an District (大安) to fill the vacancy left by former KMT legislator Diane Lee (李慶安) following her resignation in January over a dual-citizenship controversy.

Six candidates have registered: Chiang Nai-shin (蔣乃辛) of the KMT, Chou Po-ya (周柏雅) of the DPP, Calvin Wen (溫炳原) of the Green Party Taiwan, and independent candidates Yao Li-ming (姚立明), Liu Yi-chun (劉義鈞) and Cheng Yuan-chi (陳源奇) will compete for the seat.

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