Mon, Feb 22, 2010 - Page 3 News List

DPP aims for at least two seats

MA ON THE GO A visit to Chiayi capped the president’s whirlwind tour over the Lunar New Year holidays in support of KMT candidates

By Vincent Y. Chao  /  STAFF REPORTER

President Ma Ying-jeou talks to 102 year-old Ho Chang-yin in Chiayi County yesterday as he stumped for Lin Te-jui, center, the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) candidate in Saturday’s legislative by-election.

PHOTO: CNA

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) said yesterday it is aiming to win at least two of the four seats up for grabs in Saturday’s legislative by-elections.

Party officials expressed confidence that it could win at least one seat in either Taoyuan, Hsinchu or Hualien on top of Chiayi where it has a comfortable lead in opinion polls.

Speaking with DPP candidate Peng Shao-chin (彭紹瑾) in Hsinchu County yesterday morning, DPP Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said that the opposition lacked unity and cooperation.

“The Chinese Nationalist Party [KMT] has never had true party cooperation, instead what we’ve seen is a division of interests and resources,” Tsai said in response to a recent KMT announcement praising its party unity. “They have been fighting amongst themselves.”

There is speculation that Hsinchu County Commissioner Chiu Ching-chun (邱鏡淳) has dropped out of KMT candidate Cheng Yung-tang’s (鄭永堂) campaign after he failed to show up at a campaign event for Cheng attended by President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) on Saturday.

A poll released yesterday by the Chinese-language China Times showed the DPP leading in the Hsinchu, Taoyuan and Chiayi races.

It said Peng leads Cheng 37 percent to 17 percent in Hsinchu County, while in Taoyuan County, DPP candidate Huang Jen-chu (黃仁杼) is leading his KMT opponent Apollo Chen (陳學聖) 23 percent to 18 percent. In Chiayi County, the poll said DPP candidate Chen Ming-wen (陳明文) leads his KMT opponent 49 percent to 15 percent.

In Hualien County, KMT candidate Wang Ting-sheng (王廷升) is ahead of his DPP opponent Hsiao Bi-khim (蕭美琴) 31 percent to 18 percent.

Meanwhile, Ma traveled to Chiayi yesterday in his capacity as KMT chairman to stump for KMT candidate Apollo Chen. Campaigning in a traditional market in Minsyong Township (民雄), Ma said based on the KMT’s nominees for the by-elections, the party has shown its “willingness for change.”

Ma took aim at DPP candidate Chen Ming-wen, saying that the DPP had a lack of new talent as Chen has already served previously as legislator and county commissioner.

Party sources told the Central News Agency that the KMT has been adopting a policy of, “protecting two seats, snatching three and hoping for four,” for the four by-elections.

The visit to Chiayi caps off a whirlwind tour over the Lunar New Year holidays by Ma in order to spend time with each of his party’s four candidates ahead of Saturday.

Meanwhile, DPP Secretary-General Su Jia-chuan (蘇嘉全) said yesterday that nominations for DPP candidates in the five special municipality seats will begin after the by-elections.

Expanding on the timeline, Su said that registration in DPP administered Kaohsiung and Tainan cities is expected to commence next month. Polls used for the final selections will take place in May. In areas that are under KMT administration, Su said that there would be more “flexibility” in the timing.

DPP party officials have said they hope to win three of the five seats up for grabs in Taipei City, Kaohsiung City and the newly formed Sinbei, Taichung and Tainan cities.

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