Tue, Jul 05, 2011 - Page 3 News List

Lawmaker discusses KMT divisions

BAD BLOOD?KMT lawmaker Hsu Shu-po said that he doubted party campaign strategist King Pu-tsung understood the sentiment in southern rural areas, which he rarely visited

By Yan Juo-chin and Wang Yu-chung  /  Staff Reporters

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Hsu Shu-po (許舒博) yesterday criticized the party’s handling of internal discontent, one day after former KMT chairman Wu Poh-hsiung (吳伯雄) called for party members to “set aside discontent for the greater good” ahead of the January elections.

“It’s not just a few people who are disgruntled, it’s a whole bunch of people,” Hsu said, adding that the source of that anger was the impression among party members that the KMT was not fully committed to them.

“Without consideration and commitment [to party members], there can be no party spirit,” Hsu said.

The KMT nominee for the second electoral district in Yunlin, Hsu said he still had reservations about his nomination and did not attend the KMT party congress on Friday.

Hsu said he did not feel the party was fully committed to him, adding that that was the reason why his father, former Yunlin County commissioner Hsu Wen-chi (許文志), did not want him to take part in the election.

Hsu Shu-po said his father was loathe to see his son participate in “an election with no guarantees.”

Even though President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) telephoned Hsu Wen-chi to discuss the matter, the younger Hsu said that only if Ma visited his father during his visit to Yunlin on Sunday and secured his approval would he be able to engage fully in party affairs.

During an interview on Friday, Hsu Shu-po expressed doubts as to whether KMT campaign strategist King Pu-tsung (金溥聰) had an accurate grasp of the local sentiment in more rural areas, adding that he had never heard of King visiting rural areas.

King does not understand “southern flavor,” Hsu said, adding that despite announcing its determination to make central Taiwan the key battlefield during the election, execution of that strategy so far lacked strength and didn’t quite “scratch the itch.”

Voters in central and southern parts of the country are different from those in the north, Hsu Shu-po said, adding that the KMT needed someone who knew how to “talk to people” in the south, not just blindly replicate approaches that had proved successful in the north.

“Appoint me as the Ma campaign office’s southern spokesperson,” Hsu Shu-po said, describing himself as a candidate who knew how to “use the right people and do the right things, in the right way.”

In a special statement issued through Ma’s campaign office, King said he hoped Hsu Shu-po would take the larger picture into consideration and not resort to party infighting.

During an interview yesterday, Hsu Shu-po used the analogy of a dragon boat race to describe the organizational approach of the upcoming campaign.

Ma is the flag grabber, Premier and vice presidential candidate Wu Den-yih (吳敦義) is the drum beater, and the legislative candidates are the rowers, he said, adding that the most important position on any dragon-boat is the person holding the rudder.

The current rudder man does not know how to steer, Hsu Shu-po said, adding that since they were still four or five people short of a full boat, the rudder man should also take turns rowing the boat himself.

“I should only have to expend 30 percent of my energy during the election, but now I find I have to give everything I have, with zero guarantee of getting anything back in return, however hard I work,” Hsu Shu-po said.

TRANSLATED BY JAKE CHUNG, STAFF WRITER

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