President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday said that the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) was willing to negotiate with the People First Party (PFP) on legislative nominations, repeating the call for cooperation between the two parties.
Ma said the party was willing to discuss legislative nominations with the PFP if the PFP had problems with the KMT’s nominations.
“The best way [to mend the rift in the pan-blue camp] is to talk about the issue in the open,” he said.
Stressing the KMT and the PFP shared the same ideals and beliefs, Ma said the KMT respected the independence of the PFP and it promised to consider PFP hopefuls in electoral districts where the KMT has not yet completed its nomination process.
The KMT has completed its legislative nomination process in 69 electoral districts and it is scheduled to complete the process in the remaining six districts by the end of this month. Talks about KMT-PFP cooperation and a possible meeting between Ma and PFP Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜) emerged in May when the KMT called on the PFP to hold talks on joint nominations.
However, Soong and the PFP have lashed out at the KMT for its failure to raise the joint nomination issue earlier and suggested the PFP would present its own nominations.
The PFP’s reluctance to cooperate with the KMT on legislative nominations prompted former KMT secretary-general King Pu-tsung (金溥聰) to announce that he is willing to drop a lawsuit against Soong for accusing him of staging fraudulent public opinion polls during Soong’s 2000 presidential campaign.
In a press release on Thursday night, King said he was “willing to drop the lawsuit” if Soong and the other defendants made no more accusations against him.
KMT spokesperson Lai Su-ju (賴素如) said yesterday that King would drop the lawsuit in the next few days in hope of future KMT-PFP cooperation.
“Communications and negotiations between the KMT and the PFP never stopped, and the KMT will not give up the chance to cooperate with the PFP. We believe that dropping the lawsuit would be helpful for our cooperation,” she said.
PFP spokesperson Vivian Huang (黃珊珊) said yesterday that King’s decision to drop the lawsuit was a friendly gesture, but the PFP’s goal of forming a legislative caucus remained unchanged.
“The KMT has completed most of its legislative nominations. Which candidates would be willing to withdraw from the race?” she asked. “Besides, the KMT’s proposed negotiations are meaningless because the PFP still wants to put up its own candidates.”
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