As campaigning for the legislative and presidential elections in January heat up, sources in the pan-blue camp worry their camp is divided.
A former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Central Standing Committee (CSC) member familiar with the situation in central and southern parts of the country said that while the party brass remained concerned with regard to young voters and the image of the party’s politicians, the party had completely failed in awakening the passion of the public.
While President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) is campaigning vigorously as he seeks a second term in office and campaign aides have begun their work, another committee member from central Taiwan said few people in the pan-blue camp were actually involved in campaign efforts, despite the belief by senior party officials that the election was mobilizing the entire pan-blue camp and that everyone would help.
There are considerable differences in terms of involvement between the higher and lower levels of the KMT, the member said, with the majority of people from the lower levels nominally supporting the election, but remaining effectively uninvolved.
The KMT is fragmented and unfocused, the member said.
According to a second former committee member, senior party officials were altogether overlooking the heads and influential figures of the local factions that play an important role in consolidating votes for the pan-blue camp, adding that the same senior officials should not mistake the presence of local leaders at campaign events as sincere support for and willingness to work hard in campaign efforts.
Those influential individuals show up to save face for Ma, not to help with campaign efforts, the member said, adding that senior party officials should not mistake superficial unity for an actual consolidation of party efforts.
Senior officials must prioritize uniting the pan-blue camp and consolidating the influence of the local leaders or the situation among general pan-blue supporters will degenerate, the member said, adding that Ma’s camp should limit itself to fundraising, while letting party heavyweights deal with local leaders.
Translated by Jake Chung, staff writer