Sat, Dec 10, 2011 - Page 3 News List

2012 ELECTIONS: Soong intends to visit China as president-elect

Staff Writer, with AFP and CNA

People First Party presidential candidate James Soong (宋楚瑜) said yesterday he intends to become the first elected Taiwanese president to visit China if he wins in next month’s poll.

Soong, a former heavyweight in the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), said he hoped to go to China as president-elect to promote goodwill and peace between the two sides.

He also pledged to host conferences to discuss China issues if elected to ensure the public would have a say in his policymaking process. He did not specify who would attend these conferences.

In related news, various civic groups claimed that the three presidential candidates have not clarified their perspectives on cross-strait policies, which are crucial to Taiwan’s future development, and demanded clarification from all three.

The I Want a Good President Alliance, which consists of several civic groups, said at a press conference at the Legislative Yuan yesterday that President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) cross-strait policy showed “cowardice.”

The group described Democratic Progressive Party presidential candidate Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) policy as “hazy” and Soong’s policy as “concealed.”

Lai Chung-chiang (賴中強), head of the Cross-Strait Alliance Watch, said that during last Saturday’s presidential candidates’ televised debate, Ma criticized Tsai’s “Taiwan consensus” as relying too much on democratic procedures.

However, Ma should be aware that “democratic procedures should not be omitted” when dealing with cross-strait issues, Lai said.

According to Lai, while Ma mentioned during the debate that all cross-strait agreements are supervised by the Legislative Yuan, in reality, legislators rarely get a response when they ask about the details of the agreement, which he said makes Ma’s cross-strait negotiations only “10 percent democratic.”

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