Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) yesterday said that he would stand for re-election when the new legislature opens next month, while several other senior KMT legislators have expressed interest in running for the vice speakership.
The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) also said that as the largest opposition party, it would carefully consider whether to nominate candidates for the posts of speaker and vice speaker or seek cooperation with other -legislative caucuses.
The KMT maintained its majority by winning 64 seats in the 113-member legislature in Saturday’s elections, compared with the DPP’s 40 seats.
“I’ll call on new legislators irrespective of their party affiliations,” Wang said, adding, “I’ll first solicit endorsement from within the party, but I also hope to have more support.”
Wang has served as head of the legislature since 1999.
When the newly elected legislators are sworn in on Feb. 1, they will also vote for the new speaker and vice speaker.
KMT Legislator Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱), who has served in the legislature since 1990, has been tapped as a possible candidate for the post of vice speaker.
“It’s not whether I want to run or not,” Hung said when asked about her intention.
She said the party had yet to establish the relevant guidelines.
When it does, she said, she will see if she meets the qualifications and whether she has support from her colleagues before making a decision.
Another KMT legislator, Ting Shou-chung (丁守中), announced his bid to run for the vice speakership.
“I’ve long devoted myself to legislative diplomacy. My performance assessment is high and I’m the most senior of the regional legislators,” Ting said.
However, he also said that he would respect the overall considerations of the party in nominating a vice speaker candidate.
This view was echoed by his colleague, Chen Ken-te (陳根德), who said he had expressed his wish to Wang to solicit support for the position of vice speaker.