Tue, May 15, 2012 - Page 2 News List

KMT unity starts to crack

By Yen Ruo-jin  /  Staff Reporter

The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) is scheduled to hold a caucus meeting on Friday amid recent criticism of some of its legislators for failing to “cooperate with the executive branch,” while many KMT legislators have called for more communication between the executive branch and lawmakers before any major policy decisions are made.

“The main purpose of the caucus meeting this week is to make an announcement that the party regulations will be ‘officially executed’ from now on,” KMT Policy Committee chief Lin Hung-chih (林鴻池) said yesterday, following a series of incidents in which some party lawmakers declined to cast a vote or abstained in spite of possible disciplinary action.

In light of the severity of the situation, the KMT caucus had already sent out a copy of the “operations and regulations of party organization,” together with an explanation of party fines, to each legislator during a caucus meeting on May 9.

“The party caucus has already put in place regulations, but has yet to strictly exercise them. Now that the party rules have been dispatched to lawmakers, any member who finds the rules unsatisfactory can submit their opinion to the caucus. If no further amendment is proposed, the party caucus will officially activate the rules and strictly enforce them,” Lin said.

KMT Legislator Wu Yu-sheng (吳育昇) hoped that reinforcing long-standing party rules and regulations could help rebuild party unity.

However, many KMT lawmakers lodged complaints over the move, saying that the executive branch needed to communicate and reach a consensus with party legislators before making major decisions on policy.

KMT Legislator Liao Cheng-ching (廖正井) said that whenever policy could conflict with public opinion, the executive branch should hold thorough discussions with lawmakers before announcing it.

“It is the rightful duty of the legislature to monitor the administrative branch, which is why party legislators cannot endorse every policy the administration proposes,” Liao said.

KMT Legislator Lo Shu-lei (羅淑蕾) also cast doubt on the move, saying if the party wanted to demand that lawmakers work strictly within “party lines,” it should deign to communicate with them first.

“If the party demands lawmakers toe party lines while failing to conduct any communication with them before initiating policy, does it still dictate the party lines? Does every policy rendered by the Executive Yuan really stand for the party’s policy?” Lo asked.

KMT Legislator Lu Hsueh-chang (呂學樟) declined to comment on the party regulations, but said “the party would not need to press party rules onto lawmakers if the Cabinet would do its job.”

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