A majority of respondents in an opinion poll released yesterday said increased exchanges between the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and China would be helpful in stabilizing cross-strait relations, and picked former DPP chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) as their top choice to be Taiwan’s representative in cross-strait negotiations.
The release of the survey, conducted by Taiwan Indicator Survey Research (TISR) on Thursday and Friday, coincided with former premier Frank Hsieh’s (謝長廷) return from his landmark five-day visit to China yesterday.
The poll found that 57.8 percent of respondents agreed that such visits by DPP members would promote cross-strait peace and stability, while 23.1 percent said they would be unhelpful.
Photo: Wang Min-wei, Taipei Times
Out of a possible six candidates proposed by the survey, 42.1 percent of respondents chose Tsai as their ideal negotiator should bilateral talks on political issues be held.
Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) followed with 38.5 percent while DPP Chairman Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) was ranked third at 38 percent and President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) fourth with 29.4 percent.
Hsieh came in fifth with 25.4 percent of the vote, while new Mainland Affairs Council Minister Wang Yu-chi (王郁琦) was the least favored option with 6.6 percent Almost 12 percent of those polled said none of the candidates would be capable of speaking for them.
Among respondents who identified themselves as DPP supporters, Tsai won with 71.5 percent, while Su came in second with 58.9 percent and Hsieh third with 43.1 percent.
“The most noticeable fact in the survey’s results is that Ma, as president, only ranked fourth,” TISR general manager Tai Li-an (戴立安) said.
Additionally, 73.1 percent of respondents agreed that the DPP, which supports the establishment of the Republic of Taiwan in its party charter, and the Chinese Communist Party, which insists that Taiwan is part of China, should shelve their differences and promote peace on both sides of the Taiwan Strait, although 10.3 percent disagreed.
The survey also found that Ma’s credibility rating has hit its lowest level, 23.5 percent, since he first took office in 2008 and his 72.1 percent disapproval rating was the highest yet recorded during his tenure as president.
The poll collected 1,008 valid samples and had a 3.1 percent margin of error.
The navy’s new 10,600-tonne warship is on Tuesday to be christened the ROCN Yushan (玉山), as the nation’s indigenous shipbuilding program reaches a milestone, sources said yesterday. The vessel, previously referred to as the “new landing platform dock,” was at a shipyard with its name freshly painted on the hull with the number 1401, the Liberty Times (the sister paper of the Taipei Times) reported yesterday, citing an unnamed observer. Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Wang Ting-yu (王定宇), a member of the legislature’s National Defense and Foreign Affairs Committee, confirmed the report in a Facebook post. The NT$4.635 billion (US$163 million) ship is designed
INTERNATIONAL WEED DAY: Advocates are to hold a demonstration to push for the decriminalization of marijuana and allowing its use for treatment of certain conditions It is time for Taiwanese society to examine the medical benefits of cannabis, in line with the international trend to lift restrictions on and decriminalize the use of marijuana, two legislators said yesterday, ahead of tomorrow’s “Rally for Equal Rights for Cannabis” in Taipei. Taiwan is one of a few countries holding a “420 International Weed Day” event — which usually takes place around the April 20 weekend — as most nations have canceled it this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, said organizer Green Sensation, which is composed of doctors, lawyers and entertainers, among others. The group released a
DIALOGUE SOUGHT: Washington said it was concerned about the pattern of ongoing attempts to intimidate Taiwan after the 10th day of PLA activity in the region The US on Monday urged Beijing to stop its multifaceted pressure campaign against Taiwan after China sent 25 military jets into Taiwan’s air defense identification zone. “The United States notes with concern the pattern of ongoing PRC [People’s Republic of China] attempts to intimidate the region, including Taiwan,” a US Department of State spokesperson said in an e-mail response to questions. “We urge Beijing to cease its military, diplomatic and economic pressure against Taiwan, and instead engage in meaningful dialogue with Taiwan.” The Ministry of National Defense said that 25 Chinese military aircraft entered the zone on Monday. It was the 10th straight
‘NOT ENTHUSIASTIC’: People who have been approved by the CECC as special cases who need to travel, such as foreign diplomats, would be able to receive a vaccine The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday expanded the eligibility for COVID-19 vaccination to the fourth priority group — people who need to travel abroad for special reasons — adding that out-of-pocket vaccines would be available from Wednesday next week. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said although Taiwan’s COVID-19 vaccination program was on Monday expanded to include the top three groups in the priority list, people are still “not enthusiastic” about getting vaccinated. “Only 1,220 people received a vaccine shot on Tuesday, and a total of 27,113 people have received COVID-19 vaccination” so far, he