Former premier Frank Hsieh (謝長廷) yesterday countered President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) interpretation of his “constitutions with different interpretations” (憲法各表) proposal, saying the initiative was intended to highlight that there were two constitutions on either side of the Taiwan Strait, not one.
Ma was quoted in an interview with Chinese-language news magazine Yazhou Zoukan published on Thursday as saying that Hsieh’s initiative “is not different than the Chinese Nationalist Party’s [KMT] initiative of ‘one China with different interpretations’ (一中各表).”
“Hsieh advocated ‘constitutional one China’ (憲法一中) in the past and is now advocating ‘constitutions with different interpretations.’ Putting them together, you get ‘one China with different interpretations.’ It’s the same as our initiative,” Ma said.
In response, Hsieh said in Yilan County that his initiative “highlights the fact that there are two effective and working constitutions in Taiwan and China at present, while there would be only one legal constitution in the KMT’s initiative.”
“Our Constitution has gone through amendments and the democratic reform in Taiwan that would reaffirm the existence of the Republic of China [ROC]. It is different from the ‘one China’ initiative,” Hsieh added.
Beijing has never accepted the KMT’s “one China with different interpretations” initiative and has always spoken against it publicly, Hsieh said.
The former premier said it would be better for Taiwan if the DPP and the KMT had similar cross-strait policies and positions so the parties would be able to compete on their domestic policies and governance and the nation would have normal party politics.
However, former vice president Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) agreed with Ma’s assessment, saying yesterday in New Taipei City (新北市), where she was campaigning for an anti-nuclear power referendum, that “Ma has hit the bullseye and everyone knows it.”
Hsieh is free to say what he wants, but if even Ma could see through Hsieh’s proposal, the DPP should try to clarify its China policy and position as soon as possible, Lu said.