Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Taipei mayoral hopefuls yesterday made a last-ditch appeal for support ahead of today’s KMT primary.
The campaign team of former EasyCard Corp chairman Sean Lien (連勝文), the 44-year-old son of former vice president and KMT chairman Lien Chan (連戰), appealed for the “sympathy vote” among KMT members by launching a TV campaign spot yesterday that included video footage of Lien Chan four years ago, then choked up with tears when speaking to crowds, right after Sean Lien was shot in the face at a campaigning rally for a KMT councilor candidate in New Taipei City’s Yonghe District (永和).
In his appeal for support, Sean Lien recently sent a letter to all KMT members, in which he describes the year-end mayoral election as the main battle ahead of the presidential election in 2016.
“We now face challenges by the DPP and its Taiwan independence forces. I hope to lead the KMT’s young generation, to fight for Taiwan’s political stability and economic development,” Sean Lien said in the letter.
“I am fighting for the peaceful development of cross-strait relationship,” he added.
Lien Chan yesterday donned a campaign vest bearing his son’s name as he visited his son’s campaign headquarters to boost the morale of the volunteer workers there.
According to Jack Yu (游梓翔), the Sean Lien camp media advisor, they are confident of winning the party primary, as their own poll indicated Sean Lien was leading another contender, KMT Legislator Ting Shou-chung (丁守中), by a wide margin.
Meanwhile, Ting was riled by Sean Lien’s “questionable tactics.”
Some KMT members joined Ting in voicing indignance, as the party’s central organization is in charge of holding the vote to determine the mayoral candidate, and therefore is supposed to hold an impartial stance.
“The party should stand firm on the principle of impartiality. Candidates should not go there to lobby for votes,” Ting said. “I would never go to party headquarters to lobby, because it puts people into a difficult position.”
In response to Ting’s grievance, a KMT executive said the party’s headquarters does not have explicit regulations on this, and therefore cannot hold anyone accountable.