Tue, Dec 02, 2014 - Page 3 News List

Results show ‘no confidence’ in Ma, KMT

By Rachel Lin and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

The crushing defeat the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) received in Saturday’s nine-in-one elections proved that public is not buying into the empty promises of reforms by President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) administration and has chosen to embrace change, civic groups said.

Humanist Education Foundation executive director Joanna Feng (馮喬蘭) said the election results symbolized a new force emerging in the nation.

“The different environments in which younger people have grown up inspire them to ask society to make changes for the improvement of their future,” Feng said.

The wish to rid society of ancient historic baggage and stop collusion between businesses and the government is not particular to younger people, and instead constitutes a social consensus, Feng said, adding that it was with this in mind that voters cast out the “elitist families.”

Ma has continually used the economy and the so-called “China factor” to threaten people almost as if he thinks they are ignorant, while his administration’s policies heavily favor the corporate sector and disregard the livelihoods of common Taiwanese, National Alliance of Parents’ Organizations chief executive Gordon Hsieh (謝國清) said.

National Federation of Teachers Unions deputy secretary-general Lo Te-shui (羅德水) said the results were a vote of “No confidence” in Ma’s administration and also reflect a call for a generational transition.

“The most valuable aspect of a democratic society is the ability to teach whoever is in power a lesson with votes,” he added.

Taiwan Labor Front secretary-general Sun Yu-lien (孫友聯) said that despite the KMT’s claims of prioritizing the economy, there is an increasing division between poor people and wealthy people.

“The central government’s arrogance is made evident by multiple policies, including those in the cross-strait service trade pact alongside the administration’s continued efforts to lower minimum wages for workers and its pandering to corporate groups,” Sun said.

“Events such as the rallies over the death of army corporal Hung Chung-chiu (洪仲丘) last year and the Sunflower movement in March have taught members of the public that if they truly stand up against issues, they can make changes,” Sun said, adding that this mindset can be seen from the increased voter turnout among younger people.

Taiwan Alliance for Advancement of Youth Rights and Welfare secretary-general Yeh Ta-hua (葉大華) said Ma’s government has ignored the voices of the public for far too long, adding that Taiwanese — especially the younger generation — wish to end the uneven distribution of resources.

“Their actions in multiple rallies over the past few years demonstrate their discontent with the government’s evident tilt toward the corporate sector, as well as the ‘cozying up’ among cross-strait political elites,” Yeh said, adding that this was a key factor leading many members of younger generations to participate in the elections.

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