Mon, Aug 24, 2015 - Page 3 News List

New Party offers to support KMT in party portion of legislative elections

Staff writer, with CNA

New Party Chairman Yok Mu-ming (郁慕明) on Saturday called on party members to support the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) in January’s legislative elections to prevent the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) from gaining a legislative majority.

Speaking at a celebration to mark the party’s 22nd founding anniversary, Yok said the New Party would throw its weight behind the KMT and encourage its supporters to vote for the ruling party in the political party portion of the legislative elections.

Under the single-district, two-vote system, voters usually cast one ballot for a district member and another for a political party. Seventy-three of the 113 members of the Legislative Yuan are district members representing special municipalities, counties and cities; six are elected from among Aboriginal communities and 34 seats are allotted to at-large legislators selected by the parties.

In previous elections, the New Party was concerned about the party vote because parties usually receive government subsidies in proportion to the number of votes they win in an election, Yok said.

However, the New Party has decided not to vie for the party vote this time, and would call on its members to support the KMT, he said.

KMT Chairman Eric Chu (朱立倫), KMT presidential candidate Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱) and Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) attended the New Party’s anniversary celebrations.

The New Party was founded on Aug. 22, 1993 by members of a KMT faction uphappy with what they saw as then-president and KMT chairman Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) moving the party away from unification with China and his “Taiwanization” of the KMT.

Prominent founding members include former minister of finance Wang Chien-shien and former Environmental Protection Administration director Jaw Shaw-kong (趙少康).

Its best showing was in the 1995 legislative elections, when it won 21 of the 164 seats. However, it failed to win any seats in the 2008 and 2012 legislative polls.

Yok said that while the New Party will not vie for the party seats, it would nominate candidates to run for district seats, including in Taipei and Kinmen County.

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