At-large legislative nominees for the Green Party-Social Democratic Party (SDP) Alliance yesterday rallied outside the Central Election Commission in Taipei before going inside to register their candidacies, promising to “tear apart” financial interests that they said dominate the Legislative Yuan.
The six candidates stood in front of a cardboard cutout of the Legislative Yuan’s gates and then ripped apart a “money giant” poster blocking the entrance to the commission before marching through.
Alliance co-convener Lee Ken-cheng (李根政) said unfair monetary barriers such as large registration deposit requirements put candidates who rely on small donors at a disadvantage and results in the election of legislators who favor corporate interests.
“Because of unfairness in the electoral system, the legislators who are elected all pander to money politics, which leads to legislation — including that related to taxation — being tilted toward corporate interests,” Lee said, citing the recent passage of legislation to eliminate a capital gains tax on stock investments.
Lee and alliance co-convener Fan Yun (范雲) wielded a grass broom to “sweep” and “dust” the cardboard gates to symbolize the party’s commitment to sweep the legislature clean of money politics.
Fan said the alliance’s slate was composed of long-time activists, and is the only at-large list headed by a labor representative.
Taiwan Petroleum Workers’ Union chairman Chuang Chueh-an (莊爵安), the only labor representative on the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) at-large list, withdrew from the party earlier this week after failing to be given a “safe” slot on the list.
The labor representative on the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) list — Kaohsiung Labor Affairs Bureau Director General Chung Kung-Chao (鍾孔紹) — was placed 15th on the DPP list, close to end of the “safe” spots.
Fan reiterated calls for the Central Election Commission to arrange for a televised debate of “at-large” candidates.
“The government should provide channels for us to spread our message, because if they do not, people without money will not have the same opportunity as those with, opening the door for money to influence politics,” she said.
Meanwhile, the Taiwan Solidarity Union’s (TSU) at-large nominees also rallied prior to registering as candidates, holding up signs urging voters to use “DDT” to wipe out the KMT, which they transliterated as “Kill Mosquito Toxic.”
The “DDT” formula stands for voting for the DPP on the presidential and district legislature ballots, while voting for the TSU on the at-large legislative ballot.
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