Mon, May 01, 2017 - Page 3 News List

KMT’s Chan urges rivals to stop proposing Gou bid

By Stacy Hsu  /  Staff reporter

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) chairmanship candidate Steve Chan, front row middle, poses for a photograph with supporters in Tainan yesterday.

Photo: Wang Chun-chung, Taipei Times

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) chairmanship candidate Steve Chan (詹啟賢) yesterday urged other candidates to refrain from capitalizing on Hon Hai Precision Industry Co chairman Terry Gou (郭台銘), who has been mentioned as a potential KMT candidate for the presidential election in 2020.

“A certain party chairperson candidate has been floating the idea, but it is irresponsible and demonstrates his lack of confidence,” Chan said on Facebook, referring to KMT Vice Chairman Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌), who said he would nominate Gou as the party’s presidential candidate if he is elected KMT chairman.

Chan said the KMT should not cling to wishful thinking and rely on people outside of the party to win the next presidential election, because a last-minute refusal from the candidate could disrupt the party’s campaign strategy and result in the nomination of an unsuitable candidate.

That could lead to a repeat of what happened in last year’s presidential election campaign, during which the KMT replaced its original candidate, KMT Chairwoman Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱), with New Taipei City Mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫) only three months before the vote due to Hung’s falling approval rating, Chan said.

Touting his friendship with Gou, Chan said he contacted the businessman last year for a loan when the KMT was facing financial difficulties after its bank accounts were frozen by the Executive Yuan’s Ill-gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee.

“The incident goes to show our [close] relationship. We have talked about the 2020 race before, but Gou should be the one answering the question” about whether he wants to represent the KMT in the next presidential election, Chan said.

Gou’s mother loaned the KMT NT$45 million (US$1.49 million) in October last year when the party was struggling to pay its employees.

Gou last week attracted public attention after he was filmed walking out of the White House on Thursday and Friday during a trip to Washington to discuss a potential investment in the US.

The White House yesterday confirmed that Gou on Friday briefly met with US President Donald Trump.

Chan said the KMT should engage in self-reflection and explore ways to attract talent from various sectors of society to join the party.

The party should propose policies that would touch the voters, instead of capitalizing on Gou’s influence, he added.

However, the Facebook post was edited hours later to remove the parts about Chan asking Gou for a loan and Hau capitalizing on the businessman.

Hau yesterday again pointed at Gou as the only person that stands a chance of defeating President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) in the next presidential election.

“A party leader should be selfless and think about nothing but ‘winning.’ Recent polls have shown that Gou could defeat Tsai in a two-legged race. If surveys conducted near the 2020 election still suggest similar results, I will spare no efforts in persuading Gou to represent the party,” Hau said.

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