Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) retains a lead over rumored candidates for next year’s Taipei mayoral election, a survey by the Taiwan Competitiveness Forum said, while New Taipei City Mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫) has the highest approval rating among prospective pan-blue candidates.
The poll shows that Ko, an independent, has the highest overall approval rating at 38 percent, leading his rumored Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) challengers, Tainan Mayor William Lai (賴清德) and DPP Legislator Pasuya Yao (姚文智), whose ratings stand at 25.5 percent and 8.8 percent respectively.
Chu had the highest approval rating (30.3 percent) among Ko’s prospective pan-blue rivals, followed by former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) legislator Ting Shou-chung (丁守中) with 27.1 percent.
Forum director-general Pan Chien-kuo (龐建國) said the KMT would likely win pity votes if Ting were nominated.
Ting in 2010 and 2014 had the highest approval ratings during party primaries for the Taipei mayoral elections, but he gave KMT Central Standing Committee member Sean Lien (連勝文) and then-Taipei mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) the chance to run.
Chu, if elected, might suspend his mayoral duties and run for president, or be KMT chairman-elect Wu Den-yih’s (吳敦義) running mate in the 2020 presidential election, he said.
Chu in 2015 took leave from his mayoralty to campaign for president, sparking criticism that he had broken his promise to serve out his term.
Meanwhile, Hualien County Commissioner Fu Kun-chi (傅崑萁), a rumored candidate for the Taipei race, yesterday promoted Hualien watermelons at Taipei’s Hope Farmers’ Market.
Fu, an independent in the pan-blue camp, has been gifting supersized watermelons reportedly weighing up to 18kg each to Taipei city councilors and reporters.
The move has prompted speculation over his potential Taipei bid.
In response to reporters’ questions on whether he would run for Taipei mayor, Fu said that he would not “rule out any opportunities to plow the fields of happiness.”
He said he also sent Ko some watermelons, too, to wish him luck for the Universiade in August.
LIABILITIES MULLED: New Taipei City Mayor Hou You-yi said Taipei would find out if the firm was legally registered, the guide was licensed and the weather was assessed The assets of Tian Da Local Nature Co are to be frozen after at least four people died after falling into the Beishi River (北勢溪) on an outing the company had organized on Saturday, the Taipei City Government said yesterday. Six people — two adults and four children — were washed away by a flash flood on the river in New Taipei City’s Hubaotan (虎豹潭) area. They were participating in a Nature Joy Camp outdoor activity with a group of 16 adults and 15 children led by a guide surnamed Su (蘇). As of 4:30pm yesterday, four of the missing had been
The US 7th Fleet yesterday confirmed that a US Navy ship transited the Taiwan Strait on Thursday and Friday. “The Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS Dewey [DDG 105] conducted a Taiwan Strait transit in cooperation with Royal Canadian Navy [RCN] Halifax-class frigate, HMCS Winnipeg, October 14-15, 2021,” the US 7th Fleet said in a statement. “Dewey’s and Winnipeg’s transit through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the commitment of the United States and our allies and partners to a free and open Indo-Pacific. Cooperation like this represents the centerpiece of our approach to a secure and prosperous region,” it added. The transit marked the
‘COUNTERPRODUCTIVE’: The German, French and Singaporean missions said that Taiwan’s COVID-19 restrictions are hindering local projects and business operations Several foreign missions in Taiwan have urged the government to ease its strict COVID-19 border controls, which they say are hurting in-person exchanges and business operations. The missions made the appeal in response to media inquiries on how the border controls have affected their respective countries’ exchanges with Taiwan, amid growing concerns voiced privately by Taiwan-based foreign offices and businesses regarding the restrictions. Taiwan has maintained strict entry requirements since March last year, generally prohibiting most arrivals except for citizens and foreign residents, while it has required those who enter the country to undergo a stringent 14-day quarantine. Although the rules have been
PROTECTION: The Ministry of Health and Welfare is aiming for a full vaccination rate of 30 percent, and allowing mixed first and second doses to boost coverage rates Whether Taiwan reopens its borders would depend on the nation’s vaccination coverage rate and the COVID-19 situation in other countries, Deputy Minister of Health and Welfare Shih Chung-liang (石崇良) said yesterday. The Ministry of Health and Welfare is aiming for a 70 percent first-dose vaccination coverage and 30 percent two-dose coverage as part of its consideration, Shih told a media briefing following the weekly Cabinet meeting. In spite of a relatively stable COVID-19 situation in Taiwan, and calls from foreign missions and businesses in the country to allow more international travelers, the government is maintaining strict border control measures. Since March last year,