Fri, Sep 15, 2017 - Page 3 News List

Ko seen as favorite among candidates for DPP next year

By Cheng Hung-ta and William Hetherington  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) on Wednesday announced its list of nominees for next year’s local elections, with Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) being touted as a front-runner.

The DPP Central Standing Committee said after a meeting that special circumstances surrounding the party’s mayoral candidates might be resolved through a committee resolution.

Observers have said that the lack of a stipulation for the party’s candidate to be a DPP member indicates that it is preparing to support Ko for re-election.

Meanwhile, DPP Legislator Pasuya Yao (姚文智) informed President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) of his plans to run as the party’s candidate for Taipei mayor, later telling reporters that she responded with a “mysterious smile.”

He declined to comment on the meaning behind the president’s smile.

“Four year ago, Mayor Ko was still in the basement of the National Taiwan University Hospital. The real list of nominees will become available in the spring next year,” Yao said.

The DPP is being pragmatic and responsible, Yao said in an interview, but added that he plans to move forward with his bid to run for mayor.

The party is trying to remain flexible, he said, adding that it is still early in the electoral process.

Yao said he brought up his intention to run for Taipei mayor with Tsai at a funeral for a party member’s father.

Knowing that policy is important to the president, Yao said that he also shared with her his development ideas for the city’s revival, adding that legislative progress is being made on urban development through ordinances he is working on.

Asked if he would feel wronged if he is overlooked as the party’s candidate in favor of supporting a re-election bid by Ko, Yao said that after he is done with legislative efforts on urban development, he will strive to become the favored candidate.

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