Kaohsiung Mayor Chen Chu (陳菊), who is expected to assume the post of Presidential Office secretary-general later this month, is to visit former premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) on Monday to discuss matters relating to the year-end New Taipei City mayoral election, sources said yesterday.
The visit is likely an attempt to persuade Su to run in the election as the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) candidate, the sources said.
From 1997 to 2004, Su was county commissioner for then-Taipei County. The county became New Taipei City in 2010.
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislators Wu Ping-jui (吳秉叡) and Lo Chih-cheng (羅致政), as well as Taipei Deputy Mayor Chen Chin-jun (陳景峻), have expressed an interest in running as the DPP’s candidate in the New Taipei City mayoral election, but local opinion polls have shown that each has a support rating of less than 20 percent.
According to a private poll conducted by the DPP, Su is evenly matched with former New Taipei City deputy mayor Hou You-yi (侯友宜), who was yesterday confirmed by the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) as its candidate for the election.
Both Su and Hou have garnered a support rating of more than 40 percent, with Su only trailing slightly behind Hou by a margin of less than 1 percentage point, the poll showed.
When pitted against Hou, former premier Yu Shyi-kun (游錫堃) is bested by a margin of about 20 percentage points, it showed.
Wu, a member of Su’s faction, has been campaigning at the grassroots level since last year, but has failed to match up to Hou in polls.
If his party has considerations other than nominating younger members, it might as well nominate someone that has the best chance of winning the election, Wu said in an interview.
Asked for comment yesterday, Su’s daughter, DPP Legislator Su Chiao-hui (蘇巧慧), said only that her father’s positions align with the general consensus of the party, which is to win New Taipei City, adding that she believed DPP headquarters would make a wise decision.
Sources said President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), who is also DPP chairperson, is scheduled to meet with Lo, Wu and Yu today.
The planned meeting prompted media speculation about whether it could be Tsai’s move to clear the path for Su to represent the DPP in the New Taipei City mayoral election.
DPP spokeswoman Rosalia Wu (吳思瑤) yesterday said the DPP would not rush to nominate its candidate for the New Taipei City mayoral election, but would decide “after all things had been considered.”
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