Mon, May 14, 2018 - Page 3 News List

KMT aims to double leadership posts in polls

By Lin Sheng-liang  /  Staff reporter

The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) aims to double its number of administrative positions in the Nov. 24 nine-in-one elections, party sources said.

The KMT is optimistic about retaining the New Taipei City mayor’s post, as well as the county commissioner jobs in Miaoli, Nantou, Taitung and Lienchiang counties, a party member responsible for election campaigning said.

Of the six special municipalities and counties that it now governs, Hsinchu County is the only one that is unpredictable, the member said.

While the KMT cannot afford to lose any of those areas, it is also hoping to double its number of local government heads to 12, party sources said.

The would allow it to control more than half of the nation’s cities and counties and help pave the way for victory in the 2020 presidential election, they said.

The KMT is hopeful that it will regain control of Taipei and Chiayi City, in addition to Changhua and Hualien counties, sources said, adding that Hsinchu would be more challenging, but possible.

As for Penghu, the party is expecting solid support from the county’s public-school teachers, civil servants and military personnel, who account for a high percentage of the population, sources said.

While Yilan County might be a long-term stronghold for the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), the KMT has faith in its candidate for county commissioner, Lin Zi-miao (林姿妙), who has developed strong grassroots support, the party said.

Of the six special municipalities, the party is prioritizing Taichung, sources said.

Popular KMT Legislator Chiang Wan-an (蔣萬安) last week joined a campaign trip for KMT Legislator Lu Shiow-yen (盧秀燕), who is standing for mayor in that city, KMT sources said, adding that the party plans to channel more resources into the race.

As for Taipei, party statistics showed that 35 percent of the city’s residents support the KMT, while a quarter support the DPP, sources said.

While the situation is complicated by independent Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je’s (柯文哲) re-election bid, the KMT challenger, former legislator Ting Shou-chung (丁守中), has a good chance of beating Ko.

Voters in the nine-in-one elections are to choose mayors and councilors in the six special municipalities and other cities, Aboriginal district representatives and councilors, county commissioners and councilors, township mayors and councilors, and borough and village wardens.

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