Sun, Dec 16, 2018 - Page 3 News List

DPP lawmakers ask Cabinet to be included in decisions

By Hsieh Chun-lin  /  Staff reporter

Several Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers urged Cabinet officials to consider lawmakers’ opinions before launching major policies, saying that could minimize the fallout from controversial bills and help rebuild people’s trust in the party.

After the party suffered several losses in last month’s local elections, Premier William Lai (賴清德) on Friday last week presented a review by the Executive Yuan of the administration’s performance since the DPP administration took over on May 20, 2016.

Due to inadequate communication with the legislature, the administration’s policies have failed to reflect public opinion, which contributed to people losing confidence in the party, the report said.

Asked for comment, DPP Legislator Chuang Ruei-hsiung (莊瑞雄) said that communication between the Cabinet and the Legislative Yuan left room for improvement.

Having been elected by their local constituencies, most lawmakers are sensitive to the public’s reactions when new policies are introduced, Chuang said, adding that consulting with lawmakers before implementing policies would facilitate the enforcement of new regulations.

Administration officials and lawmakers look at policy from different perspectives, he added.

Over the past two years, the Cabinet has pushed through many policies without considering lawmakers’ opinions, Chuang said.

The president should lead the government in preparing for the consequences of new policies, especially policies that greatly affect people’s lives, instead of just managing political results, he added.

The government’s structure, which is neither a presidential nor a parliamentary system, creates a communication gap between the administration and lawmakers no matter which party is in control, DPP Legislator Cheng Yun-peng (鄭運鵬) said.

Increasing training for politically appointed officials could diminish the effect of the gap, making them more sensitive to public opinion and able to adjust policies with greater agility, Cheng said, encouraging officials to ask lawmakers about potential issues stemming from policies.

There are legislative committees that correspond to each Executive Yuan agency, so the key is to consider how they can be used to boost communication, DPP Legislator Rosalia Wu (吳思瑤) said.

When a government agency finalizes a bill, it should first send the draft to be reviewed by the corresponding legislative committee, instead of forwarding it to the Executive Yuan and then to the legislature, she added.

Lawmakers should be given the chance to comment on a bill before it is announced by the Executive Yuan and reported by the media, she said, adding that a misguided bill cannot be redressed once the public objects to it.

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