Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) yesterday fueled speculation that he might run for president in 2020 with ambiguous remarks, saying that he might make an announcement soon if and when “fate creates the right conditions.”
Wang made the remarks during a question-and-answer session at Ming Chuan University in Taipei, which invited him to share anecdotes from his four decades at the Legislative Yuan.
“Like I have told the media before, this is a matter to be determined by fate,” Wang said when a student asked him whether he would make a bid.
Photo: Fang Pin-chao, Taipei Times
Wang, who served as legislative speaker from 1999 to 2016, said that after more than 40 years at the legislature, it is time for him to leave and pass the torch to others.
He repeated that he is not interested in becoming vice president — a position that he said former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) offered him in 2007 and 2011.
“If I wanted to be vice president, I had the chance to become one. If you ask me to run for the vice presidency, I might as well run for president,” Wang said, without elaborating.
“As to whether I should run, let fate decide. You never know, I might be announcing [my presidential bid] very soon if and when the right conditions present themselves,” he said.
There has been speculation that four senior KMT members could compete for the party’s 2020 presidential nomination, including Wang, Ma, KMT Chairman Wu Den-yih (吳敦義), and former New Taipei City mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫).
So far only Chu, who represented the KMT in the 2016 presidential election, has publicly expressed his intent to throw his hat into the ring for the party’s presidential primary.
Asked how he would approach cross-strait relations if he won, Wang did not give a direct answer, but said that China’s unwillingness to discuss issues of concern with Taiwan was because of the government’s refusal to acknowledge the so-called “1992 consensus.”
However, he said there is no guarantee that Beijing would accept it if the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) administration publicly endorsed the “consensus” now.
Even so, Wang said politicians “should at least create a scenario where both sides of the Taiwan Strait will be able to sit down to have a nice conversation.”
The DPP and opposition parties should also work to reach a consensus and find an option acceptable to all parties concerned on the development of cross-strait ties, he added.
The so-called “1992 consensus,” a term that former Mainland Affairs Council chairman Su Chi (蘇起) in 2006 admitted to making up in 2000, refers to a tacit understanding between the KMT and the Chinese Communist Party that both sides of the Strait acknowledge there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means.
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