Thu, Mar 28, 2019 - Page 3 News List

Ko ‘almost marginalized’ as primaries gain pace

By Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je answers reporters’ questions in Taipei City Hall yesterday.

Photo: Chang Chia-ming, Taipei Times

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) on Tuesday said that he felt “almost marginalized” as the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) presidential primaries gather momentum, but added that he would “take it easy” and focus on his administrative duties.

Ko has refused to say whether he plans to run for president in next year’s election and has said that people should ask him in June.

Reporters asked him whether felt marginalized due to the heated presidential primaries.

“Almost marginalized,” he said, adding that he would “take a deep breath and take it easy.”

When asked if he would try to boost his popularity, Ko said that he would continue to do his job “earnestly,” because media coverage is secondary to his work and he does not want to be a digital influencer every day.

In related news, the Chinese-language Mirror Media magazine yesterday cited Congress Party Alliance chairperson Bhuddist Master Miao Tien (妙天) as saying that Ko would run for president.

Miao said he would help gather signatures for a petition for Ko to become an independent candidate, the magazine reported.

Ko visited Miao Tien before his trip to the US earlier this month, it reported.

Ko yesterday said that he did meet with the Miao Tien, but it was because he has good relationship with former Republican Party legislator Hsu Hsin-ying (徐欣瑩) and her brother, Taipei Department of Hakka Affairs Commissioner Hsu Shih-shun (徐世勳), so his relationship with Miao Tien was “indirect.”

Hsu Hsin-ying last year said that she learned meditation from Miao Tien.

Ko said that he chatted with Miao Tien, but has not reached a decision on whether to run for president.

Meanwhile, Taipei City Government deputy spokesman Chen Kuan-ting (陳冠廷) on Monday wrote on Facebook that Ko was asked if he supports the so-called “1992 consensus” in a meeting he attended at Harvard University last week.

“The mayor said ... the two sides of the [Taiwan] Strait should find a new statement that both are willing to accept,” he wrote.

“Unification or independence is not the current problem and we must deal with the current problems,” Chen said.

The so-called “1992 consensus” — a term former Mainland Affairs Council chairman Su Chi (蘇起) in 2006 admitted making up in 2000 — refers to a tacit understanding between the KMT and the CCP that both sides acknowledge there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means.

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