Thu, May 16, 2019 - Page 3 News List

DPP to hold televised policy presentations for Tsai, Lai

By Jason Pan  /  Staff reporter

Democratic Progressive Party Chairman Cho Jung-tai talks to reporters after a meeting of the party’s Central Standing Committee in Taipei yesterday.

Photo: Wang Yi-sung, Taipei Times

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) yesterday reached a breakthrough in an impasse over its presidential primary process, deciding to hold live televised platform presentations by its two candidates, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) and former premier William Lai (賴清德), with negotiations to continue to finalize the date and time of for the event.

DPP Secretary-General Luo Wen-jia (羅文嘉) convened a meeting of the party’s mediation panel, which agreed to organize two or three live televised presentations for Tsai and Lai to present their policy platforms, in line with the party’s open and democratic processes, and to establish a direct channel to the public.

Representatives of both camps made proposals and shared their views at the meeting.

Taipei City Councilor Juan Chao-hsiung (阮昭雄) and two other delegates represented Tsai, while DPP Legislator Lin Chun-Hsien (林俊憲) and two other delegates represented Lai.

“After it was proposed, both sides agreed to participate in the live TV presentations, and party executives suggested that there be two to three rounds,” Luo said, adding that Lai’s camp agreed to respect the party’s decision, while Tsai’s representatives concurred, but would study the proposals further.

In the televised events, Tsai and Lai would first present their policy platforms and ideas, “then we will have a panel of experts ask them questions, which the candidates will answer, before a conclusion session,” Luo said.

Particulars of the question-and-answer sessions with the panel of experts are to be decided at the next mediation meeting, which is scheduled for tomorrow, he said.

Regarding the issue of telephone surveys of the public on support for the two candidates, Luo said: “Both sides presented their views and there was an exchange of ideas.”

“We did not reach a conclusion at today’s meeting, and it is to be discussed in the next meeting,” he said.

Lin said that besides the agreement to hold the televised presentations, it is most important for the DPP to decide on a deadline for the primary process.

“During the meeting, I raised this and other issues for discussion,” Lin said. “We believe that telephone surveys of the public and other processes for the primary should be finalized by the end of this month.”

“When this is decided, then we can deliberate other details and arrangements for the primary process,” he added.

“If no clear deadline for the primary process is known, then the candidates would be unable to prepare,” Lin said. “You have to let athletes competing in a race know how far they have to run so they can reach the finish line.”

Juan said that Tsai’s camp proposed for the polling to include mobile phones, as well as landlines, “as this is the best way to gauge public sentiment, by which the party can decide on the strongest candidate witht he best support.”

“We also suggested that the public polling ask respondents to compare other parties’ presidential candidates,” he said.

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