President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) and former premier William Lai (賴清德) are to go head-to-head in their only televised presentation today as part of the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) presidential primary.
Both camps have agreed that Lai will deliver his opening statement, followed by Tsai, before they are to face questions from a panel composed of Liberty Times (sister newspaper of the Taipei Times) editor-in-chief Tzou Jiing-wen (鄒景雯), Taiwan Citizen Front founder Lai Chung-chiang (賴中強) and Business Today president Liang Yung-huang (梁永煌).
In the final segment, Tsai is to speak ahead of Lai.
Photo: Su Fun-her, Taipei Times
The platform presentation is to be followed next week by polls conducted via telephone interviews, with equal weighting for samples obtained from calls to landline and cellphone numbers.
DPP Secretary-General Luo Wen-jia (羅文嘉) has said that as opinion polls usually take three or four days to complete, the winner of the primary could be known as early as Thursday next week.
Tsai called for party unity ahead of the television presentation.
“The paddlers on a dragon boat work together and synchronize their motions, channeling one another’s energy to the same focal point, so that one plus one adds up to more than two,” she said on the sideline of a dragon boat race at the Badouzih Fishing Harbor (八斗子漁港) in Keelung.
“I will present a comprehensive report of my government’s work and accomplishments over the past two years,” she said.
Keelung Mayor Lin Yu-chang (林右昌) declared his support for Tsai in the primary.
Other DPP members who have endorsed Tsai’s bid include Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌), Presidential Office Secretary-General Chen Chu (陳菊) and a number of lawmakers.
DPP members who have expressed support for Lai include legislators Lin Chun-hsien (林俊憲) and Kuo Kuo-wen (郭國文).
Taiwanese independence advocate Koo Kuan-min (辜寬敏) and former Academia Sinica president Lee Yuan-tseh (李遠哲) have also endorsed Lai’s bid.
The Lai camp has organized a three-day motorcade to start from Pingtung County and travel north to mobilize supporters.
The “Motorcade Rally to Strengthen Taiwan” is to begin tomorrow and arrive in Chiayi City on the first day. Its course is to be updated on Lai’s official Facebook page, as it might change depending on weather and traffic conditions.
Additional reporting by Lee Hsin-fang and CNA
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