Mon, Jul 08, 2019 - Page 3 News List

Ko unsure about presidential run, cites mayorship

HAN SLAM:The mayor of Taipei said that Han Kuo-yu leaving his post to run for president would have little effect, because he has not done anything in Kaohsiung

By Tsai Wen-chu and William Hetherington  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) remains unsure whether he would run for president, as he is “hesitant about abandoning his mayorship halfway through a term.”

After giving a speech to executive master of business administration students at National Cheng Kung University yesterday, Ko was asked to comment on the trend of mayors leaving their posts for central government posts.

The student gave the examples of former Tainan mayor William Lai (賴清德) and former Kaohsiung mayor Chen Chu (陳菊), who left their cities to become premier and presidential office secretary-general respectively.

Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) looks set to become the next example and is the brunt of many jokes because of this, the student added.

The student said he believed Ko was committed to “changing the country’s political culture,” and asked whether he felt that quitting a mayorship halfway through would have any effect on that “political culture.”

Ko said that it would depend on what the mayor had accomplished, citing former Taichung mayor Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍), who last year lost a re-election bid and saw many of his projects overturned by the new city government.

“However, Han Kuo-yu leaving his post would have little impact, because he has not done anything,” Ko said.

However, if I were to leave to run for president, the impact would be great, as my administration has only “half finished” its work, Ko said.

Later, Ko told reporters that he expected national security would be balanced with the needs of trade when asked whether he was worried new legislation restricting activity in China by government officials would affect the annual Taipei-Shanghai twin-city summit.

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