The Central Election Commission yesterday held a draw to determine the number each presidential candidate would be assigned on the ballot in the Jan. 11 elections.
The People First Party (PFP) was first to draw, as its chairman and presidential candidate, James Soong (宋楚瑜), and vice presidential candidate, Sandra Yu (余湘), were the first to register as candidates at the commission last month.
PFP Secretary-General Lee Hung-chun (李鴻鈞), who drew No. 1 on behalf of the party’s candidates, said the party would consider any number lucky.
Photo: Chu Pei-hsiung, Taipei Times
However, it was particularly significant that the party would be listed No. 1 on the ballot, he said.
“The nation has been kidnapped by politicians from the pan-blue and pan-green coalitions, so the significance of being listed number one on the ballot is that we want to break down the walls built by the pan-green and pan-blue camps. We are putting the people, the Republic of China as well as democracy and freedom in first place,” Lee said.
Soong was also listed No. 1 on the ballot in the 2000 presidential election, which he lost by a thin margin, Lee said.
Photo: Peter Lo, Taipei Times
“The result in the 2000 presidential election was not only disappointing for Soong, but it also caused the nation’s economy to stagnate for almost 20 years. We are listed No. 1 again this time, which gives people something to hope for. We will work hard for the presidential campaign. However, the most important thing is that people in Taiwan need to wake up to the fact that society as a whole has not been making any progress in the past two decades, and they should not be kidnapped by politicians from the pan-green and pan-blue camps anymore,” he added.
Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜), who is the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) presidential candidate, drew No. 2.
After the draw, Han sang a self-adapted version of the 1960s pop song Picking Water Chestnuts (採紅菱) with his running mate, former premier Simon Chang (張善政).
Photo: Chu Pei-hsiung, Taipei Times
“The two of us holding hands/We are going to run for president/To make Taiwan safe and its people rich,” they sang.
He then handed out chocolates to reporters and supporters outside the Central Election Commission, before leaving in a car.
If elected president, he would ensure the nation’s safety and make people rich, Han wrote on Facebook later in the day.
“With those two goals in mind, I hope to bring a better life to members of the public,” he said, adding that the spirit of democracy is anti-authoritarianism and returning power to the people.
“Officials who fail to do a good job should be replaced, instead of urging people to vote for them through fear,” Han said.
Former premier William Lai (賴清德) of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), who is President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) running mate, drew No. 3.
The number represents three votes to protect Taiwan, grant the Tsai-Lai ticket victory in the presidential election and give the DPP a legislative majority, he said.
Additional reporting by Aaron Tu
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