PFP to announce some candidates today

LEGISLATIVE ELECTIONS::PFP Chairman James Soong is scheduled to name 10 nominees at a press conference, but he won’t be among them, at least not yet

By Mo Yan-chih  /  Staff Reporter

Wed, Aug 10, 2011 - Page 3

The People First Party (PFP) will release part of its list of legislative election candidates today, confirming that more than 10 candidates, including former independent legislator Li Ao (李敖), will run under its banner in the January.

PFP Taipei City Councilor Vivian Huang (黃珊珊) and former PFP legislator Chen Chen-sheng (陳振盛) will also be on the 10-name list to be released today, party spokesman Wu Kun-yu (吳崑玉) said yesterday.

The 10 candidates will run in Taipei City, New Taipei City (新北市), Greater Taichung, Greater Tainan, Greater Kaohsiung and Kinmen County, he said, adding that more names would be announced soon.

PFP Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜) will announce today’s list at a press conference, Wu said, adding that Soong would make up his mind about his own election bid after mapping out the party’s overall election strategy.

There has been speculation that the former Taiwan provincial governor might decide to enter the presidential or legislative elections, or add his name to the PFP’s legislators-at-large list.

The PFP’s decision to run its own candidates in January has deepened the rift in the pan-blue camp between the party and the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT).

Soong’s possible bid for the presidency has also been seen as a potential spoiler for Ma, who is facing a tight race against Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文).

KMT spokesperson Lai Su-ju (賴素如) reiterated her party’s call for collaboration with the PFP in the legislative elections, and said the KMT would not give up on cooperation with the PFP.

“The two parties can continue negotiations on nominees and jointly nominate candidates who represent the pan-blue camp via a fair mechanism,” she said.

She said Ma had contacted Soong’s secretary last week to arrange a meeting, but the PFP chairman said through his secretary that the timing was not right and any meeting should be between the two parties’ secretaries-general.

The KMT has completed its legislative nomination process in 69 electoral districts and is scheduled to complete the process in the remaining six districts by the end of this month. It has proposed holding negotiations with the PFP on candidates in undecided districts via polls. However, the PFP has been reluctant to respond to the idea.

The PFP hopes to win at least 5 percent of the vote — the threshold for securing legislator-at-large seats — by nominating at least 15 candidates in the legislative elections.