Former premier Yu Shyi-kun (游錫堃) was yesterday elected legislative speaker by the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) caucus, while DPP Legislator Tsai Chi-chang (蔡其昌) was elected deputy speaker for a second term.
The legislative speaker election was held at the Legislative Yuan in Taipei after the new lawmakers were sworn in.
Yu, a first-time legislator, garnered 73 votes, while rival Lai Shyh-bao (賴士葆) of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) won 36 votes.
Photo: George Tsorng, Taipei Times
KMT Legislator Yang Chiung-ying (楊瓊瓔) — who was the party’s deputy legislative speaker candidate — Nonpartisan Solidarity Union (NSU) Legislator May Chin (高金素梅) and rookie DPP Legislator Lai Pin-yu (賴品妤) each earned one vote, while a spoiled vote was also cast.
After last month’s legislative elections, the DPP has 62 seats, the KMT has 38, the Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) has five and the New Power Party (NPP) has three, while the NSU and Taiwan Statebuilding Party each have one.
Independent legislators Fu Kun-chi (傅崐萁), Freddy Lim (林昶佐) and Chao Cheng-yu (趙正宇) make up the remaining seats.
Photo: Chen Chih-chu, Taipei Times
In the afternoon’s deputy legislative speaker election, Tsai secured 65 votes, beating out Yang, TPP Legislator Lai Hsiang-lin (賴香伶) and NPP Legislator Claire Wang (王婉諭), who won 36, five and three votes respectively, while KMT Legislator Sra Kacaw and Wen Yu-hsia (溫玉霞) each got one vote.
In Yu’s inauguration speech, he said he hoped Taiwan would become a “normalized” nation, in which the legislature would serve as the pinnacle of its political system, and aims to improve how it functions.
He said he would push to lower the age for people seeking legislative office to break barriers between generations and promote cooperation and prosperity between people of all ages.
Yu said he would encourage his colleagues to work in tandem with government agencies to secure free-trade agreements and establish official ties with like-minded democracies, such as the US, Japan, EU, Australia and Canada, against the backdrop of a US-China trade dispute, which could tilt international relations in Taiwan’s favor.
Taiwan should use its soft power and critical strategic location in the Indo-Pacific region to capitalize on the opportunities that have presented themselves amid the trade dispute, he said.
This, coupled with a robust economy and a strong national defense system, would make Taiwan a small but powerful nation, he added.
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