Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) yesterday declined to verify whether two controversial bills — aimed at bringing Chinese students to Taiwan and recognizing Chinese diplomas — had passed a preliminary review, but described legislators’ recent clashes over the bills as “tarnishing democracy.”
Approached for comment at the legislature, Wang urged lawmakers to negotiate the bills rationally during future plenary sessions, adding that he could not condone brawling on the legislative floor.
Wang made the remarks after scuffles broke out during a meeting of the Education and Culture Committee on Monday over proposed amendments to the University Act (大學法) and the Vocational School Act (專科學校法) that would allow Taiwanese schools to recruit Chinese students and recognize Chinese educational credentials.
Monday’s clashes were the second on the legislative floor in less than a week after lawmakers brawled during Wednesday’s session on the same subject.
Lawmakers clashed on Monday as committee staffers were trying to read through the minutes and have legislators confirm that the committee session last week had completed the preliminary review of the two proposals.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱) refused to leave the convener’s podium by holding onto Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Su Chen-ching’s (蘇震清) thigh, while other DPP legislators rushed to the podium to stop the staffers from reading the minutes.
On the other side of the conference room, DPP Legislator Chiu Yi-ying (邱議瑩) chased KMT Legislator Lu Hsueh-chang (呂學樟), shouting “the KMT should be ashamed” as Lu was leaving for the conference room’s lounge.
Lu then pushed Chiu to the ground while Chiu yelled “shame on [President] Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九)” and “shame on the KMT administration.”
Lu said yesterday he would not apologize over Chiu’s fall unless Chiu apologized for “her inappropriate remarks.
He said he only used “one-tenth” of his strength to “slightly” push Chiu away.
“I didn’t know that she would fall,” Lu said, adding that he might file a defamation lawsuit against Chiu if she fails to offer an apology.
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