The Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) nomination process for the Tainan and Kaohsiung mayoral primaries was yesterday criticized, as candidates blasted alleged factionalism, “money politics” and dishonest maneuvers.
In the Tainan primary, DPP Legislator Chen Ting-fei (陳亭妃) and former DPP legislator Lee Chun-yi (李俊毅) took aim at DPP Legislator Huang Wei-che (黃偉哲), who they said was seeking to manipulate the election.
Chen criticized a report on Thursday last week by the Chinese-language Web site Storm Media, which cited a DPP opinion poll that put Huang well ahead of his competitors with 33.8 percent support, followed by Chen’s 17.5 percent, DPP Legislator Wang Ding-yu’s (王定宇) 10.4 percent and former Tainan deputy mayor Yen Chun-tso’s (顏純左) 9.1 percent, with DPP Legislator Yeh Yi-jin (葉宜津) and Lee lagging behind.
The party did not conduct an opinion poll and the report falsely cited the DPP to influence the election, Chen said.
“The DPP must take immediate action if there is any candidate presenting false opinion polls in its name. It is fraud and manipulation,” Chen said.
The nomination race is a cliffhanger between her and Huang, and the survey was fabricated in a bid to disqualify her, Chen added.
Lee criticized Huang for partnering with the DPP’s influential New Tide faction and Tainan City Councilor Kuo Hsiu-chu (郭秀珠), who Lee said has a background in “money politics” due to her experience working as an aide to former Tainan City Council speaker Lee Chuan-chiao (李全教), who was ousted for vote-buying.
Huang’s partnerships have reintroduced factionalism in the DPP and resembles the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), Lee said.
The New Tide faction and Chen’s faction, which is led by former premier Yu Shyi-kun (游錫堃), have spent more than NT$100 million (US$3.38 million) combined on campaigning, an astronomical amount for a primary, Lee added.
In the party’s Kaohsiung mayoral primary, DPP Legislator Chao Tien-lin (趙天麟) said the match would be a one-on-one competition between he and DPP Legislator Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁), while two other contenders, DPP legislators Kuan Bi-ling (管碧玲) and Lin Tai-hua (林岱樺), were to be “negotiated out” of the race.
Chao, who is lagging behind in opinion polls, said he has arranged negotiations with Kuan and Lin.
However, Kuan and Lin said they rejected Chao’s proposal and criticized his attempt to manipulate the election by making false allegations.
Kuan, who registered for the primary yesterday, disputed Chao’s claim that she had agreed to hold a negotiation.
“All opinion polls show that I am evenly matched with Chen Chi-mai,” Kuan said. “I have to warn all politicians that they should not sacrifice their integrity for popularity.”
Meanwhile, Lin said that Chao had sent an assistant to negotiate with her, but that she believes any formal negotiations should be carried out officially rather than under the table.
Lin, who has also outperformed Chao in the polls, urged him not to seek to manipulate the election by planting rumors in the media.
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