Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) supporters should rally behind the party’s candidate, who would be the best candidate for the party and selected through democratic methods, DPP Chairman Cho Jung-tai (卓榮泰) said yesterday.
Cho made the comment at a news conference prior to a meeting of the DPP Central Executive Committee amid calls by heavyweights in pro-Taiwanese independence groups for President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) to back out of the party’s primary.
Former Academia Sinica president Lee Yuan-tseh (李遠哲) on Tuesday launched a signature drive calling for Tsai to withdraw and endorse former premier William Lai’s (賴清德) bid for the party’s nomination.
Photo courtesy of a reader
At an event at National Taiwan Normal University in Taipei yesterday, former Presidential Office senior adviser Koo Kwang-ming (辜寬敏) said that while he had not seen the actual wording of Lee’s signature drive, he supported the idea after hearing about it from others.
Tsai has done all she can and should bow out, allowing Lai to step up, Koo said, adding that Tsai could then be acknowledged as a “mother figure for the nation.”
Tsai’s mindset and passion are not being questioned, but her ability to withstand international pressure to declare Taiwan an independent nation is, he said, but added that he believed Tsai’s claims that she could defend Taiwan’s sovereignty.
Photo: Peter Lo, Taipei Times
Tsai does not need to continue to serve as president for the sake of continuing policies, but given the office she holds, it is only natural that she should think so, Koo said.
Cho urged supporters to rally behind the party and have faith in the democratic process, and called for pro-independence advocates to desist from further obstruction of the process.
The party and its polling center have worked to prepare for public opinion polls, which are to be conducted from Monday to Friday next week, he said.
The party would begin selecting the target population for the polls before conducting them under public scrutiny to ensure authenticity, he added.
He and DPP Secretary-General Luo Wen-jia (羅文嘉) would monitor the entire process in person, along with experts designed by Tsai and Lai, Cho said.
If all goes well, polling could be cut down to three days, he said.
Cho called on members of the public to express themselves clearly if they receive a polling call and to refrain from verbal abuse, as they are establishing a processing that might one day be looked at as a role model.
The DPP is to hold a televised debate between Tsai and Lai on Saturday afternoon, he said.
The party’s nominee would not be revealed until after the Central Executive Committee convenes on June 19, he added.
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