The Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) candidate for Taoyuan mayor, Simon Chang (張善政), yesterday said that he would continue to campaign at his own pace following a change of opponent.
“My campaign team will use polling data as a reference and move forward at our own pace. We will listen to people and seek grassroots support, which will hopefully lead us to ... victory,” Chang said during a visit to Taoyuan’s Jingfu Temple.
Chang was to run against former Hsinchu mayor Lin Chih-chien (林智堅) of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).
Photo: Wei Jin-yun, Taipei Times
However, Lin dropped out of the race last week after National Taiwan University revoked his master’s degree after he was found to have plagiarized it.
The DPP’s electoral strategy committee has nominated DPP Legislator Cheng Yun-peng (鄭運鵬) to replace Lin in the election.
Lin said during a visit to Taoyuan’s Minglun Sansheng Temple on Saturday that he was like a starting pitcher, sustaining injuries and having to leave the field on the team manager’s instructions.
Photo: Chou Min-hung, Taipei Times
However, the party has found an ace relieving pitcher to replace him, Lin said, adding that Chang is simply “waiting to walk to a base on balls.”
Chang said he could not help it if the DPP had sent a terrible pitcher who pitched four balls.
“Lin saw himself as a starter. Unfortunately, the starter was evicted for taking banned drugs,” he said.
Asked if he would prefer Cheng Yun-peng or former DPP legislator Cheng Pao-ching (鄭寶清) as his opponent, Chang said that voters in Taoyuan have the wisdom to judge which is a better candidate.
The former “defended Lin against plagiarism allegations, while the other spoke out undaunted by pressure from within the DPP. I think people in Taoyuan have seen very clearly which one is better,” Chang said.
Incumbent Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wen-tsan (鄭文燦) of the DPP said that candidates should focus on the issues facing voters in Taoyuan now that the month-long smear campaign is over.
The DPP’s campaign team in the Taoyuan election has been reorganized and is ready to launch an offensive, he said, adding that Cheng Yun-peng would soon announce new policy proposals.
“The opponent [Chang] is obsessed with launching a negative campaign and seems to be convinced that smear tactics, sarcasm and poisoning the well is normal in a democracy,” Cheng Wen-tsan said, adding that a positive campaign is needed for the election.
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