For­mer Taipei mayor rules out pres­i­den­tial, VP bid

The China Post - - FRONT PAGE -

For­mer Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin ( ) of the rul­ing Kuom­intang (KMT) said yes­ter­day that he will not run for pres­i­dent or vice pres­i­dent in next year’s elec­tions.

Hau made his com­ments at a din­ner meet­ing with the press yes­ter­day. Asked whether he would serve as some­one’s run­ning mate, Hau said that no one had in­vited him to do so and that he “has no in­ten­tion” of be­ing any­one’s run­ning mate in 2016.

Sim­i­larly, KMT Chair­man Eric Chu ( ) re­it­er­ated his deci- sion not to run for pres­i­dent on the same day, but wel­comed news re­ports that for­mer Health Min­is­ter Yaung Chih-liang (

) is con­sid­er­ing a pres­i­den­tial bid.

Chu, also New Taipei City mayor, once again ruled out a 2016 bid at a meet­ing of the New Taipei City Coun­cil. He also re­it­er­ated his prom­ise to serve out the re­main­der of his may­oral term, which will ex­pire on Dec. 25, 2018.

He said that when he had orig­i­nally an­nounced his bid for the KMT chair­man­ship in De­cem­ber 2014, he ex­plic­itly ruled out par- tic­i­pat­ing in the 2016 pres­i­den­tial race.

Fol­low­ing re­ports that Yaung will reg­is­ter for the party’s pres­i­den­tial pri­mary, Chu said that as KMT chair­man, he en­cour­ages all tal­ented KMT mem­bers to par­tic­i­pate in the race.

An­other for­mer health min­is­ter, Yeh Ching-chuan ( ), said he was not sur­prised by news of Yaung’s pres­i­den­tial bid, but added that he will also not take part in the party’s pri­mary; in­stead he may con­sider a run as an in­de­pen­dent.

For­mer Pres­i­den­tial Of­fice Deputy Sec­re­tary- Gen­eral Lo Chih-chi­ang ( ), now a free­lance writer, sug­gested in an oped piece that if Chu has def­i­nitely ruled out a pres­i­den­tial bid next year, the KMT should en­cour­age popular Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je ( ) to par­tic­i­pate in the race.

Chu is set to lead a del­e­ga­tion to a fo­rum be­tween the KMT and the main­land’s Chi­nese Com­mu­nist Party (CCP) in Shang­hai on May 3. He is ex­pected to meet with main­land leader Xi Jin­ping ( ) in Bei­jing the fol­low­ing day.

Chu said that he will give a brief­ing on the meet­ing af­ter de­tails have been agreed upon with Xi.

How­ever, he re­fused to com­ment on a China Times re­port pub­lished that day, which claimed that dur­ing the up­com­ing Chu-Xi meet­ing, Chu will un­veil a new cross-Tai­wan Strait pol­icy un­der which the two sides will “go be­yond” ad­her­ence to the “1992 Con­sen­sus,” a sub­stan­tial move past sim­ply reaf­firm­ing his party’s ad­her­ence to it.

The “1992 Con­sen­sus” is an un­der­stand­ing be­tween the Repub­lic of China and the main­land au­thor­i­ties. Both sides agree that there is only one China, but both sides are free to in­ter­pret what that means for them­selves.

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