Hung to file lawsuit over comments against father
Deputy Speaker Hung Hsiuchu ( ) announced through her spokesman yesterday that she would seek to press charges of aggravated defamation against author Windson ( ) for calling Hung’s deceased father an “informer” during a political talk show. Hung’s father was a victim of political persecution during Taiwan’s White Terror, for which he was sent to prison for over three years on false accusations of aiding China’s communists. Hung was 2 years old at the time. In her statement in which she vowed to “defend the honor of her father’s name,” Hung stated that “the insults to my father have already exceeded the boundaries of tolerance in any democracy and humanity.”
Meanwhile, Hung’s staff attempted to put to rest any doubts lingering on the authenticity of her foreign accredited degree. In a press conference organized by Hung’s campaign office, a former classmate of Hung who also earned a master’s degree in the same program as the deputy speaker, backed up Hung’s credentials yesterday. National Taiwan Sport University’s ( ) deputy principal Chang Szu-min ( ) mentioned that Hung was an “excellent” student and cognizant on matters of education.
KMT Rejects Claims that Support for Hung to Dwindle
The Kuomintang (KMT) denied reports released yesterday by local tabloid Next Magazine ( ) that claimed it was reconsidering its support for Hung. According to the report, the KMT was reversing its support for and “distancing itself” from Hung after widely aired accusations by political pundit Clara Chou claimed that she had faked her master’s degree credentials. Spokesmen for Hung’s campaign reiterated the deputy speaker’s resolve to stay in the race while seeking legal action against Chou and the editors and writers of Next Magazine.
KMT spokesman Yang Weichung ( ), in denying the validity of the report, stated that Hung had already provided clear statements and evidence of the existence and validity of the master’s degree she earned in 1991 at Northeast Missouri State University (NMSU, now Truman State University) in the United States. The story printed in the latest issue of Next Magazine implied that the KMT was reconsidering its support by means of a statement given previously by Yang that “hoped that Deputy Speaker Hung can give a complete explanation to the public.”
Later in the afternoon, members of the KMT’s Central Stand- ing Committee called for party headquarters and Chairman Eric Chu ( ) to take charge of the election, with some arguing that Hung’s “inappropriate remarks” have ruined the party’s policy roadmap. In particular, CSC member Lin-Jung-te ( ) said that Hung’s stance on not visiting the U.S. as part of her campaign and off the cuff comments on Legislative Speaker Wang Jinpyng’s ( ) required election run to remain at his post threatened to refashion the KMT into a splinter party.
President Ma Ying-jeou weighed in on the issue of presidential candidates visiting the U.S. before election time, saying yesterday in a visit to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs that the decision depended on each individual. Ma said that if it were up to him, he would take time considerations into account. Hung had previously stated that due to her late entry into the race, she did not find it “absolutely necessary” to confer with U.S. officials as her opponent, Democratic Progressive Party Chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen ( ), did this month.