Hung says US trip can be made by proxy


Deputy Leg­isla­tive Speaker and likely Kuom­intang (KMT) 2016 pres­i­den­tial can­di­date said yesterday that dis­cus­sions and de­ci­sions re­gard­ing a pos­si­ble U.S. visit on her part was be­ing con­ducted by her aides. Hung, who made the com­ments to the press af­ter vis­it­ing the KMT Taipei City Coun­cil cau­cus. The KMT con­tender, con­sid­ered a black horse can­di­date by an­a­lysts, pre­vi­ously ruled out a visit to the U.S. due to time con­straints hav­ing en­tered the pres­i­den­tial race at a later stage than her ri­val, Demo­cratic Pro­gres­sive Party (DPP) Chair­woman Tsai Ing-wen.

Re­spond­ing to ques­tions by the press, Hung re­it­er­ated that she views the U.S. as an im­por­tant ally, and that while she was en­ter­ing the pres­i­den­tial race at a rel­a­tively late stage, it has not pre­vented her from con­sid­er­ing plans to make a visit there. She added that her aides were in dis­cus­sion re­gard­ing what would be the most ap­pro­pri­ate for­mat for a visit, but that “it does not nec­es­sar­ily have to in­clude my pres­ence.”

Elab­o­rat­ing on her in­ten­tions to cam­paign in South­ern Tai­wan, Hung said that she would not nec­es­sar­ily model in­cum­bent pres­i­dent Ma Ying-jeou’s style of us­ing “long stays,” in­volv­ing per­sonal, more re­laxed vis­its to res­i­dents away from tra­di­tional ur­ban ar­eas. She men­tioned that be­cause of po­ten­tial dif­fer­ence in gen­der in po­ten­tial vis­its, Hung did not want to “cause in­con­ve­nience” to oth­ers while vis­it­ing their res­i­dences.

In her re­marks to the KMT cau­cus on Taipei City Coun­cil, Hung re­lated that her bid to rep­re­sent the party as its pres­i­den­tial can­di­date had been a steep climb, full of trou­bles and soli­tude at times, but also pre­sented her the chal­lenges and tests that a politi­cian needed to face.

Hung, who filed three sep­a­rate law­suits against po­lit­i­cal pun­dit Clara Chou, au­thor Wind­son and the tabloid Next Mag­a­zine, also stated that while it was fine to vet an elec­tion can­di­date, it was un­just to smear another’s rep­u­ta­tion. The deputy speaker said that all of her pro­posed poli­cies have the po­lit­i­cal po­si­tion of “de­fend­ing na­tional sovereignty, help­ing the coun­try find the cor­rect path ahead and as­sist­ing young peo­ple in find­ing hope.”

Sev­eral city coun­cilors spoke in fa­vor of Hung’s can­di­dacy, ar­gu­ing that she was the only per­son who could unify a frac­tured KMT. Coun­cil­woman Wu Bi-chu en­cour­aged her col­leagues to set up cam­paign sta­tions at lo­cal rep­re­sen­ta­tive of­fices, en­cour­ag­ing city res­i­dents to make small po­lit­i­cal do­na­tions on be­half of Hung.

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