KMT chal­lenges Tsai to end po­lit­i­cal fight­ing

The China Post - - LOCAL - BY STEPHANIE CHAO

The Kuom­intang (KMT) cau­cus yesterday urged Demo­cratic Pro­gres­sive Party (DPP) pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Tsai Ing-wen ( ) to stick to her vow of “end­ing par­ti­san­ship,” by en­cour­ag­ing the DPP to sup­port the KMT’s leg­isla­tive bills.

“We hope that Tsai will show her will­ing­ness to end par­ti­san­ship now, in­stead of wait­ing un­til she is elected,” KMT cau­cus whip Lai Shyh-bao ( ) stated. “If she doesn’t, then she’ll be cheat­ing sup­port­ers of their vote.”

The ag­gres­sive stance that the KMT cau­cus took yesterday was seen as a way of em­pha­siz­ing KMT pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Hung Hsi­uchu’s ( ) first ma­jor pol­icy an­nounce­ment. Hung, on Sun­day, an­nounced sup­port for a taxd­e­ductible in­crease in salaries as a way to boost the econ­omy. Tsai has launched a po­lit­i­cal re­form plat­form that em­pha­sized bring­ing an end to po­lit­i­cal par­ti­san­ship, which was also an­nounced on Sun­day. KMT Leg­is­la­tor Lee Gui-min (

) crit­i­cized the DPP for block­ing KMT bills that they claim would im­prove liv­ing stan­dards, such as their bill to pro­mote wage in­creases ( ). “Sup­port for these bills will show whether she is se­ri­ous in her bid to wipe out par­ti­san­ship,” Lee stated.

“In­creas­ing the min­i­mum wage will af­fect 7.2 per­cent of the peo­ple,” Lee said, re­fer­ring to the bill to en­cour­age wage in­creases. “But Hung’s pro­posal could ex­tend the pro­por­tion of peo­ple af­fected to 78.25 per­cent of peo­ple work­ing in small and medium en­ter­prises.”

Lai backed up Hung and Lee’s state­ments with sta­tis­tics. There are 6.5 mil­lion work­ers earn­ing a monthly salary of NT$35,000, Lai stated. “Give them a NT$1,000 pay raise, and en­ter­prises will only need to cover NT$660, while the gov­ern­ment will cover NT$340.”

“I don’t un­der­stand why Tsai would be against Hung’s pro­posal,” Lai said.

“Hard- work­ing fam­i­lies will ben­e­fit from the re­forms should the DPP agree and pass the wage in­crease bills.”

No to Par­ti­san­ship

DPP pres­i­den­tial hope­ful Tsai also an­nounced her five po­lit­i­cal re­form pledges on Sun­day dur­ing her visit to the in­au­gu­ra­tion cer­e­mony of a cam­paign of­fice in Kaoh­si­ung and pub­lished them to her Face­book page as well, em­pha­siz­ing her prom­ise to end po­lit­i­cal in­fight­ing that has plagued the Tai­wanese po­lit­i­cal arena for years.

Her first pledge is to see the cre­ation of an econ­omy and so­ci­ety where the young gen­er­a­tion can thrive, us­ing a new eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment model and tak­ing more young peo­ple out of un­em­ploy­ment, de­creas­ing the mort­gage bur­den and im­ple­ment­ing pen­sion re­forms.

Tsai’s sec­ond pledge is to cre­ate a more ef­fi­cient gov­ern­ment. She claimed that the gov­ern­ment has cre­ated a gap be­tween it­self and its cit­i­zens, caus­ing an un­com­mu­nica­tive gov­ern­ment. Tsai aims to see a trans­par­ent gov­ern­ment in the fu­ture and hopes to cre­ate a “sin­gle ser­vice win­dow” for higher ef­fi­ciency.

Her

third pledge

is

to re­form Tai­wan’s in­sti­tu­tions through new con­sti­tu­tional amend­ments, chang­ing Tai­wan’s vot­ing sys­tem to “mixed mem­ber pro­por­tional,” a pro­por­tional elec­tion sys­tem used in coun­tries around the world in­clud­ing Ger­many, New Zealand and a sim­i­lar sys­tem is used in the UK’s de­volved leg­is­la­tures in Scot­land and Wales. She also pledges to in­crease the num­ber of at-large seats. Tsai also wants the speaker of the Leg­is­la­ture to be neu­tral, in a sim­i­lar way to the UK’s speaker of the House of Com­mons, who re­signs from his party once elected to the role.

Tsai’s fourth re­form pledge is for her gov­ern­ment to face up to the un­just poli­cies and treat­ment in­flicted upon the in­dige­nous peo­ples of Tai­wan and the vic­tims of op­pres­sion, in­clud­ing those af­fected by the 228 in­ci­dent and the “White Terror.”

Her last ma­jor pledge is to see the end of po­lit­i­cal in­fight­ing and po­lar­ity in Tai­wan, which the KMT are us­ing to urge Tsai to back their wage bills.

“The DPP will not breed po­lit­i­cal in­fight­ing,” if elected next year, Tsai stated. “A coun­try’s leader has the re­spon­si­bil­ity to end par­ti­san­ship and usher in a united na­tion.” Tsai, how­ever, ac­knowl­edged this will likely be the hard­est prom­ise to im­ple­ment.

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