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DPP needs to work with other social forces: Tsai
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-01-01 03:56 PM
TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Democratic Progressive Party needed to show more tolerance toward other forces in society if it wanted to break the monopoly of the ruling Kuomintang, former party chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen said Wednesday.

In a statement on her Facebook page, she said the DPP needed to show a clear party stance on some issues to ally itself with other progressive forces. “Today, (the question) is whether civil society will embrace the DPP, not whether the DPP can lead civil society,” she wrote.

In the past, it was always possible for the party to seek out civic and social leaders and have them run as candidates in elections, but in the present social and party-political environment, one had to think whether this formula was still the only method, Tsai said.

The core issue the DPP should be reflecting on today was whether it could join forces with social movements in order to break the KMT’s one-party monopoly hold on the country’s political and economic system, she said.

Instead of continuing to fight the KMT party-to-party, the DPP could open its doors and find a new way to concentrate positive social forces, which would benefit its future social base, Tsai said.

The former party leader also looked back at the numerous protests in 2013, saying the DPP should reflect on its transformation when it had left the streets to different social movements.

The new year will feature two types of elections for the DPP, the selection of a party chairman before May and the nationwide local elections on December 6.

DPP Chairman Su Tseng-chang is widely expected to run for re-election at the end of his first two-year term, though Tsai has often been pictured as his opponent. The two are also the party’s likely contenders for the nomination in the early 2016 presidential election.

In the year-end local polls, Su set out a target of at least three of six mayors of directly administered cities, and more than half of other city mayors and county magistrates.

The Chinese-language Apple Daily published the results of an opinion poll Wednesday showing the DPP’s choice for mayor of Taichung, lawmaker Lin Chia-lung, defeating incumbent Jason Hu by a margin of more than 40 percent. If the election were held this week, 65.69 percent of Taichung voters would cast their ballot or Lin, and 21.41 percent for Hu.

KMT lawmaker Lu Shiow-yen would receive more votes than Hu at 26.36 percent, according to the Apple Daily poll. The mayor deflected recent questions about his poll ratings by saying he was not a candidate for the time being.

Kaohsiung and Tainan are seen as DPP strongholds, while Taoyuan incumbent John Wu of the KMT is leading in the polls. Taipei City and New Taipei City are still uncertain because the parties still have to select their candidates, with the exception of the DPP having chosen former Premier Yu Shyi-kun to run for mayor of New Taipei.

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