Taiwan Opposition Parties Forge Historic Alliance for Presidential Election

Wed Nov 15 2023
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TAIWAN: In a groundbreaking move, Taiwan’s two leading opposition parties, the Kuomintang (KMT) and the Taiwan People’s Party (TPP), have announced a strategic alliance for the upcoming presidential election in January.

The alliance is seen as a significant development in Taiwan’s political history, with the parties yet to finalize which candidate will lead the joint ticket.

Hou Yu-ih from the KMT and Ko Wen-je from the TPP have been competing for the top spot, both displaying strong support in polls. Former President Ma Ying-jeou, a key figure in the KMT, announced the cooperation agreement, emphasizing its potential for mutual assistance in future elections and various aspects of governance.

The agreement outlines a unique approach to candidate selection. Three experts, chosen by Ma and representatives from both parties, will evaluate polls conducted between November 7 and November 17. The leading candidate will be revealed on Saturday, marking a collaborative decision-making process.

Ko characterized the agreement as a “historic moment,” emphasizing the importance of unity regardless of the chosen candidate. Hou echoed the sentiment, highlighting the shared goal of ensuring peace and stability in the Republic of China, Taiwan’s official name.

Previous discussions between the parties revealed disagreements on the method of selecting the presidential candidate, with KMT advocating for an “open primary” and Ko favoring opinion polls. The resolution reflects a compromise that paves the way for a united front in the upcoming election.

A recent poll by United Daily News positioned Vice President Lai Ching-te of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) as the frontrunner with 26 percent of the popular vote. Ko secured second place with 21 percent, while Hou garnered 18 percent.

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