Terry Gou's withdrawal from 2020 Taiwan leadership elections a positive development for KMT solidarity: experts

Source:Global Times Published: 2019/9/17 2:42:29

Terry Gou Photo: VCG

Taiwan business tycoon Terry Gou announced his withdrawal from the Taiwan regional leadership elections Monday, in a move that experts say could unite the Chinese Kuomintang (KMT) party and rally support behind the party's candidate Han Kuo-yu to beat the incumbent Tsai Ing-wen in the race. 

Gou announced that although he is dropping out of next year's Taiwan regional leadership election, he would not give up taking part in political affairs and would continue promoting his policy goals, Taiwan media Chinatimes reported.

Zhang Wensheng, deputy director of the Taiwan Research Institute of Xiamen University, told the Global Times that it is a rational choice for Gou to drop out of the 2020 Taiwan leadership election, assessing that the chance of being elected would be slim. Being defeated by Han Kuo-yu in the KMT party primary poll by nearly 20 percent, Gou would have been abandoned by the blue camp (KMT supporters) in tactical voting if he insisted on staying in the race. His candidacy could have split the blue camp, enabling a victory for Tsai Ing-wen, said Zhang.

Gou announced on April 17 that he would run in the 2020 Taiwan regional leadership election as a candidate of the pro-reunification KMT party. In July, the KMT announced that Han, mayor of Kaohsiung in the southwestern Taiwan region, had won the KMT primary poll and would represent the KMT in the 2020 Taiwan regional leadership election.

On September 12, Gou announced his withdrawal from the KMT party in a statement, which has led to assumptions that he may run in the election as an independent candidate.

Most of Han Kuo-yu's supporters are grassroots citizens, while supporters of Gou are mostly elites and people from industrial and commercial fields who assume Gou will contribute to Taiwan's economic development and better handle the relations with the Chinese mainland and the US, Zhang told the Global Times. However, Zhang also noted that both candidates' supporters have a common consensus in defeating Tsai Ing-wen, which makes Gou's withdrawal beneficial for the solidarity within the KMT party.

Tsai Ing-wen, the current leader of Taiwan region has confirmed that she will run for Taiwan's top leader in 2020. For the three years Tsai has been in office, Taiwan has made little progress in improving living standards. Currently, Taiwan people are more concerned about the economy and their living standards as well as the improvement of cross-Straits relations, rather than the closeness between the island of Taiwan and the US, which the Tsai authority often brags about, observers said.

Former Taiwan "vice-president" Lu Hsiu-lien also announced on Monday that she will run for the 2020 Taiwan regional leadership election as an independent candidate.


blog comments powered by Disqus