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Ex-DPP head throws hat into primary ring

2011/03/25 20:09:21

Taipei, March 25 (CNA) Former opposition Democratic ProgressiveParty (DPP) Chairman Hsu Hsin-liang unexpectedly showed up at theparty's headquarters Friday to register his participation in theparty primary for the 2012 presidential election.

"I know my chances of winning the primary are terribly slim, "said Hsu, 69, who added that he joined the race mainly to advocatehis political ideas in the hope that they will be incorporated intothe eventual winner's agenda.

Summing up these political ideas, Hsu said that at home, morepublic resources should be allocated to helping the less privileged.Regarding China, he said, the status quo must be maintained beforeTaiwan can open further up to the rising power across the TaiwanStrait.

He proposed that the DPP's presidential candidate promise to makeunemployment benefits and child care subsidies part of the party'splatform in next year's election campaign.

Regarding the future of nuclear power plants, Hsu suggestedforming an independent committee whose members include bothproponents and opponents of nuclear energy.

As to the controversy over the under-construction fourth nuclearpower plant, he said it would be a good idea to hold a nationalreferendum to decide whether or not to continue the project.

Hsu noted that he had to borrow the NT$5 million fee required forregistering his bid to run for party nomination, "an amount that willtake me a lot of time to pay back."

Tsai Ing-wen and Su Tseng-chang, the main contenders for theparty's candidacy, appeared surprised by Hsu's decision to join therace but neither made any comments beyond: "I respect his decision."

(By Lin Shen-hsu, Sunrise Huang, Chiu Chun-chin and S.C. Chang)
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