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New Party throws weight behind KMT in legislative election

2015/08/22 22:29:59

(from left to right) Hung Hsiu-chu, Eric Chu, Yok Mu-ming, Wang Jing-pyng

Taipei, Aug. 22 (CNA) New Party Chairman Yok Mu-ming (郁慕明) called on party members Saturday to support the Kuomintang (KMT) in the legislative election in January in the hope that the alliance would prevent the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) from gaining a majority in the Legislature.

On occasion of the party's 22nd founding anniversary, Yok outlined the New Party's strategy of putting its weight behind the KMT and encouraging its supports to vote for the ruling party in the political party vote during the election.

For the legislative election, Taiwan has a single-district, two-vote system. Voters usually cast one ballot for a district member and another for a political party.

Among the 113 members of the Legislative Yuan, 73 are district members elected from special municipalities, counties and cities; six are elected from among aboriginal groups; and 34 seats are allotted to at-large legislators whose election depends on the votes for political parties.

Yok said that in the past, the New Party was very concerned about the political party vote because the parties usually received government subsidies in proportion to the number of votes gained in the election.

However, the New Party has decided not to vie for the political party vote this time, and would call on its members to support the KMT, he said.

KMT Chairman Eric Chu (朱立倫), KMT presidential candidate Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱) and Wang Jin-pyng (王金平), speaker of the Legislative Yuan, were present when Yok made the remarks at the New Party's founding anniversary celebrations.

The New Party was formed after a split from the KMT in August 1993. The party had its heyday in 1995, winning 21 of the 164 seats in the legislative election, but began to wane in the late 1990s. In the 2008 and 2012 legislative elections, the party failed to win any seats.

Yok said that while the New Party will not vie for the political party seats in the upcoming legislative election, it will nominate candidates to run for district seats, including seats in Taipei and Kinmen County.

(By Y.C. Tai, L.Y. Liu and Lillian Lin)
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