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Divided legislative outlook as Taiwan gears up for elections

Reporter Isabel Wang
Release time:2024/01/03 17:19
Last update time:2024/01/03 17:19
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TAIPEI (TVBS News) — Taiwan gears up for its general elections on Saturday (Jan. 13) with voters set to choose a new president and fill all 113 seats in parliament. 

However, with current party performance, it's increasingly likely that no single party will secure an outright majority in the legislative seats. 

 

This scenario raises the prospect of a divided minority government, regardless of the presidential winner from the Taiwan People's Party (TPP), the Kuomintang (KMT), or the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

"The DPP holds a majority of 61 seats in the Legislative Yuan. Frankly, since the DPP has been in power for the past four years, they can pass any bills without impediment," remarked media personality Lo Wang-zhe. 

"However, if legislators from different parties don't have a majority in the next four years, it is inevitable to form a coalition government."
 

Based on the legislative election results in 2020, the DPP secured 61 seats in the 113-seat parliament, followed by the KMT with 38 seats and the TPP with four seats, while independents and small parties held the remaining seats. 

For this year's election, the DPP aims to win 60 seats, the KMT hopes to increase to 50 seats, and the TPP aims to double its seats to 10. These figures indicate that none of the parties is poised to achieve a majority.

"The third force will play a pivotal role in influencing both the DPP and KMT," noted Lo. "Hence, in the future, we can expect the necessity of a third opposition party for further negotiations or cooperation to ensure the smooth implementation of bills in the Legislative Yuan."

Nevertheless, the differing political ideologies among the parties pose a potential challenge to effective cooperation. Following Taiwan's first-ever political power transition in 2000, Chen Shui-bian was elected president and appointed KMT's Tang Fei to lead the cabinet. 

However, Tang resigned after just 140 days in office due to significant differences in political direction.

Cheng Tzu-chen, a political science professor at the Chinese Culture University, stressed the importance of collective consideration: "Whether it's an appointment for the premier or changes to the electoral system, I think it's worth everyone's joint consideration. 

The Blue and Green parties shouldn't decide it, as they will undoubtedly create a system favorable to themselves."
 

With the announcement of the election results next Saturday, the parties' ability to cooperate in the absence of a majority for any of their legislators will present a significant challenge for the newly elected president.

The Taiwan Briefing

National Elections

#Taiwan#elections#minority government#legislative seats#candidates#DPP#KMT#TPP#cooperation#political differences
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