DPP attempts at revenge politics only epitomize its follies
The China Post news staffWhat began as one of the greatest political crises facing the administration and the Kuomintang (KMT) under President Ma Ying-jeou has now disintegrated into a farce that has backfired against the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) leadership.
October 19, 2013, 12:05 am TWN
In response to the opposition's failure to topple the Cabinet, DPP lawmaker Chiu Yi-ying (邱議瑩) said that her party is being held hostage by DPP caucus whip Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘), while others criticized the latter for not having had a strategy at all. Even former Premier Frank Hsieh (謝長廷) said that he didn't understand what the strategic goals of the no-confidence motion were supposed to be.
Since the legislative session began last month, Premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) has been prevented six times by the opposition from giving his policy report. The DPP previously vowed that it wouldn't allow Jiang to give his report if he didn't apologize over a remark he made. The premier reportedly said, “The Executive Yuan is ready for a Legislature without Legislative Yuan Speaker Wang Jin-pyng.” Jiang denied making that remark and stressed that he cannot apologize for something he didn't say.
Regardless of whether or not that remark was actually made, the opposition probably wasn't expecting Jiang and Wang to cozy up so quickly. Meanwhile, the entire nation was caught by surprise when Wang spent half of his National Day speech lauding Ma. You can bet that the KMT's upper echelon approved, judging from the number of smiles and nods among those on stage.
The opposition tried to harness momentum against the administration by proposing a no-confidence motion, which, as we all know by now, failed. The DPP tried to topple the Cabinet last year but failed that time as well.
The opposition caucus is slowly looking more and more like a group of squabbling children, with all of its self-righteous demands, no-confidence motions, late night sleepovers in the Legislature's Assembly Hall and whatnot.
Public opinion seems to be slowly turning against the opposition precisely because of its behavior. What the DPP needs to understand is that a decrease in public support for the administration doesn't necessarily translate into an increase in public support for its own caucus.
Jiang is slated to take the podium today, despite the DPP's promises.
Yesterday, Ker said that he plans to hold a press conference outside the Assembly Hall and “interpellate” Jiang while the premier is giving his policy report inside the building. Perhaps Ker feels that he has reached a point of no return, and that whether or not his actions make him look like an idiot depends on how hard he tries to continue the act. From a public relations standpoint, the DPP is really not doing itself any favors by going down this road.
Minority parties like to talk about the “tyranny of the majority,” and the DPP is no exception. It is particularly fond of portraying itself as the last bastion of the people, defending the nation from the ruling party's evil machinations, especially through methods like seizing the podium and locking lawmakers out of the Assembly Hall. What the DPP has apparently failed to understand is the fact that the ruling party was voted into power by the people. It also seems to have failed to grasp why it is a minority party. It is a minority party because it represents a minority opinion, and by forcing the entire Legislature to a standstill, it is not going to get more votes.
If you get a kick out of watching men behave petulantly, remember to turn on your television and tune in to Ker's outdoor interpellation today.