Scholars claim Wang's expulsion is constitutional
The China Post news staffTAIPEI, Taiwan -- President Ma Ying-jeou's move to expel Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng from the ruling Kuomintang (KMT) over alleged influence-peddling does not constitute a violation to the nation's constitution, two scholars said yesterday.
September 22, 2013, 12:01 am TWN
The expulsion is an internal affair of the KMT, said Peng Chin-peng, a politics scholar from National Taiwan University.
Wu Juo-yu, a public administration scholar from National Chi Nan University, said Ma should be lauded for standing up against influence-peddling, as it is his constitutional duty to defend the people's rights.
The KMT decided to expel Wang from the party, accusing him of peddling influence in favor of legislative minority leader Ker Chien-ming in a lawsuit.
Maintaining his innocence, Wang obtained a court injunction preventing the loss of his KMT membership and his at-large legislative seat assigned to him by the party.
While many critics have described Ma's move to oust Wang from the speakership as an unconstitutional interference with the Legislature by the president, Peng disagreed.
The scholar said the president happens to be also the chairman of the party, which may not always be the case.
It is the chairman of the party, not the president, who decided to expel a party member, he said.
The president has the authority to interpret whatever is allowed by the law governing civic organizations, of which the political party is one, Peng said.
The legal battle between Wang and the KMT should not only determine whether the party has violated the civic organization law.
It should not be relied upon to examine the international operations of the party, he said.
He said Wang's KMT membership is directly related to his at-large legislative seat, not the speakership.
Wu said people misunderstand the nature of constitutional politics when claiming Wang's expulsion is unconstitutional.
The constitution protects the rights of the people and influence-peddling harms their rights, he said.
The president is defending the people's constitutional rights by taking action against influence-peddling, and should be applauded rather than criticized, Wu said.