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Ex-VP dubs possible mayoral candidates 'alien' and 'phantom'

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Former Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) yesterday suggested that prospective candidates for Taipei Mayor, Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) and Sean Lien (連勝文), are an extraterrestrial being and a ghost waging election battles.

Both the ruling Kuomintang (KMT) and opposing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) have yet to announce the party nominees for Taipei City Mayor, the position which the DPP named the “train head” of all other elections to be held in 2014.

Lu expressed her less-than-welcome opinion of Ko, a pan-green physician employed at National Taiwan University Hospital, several times after both candidates announced their interest to run for Taipei Mayor. As Ko was not a member of the DPP, it would be against the party's original regulations for him to run as a candidate; the party regulates at least two years of membership as a prerequisite for the position.

In the newest public surveys concerning hopefuls for the Taipei Mayoral seat, Ko and Lien were shown almost head to head in leading the approval rates, whereas Lu's support had dropped. Lu slammed the survey and remarked that the elections were turning out “strangely.”

“All the media and surveys are saying a certain 'phantom' candidate will win the position even though he never consented to run in the elections. Also, the DPP has plenty of talented members, but people still seem to think an extraterrestrial has more potential than our members. The elections have not even begun, yet the phantom and the extraterrestrial have sailed into combat already,” said Lu.

“And how is it possible that my ratings have suddenly dropped into hell in the United Daily News survey?” Lu demanded, adding that the Taiwanese have been relying on survey results too much in recent years.

Pointing out that Lien was a “phantom in hiding and playing unfathomable tricks,” Lu warned that Taiwan is in a critical moment of crisis. “Can Taipei City be given up on like this?”she demanded.

DPP Taipei City Councilor Chou Po-ya (周柏雅) was added to the mounting list of DPP hopefuls to run for Taipei Mayor after his announcement yesterday, reportedly ramping up the complications for the pan-green camps. DPP Chairman Su Tseng-chang noted that having more candidates doesn't necessarily mean things will be difficult. “The party has its own regulations, which we will be following,” Su noted.

“The conversation between the ET and the earthling”

Lu also commented on Ko's meeting with Su last week, when the physician was quoted as saying that he was still considering DPP membership. “The party should broadcast the conversation between the extraterrestrial being and the earthling; it should be interesting,” said Lu. “I do not mean any disrespect when I refer to him (Ko) as an extraterrestrial, (because) I actually do respect you as one.”

Ko, however, was unperturbed by the comparison. “I don't think she means any harm. My assistant joked about this, saying that we should take part in Liu Bao-jie's talk show,” said Ko. Liu was a talk show host known for his diverse discussion topics and bold attitude.

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