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June 23, 2017

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Tsai Ing-wen to run for DPP chair in preparation for 2016

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- News on the candidacy of former Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) chairwoman and former presidential candidate Tsai Ing-wen's (蔡英文) decision to run again for the chair position was updated yesterday, with Tsai reportedly to officially disclose her position as early as next week.

Sources have claimed that Tsai, who resigned from her position as chair following her presidential loss back in 2012, has displayed interest in running for the DPP chair position again. Should Tsai decide to run, the internal election for the DPP chairperson is looking to be a formidable tug-of-war between three of most influential figures in the party.

Allegedly, the possibility of rerunning for the seat that she gave up two years ago was never on Tsai's agenda. However, in light of President Ma Ying-jeou's (馬英九) declining approval ratings, the Kuomintang's (KMT) internal disputes and the increase of civil protests, Tsai has deemed her participation as a positive strategic advancement for the presidential election in 2016.

The future development of the DPP in relation to Tsai's leadership direction has also been stated as a supposed reason for her decision, as heading the party as chair, Tsai will be given the opportunity to lead with more credibility.

An Election Free-for-all?

The battle for the seat of DPP chairperson has never created more drama. Different versions of various rumors which have a direct effect to the very governing directions of the DPP have been floating in the air. With the unity of the party as their primary goal, potential candidates Tsai, current Chairman Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) and executive member Frank Hsieh (謝長廷) have all hinted that should either one of the executive members run for the position, one or two of the others will drop out. The rumors thrown around by the fractions within the party have created a gridlock where no one is dropping out since only Su has officially declared his wish to run for re-election. As of now, the gridlock is directly stalling the progress of the Taipei City mayoral candidacy.

The three-way split in votes could reveal a weakness from within the DPP that could be proven harmful come 2016. Political analysts have suggested that the most important thing to keep in mind for the potential candidates is the united public image of the DPP. With the KMT failing in popularity, the DPP should take this chance and present a new image to the Taiwanese people; one that gives a positive image and a hopeful future to both DPP constituents and the general public alike.

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