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Monday, February 6, 2023

Taiwan votes on decrease voting age, mayors, metropolis councils

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Voters headed to the polls throughout Taiwan in a intently watched native election Saturday that can decide the energy of the island’s main political events forward of the 2024 presidential election. Taiwanese residents will likely be choosing their mayors, metropolis council members and different native leaders in all 13 counties and the six main cities. There’s additionally a referendum to decrease the voting age from 20 to 18. Polls opened at 8 a.m. Saturday.Whereas worldwide observers and the ruling celebration have tried to hyperlink the elections to the long-term existential risk that’s Taiwan’s neighbor, many native consultants don’t suppose China has a big position to play this time round.”The worldwide society have raised the stakes too excessive. They’ve raised an area election to this worldwide degree, and Taiwan’s survival,” mentioned Yeh-lih Wang, a political science professor at Nationwide Taiwan College. President Tsai Ing-wen, who additionally serves because the chairman of the ruling Democratic Progressive Occasion, has spoken out many instances about “opposing China and defending Taiwan” in the middle of campaigning. However the DPP’s candidate Chen Shih-chung, who was operating for mayor in Taipei, solely raised the problem of the Communist Occasion’s risk a couple of instances earlier than he rapidly switched again to native points as there was little curiosity, consultants mentioned.Throughout campaigning, there have been few mentions of the large-scale navy workout routines focusing on Taiwan that China held in August in response to U.S. Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s go to.”So I feel if you cannot even increase this subject in (the capital) Taipei,” Wang mentioned. “You do not even want to contemplate it in cities within the south.”As a substitute, campaigns resolutely centered on the native: air air pollution within the central metropolis of Taichung, visitors snarls in Taipei’s tech hub Nangang, and the island’s COVID-19 vaccine buying methods, which had left the island briefly provide throughout an outbreak final 12 months. Candidates spent the final week earlier than the elections in a packed public schedule. On Sunday, the DPP’s Chen marched by Taipei with a big parade stuffed with dancers in dinosaur fits and performers from totally different nations. Chiang Wan-an, the Nationalist celebration’s mayoral candidate, canvassed at a {hardware} market, whereas Vivian Huang, an impartial candidate, visited lunch stalls at a market. All three made stops at Taipei’s well-known evening markets. The query is how the island’s two main political events — the Nationalist and the incumbent DPP — will fare. As a result of each Tsai and the Nationalist’s chair Eric Chu handpicked candidates, the efficiency will affect their very own standings inside their celebration, in addition to the celebration’s energy within the coming two years.”If the DPP loses many county seats, then their capacity to rule will face a really robust problem,” mentioned You Ying-lung, chair on the Taiwanese Public Opinion Basis that usually conducts public surveys on political points. The election outcomes will in some methods additionally mirror the general public’s angle in direction of the ruling celebration’s efficiency within the final two years, You mentioned.Observers are additionally watching to see if outgoing Taipei mayor Ko Wen-je’s Taiwan Individuals’s Occasion’s candidates will choose up a mayoral seat. A 2024 presidential bid for Ko will likely be impacted by his celebration’s political efficiency Saturday, analysts say. Ko has been campaigning along with his deputy, the impartial mayoral candidate Huang, for the previous a number of weeks. Meals stall proprietor Hsian Fuh Mei mentioned he was supporting Huang. “We need to see somebody worldwide,” he mentioned. “If you happen to have a look at Singapore, earlier than we had been higher than Singapore, however we have fallen behind. I hope we will change path.” Others had been extra apathetic to the native race. “It feels as if everybody is nearly the identical, from the coverage standpoint,” mentioned 26-year-old Sean Tai, an worker at a ironmongery shop. Tai declined to say who he was voting for, however desires somebody who will increase Taipei’s profile and produce higher financial prospects whereas conserving the established order with China. “We do not need to be fully sealed off. I actually hope that Taiwan might be seen internationally,” he mentioned.

Voters headed to the polls throughout Taiwan in a intently watched native election Saturday that can decide the energy of the island’s main political events forward of the 2024 presidential election.

Taiwanese residents will likely be choosing their mayors, metropolis council members and different native leaders in all 13 counties and the six main cities. There’s additionally a referendum to decrease the voting age from 20 to 18. Polls opened at 8 a.m. Saturday.

Whereas worldwide observers and the ruling celebration have tried to hyperlink the elections to the long-term existential risk that’s Taiwan’s neighbor, many native consultants don’t suppose China has a big position to play this time round.

“The worldwide society have raised the stakes too excessive. They’ve raised an area election to this worldwide degree, and Taiwan’s survival,” mentioned Yeh-lih Wang, a political science professor at Nationwide Taiwan College.

President Tsai Ing-wen, who additionally serves because the chairman of the ruling Democratic Progressive Occasion, has spoken out many instances about “opposing China and defending Taiwan” in the middle of campaigning. However the DPP’s candidate Chen Shih-chung, who was operating for mayor in Taipei, solely raised the problem of the Communist Occasion’s risk a couple of instances earlier than he rapidly switched again to native points as there was little curiosity, consultants mentioned.

Throughout campaigning, there have been few mentions of the large-scale navy workout routines focusing on Taiwan that China held in August in response to U.S. Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s go to.

“So I feel if you cannot even increase this subject in (the capital) Taipei,” Wang mentioned. “You do not even want to contemplate it in cities within the south.”

As a substitute, campaigns resolutely centered on the native: air air pollution within the central metropolis of Taichung, visitors snarls in Taipei’s tech hub Nangang, and the island’s COVID-19 vaccine buying methods, which had left the island briefly provide throughout an outbreak final 12 months.

Candidates spent the final week earlier than the elections in a packed public schedule. On Sunday, the DPP’s Chen marched by Taipei with a big parade stuffed with dancers in dinosaur fits and performers from totally different nations. Chiang Wan-an, the Nationalist celebration’s mayoral candidate, canvassed at a {hardware} market, whereas Vivian Huang, an impartial candidate, visited lunch stalls at a market. All three made stops at Taipei’s well-known evening markets.

The query is how the island’s two main political events — the Nationalist and the incumbent DPP — will fare. As a result of each Tsai and the Nationalist’s chair Eric Chu handpicked candidates, the efficiency will affect their very own standings inside their celebration, in addition to the celebration’s energy within the coming two years.

“If the DPP loses many county seats, then their capacity to rule will face a really robust problem,” mentioned You Ying-lung, chair on the Taiwanese Public Opinion Basis that usually conducts public surveys on political points.

The election outcomes will in some methods additionally mirror the general public’s angle in direction of the ruling celebration’s efficiency within the final two years, You mentioned.

Observers are additionally watching to see if outgoing Taipei mayor Ko Wen-je’s Taiwan Individuals’s Occasion’s candidates will choose up a mayoral seat. A 2024 presidential bid for Ko will likely be impacted by his celebration’s political efficiency Saturday, analysts say. Ko has been campaigning along with his deputy, the impartial mayoral candidate Huang, for the previous a number of weeks.

Meals stall proprietor Hsian Fuh Mei mentioned he was supporting Huang.

“We need to see somebody worldwide,” he mentioned. “If you happen to have a look at Singapore, earlier than we had been higher than Singapore, however we have fallen behind. I hope we will change path.”

Others had been extra apathetic to the native race. “It feels as if everybody is nearly the identical, from the coverage standpoint,” mentioned 26-year-old Sean Tai, an worker at a ironmongery shop.

Tai declined to say who he was voting for, however desires somebody who will increase Taipei’s profile and produce higher financial prospects whereas conserving the established order with China. “We do not need to be fully sealed off. I actually hope that Taiwan might be seen internationally,” he mentioned.

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