WOW!! I was not expecting this. I did know that Lee was starting to distance himself from Chen and he was also becoming less anti-China and less pro-independence, but this was a drop-kick to Chen Shuibien and his party. I honestly do not know where he is headed with this; other than to sway popular sentiment to his party or maybe in his old age he is just becoming more pragmatic.

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Lee Teng-hui pans Chen, has hopes of third election force

CHANGE NEEDED: The nation’s political scene is a never-ending brawl led by the DPP and KMT, the TSU spiritual leader and former president said

STAFF WRITER
Saturday, Dec 29, 2007, Page 3 A local newspaper yesterday quoted former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) as lashing out at President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) for having “no concept of democracy.”

The Chinese-language China Times, which interviewed Lee, quoted Lee as saying Chen had overstepped his powers.

Chen has used his position to amass personal wealth and only worked to serve the interests of his own family, Lee said.

HELD HOSTAGE

The report, which did not specify when the interview was conducted, quoted Lee as saying he was worried that the nation was being held hostage politically by the two main political parties.

Taiwanese politics is nothing more than a never-ending brawl, the spiritual leader of the Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) said.

The only way to improve the situation is for voters to cast their preferred-party ballots wisely in next month’s legislative elections, lest the nation “go under,” Lee said.

Voters will cast two ballots in the election: one for their preferred candidate within their district and one for their preferred party for legislator-at-large seats.

FACE THE MUSIC

Being elected president “does not make you emperor,” Lee said, adding that abuse of power is a violation of the Constitution and that Chen would have to pay the consequences after his term had ended.

Lee was also quoted as saying that Chen lacked faith and was incapable of promoting ethnic harmony.

Lee further said he no longer wants to share the stage with Chen.

On the topic of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) presidential candidates, Lee said the DPP’s Frank Hsieh (謝長廷) was more capable than Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) of the KMT, but that Hsieh was upstaged by Chen and had been unable to step out of his shadow.

NO PROMISE

As for Ma, Lee said he had proven himself incapable of managing Taipei City and wondered how the former mayor could run the whole nation.

The story quoted Lee as saying that he still had high hopes for a third force in the legislative and presidential elections.

He also said there was a risk that both the DPP and the KMT would split.

Lee further said next month’s legislative elections might be followed by the emergence of a true grassroots movement that could become a vehicle for a third force.

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