- - Monday, November 26, 2018

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Kudos to the people of Taiwan for once again demonstrating the strength of their vibrant democratic system through a successful round of elections (“Taiwanese voters rebuke Constitutional Court, reject same-sex marriage,” Web, Nov. 25). This impressive exercise has clarified the strength of their vibrant democratic system and is an example of democracy in action for the Indo-Pacific region. Equally impressive, however, has been the voters’ expressed dissatisfaction with President Tsai Ing-wen and her party, not only for the sluggish economy, continuing low wages and wealth gap, but also the worsening of relations with China since she came into power in 2016.

Taiwan’s ruling party was handed a major defeat in local by-elections, raising serious doubts about Tsai’s prospects for re-election and potentially heralding a shift in the island’s tense relations with China. Part of the reason for the vote was concern about relations between Taiwan and China. The results reflected the strong will of the Taiwan public in hoping to continue to share the benefits of the peaceful development of relations across the Taiwan Strait. The majority of voters just want to maintain the status quo, wanting neither independence nor unification. They simply want good relations with China and peace and prosperity for Taiwan.

KENT WANG

Research fellow

Institute for Taiwan-America Studies

Washington


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