Taiwan: Clinton's Visit in Taipei
The results of last year's presidential and legislative elections show that the people of Taiwan want the ruling and opposition camps to compromise, former U.S. President Bill Clinton said Monday. In an interview with ET Television, Clinton noted that the people of Taiwan re-elected President Chen Shui-bian in the March 20 presidential election and then gave the opposition Kuomintang (KMT) a narrow majority in the parliamentary body in the Dec. 11 legislative elections. "I think what they're saying is: We put you in the same boat together. We want you to row. We want you to work together. We want you to move us forward together. And if both of you have to compromise, that's good, that's what we intended," Clinton said.
Clinton said he met Chen and KMT Chairman Lien Chan during his stay in Taiwan and found them both to be "highly intelligent, completely patriotic, devoted to the interests of the people of Taiwan and not so far apart on some issues." What happened in Taiwan, Clinton said, was basically what happened to him when the American people elected him and then put the Republicans in charge of Congress and then re-elected him. Many elections are close, which he said is the result of the uncertainties of the modern world and people wanting political leaders to find the consensus that will move them forward rather than leaving them where they are. Politicians should be as clear as they can about their differences but should not attack their opponents personally, Clinton said. He quoted Benjamin Franklin, saying: "Our political enemies are our friends for they show us our faults." Chen defeated Lien in last year's presidential election by a slim margin of less than 30,000 votes out of more than 13 million ballots cast.
However, the opposition "Pan Blue Alliance" formed by the KMT and its political allies, the People First Party and the New Party, won 114 seats in the 225-member Legislative Yuan in December's legislative elections, outnumbering the 101 seats obtained by the "Pan Green Alliance" formed by the ruling Democratic Progressive Party and the Taiwan Solidarity Union. Clinton arrived in Taipei Sunday evening for a whirlwind 24-hour visit.
Source: CNA News