January 16-22, 2012
PCT comments on the results of the 2012 presidential and legislative elections
Reported by Sam Lee
Written by Lydia Ma
After the results of Taiwan’s presidential and legislative elections on January 14 were unveiled, PCT General Assembly convened a meeting and created an Election Response Committee. At this meeting, General Assembly Moderator Rev. Chiohh Lyiam-syian said that though the outcome of this election was a disappointment for the PCT, the church would continue to stand in solidarity with Taiwanese people and monitor the Ma administration’s policies, especially its overly China-leaning policies. However, he voiced concern that the outcome of this election may have given the international community the impression that Taiwan had chosen to tilt toward China. The General Assembly will issue a formal pastoral letter after the Lunar New Year holidays.
In last week’s election for president, the KMT ticket received 51.60% of the votes cast, while the DPP ticket received 45.63%. In terms of legislative seats, the KMT won 64 seats, the DPP won 40 seats, the TSU won 3 seats, the PFP won 3 seats, and another 3 seats were picked up by other parties and independents. One of the highlights of the legislative election was the defeat of Chiu Yi, a high-profile KMT legislator known for stirring controversies, who was replaced by his DPP opponent Chao Tien-lin, a member of San-Duo Presbyterian Church.
Responding to the dashed hopes of many PCT pastors and members who had hoped for Tsai Ing-wen to win, Chiohh encouraged them to not lose hope and to remember the “Three Little Pigs” movement, which must continue on. In the face of disappointing results, Chiohh urged to grieve without losing hope. As for the disparity between public opinion and the latest PCT statement issued in December 2011, Chiohh said that the PCT wasn’t a political organization, but a Christian organization. “Though we don’t understand what tests God has put before us, we believe that the load God has given us will not be too much for us to bear,” he said.
As for corporate influence and greed and other structural problems that made this election partly unfair, Chiohh underscored that these factors cannot conceal the fact that, compared to the 2008 elections, the gap between the KMT and the DPP has narrowed from 2.2 million votes to 800,000 votes – a significant feat. The PCT must continue to stand in solidarity with Taiwanese and move on and move forward.
Chiohh advised that more attention be paid to international responses in the aftermath of this election. He explained that, in spite of much controversy surrounding the ECFA agreement and the fictitious “1992 Consensus”, President Ma Ying-jeou’s win could give the international community the impression that Taiwanese have decided to form closer ties with China. Hence, after the dust settles and everyone has had some time to reflect during the upcoming Lunar New Year holidays, PCT will issue a formal statement to national and international Christian organizations on its take on the results of this election.
According to PCT Associate General Secretary Lyim Hong-tiong, the results of this election demonstrate that much work remains to be done in Taiwan, especially in terms of structural reform of the government. He added that the 2012 election results reflect that fear of losing profits and the China factor played a major factor in determining people’s votes. Therefore, the PCT must not lose heart, but rather stand firm, carry on with its mission, and continue being a sign of hope through love and suffering.