The Democratic Progressive Party urged to recruit ‘11 foes’ to run in Jan.


TAIPEI, Taiwan — Former Legislator Lee Wen-chung of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) suggested Saturday that the party invite all “11 foes” to represent the party in tough constituencies in the legislative elections slated for early next year.

The “11 foes” are mavericks who are either incumbent or former DPP legislators. They got the name after being panned by hardcore supporters of the DPP-led “pan green camp” as “traitors of Taiwan” during the hotly contested legislative primaries early this year for allegedly befriending pro-unification media and echoing the views of the “pan-blue” alliance” led by the main opposition Kuomintang.

All 11, including Lee himself, failed to get nominated as DPP candidates for the coming legislative elections.

Lee made the remarks following media reports that President Chen Shui-bian has lobbied Lo Wen-jia, a protege of the president and a former DPP legislator, to represent the DPP in Taipei’s Daan constituency, which has traditionally been a stronghold of the “pan-blue alliance.”

The reports also said that since the president took over the helm of the party early this month, he has begun to review a controversial “blitz” campaign strategy for the legislative elections endorsed by former DPP Chairman Yu Shyi kun, who based the strategy on that of the young professional “assassin” candidates recruited by then Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi in 2005 to beat veteran rivals and score a landslide victory in general elections in Japan that year.

Although the reports stated the president’s invitation to Lo, one of the “11 foes,” was meant as a gesture of reconciliation, Lee said the president must also consider procedural justice, now that the DPP legislative candidate in the Daan constituency has been produced in the party’s primary.

He said that soliciting one individual to run is “of little significance,” suggesting that the party invite all

“11 foes” to fight for the party in tough constituencies.

“If the president thinks that these people are suitable candidates and coordinates them for the tough elections, they can score victory with blitz warfare,” Lee claimed.

Former Legislator Lin Cho-shui, also one of the “11 foes,” said that “only Lo himself can answer if the invitation to run is meant to clear his name.” For himself, Lin said that he wants a rest and to write a book, adding that he has many things to occupy his time and that no one has contacted him about running in the elections.

DPP Legislator Shen Fa-huei, another of the “foes,” said that he was approached earlier to run in one tough constituency but that he declined the invitation because he thinks problems still exist within the party, including the “merciless bashing of the 11 foes.”

The other “foes” are former Legislators Duan Yi-kang and Shen Fu-hsiung, and incumbent Legislators Hung Chi-chang, Tsai Chi-chang, Lin Shu-shan, Julian Kuo and Cheng Yun-peng. Shen quit the DPP recently.