Taiwan voters reject China as DPP's Lai Ching-te wins historic vote for Presidency
Incumbent Democratic Progressive Party has been voted for a third consecutive term as frontrunner Lai Ching-te grabbed 40 percent of votes in the general elections. Lai Ching-te comes from the radical wing of the Democratic Progressive Party and could toe a hard line with Beijing in comparison to Tsai Ing-wen.
Taiwan voters elected Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) candidate Lai Ching-te as results suggest the new President gathered 40 percent of votes in the general elections. The Taiwanese voters also rejected Beijing as it gave the mandate to Lai Ching-te who comes from the radical wing of the Democratic Progressive Party.
The 64-year-old leader successfully managed to beat the two-term anti-incumbency of the Democratic Progressive Party. Lai Ching-te who was previously the Vice President of Taiwan was leading in the pre-poll data as well. However, the election results suggest that the leader got fewer votes than what was estimated in the pre-poll data.
As a result of that, Lai Ching-te will have to work closely with the opposition parties in the policy-making framework of the 113-seat Taiwan parliament. The main opposition party Kuomintang (KMT) underperformed in the polls as their planned alliance with the Taiwan People's Party broke at the 11th hour. This left a dent in Kuomintang’s preparation and election strategies.
Kuomintang was in favor of having friendly relations with Beijing and restarting dialogue. China's External Affairs Spokesperson constantly made statements throughout the election discourse to influence the Taiwanese people and the political parties. Beijing described the Taiwan election as a choice between peace and war. Throughout the buildup to the election, China described now-President-elect Lai Ching-te as a troublemaker and separatist.
Lai Ching-te on his victory hailed the win as a victory for democracy. He said, “Today, #Taiwan has once again shown the world our people’s commitment to democracy. @bikhim & I are grateful for the trust placed in us. Looking forward, we remain committed to upholding peace in the Taiwan Strait and being a force of good in the international community.”