Taipei Times: 2020 Elections: TPP, PFP can still cooperate, despite being competitors in polls: Ko Wen-je

The Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) and the People First Party (PFP) could still cooperate while competing in the Jan. 11 legislative elections, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) said yesterday.

Ko, who is also TPP chairman, made the remark when asked about a rumor that his friendship with PFP Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜), the PFP’s presidential candidate, has soured as they are both trying to solicit votes for their parties in the elections.

Ko said that he is a follower of Scottish philosopher and political economist Adam Smith, so he believes in the idea that “individuals pursuing their own interest can benefit society more effectually,” and that people who are in a competitive relationship can still cooperate.

Remarks by TPP and PFP politicians have prompted media speculation about the status of relations between the two parties.

On Thursday, when asked to compare the TPP’s legislator-at-large nominees list with that of the PFP, Ko said that the TPP’s is “much stronger.”

On Friday, he said in a radio interview that among the “third force” parties, the New Party and the PFP “cannot lead the way anymore” and the New Power Party (NPP) is “on its deathbed.”

The TPP is like a new company, while the PFP is like a shell company that has undergone corporate restructuring, he added.

Later that day, when asked to comment on Ko’s remarks, Soong said that “without the PFP’s support, could [Ko] have won re-election?”

“Taiwanese need to vote for people who are affectionate and righteous, and work seriously with responsibility, not someone who goes crazy during elections,” he said.

Soong said that he has disregarded his reputation and publicly supported Ko many times, but added: “Why is [Ko] always targeting us [the PFP]?”

Separately yesterday, the NPP, which won 7 percent of overall party votes in the 2016 elections, canvassed in Taichung’s Jianguo Market (建國市場).

The NPP received more than 104,000 votes in Taichung, accounting for more than 7 percent of the city’s party votes in 2016.

NPP Chairman Hsu Yung-ming (徐永明) said that he hopes the party can obtain at least 10 percent of party votes in next month’s elections to keep NPP Legislator Huang Kuo-chang (黃國昌) in the Legislative Yuan.

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