Friday, May 27, 2011

The showdown on January 14, 2012

l  Taiwan's Central Election Commission (CEC) recently announced that the next presidential and parliamentary elections will be held jointly on January 14, 2012.

l  By combining the two elections, the CEC is moving the presidential election forward by more than two months. The presidential inauguration date of May 20, however, remains unchanged, and all 113 seats of the LY will be filled and sworn in on February 1.

l  Despite saving considerable administrative costs, the CEC’s decision this week may create controversies later if the opposition DPP wins the presidency and returns to power.

l  Under that scenario, the incumbent president would be “lame duck” for four months from mid-January to mid-May, with no apparent constitutional limitations on the powers that he may exercise.

l  In Taiwan’s highly partisan politics, it could lead to heightened domestic tensions if the president-elect, for instance, wants to restrict the policymaking authority of the outgoing president during the interim four months.

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