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A Tragic Hero? Taiwan’s Democratic Progressive Party

                    Taiwan has concluded its 2012 presidential election. In a three-way race, the incumbent President Ma Ying-jeou of the Nationalist Party (Kuomintang or KMT) won re-election. His main challenger, Dr. Tsai Ing-wen of the opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), lost the election by a substantial margin, […]

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Wrapping up Taiwan 2012

In the end, the result of the combined presidential and legislative elections looks like a comfortable and routine win for Ma Ying-jeou and the KMT. Sitting presidents who successfully steward an economy through a global crisis and reduce pressing security threats, seldom fail to be re-elected. Yet, those who have followed the campaign closely will […]

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The 8th Legislative Yuan and the blue-green divide

The joint presidential and legislative elections in Taiwan are over and it is time to sum up the results. Without doubt, there will be plenty of opinions why the result turned out the way it did. The presidential election seemed to have overshadowed the legislative ones in terms of visibility, but the legislative elections were […]

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Experiencing the Taiwanese Campaign Rally

This is the second Taiwan Presidential election I have had the pleasure to observe on site. In 2008 I spend more than two weeks on the road and managed to watch rallies and election related events in Pingtung, Kaohisung, Tainan, Changhua, Taichung, Taoyuan and Taipei. This time my trip was shorter and the election observation […]

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The Flying Reporters: Out of Taiwan into China

For those of us academics based in Taiwan, keeping a close watch on the elections was not too much of an effort, although I agree with the observations in some of the earlier posts having very little feeling that there was an election of significance taking place in January 2012. I also support the opinion […]

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5 Reasons I Overestimated Tsai Ing-wen’s Chances

1. The DPP had too much ground to make up. The only DPP presidential administration to date, Chen Shui-bian 2000-2008, was characterised by severe governance problems (some of its own making, some because of KMT obstructionism in the legislature), permanent ideological mobilization, gridlock across the Strait, increasing international marginalization and, ultimately, corruption scandals that went […]

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The Fall of Great Orators and Rise of the Prompter

As promised in an earlier post, I kept notes from the field on the language practices of the campaigning candidates, and there is much to say! First, as an observer of how the candidates frame the issues for voters, it is equally interesting to stress the importance of silence. Indeed, the most important and widely commented […]

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Taiwan Elections: Good for Democracy and Stability

  Taiwan has just had a set of good elections. President Ma Ying-jeou and his Kuomintang (KMT) have won a second term with a convincing majority. But the elections had been tightly fought and the result of the presidential contest uncertain right until the end. A genuinely competitive election confirms that the democratic process is […]

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Reflections on election night

Last night, Friday 13th January, the candidates rallied their respective supporters – President Ma Ying-jeou of the Kuomintang (KMT) in front of his office in Taipei, Tsai Ing-wen of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in Banciao at New Taipei City Hall, and James Soong of the People First Party (PFP) in Taichung. For the rally […]

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Election Day Live-Blog

Welcome to the Election Day live blog. Whether you’re in Taiwan or observing from elsewhere, please check in with your thoughts. Mail me at Jonathan.sullivan@nottingham.ac.uk or Tweet me @jonlsullivan.

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