Go to contents

[Editorial] Runners for Presidential Elections Already Spreading Their Money

[Editorial] Runners for Presidential Elections Already Spreading Their Money

Posted August. 30, 2001 09:53,   


At a political reform workshop for Democrat representatives, a series of statements that said, ``Some of those running for the office of the President are spreading money for the preliminary elections.`` raised a stir.

It is not clear which individuals and how these persons are spreading money, but the statements were made by a number of influential members in the party. Persons around one party authority said that there were many instances where a runner from the Earth Party gave money for thank offerings, which was seriously discussed and reported to Cheong Wa Dae. A problem seems to have risen while the people were unaware.

The Democratic Party`s nomination list is not yet clear and the presidential elections are still over a year away. If the inner circle of the administration is publicly discussing money-spreading problems at this point in time, it gives reason to worry about how much `black money` will flow into the political arena and how it will promote a corrupt, money-driven election.

Moreover, there is a saying that after one presidential election, the national economy falters. During the last election, reports on candidates who spent 200 to 300 million won in campaign fund were filed to the National Election Commission. Politicians agree that, when one includes the money spent during the election time, the actual amount would go into the thousands. There is no question that the money will promote further distrust in politics and cast a dark shadow on our economy.

The present administration made political reform its goal but has failed to make any notable achievements. The majority and minority parties put forward only their issues, making cooperation difficult. The fact that the majority party`s presidential runners are repeating money-spreading tactics is enough to make one think that the administration`s political reforms are over. It is not possible for a runner who spreads money to become a Democratic Presidential candidate or to gain the support of the people. The fact that the majority party would select such a person as a Presidential candidate is pitiful and embarrassing.

The Democratic Party`s interior appears to be feeling the seriousness of the issue. There is talk of implementing a party law to prosecute preliminary candidates and representatives who give or receive money during the preliminary elections. We will have to wait and see what the Democratic Party will actually do. One thing is for sure. If the party does not put its effort in to completely reforming itself first, it will be difficult to recover from the people`s disillusionment in political reform. One hopes that the party will immediately provide a mechanism for eliminating money-spreading by Presidential election runners.