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[Editorial] The Open Uri Party’s “Dishonorable First Place”

[Editorial] The Open Uri Party’s “Dishonorable First Place”

Posted March. 17, 2004 22:47,   


Of the 48 people who were indicted to the prosecution by the National Election Commission under suspicion of violating election law, ten people were nominated as candidates for each party. Among these people, five candidates belonged to the Open Uri Party. Considering that the Millennium Democratic Party and United Liberal Party have two people each, and Democratic Labor Party has one, the Open Uri Party’s first place is a seat of disgrace. As a practical ruling party which has championed for brand-new politics so far, it is quite disappointing that the Open Uri Party has indifferently inspected their candidates’ ethical qualities.

People involved in the presidential slush fund such as Lee Kwang-jae, one of President Roh’s close associates, who was disposed not to be indicted with a public action by the prosecution under the suspicion of taking a 100 million won bribe from the Sun&Moon Group, were also confirmed as candidates for the upcoming general election. It is hard to understand that their candidacy in this complicated time of political disorder has proper grounds for support. Particularly in Lee’s case, his standpoint, which should go through self-discipline, does not add up in the procedure of candidate nomination.

Actually, it is premature to conclude as to whether they violated election law while the litigation is pending in court. But in order to improve the complicated political situation, people who have been sources of trouble should have been excluded in the procedure of candidate nomination. The parties should maintain their mediocre positions and not be shaken by politicians who claim, “legally, we have no problem.” That is what is known as so-called innovative candidate nomination.

Thanks to the “adverse wind of impeachment,” the Open Uri Party seems to be on the rise due to increases in its approval rate. But popular feeling is always flexible. Wrongfully recommended candidates can become one reason for a decline.

In addition, the revised election law has become much stricter than that of the past. Although the candidates managed to be elected in the ambience of the impeachment situation, the decision of their illegality can nullify their election. As an official party assuming public responsibility, the Open Uri Party should look over the profiles of the candidates again with utmost concern. Opposition parties cannot be an exception either.