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President Wants Sim Dae-pyung for Prime Minister

Posted June. 18, 2008 04:14,   


It was confirmed that President Lee Myung-bak sent key members of the presidential office to meet with Sim Dae-pyung, head of the Liberty Forward Party, last week to propose his appointment as prime minister. However, LFP Chairman Lee Hoi-chang who has the power to confirm Sim’s appointment is opposed to the idea, meaning there is a good chance Sim will not become prime minister.

▽ Presidential office awaits a decision

A presidential office source said yesterday, “It is the third time that the president has proposed appointing Sim to the post of prime minister. Now the ball is in the court of Sim and Lee. We can only await their decision.”

Before Sim announced his support of Lee Hoi-chang in the run-up to the presidential election last year, the president said he would ask Sim to serve as prime minister if elected. The president met with Sim and proposed the appointment earlier this year before his inauguration.

A source from the ruling camp said on Sim’s appointment, “It shows the president’s will to reunite the conservative camp and make a breakthrough in the current political crisis. The appointment can also lay the groundwork for policy cooperation between the Grand National Party and the LFP.” Indeed, the president and the LFP chairman agreed that the two parties can coordinate on policies in their meeting on Sunday.

▽ Negative response from the LFP

Chairman Lee reportedly decided not to accept the president’s proposal. An LFP source said, “The chairman already made up his mind. Sim will not mention the appointment either from now.”

Lee said in a party leadership meeting yesterday, “I told the president at the luncheon meeting that it is not correct to think only united conservative forces can make a breakthrough. It is best to appoint a prime minister who does not represent a particular political party or force but the entire public.”

However, Sim said in a press conference that day, “If a team is at a crisis with two outs in the last inning, even the starting pitcher can take the mound as the one-point relief to follow the coach’s decision. I believe my party will make the right decision since it cares about national interests.”

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