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Moon, Ahn jockeying for position in unification process

Posted November. 06, 2012 05:26,   


With talks rapidly progressing on the opposition camp`s attempt to field a single candidate in next month`s presidential election, the main opposition Democratic United Party’s presidential candidate Moon Jae-in and independent runner Ahn Cheol-soo are proposing methods for the selection that benefit themselves.

One of the big issues is whether to include supporters of ruling Saenuri Party contender Park Geun-hye when conducting polls. In 2002, when the opposition party decided on a single candidate between Roh Moo-hyun and Chung Mong-joon, backers of the ruling party candidate Chung were excluded.

Recent surveys show that the inclusion of Park supporters would give Moon an advantage over Ahn while exclusion would mean vice versa. “Who do you support between Roh Moo-hyun and Chung Mong-joon as a single candidate against Lee Hoi-chang” was the question in a 2002 poll that excluded Lee`s supporters.

According to a survey conducted by the left-leaning daily Hankyoreh and Research Plus from Friday to Saturday, voters preferred Ahn over Moon as the opposition`s unified candidate, 45.6 percent to 42.4 percent, when asked whom they would back against Park. When Park’s supporters were excluded, the gap grew larger to 53.2 percent for Ahn to 39.8 percent for Moon.

A survey by Seoul Broadcasting System, or SBS, also found a similar result Monday when Park’s supporters were excluded, with 49.2 percent for Ahn and 43.4 percent for Moon. But when asked about suitability as a single opposition candidate, Moon led Ahn 48.6 percent to 37.6 percent.

All of this shows that the fate of the two hopefuls might depend on the questions used in the poll. Yet in a survey conducted from Friday to Sunday by Research and Research, Moon was ahead of Ahn 41 percent to 39 percent within the margin of error.