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`Son of Suwon` vs `Prominent figure in opposition`

Posted July. 21, 2014 05:09,   


Gyeonggi Suwon Byeong (Paldal) has strong support for the Saenuri party.

It is where a by-election is being held as the incumbent Gyeonggi Governor Nam Kyung-pil stepped down to run at the June 4 local elections. Nam won the area a total of five times (15th, 16th, 17th, 18th, and 19th general elections). Before that, Nam’s father was elected twice there. The New Politics Alliance for Democracy (NPAD) has nominated Sohn Hak-gyu, who was previously Gyeonggi governor and party leader. Its strategy is to reclaim the Paldal area and win the Suwon Eul (Gwonseon) and Suwon Jeong (Yeongtong) areas as well. Yet the situation appears difficult. Saenuri Party candidate Kim Yong-nam has been shown to be in a fierce contest with Sohn within a margin of error. Kim, who is in his 40’s, is a “native” and was a prosecutor.

○ Kim, `Son of Suwon will not leave`

On Sunday, Saenuri party’s Kim began the day with an early morning service at the Suwon Saebit Church at 5am. He made the rounds at three churches in the morning alone, under the idea that a church, a congregation of many in one place, is the ideal place to raise awareness of himself, a relative unknown.

Kim went to elementary, middle, and high schools in Suwon. His key strategy is that of a “local worker” and “Suwon native.” To whomever he meets, Kim tells them that he was born and raised in Suwon, and is different from candidates who happened to come down. He is differentiating himself thus from Sohn in this respect. He is also appealing for sympathy, alluding to the fight between David and Goliath.

Saenuri Party leadership, including Kim Moo-sung, accompanied Kim to a joint rally in Suwon Station and station market, adding to the drive.

○ `Return to Suwon in eight years`

New Politics Alliance for Democracy (NPAD) candidate Sohn went on the stump in 10 places, beginning with a visit to a hiking club of Ingye Elementary School alumni, in addition to a visit to a picnic of Chungcheong Province club as well as streetside rallies. He featured his typical stumping method of clutching the hands of people he met and bowing deeply at a right angle. He is staying away from large-scale rallies as much as he can.

Sohn on Sunday also stressed at every opportunity that he was a Gyeonggi Province governor. He emphasized his ties to Suwon, saying he was returning after eight years, and that many Suwon citizens say the Governor has returned. The opposition candidate said the Gyeonggi Province Office, where he worked during his term as Gyeonggi governor, is in Suwon Paldal, and that he is not an outsider who happens to be running there. He emphasized that it was good to be back in Suwon.

Sohn also said a National Assembly member needs to be a prominent figure if his constituency, the local community, is to develop and achieve political reform.

During a large rally at Suwon station, he appealed for support saying Suwon is the very place for a launch of the people’s livelihood-oriented politics and integration politics Sohn has dreamt of. He stressed that the country should worry about the people and yet currently the situation is regretful as it is the other way round, with the public worrying about the nation and politics. He said firmly that he would demonstrate new policies where the public livelihood is alive and well.