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Ahn proposes unifying of candidates through opinion poll

Ahn proposes unifying of candidates through opinion poll

Posted February. 14, 2022 07:48,   

Updated February. 14, 2022 07:48


Ahn Chul-soo, the presidential candidate for the minor opposition People’s Party, told People’s Power Party candidate Yoon Suk-yeol that he proposes ‘the unification of opposition party candidates for the grand cause of terminating the old system and change of the administration.’ Yoon replied by saying, “I am positively considering.”

As for the way of unifying candidates, Ahn suggested an opinion poll and Yoon said that he will think about the method but there is something insufficient. Depending on the situation surrounding the discussion about the envisaged candidacy unification and results thereof, the structure of the race for the presidential election, which is just 24 days to go, could be fluctuating.

“The unification of opposition party candidates for the upcoming election should be an alliance and coalition for Korea to move towards the future,” Ahn told t a press conference after completing registration as a presidential candidate. “Whoever becomes the unified candidate, and the two candidates will become the other’s running mate, and then we can secure overwhelming victory.”

Ahn went further to suggest an opinion poll as the method of unification. “In order to ensure overwhelming victory, we have to use a reasonable method that would be accepted by not only the two candidates and their supporters but also voters who have yet to pick their choices,” Ahn said. “If the conventional method of unifying candidates, which the two parties agreed for (last year’s) by-election for the Seoul mayor, is upheld, we can conclude the selection within a short period of time just as candidate Yoon stated.” There was an opinion poll among voters to survey aptitude and competitive edge of candidates Oh Se-hoon and Ahn in the Seoul mayoral race in April last year, with Oh selected eventually to win the election.

Yoon responded positively to Ahn’s suggestion, but the People’s Power Party and the People’s Party immediately started a fight over the way of selection. “The method Ahn proposed entails the risk of running counter to the public’s aspiration for change of government,” the People’s Power Party said. “We urge Ahn to make a courageous decision for unification of opposition candidates by honoring the public’s aspiration and the grand cause of change of government. The main opposition party effectively pressured Ahn to concede his candidacy through direct negotiations between the two candidates.

Kwan-Seok Jang jks@donga.com · Joo-Young Jeon aimhigh@donga.com