Senior Advisor Lee Jae-myung’s candidacy for the June 1 by-elections is getting mixed reactions from the Democratic Party. Former party leader Song Young-gil and former Deputy Prime Minister Kim Dong-yeon, who have been elected as candidates for the mayor of Seoul and governor of Gyeonggi, respectively, have advocated Lee’s candidacy but many still feel that the timing is still too early.
Lee has been considered for candidacy for Gyeyang of Incheon, where Song had resigned. Gyeyang has been considered pro-Democratic Party, voting for Song in the 16th, 17th, 18th, 20th and 21st local elections. “There are many candidates considering running for Gyeyang, but many also point out that Lee should be the candidate to stably secure his place in the party,” said an insider of the Democratic Party.
Lee is reportedly mulling over the candidacy. “Lee’s rumors of candidacy started from outside the party, so he is not obliged to come forward to clarify his position,” said Lee’s side. “He will come forward if there is such request by the party -whether in the form of candidacy or campaign support.” Lee’s position deems to come from possible concerns of dispute between the party over his candidacy.
There are also negative views towards Lee’s candidacy within the party. “I personally hope that Lee gains parliamentary experience through the elections. It doesn’t have to be this year; it can be the by-elections for next year or the year after that. I don’t feel the upcoming by-elections is the right timing. I support his candidacy for running for a wider audience nationwide for local elections,” said Rep. Woo Sang-ho in a radio interview with TBS. During the recent presidential election, he oversaw the Election Operations for the Democratic Party.
Dong-Jun Heo email@example.com