The tension between the ruling People Power Party and the main opposition Democratic Party of Korea is getting more intensified, with the Democratic Party of Korea’s submission of a request for an extra session of the National Assembly in July, in a move to push forward with its attempt to elect speaker and deputy speaker of the National Assembly practically in a unilateral way, which was strongly denunciated by the People Power Party as a “signal to restart its bossy legislation.”
The Democratic Party of Korea submitted a written request for an extra Assembly session signed by all its 170 members. Following the DP’s request, the extra session will begin on July 1. According to the National Assembly Act, where there is no speaker of the Assembly, the secretary general shall act for the speaker and convene a plenary session, and the National Assembly member elected for the greatest number of times from the members present shall act as the speaker pro tempore. Currently, former DP lawmaker Lee Chun-seok is the secretary general, and Rep. Park Byung-seok, former speaker of the National Assembly, is the National Assembly lawmaker elected for the greatest number of times among the lawmakers of the 21st Assembly. The Democratic Party, a majority party, is already prepared to unilaterally elect speaker and deputy speaker of the Assembly.
The key official of the Democratic Party said that there is room for change during weekend as People Power Party Floor Leader Kwon Seong-dong will return to Korea on July 1, and the DP is “prepared to unilaterally elect speaker and deputy speaker of the Assembly in the event that the ruling party does not cooperate.” However, it is reported that even within the Democratic Party, there is an opposition to the formation of standing committees by ex officio power of the speaker of the Assembly. The spokesman of the Democratic Party Oh Young-hwan met with reporters after the meeting and said that the General Assembly of the National Assembly will be held to solicit opinions.
The People Power Party floor leader Kwon Seong-dong warned in a party meeting held on Tuesday that the Democratic Party’s unilateral convening of the plenary session will be taken as a signal of restarting its bossy legislation. As to the Democratic Party’s demand for the formation of judicial reformation special committee and withdrawal of the complaint at the Constitutional Court, Kwon criticized the opposition party’s “irrational attempt to complete the prosecution reform bill,” warning that the Democratic Party had better refrain from obstructing the government from doing its work, thus putting the livelihoods of the people at risk.
As to the Democratic Party’s accusation that the timing of the floor leader’s business trip to overseas, Kwon repudiated by saying that his trip as a special envoy had been scheduled three weeks ago and that the opposition party’s attempt to unilaterally and arbitrarily managing the business of the Assembly is against the fundamental rules of politics.
Dong-Jun Heo firstname.lastname@example.org · Kyung-Suk Kang email@example.com