Taiwan's 2001 Legislative, Magistrates and Mayors Election: Further Consolidating Democracy?

In December 2001, Taiwan held an election that many observers said, in addition to the 2000 election that resulted in opposition party leader Chen Shui-bian winning the presidency, consolidated its democracy. This election made President Chen's party, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), the largest party in the legislature and gave him an opportunity to implement his agenda. President Chen had not been able to do previously due to the opposition's large legislative majority and the political gridlock that had plagued Taiwan for some months.This book examines the political milieu in which the campaign was conducted, the candidates, party platforms and strategies, the campaign, and the results of the election. It also assesses the domestic and international responses to the election and its political ramifications.The author argues that the DPP won using questionable tactics, thus diminishing its otherwise significant victory while creating doubts about the Taiwan political miracle . The KMT lost badly. The People First Party, created by James Soong after the 2000 presidential election, performed very well in this election. Former president Lee Teng-hui helped found a new party shortly before this election to help President Chen by drawing support away from the KMT; it performed well.The author concludes that the election mirrored Taiwan's new four-party system, which is divided into two camps. While the green bloc (the DPP and Lee's new party) performed well, the blue team (the KMT and Soong's party) won a majority. Taiwan's party politics, the author says, remain in flux.