Steve Chan ties KMT chair bid to 2020 presidential election run

Taipei--Steve Chan (???), a former vice chairman of the opposition Kuomintang (KMT), said Thursday that he will run for the presidency in 2020 if elected chairman of the party.

Chan, who announced his bid for the KMT chairmanship earlier this week, said "it is better that the KMT chairman and the party's nominee for the presidency be the same person."

This would be the most effective approach to the presidential campaign, Chan said, describing it as a model that has proved successful in many previous presidential elections.

In an interview with a local radio station, Chan said it was best for a party chairman to lead the KMT in elections.

This will also apply to city and county head elections in 2018, and the image of the party as well as performance of the party chair will also play a role, Chan said.

When asked about reports that some within the KMT have seen Donald Trump's victory and want Hon Hai Group Chairman Terry Gou (???) to run for president on a KMT ticket, Chan said he has not discussed the matter with Gou.

But Chan said the KMT has a set procedure for qualifying and nominating candidates, and he wanted to "explicitly express" his intention on the matter.

He said his intention is to "run for president" and that he is "not considering a run for vice president." If the party wanted to recruit Gou as its nominee, however, Chan said he would stump for him.

In the party's chairmanship election on May 20, the 68-year-old Chan will face incumbent KMT Chairwoman Hung Hsiu-chu (???), former Vice President Wu Den-yih (???), incumbent KMT Vice Chairman Hau Lung-bin (???), and former president of Taipei Agricultural Products Marketing Corp., Han Kuo-yu (???).

The KMT was defeated by the Democratic Progressive Party in the presidential election in January 2016 and also lost its legislative majority.

Many of Chan's family members have medical backgrounds or have been involved in politics, including his uncle Chen Jui-tang (???) and Chan's daughter-in-law Chang Wen-ying (???), who both served as mayor of Taichung.

Chan, the chairman of Adimmune Corp. (????) and a native of Changhua County, served as health minister from 1997 to 2000.

He was superintendent of the Chi Mei Medical Center that treated former President Chen Shui-bian (???) after Chen was shot on the eve of the March 20, 2004 presidential election.

Some in the KMT accused Chen of staging the shooting to win sympathy votes ahead of the election, which he won by a razor-thin margin, but Chan said Chen's wounds were real.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel