[EDITORIALS]GNP's 2d-class legal minds

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[EDITORIALS]GNP's 2d-class legal minds

It is disappointing to hear the Grand National Party's reaction to the court decision on election law violations. The Seoul High Court on Monday sentenced four ruling party lawmakers charged with election law violations, nullifying one lawmaker's win and exacting punishment light enough on the others that they were allowed to keep their Assembly seats.

Upon learning the decision, Representative Kim Yong-kyun of the GNP said that "the first trial was presided over by judges from the Jeolla provinces and the high court trials were conducted by judges from the Chungcheong provinces." He said he worried that the judiciary was not functioning properly.

Mr. Kim's words show how low the legal mind of the GNP is since he tried to judge the judiciary by regionalism, just as he has done on other matters.

There seems to be no balance in his way of thinking, and his attitude is nothing but arrogance and the slighting of the judiciary.

Among the constituencies having by-elections in August, there are five places where the court has decided there have been election law violations. The lawmakers who lost their seats in two of the five are members of the Millennium Democratic Party, the ruling party. We would like to ask Mr. Kim whether the court rulings by which two MDP lawmakers lost their seats resulted from regionalism? If he made such remarks with the intention of pressuring the judiciary, it is even more deplorable. If the court decided not by legal principles and the truth but by the region where the judge is from, as he said, can we say that ours is a law-abiding society?

Even more shocking is that Representative Kim is a lawyer himself and he leads a group of lawyers in the party. This is the reason why there is criticism of the GNP's legal reasoning. Recently, the GNP pledged to introduce a management style to politics that would do away with school ties and regionalism. But Mr. Kim's deeply biased words are disappointing. The GNP should withdraw Mr. Kim's remarks and apologize for them. The party should also punish Mr. Kim. People watch closely what measures the former judge, Lee Hoi-chang, will take.

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