[EDITORIALS]A party in total chaos

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[EDITORIALS]A party in total chaos

Verbal mudslinging nearly turned into a physical fight at a meeting of Millennium Democratic Party leaders when an argument over the creation of a new party heated up. The chairman of the preparatory committee for the new party bolted a few days ago. This rowdy atmosphere pitted the party's supreme council members, who support presidential candidate Roh Moo-hyun, and members who are against Mr. Roh.

With less than four months until the presidential election, the split in the former ruling party was in some ways a self-wrought misfortune. It was brought by the party's back-alley logic of "Win before you lose," an obsession without any principles or just causes. In the last presidential election, Rhee In-je made the fatal mistake of refusing to accept the selection of another as the party candidate. Now the party itself is trying to annul the results of its own primary. How could chaos not emerge from such a lack of principles?

It is only too obvious that a persuasive process and cause is needed to create a new party and to change the presidential candidate chosen by the primary. The party, however, is so busy trying to flaunt the achievements of the Kim Dae-jung administration and hide its failures while engaging in the immediate internal power fight that members failed to follow necessary procedures and secure legitimacy. Will the party still have the audacity to ask the people to support it and its candidate? We are tired of repeating the entreaty that the party should appeal for the people's understanding.

Still, as the former ruling party and the second biggest party, the MDP should not forget its duty to the public. Whether it changes Mr. Roh or not, forms a coalition or brings in new people, is up to party members. Just don't confuse and tire the people anymore with your petty household affairs. It is a crime to drive the entire country into such a whirlpool of unjustifiable arguments, neglecting the duties of the administration. Maybe it is time for party members to take a look at why all of their misfortunes began. That would be the way to repay your supporters and the first real step in a long, long journey.
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