[EDITORIALS]Uri’s claim rings hollowThe ruling Uri Party yesterday passed several bills, including one on the latest real estate policies announced on March 30, amid disapproval from the opposition Grand National Party.
Party politics means trying to reach a compromise through dialogue and negotiations. At times, the majority rule can apply. But what the ruling party showed yesterday did not involve any of the above.
The Grand National Party promised it would cooperate on passing other bills if the Uri Party would make concessions on private school laws. Yet the ruling party refused to negotiate with its main opposition, and pushed its way through with sheer advantage in manpower. This is an act of self-righteousness that is against the ideals of democracy.
The Uri Party argues that it could no longer put off passing bills that affect the livelihoods of Korean people. But we wonder if the bills that were passed really have anything to do with the general public. The real estate policies, which include recapturing profits generated from apartment reconstruction projects, certainly do not support the lives of the populace.
The ruling party also rushed to pass a bill that would give voters the right to dismiss elected representatives in their respective districts if they are found to have committed illegal activities. But the elections are not until the end of this month.
Ironically, the party ignored what happened to be the only bill that concerns the common people ― one on rental housing that would benefit tenants. After all this, we ask if the Uri Party really has the right to speak the word “public.”
Immediately after the passage of the bills, Chung Dong-young, chairman of the Uri Party, criticized the Grand Nationals for being the only party that opposed bills that affect the common populace, and added that in the upcoming elections, the ruling party could defeat the main opposition based on this turn of events. His comments sound as though the Uri Party has a distorted view on the rush job it pulled off yesterday and will try to use the occasion to its advantage during the elections.
Many will suspect that President Roh Moo-hyun, by proposing to make concessions to his opposition, deliberately led the opposition to focus on making changes to laws bringing private schools under tighter government control, and that the ruling party caught the Grand Nationals off guard by rushing to pass bills on other issues. Their claim for promotion of politics through dialogue and concession rings hollow.