Nominations nightmarePeople are worried about the Grand National Party’s conflict over nominations for the legislative elections.
Park Geun-hye, the party’s former chairwoman, ha made known her determination to prevent her camp in the party from unfairly failing to earn nominations. People in her camp are even talking about leaving the party and creating a new one.
The situation for the new administration doesn’t look good.
It needs to restructure the government and get legislative approval for the free trade agreement with the United States as soon as possible.
The story behind the party’s nominations is complicated. The president-elect’s people are said to be attempting to expand their power, using public opinion to replace the party’s leading members with new people.
This will help one of them to become the next party chairman, for instance, or give them an advantage in the party primaries for the presidency or the office of mayor of Seoul.
Meanwhile, Park’s people are trying to survive using their card for splitting the party. Kang Jae-sup, the party’s chairman, promises the nomination process will be fair, but the two camps mistrust each other.
Conflict over the party’s nominations keeps occurring because of a faulty institution.
The central party nominates candidates who represent areas across the country, but this does not meet global standards.
In England, members of district party chapters form evaluation committees.
Those who want to earn their party’s nomination go through a series of tests.
They have interviews and deliver speeches. Finally, ballots are cast to decide on candidates. In the United States, a party’s nomination is solely for districts to decide.
Even if Hillary Clinton earns her party’s nomination, the party members who supported Barack Obama need not worry.
The party’s nomination is decided by party members of district chapters.
Korea also experimented with a primary based on districts, but there were many problems.
Less-experienced politicians were at a disadvantage, money was used to win voters’ hearts and a party was divided.
The Grand National Party must reform its institution for nominations. It must start work on the task shortly after the legislative elections, if need be.
The nominations this time must be a period of preparation for such reforms.
Even though the current system is far from perfect, the party should regard it as a stepping stone for further reforms and must go through the procedure as fairly and objectively as possible.