A roadmap to resignationMoon Jae-in, former leader of the main opposition Minjoo Party of Korea, said he would start a national campaign to push President Park Geun-hye out of office. Ahn Cheol-soo, former head of the splinter People’s Party, reiterated that Park must do the nation a favor by leaving the office. The two aspiring presidential candidates are right.
The president is hanging on even as she has lost the confidence of the people, who are willing to swarm downtown Seoul every weekend until she completely gets her hands off state affairs after shamefully abusing her power. People around her bet she will likely resist till the end.
Park is fully responsible for humiliating the nation and demoralizing the public. Her administrative authority further weakened after she made apologies for her friend and aides. The country faces unprecedented challenges on foreign and economic fronts, but the administration is in limbo. The disgraced president faces interrogation from state prosecutors, and the ruling party is near collapse.
From the findings so far, the president must immediately leave office. But because of the ramifications of a leadership vacuum, it would be more realistic for her to make a gradual and orderly exit. We are appalled that the president kept to her ways after all the harm she had caused.
But not much would be gained by cornering the strong-headed president. The opposition dominates the legislature. The opposition camp should come up with a plan to persuade the president to exit without causing a long lapse in state leadership. It must first name a new cabinet head to command state affairs. A resignation and impeachment motion should come after this.
It was the opposition that called for the establishment of a nonpartisan cabinet in the first place. The summit talks between the president and opposition leaders should not have been cancelled. Moon and Ahn are de facto commanders of the two opposition parties.
They can only be suspected of secretly enjoying prolonged state disorder if they seek out to oust the president without coming up with realistic follow-up measures.
What should come first is national stability. The state cannot recover order through political math and consideration. The two must propose an outline for an orderly exit of the president. It is the least they can do for the people, who are in anguish over the future of this country.
JoongAng Ilbo, Nov. 16, Page 30