Out of controlChoo Mi-ae, head of the main opposition Minjoo Party of Korea, has gone too far. Her recent comments hardly befit her position as chief of the main opposition party, which commands the largest number of seats in the legislature.
In Gwangju, a stronghold of the party, she claimed the president has squandered 200 billion won ($169.5 million) worth of tax money on her own beauty treatments. Later the party explained she must have gotten the figure wrong, based on the reports that the Blue House purchased 20.26 million won worth of syringes over the last two years.
It is hardly believable that a former judge and five-term lawmaker could mistake millions for billions. Does she think the public is that gullible?
Choo has been careless in many ways. Upon taking office last summer, she announced a plan to visit former president Chun Doo Hwan, who’s dictatorship sparked Korea’s democracy movement, which eventual led to constitutional reform allowing direct presidential elections in 1987.
She called off the plan when it was strongly protested. Choo then told reporters that she was going to have a one-on-one meeting with President Park Geun-hye after she was disgraced by the scandal involving her friend and aides. That summit was cancelled in 11 hours.
How can such an unreliable and unpredictable politician be trusted to find a breakthrough to our current political tumult? Choo last week claimed the president was preparing to declare martial law and proposed the Seoul mayor to cut off water supplies to the Blue House. Her rabble-rousing is not funny.
When Kim Moo-sung, former head of the Saenuri Party, said he would help muster votes for impeachment from the ruling party, she snapped that she would not seek help from someone who had led a group of national traitors.
Her words and behavior add more disgrace to Korean politics. She is degrading the credibility of the main opposition party. If she cannot live up to her title, she should give it up.
JoongAng Ilbo, Nov. 25, Page 34