Moon’s ruling Democratic Party wins landslide in legislative polls

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Moon’s ruling Democratic Party wins landslide in legislative polls

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Chairman Lee Hae-chan of the Democratic Party marks winners on Wednesday night at the partyĄŻs situation room in the National Assembly building. [YONHAP]

The ruling Democratic Party (DP) of President Moon Jae-in won a landslide in Wednesday’ general election, securing a solid majority in the 300-member National Assembly.

Voters elected 253 lawmakers for constituencies and 47 proportional representatives by voting for political parties. As of 9:15 a.m. on Thursday, 99.9 percent of the ballots for the 253 districts were counted and the DP won 163 seats.

The main opposition United Future Party (UFP) won 84. The Justice Party won 1 seat, and independent candidates won five.

As of 9:15 a.m., 99.41 percent of the ballots were counted for proportional representation election. While the two major parties did not field proportional lawmaker candidates, their two satellite parties won a majority of the votes.

The DP’s satellite party, Citizen Party (CP), is expected to win 16 seats, according to the current projection by the Korea Broadcasting System, while the UFP’s satellite party, Future Korea Party (FKP), is forecast to win 17.

According to the current projection, the DP-CP alliance is expected to control 179 seats – enough to pass most bills except for a constitutional amendment, which requires two-thirds of the assembly’s vote.

Since Korea introduced its current political system in 1987, it is the first time that any single political group will control nearly three-fifths of the legislature.

The UFP-FKP alliance is expected to win 101 seats, just enough to block a constitutional amendment.

After the DP’s landslide victory became certain, UFP Chairman Hwang Kyo-ahn accepted responsibility and resigned.

The defeat effectively put an end to the political career of Hwang, a former prime minister in the Park Geun-hye administration, and any hope he had of running for president.

Turnout for Wednesday’s election was 66.2 percent, the highest in 28 years.

BY SER MYO-JA [ser.myoja@joongang.co.kr]

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