Shameful distractionsAfter winning a landslide victory in the April 15 parliamentary elections, the ruling Democratic Party (DP) and its satellite Citizen Party (CP) continue making one arrogant remark after another. Buoyed by the triumph, some elected members of the parties are directing inexorable criticisms at Prosecutor General Yoon Seok-youl for his handling of their own indictments on a range of charges including abuse of power. They obviously want Yoon to resign.
Choi Kang-wook, a former presidential secretary for civil service discipline and a newly elected lawmaker of the CP, stirred controversy by attacking Yoon. “I will surely let him sense a changed world,” he wrote on Facebook. CP co-chairman Woo Hee-jong joined the chorus by demanding Yoon resign “in the face of the massive candlelight protests against him in front of the Supreme Prosecutors’ Office” last year.
Kim Yong-min, a newly elected lawmaker of the DP, lambasted Yoon for “abusing his power” while Hwang Un-ha, another new face in the DP, vowed to “wrap up long-delayed prosecutorial reforms” after denouncing prosecutors for obstructing his bid in the parliamentary election. The lawmakers had led a heated battle against Yoon and the prosecution after prosecutors launched thorough investigations into the relatives of former Justice Minister Cho Kuk on corruption charges and the Blue House’s alleged intervention in the Ulsan mayoral election in 2018.
If the newly elected lawmakers from the two parties intend such malicious attacks to affect the prosecution’s investigations and their own trials, that’s a serious problem. They must stop such outrageous acts. Moreover, Choi, the new lawmaker from the CP, is supposed to appear in court today. Choi, a former lawyer, must behave properly.
Fortunately, DP Chairman Lee Hae-chan made remarks that were far more appropriate. “Our lawmakers talk about a Constitutional revision or the resignation of the prosecutor general. But more importantly, we must overcome the coronavirus crisis first,” he stressed.
As President Moon Jae-in has said, our economic situation is extremely vulnerable, as seen on all fronts, including employment, consumption and exports. Discussing such politically explosive issues as a Constitutional amendment under such circumstances does not make sense.
Over the last three years, the Moon administration and ruling party have blamed the opposition United Future Party for its underperformance. The people have created an amicable environment for the DP through their votes. The time has come for the ruling party and government to repay their favor with sound economic policies.