[Editorial] DP must withdraw KCC member nominee

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[Editorial] DP must withdraw KCC member nominee

“The people of Ukraine are victimized because of their inexperienced president. It shows how important a leader is. Hail to Lee Jae-myung, a well-prepared president and the successor of DJ (first liberal president Kim Dae-jung)!” former lawmaker Choi Min-hee of the Democratic Party (DP) said in her social media post in February last year. She blamed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy for the losses and hardships of Ukrainians from the Russian invasion. It was her way of painting the rival presidential candidate Yoon Suk Yeol as inept and unprepared in comparison with Lee Jae-myung.

She habitually distorted facts for political slander. She accused President Yoon of sexual harassment after he posed for a picture with a woman restaurant owner with his hand on her shoulder. She doesn’t care to check out the facts. The owner later said she had asked Yoon to take a picture with his arms around her shoulders. But Choi later appeared in a photo hugging former president Moon Jae-in.

Choi lauded Lee, the former presidential candidate of the DP, as a “successful version of Jeon Tae-il.” Jeon remains the iconic figure of the Korean labor movement. But Lee is implicated in a number of corruption charges. He is also known to have been mean to his relatives when he was Seongnam’s mayor.

When her peer Yoon Mee-hyang was accused of embezzling donation and public funds that should have gone to the victims of Japanese military sexual slavery, Choi claimed that Yoon Mee-hyang was being framed by ultraconservative and pro-Japanese forces. But the lawmaker’s misdeeds were exposed by the surviving victim herself. Nothing she said has any credibility. Choi doesn’t seem to have any respect for truth or civility.

Yet the DP recommended her for a vice-ministerial position at the Korea Communications Commission (KCC). The state agency is responsible for overseeing independence, objectivity and fairness in broadcasting and other media outlets. Seating such a biased person as a standing member of the commission is preposterous. Moreover, Choi lost the right to run in elections for five years after she was found guilty of spreading false information and violating the election law in 2018. If not for a presidential pardon by former president Moon in late 2021, she could still be restricted from running for elected office.

Former MBC president Choi Seung-ho disapproved of the DP’s recommendation of her as a member of KCC. He said she is just a politician and a mere mouthpiece for the DP. “It cannot be appropriate for Choi [Min-hee] to serve on the board that needs to be independent and neutral,” he said. The DP must withdraw the recommendation, or the lawmaker must turn down the offer. If not, President Yoon must veto the recommendation.
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