Miaoli, you can’t miss it in Taiwan’s “Nine in One election” /The 93rd “Cross-Strait Talk” (General
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At 7:30 p.m. on November 2, the 93rd “Cross-Strait Talk” (General 169th), hosted by China Cross-Strait Academy (Hong Kong) and Xiamen Qidataixiang Entrepreneurship Service Co., Ltd. , was successfully held at the Tencent Conference with the theme of “Miaoli, you cant miss it in Taiwans Nine-in-One election’”.

The Nine-in-One Election in 2022 has entered the final sprint of the last month, and all political parties and candidates are making every effort. At this moment, all kinds of “bad moves”, “throw mud at the opponent”, “online campaign” and “offline campaign” election attacks and defenses are constantly emerging. However, only a few of the 22 counties and cities in Taiwan are constantly concerned by all parties, and they are also the focus of attacks and defenses of political parties, because these counties and cities may waste all the previous efforts if they are not careful. It even affects the momentum of the 2024 election. Therefore, the “nine in one” hot topic of counties and cities will be discussed in depth on the current hot situation of each county and city, the tight situation, key issues affecting the final situation selection, and etc. In this “Cross-Strait Talk” forum, the China Cross-Strait Academy (Hong Kong) specially invited experts and scholars from both sides of the Strait, including Xiao Hengzhong, the assistant professor of National United University and Ph.D. of Chinese Culture University, Lin Yichen, the assistant professor of National United University in Miaoli, Lai Rongwei, the assistant professor of Lunghua University of Science and Technology and Liu Shenyuan, the student of the Department of Finance in National United University and young farmer in Miaoli County to discuss the topic of Miaoli, you cant miss it in Taiwans Nine-in-One election’”. They focused on the current hot spots in Miaoli, whether the DPP could benefit from the split of the KMT, why is Miaoli County called Miaoli Country, etc. Lou Dingjun, the Secretary General of China Cross-Strait Academy (Hong Kong), served as the host of the meeting.

Lin Yichen said that from the current polls, there is a very interesting situation. The polls of the Green-leaning media are obviously inclined to the Green camp, which is also considered to be the ideological marketing of the DPP. In fact, this phenomenon occurs every time during the election period. There are polls from both the Blue camp and Green camp with a media position bias, many of which are out of line with reality and do not reflect reality. Most of the current polling data objectively shows that Zhong Dongjin, the non-party candidate, has a good chance of being elected. Although Miaoli County is known as the Miaoli Country, it cannot be denied that there are many shortcomings that need to be improved due to the KMTs sustainable governance, such as huge debt, budget, vote buying and other problems. Under all kinds of unrestrained behaviors, Miaoli County has grown savagely in the law of the jungle.

Liu Shenyuan pointed out that Miaoli Countys debt ranks first in Taiwan, and the unsatisfactory performance of local finances has also led to the inadequacy of local construction. The aging of the local population is serious, and a large number of young talent loss due to the population outflow. Young people in Miaoli are not very enthusiastic about the election and have a lying-flat mentality about electoral politics. Many young people who disappointed with both the KMT and DPP may give up voting or directly vote for the New Power Party. Even some young people believed that if rotation of political parties is achieved, it may bring hope for progress in Miaolis future.

Xiao Hengzhou believed that the election in Miaoli County is still in a very anxious state. In terms of party support, the KMT can still maintain the largest foundation in the local area. However, in the process of competition among the KMT and other parties, more than half of the voters still have reservations, and the number of voters who prefer not to take a stand and the number of middle voters are large. In the recent meeting of the DPP, Tsai Ing-ern said that Miaoli County should be listed as one of the target counties and cities that must be won. However, the DPP lacks a deep foundation in Miaoli County. In the face of the vote split by the New Power Party, as well as the deep local base of the Blue camp and the unshakable local strength of Zhong Dongjin, it is not easy for the DPP to break through many obstacles to a sweeping victory.

Lai Rongwei pointed out that Miaoli County had long been governed by local factions. The local Liu faction and the Huang faction had clear borders, and the politics of Miaoli is stable. The governorship of the county had always been firmly in the hands of the KMT, and the Liu faction and the Huang faction take turns in power. Miaoli County has been jokingly called Miaoli Country to describe the fact that Miaoli County has long been politically, economically and culturally different from other counties and cities, and its differences are so great that it has been described as a separate country, which is also a part that is often teased or condemned. Miaoli County has been ruled by the KMT and has been in financial deficit for a long time. In addition, there are many problems that polices ignored violence.

In addition to the wonderful speeches delivered by the guests, the online audience also actively participated in the interactive Q&A on the topic. Questions from the audience concerned whether the polls are referential, whether the DPP has a chance to win in Miaoli County, what is the local policy of helping young people and the elderly, and whether the election in Miaoli County can be regarded as the battle of the three or the battle of the four, etc. All the guests at the meeting answered these questions, and the discussion was heated, highlighting the great concern of young people and scholars on Cross-Strait on the issue of “Miaoli, you cant miss it in Taiwans Nine-in-One election’”.

Lin Yichen pointed out that multiple polls from different polling institutes can be reviewed together to judge whether the polls are credible by observing the consistency of these polls. In Taiwans elections, personal ability is far less important than the campaigning ability. However, although the DPP is good at campaigning, it lacks a local foundation in Miaoli County, and many so-called supporters are driven by interests and come from far away, which makes it difficult to help its local election cause. The dispute over Miaoli mayor is not enough to form the situation of the battle of the three or the battle of the four, but it can be regarded as the battle among two big and two small at present. Even if Xie Fuhong and Song Guoding do not dominate the election, their power to stir up the election cannot be ignored.

Liu Shenyuan believed that Miaoli County is dominated by animal husbandry and agriculture. The aging of the local society is serious, and the lack of industry leads to a large number of young people leaving for urban areas. If Miaoli wants to seek progress, it should first bring back young people and scientific and technological talents. Therefore, the government should invest more resources to promote the development of local industries and attract young people to be willing to stay in the local area to build their hometown by raising the salaries of young people, improving the local living standards, and proposing more future planning and bright visions. In addition, local care and support measures for the elderly are also at a standstill and need to be improved and strengthened.

Xiao Hengzhong said that the election in Miaoli County is actually a duel between Zhong Dongjin and Xu Dingzhen. However, the small force is not able to accomplish anything but quite capable of ruining it, so it cannot be ruled out that the small forces will bring about variables and lead to abandonment. Whether Zhong Dongjin will provoke the rise of the third force in Miaoli County is worth observing because he was member of Blue camp but he attended this election as a non-party member.

Lai Rongwei mentioned that under the split of the Blue camp, Xu Dingzhen, the county magistrate candidate of DPP and Song Guoding, the candidate of New Power Party have recently launched a fierce attack on the candidate Zhong Dongjin who left the party to run for this election. According to the poll data, Zhong Dongjin is still maintaining a high position, putting pressure on the other three candidates. Although his personal image and involvement with Gangdom Crime may detract from his election, his chances of winning the election will be relatively high due to his many years of solid foundation in the local area, strong connections and financial resources, and high reputation and support.

At the end of the meeting, Lin Yichen said that Taiwans democratic politics still has many shortcomings to improve. Voters disappointment with candidates may lead them to choose not to vote. If this happens, Miaoli County may usher a great change. Liu Shenyuan pointed out that he hoped that young people in Miaoli would still have enthusiasm for their hometown and jointly change the status quo in Miaoli County. Hsiao Heng-chung believed that no matter which candidate is elected, Miaoli Countys industrial construction should be given attention. By building up fully and releasing sparingly, talents and industries can really drive the urban development. Lai Rongwei pointed out that the Blue camp should face up to the existing problems in Miaoli County and actively solves them. Only if the KMT reverses its image in the minds of local voters will it be able to establish a firm foothold in the future where a large number of young people are emerging.

Through a brief 2-hour online exchange, more than 140 people from both sides of the strait gathered to discuss the topic of Miaoli, you cant miss it in Taiwans Nine-in-One Election’”, to promote cross-strait exchanges with practical actions, and make contributions to maintaining cross-strait peace and development. 

As the cross-strait exchange activity synchronized with Cross-Strait Talk and Smart Youth Integration in the Four Places, the Cross-Strait Youth Perspective Forum, which launched by China Cross-Strait Academy (Hong Kong), is mainly characterized by gathering authoritative scholars and media worker from Cross-Strait and four places. They will listen to the voice of the Strait, pay attention to the hot spots on both sides of Taiwan Strait, take a global vision, and make a new voice based on both sides of the strait and facing the world.