Korea’s political parties work to narrow candidate field ahead of May election

With only fifty days to go untill the presidential
election here in the nation, Korea’s political parties are working to narrow the field of
candidates seeking the nomination… before they start campaigning. Park Ji-won zooms in on their preparations. The Democratic Party of Korea plans to choose
its presidential nominee by April 3rd or 8th at the latest. The party has held five debates and plans
to hold five more, along with regional primaries and mobile and online voting. “This presidential election is a contest between
a new Republic of Korea and the old Republic of Korea. It’s a choice between getting rid of the nation’s
deep-rooted evils or not, between national integration or not.” Three main contenders are currently vying
for the nomination — former party leader Moon Jae-in, Chungcheongnam-do Governor An
Hee-jung… and Seongnam Mayor Lee Jae-myung. The Liberty Korea Party has already started
running negative ads against Moon, who now enjoys a comfortable lead in the polls, pointing
to allegations that his son was given undue advantage in his job application process. “Since former opposition leader Moon Jae-in
insists on fairness and justice,… we hope he comes forward to clear away the doubts
about the allegation.” The Liberty Korea Party is planning to select
its presidential nominee by the end of the month through a series of five debates. Gyeongsangnam-do Governor Hong Joon-pyo is
the currently party’s strongest candidate according to recent polling. The People’s Party has completed the first
round of its nominating process. It narrowed the field to three presidential
hopefuls — former party leader and software tycoon Ahn Cheol-soo, former presidential
candidate Sohn Hak-kyu… and four-term lawmaker Park Joo-sun. The party will hold televised debates, regional
primaries and public polling to choose the nominee by April 4th. “We expect journalists and the public will
be interested in the debates by our presidential candidates.” The splinter conservative Bareun Party is
overseeing a two-way race between former Liberty Korea Party floor leader Yoo Seong-min and
Gyeonggi-do Governor Nam Kyung-pil. “The party will make its final selection a
week from Tuesday. Park Ji-won, Arirang News.”

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