Since late August 2023, eggs have become a popular keyword in Taiwan's 8 election.

The problem began with the egg shortage crisis in late 2022. At that time, egg prices soared and public discontent was everywhere, Taiwan's Ministry of Agriculture announced the implementation of the "egg project import" policy, planning to import eggs from Thailand, Australia, the United States, Brazil and other places to slow down the egg shortage and stabilize egg prices, the time is expected to be from March 2023 to June 3, but I did not expect that the scandal broke out in less than half a year after the implementation of the policy.

The first is the Tuli Doubtful Cloud of Supervision. According to the company's introduction, Chaosi is a small company just established in September 2022 with a capital of only NT$9,50, and its registered address is only a rural house, with no signs of operation, but it can beat other large enterprises in the "egg project import", grab 5 million yuan of government bidding, import more than 8 million eggs from Brazil, accounting for 000% of the total imports, and receive government subsidies of 60 million yuan in the process. All of the above has made many people suspect that Chaosi is just a false line number, in order to cover up the improper profit of a specific group through the "import of egg projects".

Taiwan's egg shortage crisis broke out in the second half of 2022, triggering a series of egg import disputes in 2023. (VCG)

Then came the expiry dispute over imported eggs from Brazil. In early September, some people found that the shelf life of commercially available Brazilian eggs was marked "October 9", which was four months after May 10, when they were loaded out of port, and the validity period was significantly longer than that of ordinary imported eggs.

As a result, Taiwan's Ministry of Agriculture first explained that "eggs imported from Brazil are treated with wax spray film, so the validity period can reach 120 days"; He then put the blame on the Tainong who marked the date, saying that the label was wrong and that "the validity period should be September 9." Unexpectedly, the chairman of Tainong came forward to deny it, saying that the washing and selection of packaging labeling was carried out in accordance with the standard process, and that the mistake was what the Ministry of Agriculture asked me to say, and told me to bear it down and quickly calm down this matter." It is conceivable that Tainong's rebuttal triggered a tsunami of public opinion, but this is only the beginning.

Next, there is no cold chain in the transportation process of Brazilian eggs, the loss of destroyed eggs is estimated to exceed 2 million yuan, Brazilian eggs are found to be impersonating local eggs and liquid eggs mixed into the market, the Food and Drug Administration announced that Brazilian eggs have not been "coated with wax spray film" and other negative news have broken out successively, the image of the Ministry of Agriculture and the Democratic Progressive Party has been seriously damaged, netizens have ridiculed that "a group of bastards introduce bad guys", Lai Qingde's rolling poll in the "Formosa E-News" fell to 35.2%, a new low since the peak of 43% after visiting the United States.

Perhaps because of this, Minister of Agriculture Chen Jizhong, who once "resigned and was consoled", announced his resignation on the 19th, and Chen Junji, vice minister of agriculture, was temporarily appointed as minister. But even if the DPP intends to stop the bleeding, Lai Qingde's hidden worries have emerged, that is, the various malpractices during Tsai Ing-wen's term will disrupt the DPP's electoral rhythm.

On February 2022, 2, the press conference of Taiwan's Executive Yuan's "Measures to Control the Import of Japanese Food" announced the lifting of the ban on Japanese Fukushima food. The picture shows Chen Jizhong, then chairman of the Taiwan Agricultural Committee. (Photo courtesy of Taiwan's Executive Yuan)

The factional tussle behind the fraud scandal

Previously, the author wrote an article "Lai Qingde's Hidden Worries (I): China and the United States are participating in the election, and the DPP is inferior to the Kuomintang and Hou Youyi this time", pointing out that Washington's lack of strong support and Beijing's strong suppression will become a major hidden worry for Lai Qingde this time. After Hou Youyi's visit to the United States, he did get more aura than Lai Qingde, not only "coincidentally" with New York Mayor Eric Leroy Adams (Eric Leroy Adams), visiting Washington where Lai Qingde could not go, but also was praised by Bonnie S. Glaser, an important person involved in Taiwan, as a "well-prepared and straight-ball matchup." The reason why Lai Qingde Competition Office spokesman Zhao Yixiang criticized Hou Youyi and "plagiarized Lai Qingde in the proposal of submitting a letter to Foreign Affairs" should also be related to the "special courtesy" of Hou Youyi by the United States, which caused tension in Lai's camp.

Returning to the topic of fraud cases, one of the reasons why the author believes that this will be another major concern for Lai Qingde is that the scandal of the fraud case will inevitably involve the factional struggle of the DPP, and will eventually make Lai Qingde dilemma: the drastic handling will either hurt comrades or trigger a greater backlash from other factions, and in the end, it is the unity of the party that is dampened, and the outside world has a very bad perception.

Take the egg controversy as an example, it finally clearly caused a quarrel between the British (led by Tsai Ing-wen) and the new trend (Lai Qingde's faction), although the two factions looked more like accomplices in the incident: in the cloud of super-stratuli, the livestock society played an important role, and its chairman was Lin Congxian, who was born in the new trend; In the dispute over the expiration of imported eggs from Brazil, the Ministry of Agriculture led by the British Chen Jizhong became the target of public criticism. In fact, the real power of the Livestock Department of the Ministry of Agriculture is higher than that of the Livestock Association, but no matter how the Livestock Association acts, it will eventually require the formal approval of the Ministry of Agriculture, so the two factions are more like a symbiotic relationship.

On September 9, Hou Youyi (middle) visited the Brookings Institution, a US think tank, and US Taiwan-related figures Bu Ruizhe (left) and Graiyi (right) attended the meeting. (Facebook@ Hou Youyi)

However, in the face of the Brazilian egg controversy, Chen Jizhong has repeatedly been in the line of fire and crazy loss of points, the new trend obviously has a different calculation from the British system: in the eyes of the new trend, it is the top priority to elect Lai Qingde, who was born in this faction, as president, so the egg incident must be "someone step down" and quickly stop the bleeding, otherwise it may drag down Lai Qingde, and Chen Jizhong is obviously the object of "should be sacrificed"; But in the eyes of the British family, its internal key role has no president, so preserving the faction territory is the top priority, so Chen Jizhong from the British family must not be easily sacrificed, and the livestock led by the new trend Lin Congxian will also be responsible, why is it only called British sacrifice?

On September 9, Taiwan's media circles suddenly received the news that "Chen Jizhong asked for resignation and did not receive consolation", but Chen Jizhong himself did not express it at all, and then later the news became "please resign and stay comforted", and Su Zhenchang, who has been the chief executive for several months, suddenly spoke out and supported Chen Jizhong, saying that the news of his resignation "is someone talking about the operation, which is very bad." All of the above was interpreted by the outside world as the new trend intended to "force the palace" Chen Jizhong, but was resisted by the British family and failed. After Chen Jizhong's official resignation on September 17, Lin Congxian also announced his resignation as chairman of the Animal Products Association, which was considered to be the new trend in order to stop the election and stop the bleeding, and did not hesitate to sacrifice Lin Congxian in exchange for the British "letting go" of Chen Jizhong.

Judging from the results, Chen Jizhong's resignation did help stop the bleeding, but if it were not for factional fighting, his instinct would have been to resign earlier. And judging from the development of the situation, Chen Jizhong's statement defending the Brazilian egg "changes every day", which is actually more like the fundamental situation outside the fundamental situation, but was hastily pushed into the line of fire to deal with the aftermath than the lying nature criticized by the outside world. In other words, if it were not for the new trend to which Lai Qingde belonged from the beginning, which wanted to cut and stand alone, the egg controversy might not have triggered a tsunami of public opinion, nor would it have let the outside world see Chen Jizhong's ugly state of "resignation".

On August 8, Lai Qingde attended the luncheon of mainstream and overseas Chinese in New York, USA. (Taiwan Presidential Office)

And eggs are obviously not the only fraud in this election, and the previous clouded leopard energy scandal is equally ugly: Lai Jinlin of the new trend was found to be the chairman of 18 energy companies including "Clouded Leopard Energy", many of which are like this Chaosi, which is only registered with an address, no actual operation of the fake line number, and the address is still registered in the same place, but it defeated other large enterprises with a long history, grabbed a large number of government photoelectric bids, and was criticized by the outside world for "laundering money through green energy" because of the continuous political donation of new trend legislators. "New Trend Vault", "Clouded Leopard Turns into Money Leopard". The case ended with the double resignation of Yunbao Energy Chairman Lai Jinlin and independent director Li Qizhi, which is obviously also the reason why New Trend intends to stop the bleeding for Lai Qingde.

But the problem is that in the process of the scandal exposed, some of the Kuomintang members who cracked down on the case obtained key evidence because the DPP appeared "whistleblowers", who may have a bad conscience, but more from the veins of factional struggle. As we all know, the green energy industry has great benefits, but the new trend occupies a large area, and once Lai Qingde is elected, this trend will only strengthen and not weaken. Of course, such non-new trendsetters are not happy, so they do not hesitate to dampen Lai Qingde's election, and they also want to take the opportunity to break the news before the election.

In the final analysis, this election not only caused the KMT to have mountaineering, which triggered a storm of "changing marquis" between the party Central Committee and local factions, dragging down the election, but the DPP was obviously also mired in mountaintop politics and entangled with scandals of malpractice, which dampened Lai Qingde's great advantage.

Lai Qingde speaks at Taoyuan Airport on August 2023, 8 (Reuters)

Why didn't the malpractice hit polls

Of course, many voices questioned that although the DPP has successively exposed the clouded leopard energy and egg import fraud cases, Lai Qingde's polls are still far ahead of Hou Youyi and Ke Wenzhe, and the fraud case seems to have no effect on the election, but the author does not think so.

Taking the 2022 Taiwan nine-in-one election as an example, the author's hometown Tainan is the deep-green base camp of the DPP for more than 20 years, basically there is no suspense for all parties before the election, believing that even if there is a photoelectric fraud case, Huang Weizhe, who is from the DPP, will inevitably win Xie Longjie of the Kuomintang, and the poll data of all parties also shows that in November 2022, two weeks before the election, the data of "Beautiful Island Electronic News" was Huang Weizhe 11.61%, Xie Longjie 1.15%, and "Huiliu News Network" was Huang Weizhe 7.55%, Xie Longjie 0.19%, basically a difference of more than 4%.

But unexpectedly, the final voting results showed that Huang Weizhe won 48.80% of the votes, and Xie Longjie 43.63%, the difference between the two was only 5%. In the author's view, the huge difference between the polls and the results may be related to the people's debt complex and class gap after the topic of malpractice is fermented.

The so-called debt complex refers to the fact that some southern voters think that they owe the DPP "a piece of love" based on their "feelings and pity" for the DPP, including gratitude for the DPP's contribution to Taiwan's democratization, and sentimental regret for the authoritarian persecution that the DPP has suffered. Of course, these people know that the DPP has become corrupt and degenerate, but when they receive polls, they will still tend to express their support for the DPP presidential candidate rather than say "support for the KMT". But of course, these people may not go to the poll in the end, because the verbal support in the poll is already a demonstration of "making up for the deficit", and it is not necessarily really necessary to put it into action, and it is precisely because some people are unwilling to support the DPP with their votes that they want to express their support and "make up for the deficit" in the poll, which may have led to a huge difference between the poll results and reality.

Taiwan's nine-in-one election ended with the vote called, the Kuomintang won 13 seats, and the blue sky of Taipei City and Taoyuan City reappeared, achieving the goal of more than half of the six capitals of party chairman Zhu Lilun (middle). Zhu Lilun delivered a speech at the Zhongshan Hall of the Kuomintang Central Committee on the evening of November 11, in which he called on Tsai Ing-wen to return to be president and not to be chairman of the Democratic Progressive Party only for the sake of the selfish interests of one party. (Courtesy of the Kuomintang)

Then there is the class gap, the key is the aforementioned Tainan photoelectric fraud case. After Tsai Ing-wen introduced the "2025 Non-nuclear Home" policy, the saltland optoelectronics, farmland optoelectronics, and fishery-power symbiosis projects wantonly invaded Tainan farmland and fish, dragging out enclosures, opening joints, intimidating demonstrators and other horrific incidents, and even before the 2022 election, local factions broke out to compete for optoelectronic interests, and hired the underworld to fire 88 shots, which brought the degenerate reality of Tainan's "official and business black gold gun" to the surface. In this process, the victims are obviously the coastal and rural areas of Tainan where the land has been plundered, rather than urban residents, such as the Beimen District surrounded by photovoltaic panels, not only the fish is "dead and electrified" because of electricity cultivation, the residents have been living in the harsh environment of low-frequency noise and photovoltaic panel heat accumulation for a long time, the land is illegally buried in highly polluting slag, and the people's demonstrations have been brutally intimidated by the underworld and arrested by the police, which can be described as cornered and have no way to seek help.

Finally, in the 2022 Tainan mayoral vote, the perennial dark green north gate saw the first time that the Kuomintang candidate won the vote: Xie Longjie led Huang Weizhe with 48% of the vote. Even if it failed to reverse the overall war situation in the end, it has exposed the DPP's great warning: the political style and governance failure of the eight years in power have not been unfelt by the people. Tainan farmers and fishermen are usually middle-aged and elderly elders, and they often work in the fields and fish fields, and they may not be able to receive poll calls if they do not often go online, which may not reflect their voting intentions in the polls, resulting in a huge gap between the closed polls and the voting results.

A similar situation also appeared in the 2022 election results of Kaohsiung City and Pingtung County, which are also in the southern deep green agricultural and fishery counties. In the pre-election poll in Kaohsiung, the results of the "China Asia-Pacific Elite Exchange Association" were 51.7% for Chen Qimai of the Democratic Progressive Party and 19.4% for Ke Zhien of the Kuomintang, a difference of more than 30%, but the final voting results were 58.10% for Chen Qimai and 40.16% for Ke Zhien, narrowing the gap to less than 20%; In the poll before the election in Pingtung County, the results of the "Huiliu News Network" were 50.3% of Zhou Chunmi of the DPP, 18.7% of Su Qingquan of the Kuomintang, and 49.6% of Zhou Chunmi and 24.6% of Su Qingquan, and the final voting results were 49.09% of Zhou Chunmi and 46.59% of Su Qingquan, with a gap of just over 1,<> votes between the two sides.

On November 2022, 11, Kuomintang Tainan mayoral candidate Xie Longjie went to the polling house to vote. Although Xie Longjie ultimately lost the election, it was the closest election battle in Tainan in the past 26 years to a political party rotation. (Facebook@ Ryusuke Sei)

Comparing the grand sweep of 2020.817 million votes by Tsai Ing-wen in 2022, the biggest difference between the 2020 and 2020 election campaigns is that the issue of "anti-China and Taiwan" has not fermented. The 2022 presidential election coincided with the turmoil of Hong Kong's anti-extradition bill, allowing the "anti-China defense of Taiwan" to dominate the election campaign, especially the United States behind the scenes, and the topic of people's livelihood and economy was all covered up; However, in the <> county and city governor election, there is basically no room for "resisting China and protecting Taiwan", and the people's livelihood economy has become the main topic, coupled with the "debt complex" of the people in the southern deep green counties and cities, and the class factor misleads the polls, resulting in an unexpected defeat for the DPP after the vote: the north lost wildly, and the south did not win big.

The situation in 2022 can basically be partially extended to 2024: this time the United States did not strongly promote the issue of "resisting China and protecting Taiwan", and also agreed with Hou Youyi, who was born in the Kuomintang and had a moderate position, as long as the issue of "anti-China and protecting Taiwan" cannot be strongly fermented, the people's livelihood economy can play a role, so the energy malpractice and egg import malpractice can trigger a tsunami of public opinion, forcing the DPP to open the guillotine to stop the bleeding.

However, it is conceivable that the DPP has been in power for eight years, how can there be only the aforementioned two "great achievements"? In the atmosphere of factional struggle and election campaign, the attack and defense of fraud cases will inevitably continue until the eve of the vote, and eventually lead to the benefit of the Kuomintang, which is in the non-green camp and has more organizational combat power than Ke Wenzhe. And the debt complex and class factors of the people in the southern deep green counties and cities will of course continue to play a role, but to put it bluntly, they have been poisoned by the DPP for many years, and even if the southern people still think that they owe the DPP, I am afraid that they no longer think that they must be repaid with votes, otherwise 8 will not be this kind of voting result.

To put it simply, Lai Qingde's current polls are high, in fact, there are many crises: as long as the topic of "resisting China and protecting Taiwan" cannot stir up new heat, economic and people's livelihood factors have a very high probability of causing the DPP to "iron tickets are not iron" and "the ticket warehouse is lost", and in the end, even if Lai Qingde can lead the polls to the end, it is very likely that the president's dream will be shattered when he kicks the door.

Reporter's note: Hangzhou has been "armed to the teeth" for the Asian Games, Deng Pufang, the eldest son of Deng Xiaoping, stepped down as honorary chairman of the Disabled Persons' Federation The Cultural Revolution was persecuted, jumped from the third floor, paralyzing, and a large number of missile silos were deployed China's nuclear strike force jumped - experts have something to say Lai Qingde has hidden worries (2024): China and the United States are running for election The DPP is not as good as the Kuomintang and Hou Youyi in the <> Taiwan election this time|China and the United States are not against Hou Youyi But the people of Taiwan are against it?