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4 years ago

Ruling party elects seven-term lawmaker Lee Hae-chan as new party chair

Arirang News
Arirang News
South Korea's ruling party has a new leader.
As polls expected... it's veteran politician Lee Hae-chan .
He vowed to boost cooperation with the opposition parties... and work to improve people's lives.
Kim Min-ji reports.
Seven-term lawmaker Lee Hae-chan will take the helm of the ruling Democratic Party of Korea for the next two years.
At the party's national convention on Saturday,... Lee won a three-way race,... getting a combined 43-point-9 percent of votes.
The veteran politician has close relations with President Moon Jae-in,... and has a wealth of political and administrative experience,... including serving as prime minister between 2004 and 2006.
In his victory speech, Lee said his focus first and foremost is taking care of the lives of the people.


"We will be the party that comforts the underprivileged. We will be competent and communicate with corporations, workers, the government and civic groups to create better jobs. We will also support the President in developing a welfare state based on income-led growth and innovative strategies."


Lee said he plans to hold regular three-way meetings of the ruling party, the presidential office and the government -- stressing that they have to work hand-in-hand,... and he promised all the party's efforts to support the Moon administration's policy agendas and reform drive.
He also vowed to step up cooperation with the opposition bloc -- requesting talks with the opposition party leaders.


"I hope there can be a meeting between the leaders of the five major parties. We have to come together to make parliament productive. On urgent issues related to people's livelihoods, we can reach a parliamentary consensus,... while also listening to calls from the people to establish peace on the Peninsula.


This could prove helpful,... given that the opposition hasn't been fond of the government's income-led growth policies -- claiming that they've led to sluggish job growth and slowing economy.
Aside from that,... Lee will have to work to turn around a dip in the party's approval ratings -- which in recent weeks hovered at around 40 percent,... after hitting a record high of 57 percent.
The new chair will also have to try and steer the party to victory in the 2020 general elections.
And with the leader holding the right to nominate candidates -- he will likely set the tone for the future course of the party.
Kim Min-ji, Arirang News.

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