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Outcome of the 2020 Taiwan Presidential Election: Perspectives by Gerrit van der Wees Ep 62

By Felicia Lin

A Note from Talking Taiwan host Felicia Lin:


I recently invited Gerrit van der Wees, to share his perspectives on the outcome of the recent 2020 Taiwan presidential election. Gerrit is the former editor of the Taiwan Communique, a publication that was dedicated to the human rights and democracy of Taiwan. He has also worked for FAPA as a senior policy advisor and currently teaches the history of Taiwan at George Mason University. He’s also a former Dutch diplomat.


Gerrit has provided a very concise analysis of how the DPP and Tsai Ing-wen have come back after the disastrous results of the 2018 local elections. He also offered some insight into the reforms that the Tsai administration will now be able to carry out upon re-election and with a DPP majority parliament.


Here’s a little preview of what we talked about in this podcast episode:


  • How the protests in Hong Kong played a role in the outcome of Taiwan’s 2020 presidential election
  • What led to the poor results for the DPP in the 2018 local election results and how Tsai Ing-wen was able to turn that around and make a comeback
  • The unprecedented news coverage of the 2020 presidential election
  • The high voter turnout for the 2020 presidential election
  • The reforms that Tsai Ing-wen initiated in her first term and will now be able to move forward with, including the transitional justice reform urging investigation into many of the political murders that happened during the martial law period and White Terror era of Taiwan
  • Tsai Ing-wen’s economic initiatives and reforms
  • China’s carrot and stick approach in dealing with Taiwan
  • How Tsai Ing-wen was able to attract businesses in China back to Taiwan


Related Links:


The Formosan Association for Public Affairs (FAPA):


Taiwan Communique:


1992 Consensus:


Washington Post Editorial by George Will: Time is on Taiwan’s side, as long as the U.S. is, too


228 Incident (1947):


The Kaohsiung incident (1979):


Lin Yi-hsiung murder case (1980):


Death of Professor Chen Wen-chen at the National Taiwan University (1981):


About the Host

Felicia Lin is the Host and Producer of Talking Taiwan, a podcast which seeks to introduce you to interesting stories connected to Taiwan and the diverse individuals who make up Taiwan’s global community.

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