DUP Picks Its Presidential Candidate
The main opposition Democratic United Party declared lawmaker Moon Jae-in its candidate in the December presidential election after he completed his sweep of 13 primary races with a big win in Seoul on Sunday.
Moon, a former chief of staff to the late President Roh Moo-hyun, gained a whopping 60 percent of the vote cast in the Seoul primary.
Sohn Hak-kyu, a former party chairman and former Gyeonggi Province governor, came second with 21 percent of the vote.
DUP presidential nominee Moon pledged to work towards building a compassionate society that would raise the status of the weak and less privileged.
[Interview : Moon Jae-in, DUP Presidential Nominee] "Dear countrymen and party members. Thank you very much. You have chosen a change for Korea. You've chosen a transfer of power. You've chosen a victory for the Democratic United Party. And you have chosen me. You entrusted me with the vital task of becoming the force for a new change. I hereby accept the party's presidential nomination with a humble heart."
In terms of accumulated votes from all 13 regional primaries, Moon secured 57-percent of support and Sohn 22-percent.
Sohn had hoped to reduce Moon's total vote count to below 50-percent to trigger a run-off race but failed to do so.
There were complaints that the rules on voting by mobile phone affected the outcome of the primary race. Disgruntled party delegates jeered the nomination of Moon on Sunday. But the party leadership urged them to unite behind the candidate and defeat the ruling conservative Saenuri Party.
The presidential race will pit Moon against the Saenuri Party's Park Geun-hye and possibly liberal independent candidate and internet entrepreneur Ahn Cheol-soo, who may announce his candidacy this week.
The entry of Ahn would split the progressive vote between him and Moon.
The latest poll by Realmeter shows Park is leading in a three-way race with 41-percent, followed by Ahn with 23-percent and Moon with nearly 18-percent.
[Reporter : Kim Yeon-ji, Reporter
Goyang] "The Democratic United Party finally wrapped up its month-long presidential nomination process. However, the party has many tasks ahead including negotiating with potential liberal independent candidate Ahn Cheol-soo to ensure the success of the progressive camp in the December election."
Kim Yeon-ji, Arirang News, Goyang.
Reporter : firstname.lastname@example.org