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Jan 31, 2008

DPP suit, and Ma Ying-jeou's green card

The DPP is going through with its calls for a constitutional interpretation on the fairness of the new system, a move that I believe will not only fail but will be seen as a "sore loser" move.

The other topic that's been in the news the last couple of days has to do with Ma Ying-jeou and a green card (a permanent resident card for the US). I haven't posted on it because it seems like a dumb topic, but it may make some impact on the election.

A story from Wed.'s Taipei Times:

On Monday, Hsieh said he had documents proving that Ma still has a green
card. Yesterday he said Ma's wife Chou Mei-ching (周美青) was also a green card
holder.

"Two out of Ma's four family members are green card holders and [Ma's
eldest daughter] is a US citizen. They can emigrate to the US any time. If a
nation's leader and his family get themselves life jackets, how can he say he is
closely bound to the fate of Taiwan?" Hsieh said.

Ma called an emergency press conference on Monday night to respond to
questions Hsieh raised on Sunday. He said he had obtained a green card while he
was living in the US, sometime around 1977.

But Ma said both his and his wife's green cards became invalid in the 1980s
when they applied for visas at the American Institute in Taiwan to travel to the
US.

One reason this green card topic became an issue was that Ma's spokesperson originally said he did not have a green card; Ma later corrected the statement, saying he once had a green card, but no longer does; Dennis reminds us: This is a misrepresentation of fact. Ma confirmed the spokesperson's "no green card" statement before retracting (United Daily Evening News 28 Jan., p. A2). Blaming the spokesperson just won't do.

Ma specifically defended himself by saying he wasn't lying because these statements are not contradictory, and he wasn't trying to hide anything.

Kuomintang presidential candidate Ma Ying-jeou yesterday maintained that he had not violated any law by possessing a U.S. green card and that he never intended to hide the fact he was once a permanent U.S. resident.

He maintained that when he returned to Taiwan and became then President Chiang Ching-kuo's English secretary, his U.S. residency was not against any government regulation of the time.


OK, so Hsieh is supposed to "release his evidence" showing Ma is still a green card holder by the end of the week. He also reminded people that Ma's daughter, the one with the US passport, wasn't a US citizen automatically upon birth in the US; rather, the parents have to apply for the citizenship. Hsieh reasoned that Ma should not chalk up his foreign citizenship to her place of birth alone, and instead should explain why he decided to apply for her citizenship. Edit: Check the comments, I've been corrected on this point.

Frankly, I would be quite surprised if Ma still has a green card. We'll see.

The DPP is using this as a wedge on the loyalty/identity issue, but I'm not sure how much impact it will have. It does make sense in a way though; loyalty is one of Ma's perceived weak points, so the DPP is hitting it hard. And Ma didn't help himself with his initial denial of the card, which he should have just explained right away, as this ETToday analysis affirms.

Still, if Ma's green card turns out to be a bunch of hot air, I think this topic could backfire for the DPP, who would again be focusing on thirty year old issues instead of the future.

7 comments:

Tim Maddog said...

You wrote:
- - -
I believe will not only fail but will be seen as a "sore loser" move.
- - -

Compare that with the real sore losers --the pan-blues -- who, when they lost the 2004 presidential election didn't wait for legal processes, but instead took to the streets immediately and violently.

There's a huge difference there that should not be ignored. The people who will see the DPP as "sore losers" for using the legal system don't have any mirrors.

Tim Maddog

Prince Roy said...

He also reminded people that Ma's daughter, the one with the US passport, wasn't a US citizen automatically upon birth in the US; rather, the parents have to apply for the citizenship. Hsieh reasoned that Ma should not chalk up his foreign citizenship to her place of birth alone, and instead should explain why he decided to apply for her citizenship.

Xie is completely and absolutely incorrect. Ma's daughter became a US citizen when she was born on US soil. There is nothing to 'apply' for. Either Xie is the worst lawyer in history, or he is deliberately distorting the facts in order to mislead Taiwanese voters.

Taiwan Echo said...

He also reminded people that Ma's daughter, the one with the US passport, wasn't a US citizen automatically upon birth in the US; rather, the parents have to apply for the citizenship.

A-Gu, in the news you referred to above, Hsieh DID NOT mention anything you said he did.

Taiwan Echo said...

The most suspicious thing in the entire event is that when Ma was asked to show his passport (and visa stamps in it) in order to show that he did go to USA using visa other than the green card, Ma and his camp told Taiwanese that Ma's passport is no where to be found.

Convenient, isn't it ?

To my knowledge, whoever enters US using a Green Card will have his/her passport written with "ARC" (Alien Registration Card), indicating the person is a "Permanent Resident" of USA.

It just so coincident that you can't help but wonder if Ma is actually a current USA permanent resident.

Hey, US of A, one of your PRs is running for Taiwan's president. All of his siblings as well as half of his children are all Americans. Is this your way of taking over Taiwan --- sending one of your guys to run for Taiwan's President ?

Wait, if Ma is a current PR of USA and he didn't pay tax to USA, he would be a criminal of USA ...

If Ma did pay tax ... holy, Taiwanese President pays tax to USA government ?

dennis said...

One reason this green card topic became an issue was that Ma's spokesperson originally said he did not have a green card; Ma later corrected the statement, saying he once had a green card, but no longer does.

This is a misrepresentation of fact. Ma confirmed the spokesperson's "no green card" statement before retracting (United Daily Evening News 28 Jan., p. A2). Blaming the spokesperson just won't do.

阿牛 said...

Thanks for all the clarifications, everyone!

Paul said...

All I am asking for those pan-blues...if you lose this time, just shut up and let the leaders chosen by the Taiwanese do their job. Oops, sorry, I forgot, you guys own most of the legislature yuan, so...I guess you won't shut up...but to keep continue holding Taiwan's bright future...good job! But remember, you might win or it might seem like you guys win in this lifetime, I am not quite sure about your NEXT lifetime...think about it, be true to yourself, and help others, not yourself...thank you.