Governor and Vice President, 1981–87

  • Shih-shan Henry Tsai


The tang-wai non-KMT (or nonparty, actually, of course, they were very partisan) candidates were hoping to turn Taiwanese outrage into ballots in the November 1981 elections. However, the elections were primarily local and since the opposition leaders were incarcerated, the KMT, with all its resources and its firm control of local election machines, easily won 77 percent of the 189 seats in the various councils. However, 19 of the 31 nonparty candidates won, including relatives of the victims of the Formosa Incident. For example, Huang Tien-fu (who was the brother of Huang Hsinchieh), Chou Ch’ing-yu, the wife of Yao Chia-wen, and Hsu Jung-shu, the wife of Chang Chun-hung, were all elected. In particular, Chou Ch’ing-yu, who ran for a “supplemental” seat in the National Assembly from Taipei, received the highest number of votes. In addition, the nonparty candidates captured 4 of the 19 magistrate offices.1 In short, even though there was no groundswell of support for the tang-wai movement, the most impressive gain was the entrenchment of democratic vocabulary and ideals in a society that had a long tradition of authoritarian rule by mainlander Chinese.


Vice President Democratic Progressive Party Taiwan Provincial Taiwanese People Taiwanese Society 
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© Shih-shan Henry Tsai 2005

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  • Shih-shan Henry Tsai

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