Presidential candidates can drop out after passing petition

13 September, 2023

Courtesy of ICRT


Independent presidential hopefuls who collect enough signatures to become eligible candidates in the presidential election will not be violating election law if they later decide to drop out.


However, they must withdraw before they register their candidacies with the Central Election Commission.


Independent presidential hopefuls and their running mates can register from today through Sunday. They must then begin submitting signatures in support of their candidacies between 19 September and 2 November.


Commission chair Lee Jin-yong says the results of the petitions will be announced by 14 November. Candidates nominated by parties or independent candidates who collect enough signatures to qualify as candidates in the presidential election are required to register from 20-24 November.


Independent presidential hopefuls must obtain 289,667 signatures, or 1.5% of eligible voters in the previous presidential election, to qualify as candidates. The CEC says some 19.5 million Taiwan nationals will be eligible to vote for January's general elections. That includes 1,028,000 first-time voters, meaning voters who have turned 20 years old since the last election. This bloc of young voters are regarded as swing voters, a critical group whose support is being aggressively pursued by all candidates.


The CEC also says there will be 17,794 polling stations across the country, an increase of 145 from last year's local election.


In addition, the CEC is planning three nationwide simulation exercises in the run-up to the election, to ensure the security of computerised vote counting and achieve error-free election results. The 2024 presidential and legislative elections are slated for 13 January 2024.

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