President Tsai says her job is tough, gets slammed regularly

2017/05/13 19:45:19 fontsize-small fontsize-default fontsize-big
Tsai Ing-wen (rear, left)

Tsai Ing-wen (rear, left)

Taipei, May 13 (CNA) President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said Saturday the job of president is tough and she is regularly slammed in the media.

"If my father were still alive, he would have opposed me serving as president," Tsai said when attending a face-to-face with senior high students sponsored by a local weekly, Business Today, and listened to students addressing the subject "if I were president."

She shared her experience of the job.

"In fact, the job of a president is tough," she said, adding that she was not referring to working 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This is because the people expect you to show up every day.

"Basically, a president has no holidays, as there are a lot of things to be done. Also, I have to spend a lot of time thinking and making policy," she said.

She discussed the controversial NT$880 billion (US$29.15 billion) "forward looking infrastructure program" proposed by the government, saying that it was devised when the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) was in opposition and its think tanks mapped out a blueprint for national development.

However, in a democratic society a government that focuses only on long-term programs or short-term ideas is doomed to fail, Tsai said.

She observed that a lot of people have no patience and want to see policies that produce immediate results. However, although a government that concentrates on short-term policy might not fail in the short term, it could undermine the long-term prospects of the nation.

"It may not be the most ideal job to be president, but it is a job that can best help people realize their ideals," she said.

Tsai recounted that DPP heavyweight Koo Kuan-min (辜寬敏) once said that no one who wears a skirt should ever be president. After she took office in May 2016, Koo told her that he made the comment because he was unwilling to see a woman slammed daily in the media.

"I can understand his feelings. If my father were still alive, he would have opposed it," she said.

Tsai said that as president, one faces many different points of view and criticisms from those who have yet to understand your intent.

"This is a difficult and not well appreciated job, but someone has to do it," she said.

When she considered running for president, she made the necessary preparations, Tsai said, adding that politicians are not popular in Taiwan.

(By Sophia Yeh and Lilian Wu)

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