Citizens 'three choices' that will determine President Yoon's 'three years'

2024.04.09 17:37
Yoo Jung-in

President Yoon Seok-yul puts a ballot into a ballot box at an early voting center in Myeongji 1-dong, Gangseo-gu, Busan, on Friday, as early voting for the 22nd parliamentary election began. Kim Chang-gil

President Yoon Seok-yul puts a ballot into a ballot box at an early voting center in Myeongji 1-dong, Gangseo-gu, Busan, on Friday, as early voting for the 22nd parliamentary election began. Kim Chang-gil

President Yoon Suk-yeol's control of the state and political influence will depend on the general election on April 10. The election is going to be held a month before the two-year anniversary of Yoon's inauguration and will be characterized as a midterm assessment of his administration, with critics and supporters of the regime facing off.

If the ruling party wins, it will gain momentum and Yoon can enter the second half of his term with stability, but if the opposition wins, he will be blamed for losing the general election and will likely be sucked into a lame duck phase.

On April 8, Yoon met with young venture and startup entrepreneurs at the presidential office in Yongsan and said, "I will ensure financial support to help your businesses grow into world-class companies." At an urban housing supply inspection meeting held shortly afterward, he reaffirmed the current government's real estate tax cuts and deregulation policies and said, "I will work hard to ensure that people can live without worrying about their homes." It is interpreted as a move that stimulated the sentiment of real estate development again before the general election.

Yoon has continued his wide-ranging activities until the end of the election campaign, carrying out 43 schedules across the country since March 10, a month before the general election. The reason why he continued such a move despite criticism of the "government’s involvement in the election" is interpreted to be due to the perception that the general election is a decisive turning point in the future political situation.

If the ruling People’s Power Party (PPP), wins a majority of seats in the National Assembly, the party, which is now a minority, becomes a majority. Yoon is likely to perceive the ruling party's victory as public support for the government and actively pursue the realization of state affairs through legislation. If Yoon and the ruling party share the fruits of the victory of the general election, they will be able to make a soft landing with a gentle curve even in the case of a lame duck.

If the opposition parties, including the Democratic Party of Korea (DPK) and the Rebuilding Korea Party, win a majority or the DPK alone becomes a majority, Yoon's second half of his term will be in constant crisis. With the opposition parties maintaining a majority in the National Assembly, Yoon will be unable to exercise his authority over budget bills and personnel matters without the cooperation of them. In legislation, the president and the ruling party will also be strongly checked by the opposition parties, making it difficult to secure state leadership through legislation during his five-year term in office.

If the opposition wins more than 180 seats, which is two-thirds of the total number of seats in the National Assembly, it is possible that the country will fall into a more serious lame duck situation. As in the past two years, various bills will be designated as a fast-track agenda led by the opposition parties and voted on by them, and Yoon is expected to stand against them with the right to veto. The center of gravity in the party-government relationship is likely to shift firmly to the party. If the reason for a crushing defeat is judged to be various bad news from the presidential office, including the scandals involving First Lady Kim Keon-hee and the controversy over former Minister of National Defense Lee Jong-sup's "flight to escape from the country to Australia," voices calling for a change in the stance of state administration will be encouraged even within the ruling party. As the ruling party's attention shifts to the next presidential candidates, a lame duck may accelerate within the party.

※This article has undergone review by a professional translator after being translated by an AI translation tool.

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